2017-08-06 / News

St. Charles Village waits for contamination test results

By Jeanne Marcello
Staff Reporter

VILLAGE OF ST. CHARLES – During the last week in July, Saginaw County Sheriff William Federspiel pulled deputies from the St. Charles substation over health concerns in the building. St. Charles Village Manager Matthew Lane explained the deputies were pulled due to concerns about contamination in the building.

“We have known about the remnant of underground storage tanks; the DPW used to be [in the village building]. They had their own gas pumps,” Lane said.

The village police department shared the office with sheriff’s deputies. The village police officers continue to work out of the same office.

Lane confirmed the two previous St. Charles Village police chiefs, Kevin McInerney and Barry Dobis, both suffered from the same form of leukemia. Dobis retired from the village police department in February of this year.

Lane said, “The situation is concerning to me. It’s been taking place over decades. But, we don’t have any firm scientific answers. We’re waiting for tests.”

The Village of St. Charles has engaged AKT Peerless to run those tests. The next step is to work with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to establish a plan based on the test results.

“We will need some type of remediation plan. There’s no money budgeted for it at this time. The financial piece will become clearer once we know what has to be done,” Lane said.

He explained he first learned about the problem when he became village manager in late 2015. “The level of concern wasn’t as high then as it is now. With what’s happening now, it’s incumbent upon me to take the bull by the horns and take care of the situation.”

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