Town of Campbell to ask La Crosse County board for $100K for PFAS testing

LA CROSSE (WKBT)- The Town of Campbell board has approved a motion to ask the La Crosse County board for $100,000 for PFAS testing.

Town of Campbell supervisor Lee Donahue told News 8 Now that the money would go toward drilling a test well in an area where they previously haven’t found too much contamination of the harmful forever chemicals.

The DNR and private citizens have conducted tests of over 550 wells in the town. They found 97 percent of the wells have some level of PFAS contamination.

If the county board approves the $100,000, the test drill research would take several months, but if the research is promising, it would signal a huge step for the town.

“It will help us to determine whether there is a safe, long-term water source, and that’s really our goal,” said Donahue.

Residents have been on DNR-supplied bottled water since March of last year.

Donahue added that town residents are not eligible for new DNR funding announced this week.

Governor Evers announced $10 million in grants are available for people with private wells to dig deeper wells to avoid harmful nitrates. But Donahue said that money is for wells in different parts of the state, because the town of Campbell has found that digging deeper has no correlation to finding fewer PFAS.

“It isn’t pertinent to our community, not pertinent to the town of Campbell, because we haven’t found that correlation. As long as you’re in that sound and alluvial aquifer, you’re going to find contamination,” said Donahue.

Donahue is submitting the formal financial request to the county board. The timetable for when the county board might approve that request is unknown.

Donahue says she and the county supervisor discussed the $100,000 amount last year and there was an informal agreement that if the town needed the resources, the board would consider the motion.