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Parma Park concerns

/ Source: WHEC-TV

It's a favorite spot for hundreds of children and their parents but some are calling it a danger zone.

Cande Cooper's two boys play baseball at the Parma Town Park. She says her family loves the park and so do many of her neighbors. "Hilton really doesn't have anywhere else for the kids to go and play their sports, with that awesome playground it's really the only park we have."

A Parma resident is questioning whether the town park is safe for anyone to use. John Chart says the soil is contaminated with high levels of arsenic and he has the test results to prove it. "I think there should be yellow tape put around this field until the soil is removed it should not be used for anything."

Chart became concerned a year ago when he saw a letter from the State Department of Conservation stating that soil it had purchased six years ago from a Parma construction site was contaminated.

Chart says it's the same soil the town and used for the park. "I believe that having toxic soil in our park where our children play is just unacceptable. I thought it was definitely the right thing to do to pursue this."

Chart believes Town Supervisor Richard Lemcke has known about the soil for the last six years and has done nothing about it. But Lemcke says the town did test the soil this spring and found no danger. He says chart's claims are politically motivated. "The DEC, Monroe County Health - no one has told us we have imminent danger out there and because one's gentleman's on this crusade. Until we get the facts and figures and given the circumstances of this particular gentleman and the time of year it is, we're going to wait to hear from someone."

Lemcke says he's heard no complaints from residents but some people would like the town to take a second look.

Parma resident Jeanne Saucke said, "I think that the test needs to be redone first of all. Then if the test still shows there are certain levels of arsenic, then it needs to be cleaned up."

Chris Crane with the Monroe County Health Department told us the health department has seen both charts report and the towns and says, "We have conflicting findings. It's our job to make sure the park is safe."

Crane says a meeting has been scheduled to discuss the findings and to determine if another round of testing is appropriate.

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