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WATER LEAK DAMAGES AGRICULTURE BUILDING

WATER LEAK DAMAGES AGRICULTURE BUILDING

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A major water leak during the weekend in the state Department of Agriculture building caused extensive damage to the second and first floors and the basement, authorities said Monday.

``The amount of damage has yet to be determined,' Agriculture Commissioner Jim Graham said. ``Employees discovered the leak about 6 a.m. Monday.'Graham said a seal in a water circulating heat pump on the second floor apparently ruptured Friday after working hours and water pumped throughout the weekend. He said he hoped to have the water cleaned up by Tuesday, adding that repairs would take a week.

Water damage was sustained in the first floor's hall of fame room, where part of the ceiling caved in and 11 of 25 pictures were soaked but salvageable, spokesman Jim Devine said. There was severe damage in the offices of the Division of Natural Resources and Aquaculture, where the ceiling fell through, furniture and walls were damaged and files and papers were destroyed, he said.

Devine said the basement snack bar was washed out of business, with damage to the cash register and various appliances. Floor and ceiling damage had occurred in the payroll section, she said.

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