INEZ, Ky. — It was meant to be a joyful event in eastern Kentucky, where firefighters sprayed a plume of blue water from a truck to announce that one of their own is having a boy.

But the gender reveal isn’t going down well in Martin County, where some residents have to use bottled water for everyday needs.

Members of the Facebook group “Martin County Water Warriors” are sharing outrage over a video of the event, at a time when they face outages, low pressure and dirty water. The eastern Kentucky water district says it can’t afford infrastructure repairs. They’ve proposed a rate increase of 49.5 percent.

Inez Volunteer Fire Department Chief Lee Gauze is defending his crew, saying a firefighter paid $6.70 for 1,000 gallons of water.

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