2007-09-22 / Editorials & Letters

Writer questions more water reports, studies

Editor:

Am I correct that the village is back to conducting another study on the feasibility of a village owned and operated water well system?

At the expense of repeating myself, wouldn't it make a great deal more sense to inquire with those that have already been through the experience, and have similar numbers of potential paying customers, as to how much capital and revenue are needed to support a system? What good does it do to know whether producing wells can be drilled if there is no hope of operating a system at a reasonable cost, and securing the revenues to keeping those operations going?

In fact, even before doing that, it might be appropriate to check the accuracy of the population to be served. According to the last census figures available, for zip code 43008, there is a household population of 2113; but there are only 1033 housing units; and only 835 of those are owner-occupied. Does anyone really believe that number of households can support a viable system? Has anyone bothered to ask the EPA whether any studies have already been conducted as to how much such a system might cost to construct and operate; or to identify the savings that might be achieved by joining with another system already in place? There I go again, asking rhetorical questions.

But then, what might be expected from a council and mayor that explains everything with conclusions that defy any rational understanding. According to the Beacon's report, the "studies" are necessary because:

"In a related issue, Foster said in order for the village to complete a Capability Assurance Plan - a plan that helps determine the village's ability to construct a villageoperated water treatment facility, as is the current plan - the village's well field wells must be redeveloped. ME Companies, an engineering firmdesigning a water system for the village, is getting an estimate from several contractors to do this work. Foster hopes there will be more information about this at the next council meeting." (Apparently, there is no need for a plan that also addresses the Village's ability to operate a system once it is constructed).

Maybe it would be more understandable if we just knew:

1. How much has ME Companies already been paid?

2. How much more is budgeted to be paid to them?

3. Who requires the Capability Assurance Plan?

4. Why do the village's well field wells need to be redeveloped?

5. What does the mayor mean by "redeveloped" in this context?

6. Where are the current well field wells and who drilled them?

Even more importantly, in determining the village's ability to construct (and operate) its own stand-alone system, is there going to be any consideration given to the ability of the village to even collect money from its residents? Sixty fivepercent of residents in 43008 have a household income about 30% lower than the national average. If there is a collection problem, will the village just raise the rates of those who do pay?

Perhaps I judge too harshly, but I have been waiting over 14 years for potable water to be available in Buckeye Lake; and the only results ever seen are the egos of government officials getting in the way of common sense. Perhaps people who get elected to public officejust can't grasp the fact that being in "control" or having ones name on a street (or water system) really means nothing to anyone but them in the long run. Believe it or not, it is much more important to protect the health and welfare of village residents. People need clean water now, and that water can be obtained fairly quickly from one or mor e systems already in place, and without further costly "studies" ad nauseum. All that needs to be done is the signing of an agreement; and if this council and mayor don't do whatever is needed to get it done as quickly as possible, shame on them.

Boyd Ferris Harbor Hills

Return to top