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ALERT SHOCKER: State to Anderson Officials — Don’t Forget to Flush

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Anderson Mayor Kevin S. Smith (R)

Administration officials of Anderson, Ind. Mayor Kevin S. Smith (R) “acknowledge” to Indiana utility regulators that no water strategic plan exists for the City of Anderson.

The Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC)  has some advice for Anderson Mayor Kevin S. Smith (R) — Don’t Forget to Flush.  Iron oxide levels in Anderson’s water supply have the OUCC asking City of Anderson officials to develop a plan to flush the city water lines to improve water quality in the city.  The OUCC says “Indiana consumers have the right to expect safe, reliable utility services at the most reasonable prices possible.”  Indiana utility regulators are currently reviewing Mayor Smith’s request for a 47% water rate increase.

After eight years, mayoral administration officials "acknowledge" no city water strategic plan exists.

After eight years, mayoral administration officials “acknowledge” to Indiana utility regulators that no city water strategic plan exists as request for 47% water rate hike progresses through state review.

During a formal review of the mayor’s proposed rate increase, the OUCC asked city officials to produce a copy of its strategic water plan.  In over 130 pages of testimony, city officials “acknowledged” that no plan exists.  The State, in a 32 page response, has instructed the city to flush city water lines, institute professional water tower safety inspections, and develop a strategic water plan, among other action items.

The State of Indiana, in response to the acknowledgement that no water plan exists, explained why a strategic plan is important to Anderson and referred city administration officials to page 2 of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) booklet, “Strategic Planning: A Handbook for Small Water Systems.”

In December, ALERT and Call 6 Investigators reveal Anderson water tower inspection record.

In December, ALERT and Call 6 Investigators reveal Anderson water tower inspection record.

According to a Reuters report, after water goes through an “extensive purifying process, water ends up in your glass after traveling through pipes laid under city streets 50, 60, or 100 years ago.”  Many of these pipes are made of iron, which corrodes over time.  Timothy Ford, a microbiologist and water research scientist with Montana State University said, “If you clean up water and then put it into a dirty pipe, there’s not much point.”  Ford continued, “I consider the distribution system to be the highest risk and greatest problem we are going to face in the future (to drinking water).”

In response to city officials, the OUCC explained, “Generally, water utilities in Indiana perform periodic routine flushing of their mains to improve water quality and flushing of their fire hydrants for safety reasons.  It is typical in Indiana for well water to contain iron oxide, which discolors finished water.  While treatment plants use filters to remove iron oxide, they don’t eliminate it altogether.  To maintain the quality of water, flushing can eliminate iron that settles in the mains.”

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{ 5 comments… add one }

  • crystal Tuesday, February 3, 2015, 9:52 am

    The money that has been “wasted” on the Mounds lake reservoir project could have made some valuable improvements to the city.
    If the dam goes through they will force more people to buy toxic water composed of chemical runoff from thousands of acres of farm fields and local businesses.The reservoir would be on top of old dump and junk yard sites.
    Read the article…
    “An Indiana Community’s Fight to Save the West Fork of the White River” in Counter Punch….very interesting…

  • kathy Tuesday, February 3, 2015, 12:32 am

    Water seems to be the big issue for Anderson. From reservoir to water quality to Nestle. Sam Bozzo and.T. Boone Pickens prefer to call it BLUE GOLD. Why are we paying double for water and what does Nestle .pay. pumping and bottling day and night. Better question, what effect will this pumping have on Anderson/ Indiana’s water supply?

  • Mike Monday, February 2, 2015, 11:49 am

    Maybe some of that rate hike should go into reimbursing well owners in Lafayette Township. A lot of them had to have their wells drilled farther down when Anderson drilled under Lafayette Township.

  • Lonnie Brooks Monday, February 2, 2015, 8:26 am

    Anderson has refused to flush water lines for years It does not matter ho is in office they just do not flush water lines. All other city and towns around Anderson do flush there lines

  • SUE COGSWELL Sunday, February 1, 2015, 6:38 pm

    NO OUR MAYOR WOULD RATHER SPEND MILLIONS ON A RESERVOIR AND IF IT IS NOT STOPPED A COMMISSION WILL BE APPOINTED AND THEN IT IS A DONE DEAL. ANDERSON NEEDS HELP FROM THE OUCC..

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