Letter – Other, better options available

Letter to the editor from the June 4, 2014 Grand Forks Gazette newspaper.

Editor, The Gazette:Enclosed is information on how the City of Revelstoke has dealt with their loss of water through leaking main lines. Veritec engineering did a current and in depth study, and came up with far better solutions than are proposed by our current council and CAO. You will notice the electronic metering proposed by our council is by far the most expensive way to find main line water leaks. The Veritec report also states the actual loss through main line leaks will be between 27 per cent and 74 per cent of water pumped. Our council estimates our loss between 25 per cent to 35 per cent.The percentage of water loss from the main lines is comparable, which suggests that excess usage by property owner, is very minimal.The Veritec report also acknowledges the water lost by the leaking mains is chlorinated, and this water goes directly back into the aquifer.The excerpts of the article from the Nov. 5, 2013 Revelstoke Daily News covers the highlights of the 200+ page report provided by Veritec engineering. The entire engineering report is available on line.Good intentions but poor research by council has provided Grand Forks property owners with a metering option that is far too expensive, and far too inefficient. The solutions provided to the City of Revelstoke, is a fine example of what can really be accomplished.Grand forks tax aying property owners have every right to expect their elected council’s research and provide cost effective solutions—not rely on outdated engineering reports, or, for that matter, expect or look to the CAO of the day to solve all their problems.What our outdated engineering report does address is another well and pump need to be provided to be a replacement for a older current well that could fail.The allocation of $1.4 million of gas tax dollars could provide a new well and pump withNO additional debt load to the taxpayers, and the balance of funds go towards providing a system to identify main line water leaks.Once the city repairs all the main line water leaks, then a true measurement of the real consumption of property owners will be known.It is my firm belief far better value can be derived from a $1.4 million expenditure than is currently being offered.To all payers of property taxes, please do,talk to your councillors and mayor, and insist they do not move forward on their current proposal. Better options are available.Gene Koch,Grand Forks