Received today from Valdosta City Council Tim Carroll, who sent it to a long list of people, apparently responding to the VDT's recent article and editorials.
During my tenure as a city councilman, I have tried to keep everyone updated on events and issues with our city. I want to share and email I sent out recently that hopefully you will agree is important information. In regards to today's paper — the story has some serious errors and omissions. First of all in 2009- all we saved from the flood was the pump station. No sewage treatment was taking place and contrary to what the VDT says, then as we are now — raw sewage was going into the river. It lasted about a month in 2009. With the decision to pull equipment/tanks etc so they would not be destroyed this year — we not only saved a lot of tax payer money….but we will be able to bring the plant back on line in about a week. Reducing by several weeks the amount of sewage going into the river. In regards to city water systems being compromised — considering our water plant is 10-15 miles north of the WWTP and the amazing fact that the river flows south — your water is completely safe. Do we like discharging raw sewage into the river? Of course not. During the flood it was going to happen either way.
I want to add one other note — the men and women in our Utility department, fire, police, sanitation, engineering etc, etc have been working long days this past week trying to manage flooding issues. They deserve our thanks. It is very frustrating for those whose homes and businesses were threatened by the flood. It is very frustrating to our city employees who have worked so hard to manage this crisis.
So as Paul Harvey says — “here is the rest of the story”.
I think Council Carroll is a bit cavalier about the city's wells being upstream of the wastewater treatment plant, because while the river may flow south, it's not clear how the Floridan Aquifer flows, especially with multiple 800 foot deep wells sucking water out of it. Also I wonder what people downstream of the Withlacoochee Wastewater Treatment Plant think of all that raw sewage coming down at them, especially considering some of them have wells downstream.
However, he makes a number of points that the VDT omitted, including a plan to do something about the situation, and appended is his "rest of the story".Continue reading