Editor, County Press
WOODSBORO — The newest water well in Woodsboro was shut down after every solution suggested by the town’s engineers failed to work.
“We’ve gone as far as we can go,” said Gabe Thomas, public works director. “Well No. 5 is turned off. We’ve done everything the engineer said.”
Thomas said the town is only using wells 3 and 4, the town’s older wells. Well No. 5 was installed to alleviate the arsenic levels contained in the older wells. The original plan was to blend the water from Well 5 with Wells 3 and 4 to decrease arsenic levels to comply state guidelines.
The water from No. 5 contained manganese and other minerals which caused the water to be discolored with a bad odor so a filtration system was installed.
Since the water filtration system was installed, arsenic levels decreased; however, No. 5, which was supposed to be blended with water from the other wells is not in compliance with residual levels set by the state, according to Thomas.
“Residuals are what’s left after the chlorine has done its job,” said Wesley Childers, consultant, who has been working with Thomas to correct the town’s water problems.
The consultant said 50 pounds of chlorine was added, to no avail.
“It’s a balancing act,” he said.
Childers said he talked to other consultants in Dallas. They were baffled and had no answers.
“I cannot get a residual in the tank,” Childers said. “I take a sample, add bleach and it actually burns it. I can’t get the residual – it eats it before it gets there.
“I don’t know what actions you want Gabe and me to try,” Childers said.
Water samples will be sent in this week to check arsenic levels.
“Well 4 is the primary well and it has lower arsenic levels,” Childers said.
The consultant said No. 5 is not a factor since 3 and 4 are running.
Thomas also reported two major water leaks, one near the school and the other a result of someone running over a fire hydrant.
“They were taken into custody,” he said.
City Secretary Ruby DeLaGarza told the council that water, sewer and drainage grants will be coming up soon.
The council set Monday, June 25, as the beginning of the annual Hurricane Cleanup. One pass will be made through the town to pick up debris.
“After one pass is made, Cody will ride down the streets to ensure no more stuff is put out,” said Mayor Pro Tem Larry Jochetz, who presided over the meeting in the absence of Mayor George Hernandez.
In other matters, Municipal Officer Cody Farenthold was released from his probationary period and given a raise to $34,500 effective immediately.
Farenthold reported the town has been quiet; however, he has answered several major medical calls, some requiring CPR.
The town also hired Jacob Diaz at the wastewater station. Diaz is licensed and was hired at $15 per hour. J. Torres was hired as a laborer at $10 an hour.
Municipal Judge Diego Bustillo reported a total of $6,909.66 was collected by the court, with $2,550 going to the state.
In other matters, the council:
• Voted to host the Coastal Bend Water Utility Association meeting July 18, although a location was not decided.
• Agreed to provide two port-a-potties for the Lions Club annual Fourth of July celebration.
• Set June 19 at 6:30 p.m. for a budget workshop.
• Voted for Larry Jochetz to continue as mayor pro tem.