Accurate information needed on bond

By Patricia Mitchell | Published Saturday, October 20, 2018

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With $2,750,000 at stake and early voting beginning on Monday, if Rhome voters are to make an informed decision, they are entitled to correct information; particularly official information posted in the bond update published on the city of Rhome website.

Specifically, “the Eastside WWTP is at the 75 percent capacity and is required to be in the design phase for expansion.” Three paragraphs later, the document states, “It should be noted that if Prairie Point Development decided not to pursue development that the city would still be required to expand the Eastside WWTP due to TCEQ’s 75 percent capacity rule.”

This is inconsistent with the June 2018 Eastside Wastewater Treatment Plant Master Plan commissioned by Rhome’s mayor and council.

The report notes that at 75 percent capacity for three consecutive months, the permittee must be in the design stage for expansion. However, the permittee is not required to obtain authorization and start new construction until it reaches 90 percent of its capacity for three consecutive months.

From February to June 2017, the report notes the monthly numbers exceeded 75 percent required for design. Dropping to 63 percent in July, monthly numbers remained below 75 percent, averaging 69 percent.

This council borrowed $660,000 last year, allocating $95,000 for the purpose of design as required by the 75 percent mandate. None of the months in 2017 exceeded 90 percent that mandates new construction.

From January to March 2018, monthly numbers remained below 75 percent. After the faulty flow meter was replaced in April, numbers dropped significantly, to 51 in April and 46 in May. Year to date, it is averaging 57 percent, below 75 percent required for design and not even close to the 90 percent required for new construction. For the last 11 months, averaging 59.

Based on the report, expansion of the Eastside Wastewater Treatment Plant is not necessary and won’t be required for some time.

Vote Nov. 6.

Patricia Mitchell

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