The Board of Trustees at the Town of Goldsby have been busy discussing the Town’s water system, how it works, and challenges and issues it is facing, as well as future plans. The latest discussions took place at the Board’s October and November meetings and included the possibility of mandatory water rationing in the Summer of 2024.
While Trustees believe they have enough water capacity with the possibility of purchasing more in a pass-through agreement with Newcastle for Oklahoma City water, the Town’s water lines going to the storage towers, especially the west tower, during peak times is not sufficient.
Mayor Mike Herrin provided a Power Point presentation during the October meeting which showed the system, how it works, and the causes of the Town’s water crisis. The presentation also showed what can be done to fix it. During that time, several questions were asked about infrastructure.
Herrin states that water usage by residents and businesses during summer peak times exceeds the system’s ability to fill the Town’s two water towers. When this occurs, there is either low water pressure or no water available. The West tower is considered the worse of the two towers, and is the Town’s highest priority.
Herrin’s presentation states that projects which could be done to fix it include the following:
• Increasing water flow to the towers;
• Install an 18” water line from the treatment plant to the west tower;
• Install an 18” water line from the treatment plant to W. Center Road; and/or
• Purchase pass-through water from Newcastle which comes from Oklahoma City.
Herrin states that the Town needs a comprehensive water study by an engineer (related story in this issue of The Purcell Register). He states that a project to connect the treatment plant to a 12” water line at 24th Street would take about two years, and cost at least $4 million. This project could also entail a high capacity pump at approximately $500,000, and larger water storage at the treatment plant at a cost of $850,000.
The Mayor’s presentation also states that connecting the treatment plant to a 12” water line on Center Street would need an engineer’s evaluation to determine costs and timeline.
In order for any project to begin, it would need approval from both the Goldsby Water Board and the Town Board of Trustees.
The Town has been considering a purchase of 150,000 gallons per day of water from Newcastle at a cost of approximately $26,000 per month, or $315,000 per year. The presentation notes that a contract with Newcastle has a limited water purchase of 400,000 gallons per day.
Other options presented included the possibility of a multi-town and/or tribal consortium which would build a new water line from Oklahoma City as opposed to using Newcastle pass-through from Oklahoma City. The presentation also questioned the possibility of purchasing water from Norman.
The Mayor’s presentation noted that both of these options would require additional infrastructure and would be more of a potential long-term option.
The City of Newcastle has pass-through wholesale water contracts in place with Tuttle and McClain County Rural Water District #9. They are also in talks with the City of Blanchard.
The mayor’s presentation can be found online at www.townofgoldsby.com. The presentation outlines how the Town has rights to 730 million gallons per year. Their water treatment plant was built in 1997 and a major expansion took place in 2018 at a cost of $5.5 million. The Town still owes approximately $2 million, according to the presentation, and is paying approximately $180,000 in annual payments for a loan with the Oklahoma Water Resources Board.
The maximum water production at the plant is 2.0 million gallons per day, or approximately 60 million gallons per month.
The Town has two water towers, one in the west and one in the south, both with total capacities of 300,000 gallons. The west tower, which serves 612 water meters, is fed from the treatment plant by five miles of an 8” water line, while the south tower, which serves 813 meters, is fed from the treatment plant by an 8” water line for 3.5 miles.
The Town has 1,425 meters. Of those, 1,129 are Goldsby residents, 296 are out-of-town residents, and 104 are commercial.
The presentation noted that Goldsby must conserve its water and will likely have a mandatory odd/even rationing in Summer 2024. They want to improve awareness and understanding of the problem, and improve notification on the water rationing. The presentation notes that cooperation will be needed from every water meter holder.
Finally, the presentation also noted that additional meters are coming online. It states that the Bellissimo Subdivision will have 11 additional meters, the Brentwood Subdivision will have 117 additional meters, and the Summit Subdivision will have 124 additional meters. The Old Town Square project will have 16-plus additional meters, and there are other commercial developments in Goldsby which will have to be included in the count.
Herrin stated every effort is being made to make sure the Town and Water Authority Board make the right decisions for the population.
A motion to approve a pool of engineers for the Town and Water to use was approved and included Guernsey, Crafton Tull, Parkhill, and Kimley Horn. The mayor was approved to sign any agreements.
Herrin said, “We have the wells and the treatment plant to produce the water we need. We are using about 30% of what our annual capacity is to produce water from the wells to the treatment plant. The wells provide the same capacity that the treatment plant can treat — basically two million gallons per day, according to the town engineer.
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