Town considers selling its water

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

CLOVERDALE -- Cloverdale heard the state of their water finances and about the benefits of selling the town's water to an outside company in a special town council meeting Tuesday evening.

James Treat from O.W. Krohn & Associates is the town's financial advisor. He reported to the council how chemical costs have gone up nearly $50,000 mostly due to sodium hydroxide. Sodium hydroxide is used as a softener for the water.

"There are very few water utilities that currently soften their water, especially to this extent," Treat said and an official from American Water agreed.

Cloverdale currently softens its water to the extent a home would. At a cost of $3.87/gal. and use 19,000 gallons a year, Cloverdale spends near $77,000 for sodium hydroxide alone. The cost to run the utility in 2007 was around $38,000, but if trends continue, 2008 will be nearly $86,000, according to Treat.

One way to lower the costs would be to lower the use of sodium hydroxide or abstain from using it at all. Councilman Dennis Padgett suggested they take a look into both options.

Also present at the special meeting were two officials from American Water.

By request of town council President Don Sublett, the officials gave a 20-minute presentation about the benefits of selling the town's water utility. They began by stating how Russellville and nearby Waveland are in negotiations to sell their utilities as well.

"With a town this size, the utility could be appraised around two million dollars," said Jeff Henson of American Water. "The town could use that money to pay off debts or use it for whatever else the town deems necessary."

No decisions were made at this meeting on the future of the water utility. The only thing decided upon at the meeting was to check into lowering the levels of sodium hydroxide.

The next town council meeting is set of Sept. 23 at 7 p.m. in Town Hall.

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  • Selling our water utilities would be the perfect option for THIS board. Seriously, if you can't handle the task, sell it to someone who can.

    Hkakeem Mulhammid (ex Al-Quida militant) and his group are buying smalltown water companies allover the USA. They are a bunch of middle-east Arab investors looking for ailing utilities to buy at bargain prices. They also pay in cash. Your man Mitch has their number.

    -- Posted by Xgamer on Wed, Sep 17, 2008, at 5:03 AM
  • Where else does Cloverdale make money to run on besides the Water???

    -- Posted by chicagogirl on Wed, Sep 17, 2008, at 8:05 AM
  • The council won't make a decision until they talk to the ones that make the decisions. Seriously, sell off everything they can so they can tell the community how they saved taxpayer's money (?) Cash........what a unique idea.

    -- Posted by sadNmad on Wed, Sep 17, 2008, at 8:34 AM
  • If the water utility is sold off, who is then responsible for maitaining all of the water lines? Would the current employees be let go and the new company use their own? Would our bills increase with a new company?

    -- Posted by cloverlady on Wed, Sep 17, 2008, at 9:32 AM
  • We dont even get to shower on a regular basis. We only get to shower on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays. We have to drink bottled water cause the running water is unsanitary to drink. And now we are only allowed 6 bottles of water a day. Imagine how much a person sweats on a daily basis over here and imigine how much water one would need to drink to replinish. Ponder that the next time you drink a glass of water.

    -- Posted by joey_cope on Wed, Sep 17, 2008, at 10:00 AM
  • How about using the money to settle all those lawsuits.

    -- Posted by whatsup on Wed, Sep 17, 2008, at 7:33 PM
  • Not sure what the connection is between this Hkakeem Mulhammid (sp?) and American Water is. I don't necessarily have an opinion on the purchase of the water systems, but adding distortions like this distracts from the real conversation. American Water is an NYSE traded company founded in 1886. Look at the website for board members and managers - I saw a few German guys on the board, but it's an American company.

    -- Posted by bungie on Thu, Sep 18, 2008, at 8:10 AM
  • Typically, when something gets so expensive that you can't afford it, you responsibly stop using it. Not in Cloverdale. They want to sell it to someone else so they can raise the rates higher so that the one's of us NOT on Government assistance can struggle even more to pay for it. Just in case you haven't really noticed, the chemicals they are putting in our water isn't really softening it anyway. It has stripped the perm completely from my hair! So they are wasting OUR money to begin with. Everyone in the County that reads the paper in regards to town meetings and such should realize that the board never does anything that is a benefit to the residents of Cloverdale. Maybe Greencastle or Spencer could buy the whole town.

    -- Posted by clovertaxpayor on Thu, Sep 18, 2008, at 9:07 AM
  • bad hair day? wear a hat

    -- Posted by justmoveonwillya on Thu, Sep 18, 2008, at 8:08 PM
  • Why are they putting LYE in the water. I did a internet search and finally found LYE as a water softener but it wasn't the best way to soften by what I read. I have hard water where I live but we live with it. And am thankful everyday that I don't have the nightmare water bills I have heard of in Cloverdale. If Cloverdale would sell it the town will probably waste the money as it has all the other funds it gets. Of course I don't live in the area where I can run for the board but I have to live with the boards choices. GOOD LUCK to the people of Cloverdale.

    -- Posted by clovermaybe on Thu, Sep 18, 2008, at 9:57 PM
  • I don't believe the article stated they ARE selling the water. They listened to a presentation, that is all.

    If you are concerned, talk to the town council. I did.

    -- Posted by captain crunch on Fri, Sep 19, 2008, at 5:25 AM
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