Water restrictions remain at stage 2; sewer initiative OK’d

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By Matt Kelton
Pioneer Sentinel

Despite diminished levels at Lake Arrowhead, raw water supplies for the City of Henrietta appear to be in good shape, prompting officials to leave the drought contingency plan at stage two.

Aldermen discussed lake levels and the contingency plan during Monday’s city council meeting.

Lake Arrowhead is at 49.7 percent capacity, down 2.9 percent from one month ago, but the city has requested only two water releases this year.

The City of Wichita Falls, which controls Lake Arrowhead, is required to release 1,560 acre-feet of water to the City of Henrietta reservoir each year. Henrietta received its first release, 132 acre-feet, on May 24. On Monday, the City of Henrietta called for another release of 176 acre-feet.

The city has used less water this year than was used during last summer alone, when the area was suffering exceptional drought conditions, said City Secretary Cathy Mills.

In stage 2 of the contingency plan, residents with odd-numbered addresses can water on odd-number days, while residents with even-numbered address can water on even-numbered days. All watering must be done between the hours of midnight to 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. to midnight.

The council approved a sanitary sewer overflow initiative with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality in an effort to update the system to meet state requirements.

The TCEQ is requiring the city to join the initiative following flooding in between May 10, 2010, and February 2011, which caused two discharges of waste water totaling 103,000 gallons from the south sewer plant. The plant is located in a flood zone.

Since that time, the city has worked on compliancy issues with the TCEQ by adopting plans to seal manhole covers, inspect sewer mains by camera, jet clean sewer mains and to clean sewer mains with a chemical root control. The city has posted on its website the proper method for disposing of grease, fats and oil.

The initiative outlines the city’s goals over a period of 10 years.

The council and Henrietta Economic Development Director Rick Langford reviewed and approved the city’s tax abatement guidelines and criteria, and agreed to do so every five years.

The council also approved an ordinance closing the alleyway between the 800 block of East Crafton and East Commerce streets.

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Pioneer Sentinel

The Pioneer Sentinel is an online newspaper designed to deliver the news of Clay County, Texas, in a concise and community-friendly format.

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