Brewery water long time coming

November 30th, 2009 by Ken

Any expectation that the cities of Olympia, Lacey and Tumwater have about using water rights from the old Olympia Brewery will have to be put on hold for the immediate future.

Use of any water from those water rights may be as long as five years away.  Lacey City Manager Greg Cuoio said that much research has to be done on the existing wells and it’s anticipated that those wells won’t hook up to a municipal water system.  That means that new wells have to be dug and new infrastructure put in place.

In addition, Lacey has to negotiate with the City of Olympia to use its water system to bring the water from the site to Lacey users.

The City of Lacey has called for a four percent increase in water rates in the 2010 budget.  Cuoio said the money will be used to pay the 30 union members in the city water department a 2 percent pay increase and the pick up of 90 percent of their health care costs.

Lacey has searched for new wells in order to meet the needs of its growing community.  The city needs an additional 10,000 acre feet of water just to meet the demands within the city limits.  (There is 325,000 gallons of water in an acre foot.)

The new Betti well is pumping 600 acre feet of good quality water.  A new well at Hawks Prairie is pumping 1600 acre feet, but the water is of poor quality and has to be filtered.  The city has constructed a multi-million dollar facility to do just that.   A second well at Hawks Prairie awaits the approval of the Department of Ecology but that water will also have to be filtered.

A slow down in new construction has given the city some breathing room but additonal water sources are still needed.

Posted in Business, Government, Informational, The Real News

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