Sunday, October 7, 2012

City's Numerous Faces on South Pool Pumping



This seemed worth posting here, given the city's continued pumping of the South Pool, despite a half year's increase in supply (at Twin Buttes alone) from recent runoff.

This decision should have been made by City Council, as indicated in an October 1, 2012 City of San Angelo press release.

The City has been pumping water from Twin Buttes’ south pool to its north pool. Those pumps have been shut down to save on expense until the City Council decides Friday whether to continue the pumping operation.

Council didn't decide.  Instead San Angelo's water czar unilaterally declared to keep pumps running and the public locked out. I find this odd as City Council only approved pumping for one month when they addressed the item this summer.  The topic hasn't surfaced since in Council chambers.

I expected City Council to at least approve a budget amendment given plans to pump longer than two months, the time predicted to pump the South Pool down to less than fish kill levels.

That time frame changed, given this post, published just days before our record runoff producing rains:

... until the pumping operation is complete near the first of the year
Since then the South Pool increased by 2,000 acre feet.  At 77 acre feet a day, it should take 26 days to drain the increase.  Add another 10 days and the total volume could be sucked dry.    The South Pool could be gone by Thanksgiving.

The City has no urgent need to pump South Pool water, given the North Pool sits at nearly 12,000 acre feet, an increase of 7,000 acre feet.  Council owes the public several public approvals and the right for people to be heard.  Pushing it off on the water czar is both bad leadership and poor policy.

Update 10-8-12:  City Councilman Paul Alexander thought the pumping had been stopped and would not restart without City Council direction.  He sees no need to pump the South Pool during our low evaporation months. 

Update 10-16-12:  City Council silenced Gajeske's pumps at the South Pool, likely until spring of 2013.  

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