Worthington Water Woes
by Laura Monteverdi, Reporter
November 16, 2012 6:29 PM
The effects of the drought are evident at Lake Bella in Worthington where the city's primary water source is drying up quickly.
“I just got another reading this morning and we just dropped another foot again this past week,” said Worthington Public Utilities Manager, Scott Hain.
Hain said that the drought is especially a concern during this time of year.
“When we get into these winter months, regardless of what happens with precipitation, our well levels won’t do anything but decline during the winter,” said Hain.
On Thursday the city department announced their new plan to ease the pressure on Lake Bella. They announced that they will form an interconnection with the Lincoln-Pipestone Rural Water line.
“What we will be able to purchase from them certainly won’t satisfy one hundred percent of our community needs but we’re grateful for the opportunity to hook up with them,” said Hain.
With the new purchase agreement, the city utility customers may see a new charge on their bill as early as January.
“That purchase water adjustment charge will be charged to all customers- residential, commercial and industrial. It will be a charge for every 1000 gallons of water that we sell,” said Hain.
Hain said the charge won't be significant but will vary based on the amount purchased. He said that rather than take a guess at what the total cost would be, the amount will be divided by the number of units that have a water meter to come up with the new rate.
Some residents say that the charge is understandable.
“I think we all have to help. This could be a big crisis and we're all in this together,” said Worthington resident, Sally Ann Jonson.
The city said they should be able to begin purchasing water by the end of this week or early next week.