The Clarke County Reservoir Commission is holding a public hearing on Wednesday, October 26 at 6:30p.m at the Clarke County Fairgrounds. The public is invited to the open hearing to learn more about the project and its goals for serving Clarke County and the surrounding communities.
According to engineers, Osceola already routinely pumps more water out of West Lake – the City’s current water source – on a daily basis than can be sustained, according to standards used by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. Without expanding their water source, the city will suffer potential water shortages and a possible decrease in economic development. The reservoir project was initiated to ensure the county had enough water to sustain its current demand as well as provide for future population and economic growth.
The planned Squaw Creek location will provide up to 2.0 million gallons of water per day and allows volume for growth in water demand. Osceola Water Works officials also agree that the proposed reservoir location will alleviate water safety concerns. According to Brandon Patterson, Osceola Water Works Superintendent, the distance from the Squaw Creek location to the water treatment plant will allow time for the water to be naturally treated before reaching the plant and reduce the need for aggressive chemical treatments causing frequent changes in water taste and odor.
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Vilsack and other politicians have recently criticized Iowa’s water quality, stating “If we’re the only state that’s not addressing this, there’s going to be hell to pay.”
With fertilizers and pesticides running off of Iowa’s farmland, Iowa’s drinking water can be ridden with chemicals. By using the Squaw Creek basin for the Clarke County Reservoir, water would be filtered before even reaching the treatment plant, resulting in higher quality and much safer water for Clarke County and surrounding communities.
The reservoir commission has secured upwards of 60% of the land needed to commence construction of the reservoir. During Wednesday’s hearing, the commission looks to have a productive discussion with the public on how the reservoir will benefit the city of Osceola, her residents, and businesses long into the future.
For more information about the Clarke County Reservoir project and the public hearing, you can contact Dave Beck, Project Coordinator for the Clarke County Reservoir Commission, 641-782-4033, or [email protected]