Monday, January 21, 2008

Water company on the agenda of the Scottsdale City Council

In light of the events of the past week, it should come as no surprise that the Scottsdale City Council has changed its agenda for Tuesday's meeting to include a discussion of the Arizona American Water Company.

What is a little surprise is the wording of the agenda item itself -

***16B. Acquisition of Arizona American Water Company

Request: At the request of Councilman Ron McCullagh, discussion and direction to staff to investigate and analyze the legal and financial impacts of acquisition of the portion of the ArizonaAmerican Water Company that serves Scottsdale customers.


That should make for an interesting discussion.

More on the water contamination situation:

As reported on Saturday, the tap water ban for AZ American Water's customers has been lifted, the facility is completely shut down and the investigation into the incident is continuing.

According to Todd Walker, spokesman for Arizona American Water, the Miller Road Treatment Facility won't be brought back online until the issue and process have been reviewed and resolved.

The EPA was closed Monday due to the MLK holiday, but I'll contact Vicki Rosen at the EPA before I head out to the City Council meeting on Tuesday.

During my talk with Walker, I asked for a comment on the Scottsdale City Council agenda item, but he demurred, saying that he didn't know enough about it to have a comment.

I should have more info tomorrow night.

An observation about the whole thing -

I've got to give credit where it is due - at the November meeting of the NIBW Community Involvement Group (post on that here) where people found out about an "incomplete remediation" incident at the MRTF, almost a month after it occurred, was marked by community anger at the lack of communication.

That failure was certainly corrected with this incident with the emails, reverse 9-1-1 calls, and media notifications, all made the day that the blower malfuntion was discovered.

Many people have complained that they didn't receive the notifications, and their anger and frustration is understandable, but under the communication plan agreed to by the EPA and all of the participants, they only had to send out a letter within 30 days.

Perhaps their communications missed some customers, but they did go above and beyond and deserve credit for that.

Save the criticisms for the apparently chronic problems at the MRTF. :)

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