Saturday, March 7, 2009

Another of the weekly information installments from Punta Gorda...

The spread of misinformation is not limited to Lake Worth - and sometimes comes from "legitimate" media sources. Check out this week's communique from our stalwart elected official. This comes to constituents as an e-mail message, with the City Manager's weekly report attached. I've highlighted some areas that deal with their water supply - apparently they are headed toward construction of their own reverse osmosis water plant (Click title for link to the City Manager's weekly report):

Good Day,

Well if you were around downtown last weekend your saw our city in full swing; hundreds of people crowded into the Event Center for the quilt show while hundreds more were at Laishley Park at the Peace River Art Festival, while at the same time a Corvette Car show was being judged at Gilchrest Park. The streets were packed and parking was at a premium.

Some of you may have seen an editorial comment from a Barb McCauley in Wednesday’s Sun Herald in which she made allegations that the city water supply caused her pipes to corrode and leak. I can’t imagine where she got so much erroneous information, she said, Punta Gorda water uses reverse osmosis purification and must super chlorinate the water” which creates “… a corrosive combination that severely shortens the lifespan of copper piping.” Punta Gorda does not even have reverse osmosis facilities; every ounce of water comes from the surface water of Shell and Prairie Creeks. We disinfect solely with a compound of chlorine and ammonia, which has no corrosive properties. And for 20 years we have added a stabilizer that renders our drinking water less corrosive than our raw water downstream supply. She went on to say, that PGI water (for which we pay a premium) …,” and, “We already pay more for water than other Charlotte County residences ….” Of the 14 surrounding communities in southwest Florida, Punta Gorda has the fourth lowest water rates. I have heard the stories over the years of some of the older homes having breaks in their water lines within the concrete slab; they have been attributed to the use of low grade copper piping during construction. How sad she didn’t call us and find out the right information.

You will read inside that we adapted an ordinance reducing the watering fines to a more reasonable level. Until last Wednesday a first offence for watering on the wrong day was $100 followed by $200 for the second offense these have been reduced to $25. and $50. respectively.

You will also see in the report that we approved moving forward with the design and construction of our first reverse osmosis facility. Until recently the governing authority SWFTMUD did not approve of RO installation and therefore would not assist in the funding of them.