Goochland talks water problems with Kinloch residents

Kinloch residents are looking for solutions to a complex array of problems regarding the Tuckahoe Creek Service District.

On August 27, the Kinloch Advisory Board met to discuss utility rate increases, water odor and management concerns.

“The group was wanting honest answers to many problems,” said Ned Creasey, District 3 supervisor who attended with Rudy Butler from District 4.

Kinloch resident Bob Minnick organized the informal gathering, and said that the county has made significant progress but problems still remain.

“We’re sending out a survey to try to isolate some of the water issues,” Minnick said during a phone interview.

Minnick said that Rebecca Dickson, county administrator, and Don Charles, director of community development were also present to help address citizens’ concerns.

In an effort to mitigate the water odor which exists because of low water usage, the county has been flushing 1.08 million gallons of water from Kinloch’s fire hydrant on a monthly basis, according to Matt Saccone, utilities engineer.

Saccone reported that Goochland flushes water at nine different locations within the TCSD. Since 2007, Goochland has flushed more than 37 million gallons of water, costing taxpayers more than $62,000.

Charles said that Goochland is also purchasing an automated flushing station at Kinloch for $35,000, and that another automated station may be needed for other locations.

The flushing station will send water to the irrigation pond at Kinloch Golf Club. Dickson said in an interview that the county would consider other recycling options for the water that the golf club would use free of charge.

The county is also considering utility rate increases for the TCSD. The board of supervisors heard a resolution to increase rates by 13 percent on September 1, after press time.

“I think people in [Kinloch] would entertain rate increases,” Minnick said, “as long as it was part of a county-wide plan.”

Minnick noted that the TCSD tax revenue benefits the entire county, and that the county should be involved with mitigation.

Dickson said that the TCSD utility rate increase was the first of several potential rate increases.

“We need to take a look at the debt in [the TCSD],” Dickson said. “Maybe we ought to restructure. It’s a complex situation.”

The county is currently developing a request for proposal to better understand the structure of all three county utility systems, and Dickson hopes to have the RFP ready for the October board meeting.

Originally published in The Central Virginian

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