The staff report posted today for the March 3 meeting says, “multiple industry experts, engineers and contractors have arrived at the conclusion the placement of a well pump of either size (530 gpm or 1,000 gpm) at 680 feet will not materially change water quality.” This should resolve the only major concern expressed by the board at the February 24 meeting, that the larger pump might produce poorer-quality water and require a restart of the treatment plant at an incremental cost of about $465,000.
Staff is seeking approval to spend up to $275,000 to install the new pump. The project has cost $28,600 to date. Staff reiterates that, because the well casing has become increasingly out-of-plumb, there will be corrosion and vibration effects that may cause the new pump to fail in 5-10 years. Meanwhile, having Well #4 back in service is projected to save every six months the entire capital cost of the pump-lowering project.
The only important open question seems to be when the project will be finished. If the well can be placed back into service by about May 1, it should be possible for Crestview to pump its entire groundwater allocation this year. That could allow the new, much-higher 2022 rates to go back down.