Herriman city council candidate answers: Secondary water
I would like to sincerely thank the four candidates for taking the time to address my questions. I have included links to their respective websites and/or Facebook pages below.
Here is my original question for the candidates on the topic of the secondary water:
Many say Herriman's secondary water system is, frankly, a joke. Not everyone has access to it and those who do have access to it pay substantially more than residents in Riverton do for their secondary water. What measures would you propose or support to make the secondary water issue better?
Yes this is a joke. It is expensive and ineffecient. I am told this is by design and we are the first city to meter it. I don't agree with this. I think our rates should be in line with our neighbors in Riverton. If not we are at a competitive disadvantage.
I live in a portion of the city that does not have secondary water, so I am not familiar with the costs or problems associated with it. This is an issue that we should research and find a solution to bring our secondary water prices in line with other cities.
Not all cities are created equal when it comes to water resources, unfortunately. Comparing us to Riverton, while tempting, is an unfair comparison because they had access to federal resources that are no longer available. They also have considerable access to canals, that again, we do not have. Our secondary water system infrastructure will take considerable time to pay off, with the current costs reflecting that burden. Any efforts we make with secondary water are commendable, I believe, as living in a desert means water should always be a concern. Our secondary water system will simply be more expensive than our neighbor to the east because of water availability, pumping costs, lack of federal resources and new system costs. Historically, cities have had federal lobbyists to help secure funds for water. The climate is not friendly for those "earmarks" any longer and I know many people are not proponents of the use of lobbyists in this regard. Regardless of your appetite for lobbyists, the effort certainly paid off for Riverton residents in this instance.
Elevation is not our friend in this case. Yes we pay more than Riverton, but we must pump the water uphill to our reservoir for use, which adds cost to the water. I do believe that we need to make the expansion of the secondary water to more residents a priority. Many are ready to switch as soon as water is available, but have not timeline for when that will happen. I will work with the city staff to create a timeline of expansion, so residents will know when water is coming. “Someday” is not a plan. Once we have a plan, we will see progress.
It seems all the candidates wants Herriman residents to have the same benefits that Riverton residents enjoy with regard to secondary water.
Nicole Martin showed her extensive background knowledge on the issue and highlights an advantage Riverton had when building out their system that has resulted in low monthly rates for Riverton residents. As a result, Herriman residents must, unfortunately, pay more than them.
David Watts' determination to hold the city to a schedule on expansion of secondary water is admirable. It sure would be nice to go somewhere on the city's website and be able to see when my home, if ever, is going to be able to connect to the city's secondary water system.
My pick on the topic of secondary water is a toss-up between Nicole Martin and David Watts.