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Water issues in 2012 cause boiling debates

Posted on Wednesday, January 2, 2013 at 11:29 am

Alliance Employee Rick Phillips is seen above flushing out the water system on Locklane in Elsberry. Under the new contract, Alliance is required to do this once every six-months

It seemed to be the year for water issues in 2012. Whether it was water rates, new water projects, expanding city utilities to Lakeview, meters or DNR regulations on wells, water was the boiling point for many Elsberry residents.
Throughout the year, Alderman argued on topics such as keeping or not keeping Alliance Water Resources, to the point where representatives from Alliance put together several power point presentations and rebuttals about why they were the best option for the city.  For a short span, and for what may still be in discussion, some city officials even explored the idea of Elsberry taking over their own services.
However, not all discussions and projects had a negative outcome. In fact some of the biggest topics seemed to help Elsberry inspire change for growth. For instance, the Elsberry Water Tower Project and 80-year old water lines being replaced, allowing for cleaner more efficient water. Even with all the water main breaks and boil alerts that seemed to pop up at least twice a week for a short spell, in the end city officials stood by the idea it was a small sacrifice for a greater reward.
According to Elsberry Mayor Terry Martin, by improving the Elsberry water system, it could possibly make for a more appealing atmosphere for new business and new residential growth. Yes, it was the year of opened floodgates and flooded ideas. Even the Corp of Engineers and Neighbors of the Mississippi group had concerns of water. But for them it was the possibility of to much water, in the amounts of detrimental proportions. According to them, the lack of raising levees in the north could ultimately ruin farming communities, small businesses and even homes in Eastern Lincoln County down to St. Charles.

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