A public forum was held at City Hall in Garfield on Tuesday, September 10, 2019, concerning options for the refurbishment or replacement of the City’s old water storage tank, which was no longer supplying water to the Garfield Public Waterworks District.
Mayor Gary Blackburn explained that the Garfield water storage tank was currently offline, per mandate by the Arkansas Department of Health. Water was being provided directly from Benton Washington Regional Public Water Authority via the Water Authority’s 880,000-gallon tank. The Water Authority will replace the 880,000-gallon tank with a new water storage tank in 2020 or 2021. In addition, the City of Garfield is required by the State of Arkansas to have sufficient water available for fighting fires. The Benton Washington Regional Public Water Authority cannot assume that responsibility for the City of Garfield.
A cost estimate for addressing the City’s water storage needs was given at $350,000 to $400,000. Various means for financing this essential municipal water storage facility were discussed; Mr. Jason Connolly suggested that the City borrow money from the City of Garfield General Fund to purchase a larger water storage tank for the City.
During the meeting, Mayor Blackburn itemized three options that may be considered as the City makes a decision about how to obtain an adequate City water storage tank:
- Rehabilitate the City’s existing 40,000-gallon water storage tank
- Replace the 40,000-gallon water storage tank with a 60,000-gallon tank
- Purchase the 880,000-gallon water storage tank from the Benton Washington Regional Public Water Authority
The public forum on options for financing a City water storage tank was the first of three such meetings that have been planned. Mayor Blackburn advised that an engineer be present at the next public forum.
To review the minutes from the public forum on City water storage tank financing, follow the link below.