How does a city the size of Winter Springs almost run out of water?
Watch the video below to get the real facts about or water shortage. We take a behind the scenes look at how our systemic leadership failures and negligence caused a perfect storm and an avoidable crisis for the residents of Winter Springs. Our city is being led by commissioners and a city manager who have shown no ability to manage our growth, despite all of their flowery campaign rhetoric. As a result, we are in violation of the St. John’s River Water Management District Consumptive Use Permit. The water we are drawing is exceeds what we’re permitted to use. This is going to become an increasingly expensive problem to handle, and could have ripple affects across the Central Florida region if unaddressed.
It didn’t have to be this way. In fact, back in 2013, the City finished construction on the Lake Jesup Reclamation Facility. It was designed to provide reclaimed water to all the citizens of Winter Springs. The stated goal of the project is to meet the mandate of the St. Johns River Water Management District to reduce groundwater withdrawals. The plan was to replace all potable water used for irrigation with reclaimed water by installing additional piping to supply the reclaimed water to all homes.
So what happened? Imagine if the city manager and Veolia had spent the last two years following through on the plans their predecessors made to have taxpayers pay for and add some reclaimed water lines to these new developments? Imaging how that might have helped us recently! Instead, Veolia and co. were killing fish in our ponds and being investigated for DEP violations.
To summarize: The taxpayers under Mayor Charles Lacey funded a new water plant to supplement future reclaimed water needs and eventually bring the entire city onto reclaimed water. The plan involved installing new irrigation lines to reduce the impact of new housing development on the potable water system. In recent years, however, our city continues to add new developments, has not followed through on implementing these plans, which resulted in increasing usage of potable water for irrigation, while a taxpayer funded plant sits idly by, with plenty of wasted capacity which could have been used had the city followed through on its prior plans.