Skip to content

City under consent order from the state related to arsenic levels

As previously expected, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Environmental Protection Division has placed the City of Cairo under a consent order with the requirement that the new arsenic treatment system at the city’s new water plant be operational by March 31, 2017.
The order issued by EPD was anticipated after the city received notice of violations for elevated arsenic levels above the Maximum Contaminate Level (MCL) of 10 parts per billion for the second, third and fourth quarters of 2015.
The consent order agreed to by the city council this week requires within nine months the annual running average for arsenic shall be reduced to below the MCL of 10 parts per billion.
According to Cairo city manager Chris Addleton, the first and second quarter 2016 arsenic samples were below the MCL which has reduced the city’s annual running average.
Addleton says the new plant being constructed at the Cairo municipal Airport should be completed and operational by the end of Dec. 2016. The city manager negotiated with EPD officials to extend the deadline from Dec. 31, 2016 in the original agreement to March 31, 2017.
“Because the arsenic treatment system is new technology for us there may be some fine tuning associated with the system so I requested the deadline be extended,” Addleton said.
The city manager said that testing for the third quarter had been completed, but the results were not yet available.
“Are you aware of other communities in the state facing the same issue?” Councilman Jerry Cox asked the city manager.
“I am aware of some issues with private wells located in the Gulf trough and I believe there have been some issues at Hamilton School in Colquitt County,” Addleton said.
In other business Monday night, the council:
‰Voted unanimously to adopt a 2016 ad valorem tax rate of 8.325 mills, which is equal to the same millage rate of 2015. The council also adopted the budget ordinance to fund the budget and authorize the collection of the ad valorem taxes.

Leave a Comment