Brown water and irate customers were featured at last night’s meeting of the Ouachita Parish Police Jury (OPPJ), when Greater Ouachita Water Company (GOWC) showed up to fend off complaints about discolored water and poor service.
The issue came to a head recently when West Monroe resident and GOWC customer Quentin Henry created a Facebook page (The People vs Greater Ouachita Water Company), and began to chronicle customer complaints with pictures and videos.
GOWC’s Tommy Sparks said that while the water has been in compliance as far as safety, it was “not acceptable” in appearance. He said they were taking steps to install carbon filters to remove the color.
Said Sparks, “We going to convert to carbon filters. We’re going to put these at Arkansas Road and Highway 80,” the area where many of the complaints were originating.
He said that by 2016, much of the system will have the filters.
Also representing GOWC was Bill Murdis and Jason Moss of Severn Trent Services, the systems operator. They detailed the technical processes they were employing to remove the stain. Promises were made to be more responsive to customer complaints.
Henry said that the reason he created the page was to help prevent a re-occurrence of the problems. He suggest that the jury create an advisory board to work with GOWC, as is provided in the company’s original charter.
Said Henry, “They (the advisory board) are there to know what exactly is going on at all times,” with the water system.
The jury approved a resolution appointing Jury President Scotty Robinson (District A) to coordinate between GOWC and the jury.
Robinson said he would begin receiving the systems monthly reports and keep the other jurors informed.
In other business, Parish Engineer Kevin Crosby reported on a revision of the flood insurance rate map for Frenchman’s Bend Subdivision.
See here the news release.