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Granite Shoals plugs along on water treatment system improvements

Granite Shoals thanks QRO-MEX for help during February freeze

Granite Shoals Mayor Will Skinner (left) and City Manager Jeff Looney present Robert Rubio of QRO-MEX Construction a certificate of appreciation for all of the work the company does to help city. In February, when the city’s water system stopped because of the freeze, QRO-MEX sent a crew to fix equipment issues at the treatment plant. Staff photo by Jennifer Fierro

While it might not look like it from the outside, the city of Granite Shoals is making progress on its water system. The city, however, doesn’t have a set completion date.

“Anything that involves changes to the treatment process needs (Texas Commission on Environmental Quality) approval,” said Assistant City Manager Peggy Smith. That takes time. 

Residents approved a $7 million bond in 2019. Since then, city improvements to the system have been steady. On April 13, the City Council approved spending $360,000 on a chlorine dioxide system as well as building a catwalk and installing railing at the water treatment facility. 

Most of the funding — $300,000 — is coming from a community block grant. The city is chipping in $60,000.

City Manager Jeff Looney said Granite Shoals’ water quality is “very good,” but the city is trying to improve the treatment process. The chlorine dioxide system will oxidize, or kill off, pathogens and organic matter during the first phase of the water treatment process. In the second phase, crews extract chlorine and chemicals from the water. In the final phase, the treatment system filters and purifies water for human consumption.

Smith said the city is addressing other improvements to the water treatment system as efficiently as possible.

The bond also will pay for a new water tower. TCEQ approved the plans for the new tower in March. The city will operate the current water tower until the new one is completed.

Other aspects of the bond package include water lines, fire hydrants, and a sludge lagoon.

During the meeting, councilors also recognized QRO-MEX Construction for assisting Granite Shoals with the water system when part of it froze during the February winter storm. 

jfierro@thepicayune.com

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