Jackson, Miss. (WJTV) – At a Thursday night Jackson City Council meeting, the council voted against a measure for a corrosion control study. That move, according to Mayor Tony Yarber, could cost the city thousands.
During the council meeting, members were asked to hire Trilogy Engineering Services to submit an engineer-designed corrosion control study.
According to Mayor Yarber, Council President Melvin Priester and council members Tyrone Hendrix, Margaret Barrett-Simon, Ashby Foote and DeKeither Stamps voted against the measure.
That study, according to the mayor’s office, is one of the main requirements the City of Jackson must meet as part of a Mississippi Department of Health compliance plan. The plan was activated after tests found actionable levels of lead in some drinking water samples.
The city must improve the alkalinity and pH balance in its drinking water to prevent leaching that is occurring when the water flows through lead plumbing or pipes that have lead solder.
Because the council voted against the measure, it puts the city at risk of being fined $25,000 a day for noncompliance with the plan by MSDH, according to the mayor’s office. The City has until April 4, 2016, to submit an engineer-design corrosion control study and plan for optimization of water treatment to keep from getting fined.
“Protecting our citizens is the priority. The issue of public drinking water should not be a pawn in anyone’s political agenda,” the Mayor said. “The council’s inaction delays the City’s ability to meet the compliance requirements and ensure the City is doing everything possible to deliver safe drinking water to the public.” – Jackson Mayor Tony Yarber
We’re working to find out why those city council members voted against the study. Once we receive that information, we’ll pass it along to you.