Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Water woes a hard problem for Fillmore folks

I am not a fan of using Water Softener. I see that, it is immoral to discharge contaminants to the ground to contaminate our mother earth.

Water woes a hard problem for Fillmore folks
Some softeners must go or residents and city might face stiff fines
By Eric Leach
Staff Writer

Saturday, December 04, 2004 - FILLMORE -- Residents of Fillmore, who have some of the hardest water in Ventura County, may face heavy fines if they do not remove their beloved water softening devices that discharge chloride into the Santa Clara River.

By September 2008, the city could face fines up to $1.1 million a year if it does not comply with state water discharge requirements, officials said.

"Some people have said, why not just pay the fine and keep our water softeners, but that is not a viable alternative," said City Engineer Bert Rapp. "We could never consider violating the limits (state officials) have imposed."

One alternative for Fillmore's 4,200 households is to build a plant that would cost about $24 a month per household and soften water for the entire city without discharging prohibited levels of salt, Rapp said.

"If we can soften the city's drinking water (at this plant) it would remove 75 percent of the hardness in the water, which would make everybody's plumbing fixtures last longer, their water heaters would last longer, their clothes would wash better, their dishes would wash better. It would improve the quality of water for all of our customers."

Jonathan Bishop, executive officer of the Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board, the state agency that ordered Fillmore to clean up the problem, said the chloride is a threat to aquatic life in the river and agriculture in Ventura County.

Fines are possible in 2008 if Fillmore does not comply, but the amount of the fines would depend on the situation at that time, he said.

"This problem has been going on for 20 years. We've given Fillmore many chances to address this problem, and we support Fillmore's efforts to limit water softeners."

Fillmore is in a peculiar situation because of the hard water that comes from wells in the area and the ecological sensitivity of the Santa Clara River.

Dawn Ladny, a resident who supports building a plant to soften water for the entire city, said living in Fillmore without a water softener is not an option to many people.

"If I didn't have a water softener, I would be replacing my dishwasher every couple of years," she said.Read More...

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