More Wichita Falls Water Testing Required

- After months of planning, testing and waiting, the state of Texas says more testing is needed before Wichita Falls can use recycled water in its system.

Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Spokesperson Andrew Morrow tells us that after reviewing the full-scale verification test, they are requiring the city gather additional information through a second verification test.

For the second test, the TCEQ says the city will ensure that the equipment and the city staff resources can demonstrate daily protection of public health -- plus meet state and federal water requirements.

Now city officials have been in Austin all day meeting with the TCEQ and Wichita Falls City Manager Darron Leikier says the meeting was productive and they understand the need to ensure that everything is in place before the cutting edge project is fully implemented.

Now it is still unclear why the TCEQ decided the city needs extra testing, when they could start, or how long we will have to wait for the second round of results.


"Our meeting has been productive, and we appreciate the TCEQ's willingness to work with the city on this very important project. While we wish that we were at the point of finalizing the full scale verification for this project, we understand the need to ensure that everything is in place to protect the public health before this project is fully implemented. The unique nature of this cutting edge project requires caution and diligence, and we share the same goal of TCEQ to provide a safe drinking water supply for our customers," says City Manager Darron Leiker.

"We are working cooperatively with the TCEQ and everyone believes this is still a viable project. Rest assured, we ALL have the common goal of getting this right! Our project may set the precedent for all of
Texas, and that is one big reason why it is being scrutinized to this degree," says Leiker.

Andrea Morrow, TCEQ Media Relations released the following statement:

"The City of Wichita Falls proposed an Emergency Direct Potable Reuse Project that uses the city’s wastewater effluent through a multi-barrier treatment process, including blending with raw surface water to partially address the city’s water supply shortage. Once this project is approved by the TCEQ, the city proposes to distribute this treated water to customers.

The city conducted a Full-Scale Verification Test of the DPR treatment process for 43 days. The city compiled the data from the FSVT into a report and submitted this to the TCEQ on March 28, 2014.

In response to the drought emergency, the TCEQ conducted a thorough-expedited review of the city’s report. The TCEQ will meet with city representatives on May 2, 2014 to discuss the TCEQ’s response to the report and the need to gather additional information through a second FSVT. During the second FSVT, the city will demonstrate the entire DPR treatment process to ensure the equipment and city staff resources can demonstrate daily protection of public health and state and federal drinking water requirements can be met."

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