Saturday, May 16, 2015

Mr. Riley: The Spence Conundrum

San Angelo's Water Advisory Board is new and improved, a far cry from the rubber stamp version under former Water Chief Will Wilde and the non-entity under his replacement Ricky Dickson.  The new Water Chief Bill Riley gave an update on the Hickory Aquifer.  He deferred to Board members saying:

 "I know that most of you are more familiar with the Hickory Project than I am."
Riley went on to talk about Lake Iviie and E.V. Spence Reservoir.

"Spence Reservoir is the other reservoir.  Their water is made available to San Angelo.  It is virtually dry.  It has not picked up any significant water so it doesn't play into the equation right now."
Spence picked up nearly 6,000 acre feet in the last month, going from 9,029 to 14,770 acre feet.  That's roughly the amount in the North and South Pools at Twin Buttes Reservoir.  How is one critical to our water supply and the other irrelevant? 

The answer is we can get Twin Buttes water to our treatment plant.  Riley's predecessor said this in 2009 to an earlier version of the Water Board.

Mr. Wilde stated the Lake Spence water supply pipeline has experience problems and issues, primarily due to the materials used; therefore not a viable water source.
Wilde used a bad Spence pipeline to justify construction of the Hickory pipeline.  Surface water comes and goes.  Two years ago Spence had 30,000 acre feet and no way to move a drop to San Angelo.  That is if Will Wilde told the truth.  Since that wasn't Wilde's strong suit, what is the status of the Spence pipeline?  How much repair or replacement does it need to function as promised?

Spence is part of San Angelo's water history.  It's not clear it's part of our future.

Update 5-19-15:  Spence Reservoir is up three feet in the last 24 hours.  It now holds 17,158 acre feet. 

No comments: