EARLVILLE – Voters in Earlville will head to the polls Tuesday to decide whether to move forward with a $3.4 million water system improvement project.
Debate over the proposed water project has raged in Earlville for over a year. Many village residents have complained of brown water and low pressure caused by the outdated water system.
“Since I moved to Earlville 30 plus years ago, the water in town has been an issue,” said resident Tommy Thompson. The lack of water pressure has caused many of the village’s fire hydrants to become inoperable.
Other residents have expressed a belief that the overhaul of the entire system is unnecessary and will cost taxpayers more than expected in the future. One resident went so far as to take out ads in local newspapers to voice his disapproval of the project, claiming it will increase taxes and the village water bills.
Village Fire Chief David Baird has called the water project “critically important for the Earlville Fire Department.” Baird explained that the water system has made it difficult to utilize the hydrants during house fires or even for training purposes. “Many residents may be unaware that throughout most of the village, the hydrants are incapable of delivering adequate water to fight a house fire. As a result, our standard operating procedures for any fire in the village are to use tanker trucks for water supply, with the water being pumped from the rivers east and west of the village. Modern municipalities in the rest of the country don’t operate this way. The new water system designed by the engineering firm will greatly improve our ability to provide service to our residents,” Baird said.