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October 1, 2013

Livingston considering contract to install well filter

Livingston City Council will consider approving a $1.8 million contract with a Manteca-based company to install a contaminant filtration system in one of its water wells during a council meeting today.

Livingston City Council will consider approval today of a $1.8 million contract with a Manteca company to install a contaminant filtration system in one of its water wells.

City staff recommends awarding the construction contract to Conco West, Inc. to install the filter to treat TCP contamination in groundwater.

The well, located on North Main Street near the Foster Farms facility, was chosen because water drawn from it contains the highest levels of the contaminant, Livingston Mayor Pro Tem Gurpal Samra said.

“The main problem in this well is TCP, and one of the things we’ve been looking at is putting multiple treatment vessels to add an arsenic-removal system to it,” Samra said. “We’re going to use this as a template for other wells.”

Often used in the production of pesticides, TCP is a man-made chemical that can cause cancer, kidney failure and tumors, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Samra said the city plans to install treatments devices in all of its wells, and some wells might be linked together if they are close together.

The funding for the project comes from a 2011 settlement against two chemical companies – Dow Chemical and Shell – for $13 million, said Livingston City Manager Jose Ramirez.

“The reason we’re using the funding specifically for water quality issues in the city is because the lawsuit was about groundwater contamination and there’s a need to filter the contaminants,” Ramirez said. “It’s very exciting that we’re making progress and we’ll be able to provide a reliable and clean water system to our residents.”

Samra said the city is also working on educating residents about ways to reduce water usage because a shortage of groundwater is always a concern.

“There’s always a worry because groundwater levels have been dropping, but that’s not just in Livingston – that’s all over the state,” Samra said. “One option we are looking at to conserve water is alternating watering days for residents.”

The city also uses a water meter system to gauge usage for all residents and businesses, he said.

The Livingston City Council will meet at 7 p.m. today at the City Council Chambers, 1416 C St.

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