Water pipes in Vienna

Within the next month the residents and businesses are going to have the rate increase on their water bills that recently passed by the mayor and council for the City of Vienna.

It has just now, within the past two months, been brought to light that there are transite asbestos concrete water pipes under the city streets since the 1950s and are only replaced when they break. These pipes have been in the ground for at least 60-70 years — way past their life expectancy and as they deteriorate the asbestos goes into the water that services homes and businesses. The city has known about these pipes all these years and hasn’t planned or put money aside to take care of them only to replace them as they break and by that time the asbestos is already in the water.

The city stated the reason for the water sewer rate increase is mainly due to being short on their reserves and Rosemar Meadows housing development has a failing sewer system and the city needs to run sewer out to them and are taking sewer out to Seminary Road that goes to Ohio Valley University. It was stated at the utility board meeting on Nov. 7, 2017 that Rosemar Meadows are putting in a lift station and running sewer up to Greenmont Gardens to a pumping station at their cost of $120,000 and that the city would only be responsible for maintaining the lift station.

The concern is not addressing the issues with our water pipes that are a health issue for the people who live and have businesses in Vienna. There isn’t a quick revenue to be gained going out Rosemar Road with sewer as it is undeveloped land and will be quite some time before Vienna will see anything financially for this venture. With the plan in place without loans or grants it would only deplete city money and they would be short again with their reserves causing them to raise the water sewer rates again in two years.

It is time the citizens and businesses stand up and hold the City of Vienna accountable for things that need to be addressed for the safety and well being of everyone. We cannot plan for the future if we do not address the things that need to be taken care of that are here in the present.

Brenda Powell