Weatherford Democrat

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March 20, 2014

Willow Park council OKs fund issuance for water line replacement project

By CHRISTIN COYNE

WILLOW PARK – Though the ordinance adopted didn’t have the wording city council members had hoped, the Willow Park City Council Tuesday night OK’d issuing certificates of obligation for a $685,000 water line improvement project.

The funding, which will have a subsidized interest rate of 1.25 percent below market through the Texas Water Development Board, will pay for replacement of six water lines around Willow Park that have a history of breaks.

Rather than send the proposed ordinance back to the TWBD and delay the project, council members, including Gene Martin and Bernard Suchocki, reluctantly specified how they preferred the bonds to be funded in the wording of the motion.

Though the ordinance states that the debt will be backed by both water revenue and tax revenue, the motion adopted by the council states that the tax revenues will be applied in the event that water revenues are insufficient, making clear that the city intends for the system’s revenue to fund the upgrades.

The available $685,000 loan from the TWDB is sufficient to cover the first six of the city’s nine line replacement priorities, the city’s remaining cast-iron lines. Replacing all nine lines was estimated to cost a total of $920,000.

The first priority is a cast iron 6-inch line running from Crown Road to Squaw Creek parallel to a new 12-inch line. The city plans to abandon the line in place and tie in main lines and service lines to the newer line.

The second priority involves lines running along Ranch House Road from the north side of Interstate 20 to Trinity Drive. The cast-iron pipe was not installed properly, with most of it sitting on solid rock, rather than a bed of sand, Public Works Director Lance Petty told the council at a prior meeting.

The city first applied to the Texas Water Development Board for funding for a project in 2012 and, though denied a grant, the reduced loan was offered.

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