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Posted on Jul 13, 2019

City Council OKs letter of interest on industrial wastewater discharge

The city of Quincy signaled its interest in talking with the Port of Quincy about industrial wastewater at the July 2 meeting of the Quincy City Council
Council members David Day and Tom Harris were absent.
After the motion to approve the letter of interest, there was no discussion and the council voted in favor. The letter states: “ … The City of Quincy is willing to enter negotiations with the Port of Quincy to determine if the City and the Port can come to mutually agreeable terms for the City to transfer to the Port the City’s interest in the Industrial Wastewater that is currently being discharged into the Potholes Reservoir via the United States Bureau of Reclamation wasteway … . It is the City’s understanding the Port is initiating engineering and feasibility studies on discharge and permitting options at its own expense.”
The city must end discharge into the wasteway by 2022.
The port commissioners at their meetings have begun discussions about taking industrial wastewater and moving it north of the city, where the treated water could be used to irrigate crops.
After the meeting, Quincy Port Commissioner Brian Kuest, who was at the council meeting, as was Commissioner Curt Morris, explained that the letter from the city was needed for the port to engage the state Department of Ecology on the subject. The next step is to meet with the city, Ecology and industrial water users to determine what the costs are and what comes next, Kuest said.
As usual, most of the measures on the council’s agenda had to do with engineering and water. The council approved about a dozen such motions.
In the Public Works Department, the retirement of Maintenance Supervisor Dave Reynolds has left substantial extra work for the working foreman, Roy Echavarria. The city is in the process of hiring a replacement for Reynolds, as well as a public works director and an administrative assistant.
Recognizing the temporary added load on the working foreman, the council approved a motion to add some pay, a stipend of $9,634.
The council also approved a motion to adopt a procedural handbook for the Quincy Animal Shelter. The 65-page document details duties and policies for shelter staff.
In the mayor’s report, Mayor Paul Worley said, “I want to thank the police … they’ve been catching vandals and doing a lot better job than some people think they are.”
Chief Kieth Siebert told the council about a meeting of key members of the community, including Siebert, on July 18 at which housing issues in Quincy will be discussed. He said the group might have ideas to present to the city.
After the meeting Siebert said the group meets on the third Thursday of each month and it includes people from local organizations. He said they are trying to find a way to get more equitable housing in Quincy, address the issues and look for solutions.
“We are just trying to find answers,” he said.

By Dave Burgess,