Terre Haute Councilman Pushes To Get Neighborhood City Water

A city councilman is pushing to incorporate one neighborhood’s private wells into the city’s water system because residents are afraid of water contamination.

well water

Photo: ladyhawke2007 (flickr)

Members of the Terre Town neighborhood get their water from wells.

Residents of the Terre Town neighborhood, on the north side of Terre Haute, don’t have access to city water lines, so they use well water instead. But some residents fear their well water is being contaminated.

There are two EPA Supersites, areas of previous intensive pollution and current remediation, in Terre Haute. Volatile organic compound contaminants were found at sites to the north and south of Terre Town. Residents are worried contaminates have made their way through groundwater and into their wells.

But Richard Milton says that’s not likely. He’s Project Manager of Site Investigation at the Indiana Department of Environmental Management and says tests show the well water is clean.

“They tested for what’s referred to as VOCs-Volatile Organic Compounds- that’s what they sampled for because that’s what TCE is,” he says. “So there’s a list of these compounds and from what I saw on the list, none of them were detected.”

But that hasn’t eased residents’ fears so Terre Haute District 3 City Councilman Norm Loudermilk says he’s still pushing to have private wells annexed into the city’s water system.

“There has been some talk for quite a while to try to bring Indiana American Water up there, and one of my goals in this last term as city councilman is to try to get that done in that neighborhood,” he says. “But because Indiana American is a private company, it has to be profitable for them to try to do that.

Loudermilk says the city has a tight budget because of property tax caps, and he knows it will be difficult to find ways to allocate dollars to a single neighborhood.

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