- The Louisville pipeline could not be completed before 2012, and it most likely would be several years thereafter.
After three days of public hearings recently in Frankfort at the Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC), it remains clear that the Central Kentucky Solution is the right project at the right time, and that we as a regional community are closer to solving the water supply deficit than we have ever been. The work of the BWSC to develop the solution, and the work done by Kentucky American Water to design and present the solution for a new water treatment plant on Pool 3 of the Kentucky River, withstood all scrutiny.
Attorneys for seven different groups were part of the hearings where seven experts from Kentucky American Water were questioned during more than 25 hours of sworn testimony.
An order from the PSC, an agency of state government that regulates our company, is expected in January 2008. We trust the PSC sees the merit in the project and will tell us to move forward. We are ready. Here are some of the many key points from the three days of "evidentiary hearings" at the PSC:
- We can build a 25 MGD plant on Pool 3 now, which can be expanded to treat more water available in this downstream pool.
- The Kentucky River Authority has budgeted funds to install crest gates which will add 1.5 billion gallons of capacity to Pool 3.
- The Kentucky Attorney General's expert witness supported the Pool 3 Kentucky American Water plan.
- A wide array of political leaders, cities, counties, and other organizations within our region support the Pool 3 solution.
- The water from the new Pool 3 plan will be ready to address our water supply shortfall by 2010.
The idea put forward by LWC for a pipeline to the Ohio River is not being reviewed by the PSC. The facilities are not designed, and no permits have been applied for, much less received. In fact, the LWC idea would not even be ready to submit for approval to the PSC for many months.
As a region, we have talked about solving the water supply deficit for 20 years. We have worked toward the Central Kentucky Solution for nearly eight years, including consideration of four different proposals from LWC, and for the past eight months the process before the PSC has allowed a very detailed analysis of our proposal.
Our testimony showed the Central Kentucky Solution is timely, cost-efficient, feasible, environmentally sound, and meets the long-term needs of Kentucky American Water and BWSC customers.
The time for study is over. We hope to receive PSC approval early in 2008. Then, we intend to build the solution that brings more water to Central Kentucky by the summer of 2010, because that's what residents expect and deserve.
Nick Rowe is the president of Kentucky American Water, which is Lexington and Fayette County's water supplier and also has customers in Clark and other neighboring counties.