LETTER: Pride not a factor in EGF sewage-treatment decision
I am writing in response to the Herald editorial, "Wastewater treatment is poor source of civic pride" (Page A4, April 30). The East Grand Forks City Council must select one of several alternatives for the treatment of the city's sewage. The edit...
I am writing in response to the Herald editorial, "Wastewater treatment is poor source of civic pride" (Page A4, April 30).
The East Grand Forks City Council must select one of several alternatives for the treatment of the city's sewage. The editorial favors the interconnect project, whereby East Grand Forks sewage would be piped under the Red River to be treated at the Grand Forks treatment facility.
The editorial suggests that civic pride might be a factor impacting the East Grand Forks City Council's decision about what to do with the city's wastewater.
Civic pride? What was the editorial writer thinking? What a silly and foolish notion.
Civic pride has nothing to do with the decision. Trust and a viable alternative have everything to do with the decision.
I served as East Grand Forks city attorney for 24 years, and during that time I saw promises made and promises broken on both sides of the river. Times change. Conditions and situations change. When push comes to shove, a council has to support the home team. That's only natural.
If the Grand Forks City Council should find itself with its back to the wall concerning its capacity to treat wastewater, what will it do? It will do what's best for Grand Forks.
Proponents of the interconnect say East Grand Forks will be protected by an "ironclad agreement." That's a fantasy. No such document has ever been written.
If push comes to shove during the operation of the interconnect and East Grand Forks, for whatever reason, is forced to reduce the amount of sewage it can send to Grand Forks, what will East Grand Forks do? Send out a memo with the Water and Light bill instructing people to stop flushing their toilets?
In support of its position, the editorial points out that East Grand Forks successfully sends its garbage to the Grand Forks regional landfill.
That's true, but it's also an entirely different situation. If for some reason Grand Forks was forced to deny East Grand Forks access to the landfill, all East Grand Forks would have to do is send its trucks to a different landfill.
In making its decision on how best to treat the city's wastewater, I would expect the East Grand Forks City Council to consider both the short term and long term costs of the various options available.
In addition, with respect to the interconnect project, I suggest the council should seriously consider the issues of trust and a viable alternative should things, for whatever reason, go south between the two cities.
But civic pride? Please-give me a break.
East Grand Forks