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Water Line To Be Repaired

COMANCHE CO., Okla_ A leaky water line in an eastern Comanche County neighborhood will be fixed for good.

The Comanche County Commissioners approved a contract to start work on the Bishop Water District's main water line. The neighborhood, located along southeast Woodlawn Road between 45th and 60th, has about 13 homes.

Residents say the 25-year-old line has developed a tremendous amount of leaks over the years, costing them thousands of dollars in repairs and fees.

The residents received a Rural Economic Action Plan (REAP) grant earlier this year. The new line costs a little over $43,000. Had they not received this grant, each homeowner would have paid over $3,000 to repair the line. They say after years of dealing with the leaky water line, this grant could not have come at a better time.

Bishop Water Association members Lee Gleaves and Jim Hardin say they've been quietly dealing with their neighborhood's water problems for years. When the City of Lawton installed a nearby water tower three years ago, their problems got even worse.

"For about three months, we had over $1,000 in overage that was above what each meter read," Gleaves said. "That was because of leaks. Jim and I were digging holes just to repair the leaks."

Hardin said when the cost of repairs to fix the numerous leaks exceeded $15,000 over a two-year period, the association decided to take matters into their own hands.

"We came up with a plan to reduce the water pressure at the main where our water line hooks on and we cut it down to approximately half," Hardin said.

This resulted in extremely low pressure for everyone, but it was an even bigger issue for residents in two-story houses.

"They haven't been able to use their water facility on the second floor," Hardin said.

Gleaves and Hardin said they were relieved when they found out they had received the grant money, which means added convenience and lower costs for their neighborhood.

"The responsibility of keeping everybody in water fell on a few people," Gleaves said. "Replacing this line should eliminate those problems. Your property is worth nothing without water. So, that's what it boils down to. That's how important it is."

Gleaves said the project should start within the next few weeks. The Bishop Water Association said it wants to thank the ASCOG and the county for helping residents get this issue resolved.


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