Chickasha to get new water treatment plant with help of tax increase

Chickasha can be expecting a new water treatment facility within the next three years.
Published: Aug. 18, 2023 at 10:36 AM CDT
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CHICKASHA, Okla. (KSWO) - The current water plant in Chickasha has been serving the community since 1974. However, after 50 years of service, city officials are starting a project to build a new water treatment plant.

The current treatment facility is facing major decay and the city could be facing possible fines from environmental associations due to it. A new tax increase will provide funding for the new water treatment facility.

This change has been long awaited by both city officials and residents of Chickasha. Chickasha City Manager Keith Johnson said they knew the current facility was going to need replacing soon and action was needed for the city’s residents.

“We’ve known for some time that this current facility was outliving its useful life,” said Johnson. “We are at risk of not being able to provide the basic water services to the city, so we needed to take action.”

To acquire funding for the new treatment facility, the city gave residents a choice between a permanent 1.25% sales tax increase or an 82% raise in water costs. The residents voted to approve the sales tax increase.

City officials are both excited and grateful for the community’s support, saying this project is funded by the people for the people. Johnson said the city will be transparent regarding the new tax revenue and the construction of the new plant.

“It is up to us to be transparent to show the citizens where we are spending the money, how much money is coming in from the sales tax revenue, how it is being spent and seeing construction of the new facility as quickly as we can,” said Johnson.

The new plant will feature more updated technology as well as more filtration methods and quality residents will be able to taste and see, according to officials.

The Senior Project Manager for U.S. Water Services, Chris Jones, said he hopes the new treatment plant will bring the best water possible to the residents of Chickasha.

“Hopefully we will have acceptable taste and odors 12 months out of the year, the water won’t have any discoloration and hopefully the water will be softer,” said Jones.

Management at the current plant maintains the safety and quality of the current water and will continue to supply it to the city until the new plant is finished.

Officials estimate the new plant will be completed in the next three years.