The Brooksville City Council has approved a memo of understanding (MOU) relative to a plan to send reclaimed water to the Cascades Community located within the Southern Hills Plantation development. The vote took place during the regular meeting of the City Council on July 19.
Jon Dowler of the Brooksville Public Works department told the Council that along Cotillion Blvd, there is currently an existing 8-inch water line that was never connected to the City's reclaimed water line.
Under the plan the City would make the final connection of about 200 feet, and install a meter and a discharge into a community pond for further use. The pond currently draws its water from the aquifer via a pair of wells and is supplemented by storm water runoff.
“The reclaimed water is going to supplement the water they have in their pond for the purpose of irrigation – for the residents and the common areas.” Dowler continued, “There are some nutrients in this reclaimed water that will minimize the need for additional fertilizer for their vegetation,” and it “gives the City a place to take its reclaimed water and put it somewhere.”
Finally, the project also allows the Cascades community to modify the existing well permit that it has with the Southwest Florida Water Management District.
“Which is a requirement for us to do this project,'' Dowler said.
Funding for the project would be derived from a $150,000 legislative funding allocation, Dowler said.
“Our current existing agreement with Cascades states that they will connect to the city's reclaimed water system when we have plans that are approved,” Dowler told the Council. “We have plans that are approved (and) in fact, we are taking the bulk of the costs, and have grants to do all the legwork to get this done.”
Some Cascades residents approved of the plan which would move reclaimed water into the community's irrigation system, but opposed pumping reused water into the pond because they said it would contain nutrients that would cause pond waters to smell and affect the quality of life in the community.
“Environmentally speaking, it's the right thing to do,” Dowler said.
Ultimately, City Council members voted 4 to 3 to approve the staff's recommendation to approve the memo of understanding with Council member Betty Erhard casting the dissenting vote.