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Dripping Springs wastewater discharge permit progresses

Wednesday, February 1, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

According to an announcement from the city of Dripping Springs, after several months of meetings, a controversial wastewater discharge permit is now significantly less controversial. Preliminary findings of an evaluation of Dripping Springs’ plan by Austin’s Watershed Protection Department show that it meets Austin’s standards for potential impacts on water quality in Onion Creek. From the announcement: “Dripping Springs has signed reuse contracts with the Caliterra and Howard Ranch developments to accept close to 500,000 gallons per day of reclaimed water. This, combined with plans the City has to irrigate city-owned land, accounts for approximately 600,000 gallons per day, which puts a significant dent into the proposed allowable maximum of 995,000 gallons per day. The City Council also has signed a letter of intent with local landowner Scott Roberts as it relates to a proposed development in Driftwood. A feasibility study will now be conducted to evaluate that development accepting up to one million gallons of treated effluent for reuse.” Dripping Springs Mayor Pro Tem Bill Foulds explained, “The City of Dripping Springs remains as committed as ever to this strategy; it has never been our intent to discharge. We are on the record that beneficial reuse and direct potable reuse are our long-term goals.” He also thanked city staff and Austin Mayor Steve Adler, who said he was excited that the two cities “are working together to find solutions to accommodate the region’s rapid growth, while protecting water quality.”

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