Tuesday, June 18, 2019
     
"An investment in Knowledge pays the best Interest."

Ben Franklin's words still ring true today. So we pick out the most appropriate articles in current events and news regarding the Water Industry both nationally and in Kansas to filter the most pertinent information for you.

Weekly News for June 10, 2019

06/10/2019 - Weekly KRWA E-News

GMD Reports Aquifer Levels Near Hutchinson Reached 18-Year High During May
A depth to water of of 5.5 feet below ground surface level was recorded near the end of May, the highest since 2001, according to Tim Boese, manager of Equus Beds Groundwater Management District No. 2. Those water level measurements were recorded in automated wells monitored by GMD 2 staff. The high water levels are causing headaches for homeowners with flooding basements in the Hutchinson area, as several other Reno County monitoring wells are also recording high groundwater levels. [source

 

Salina Annexes Land for Water Treatment Facility
Three months of negotiations between Salina and Saline County came to an amicable conclusion last week when the Salina City Commission annexed about 42 acres of land into city limits for the future location of a new water treatment facility. The land is located at the southeast corner of East Water Well Road and South Ohio Street. [source

 

KDHE Issues Stream Advisory in Washington County
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) last week announced it is investigating a suspected animal waste discharge in Washington County. The agency also issued a Stream Advisory for Ash Creek, Mill Creek and the Little Blue River, in Washington County, pertaining to all of Ash Creek, Mill Creek downstream of Washington and the Little Blue River downstream of Hanover. The public and landowners along these streams are advised to avoid contact with those waters and to restrict pets and livestock access to those waterways until KDHE determines that impacts from the discharge are negligible. [source

 

Repair Work Started on Watershed Dam Near Sabetha
Workers conduct repairs on failing Kansas dam with a backhoe.Repairs started last week on a dam south of Sabetha that had partially eroded away. Brown County Emergency Management Coordinator James Stuart reported last Monday that dry weather conditions over the weekend allowed the water level behind the failing Nemaha County watershed dam to be drawn down to a point it that was safe for repair work to begin. The Division of Water Resources ordered work to begin Monday in anticipation of the expected rain. Assistant City Admin­istrator Bill Shroyer told the Sabetha Herald, "The watershed pond needed to be drained to replace the drainage tube under the dam, which is initially believed to be behind the failure of the dam structure." With the City of Sabetha's wastewater plant located close to the pond, Shroyer said there was also some initial concern about flood­ing affecting the wastewater plant. By bringing down the water level incrementally, they are hoping to avoid causing any flood damage or affecting downstream water levels that much. "More extensive repairs will be done at a later date, weather permitting, along with reopening of area roads that had been closed due to the dam failure threat," according to Stuart. [source

 

Watershed Dams Touted in Kansas Flood Prevention  
The value of watershed dams in south-central Kansas is being realized after the area received as much as 15 inches of rain in May. The Sand Creek Watershed District, for example, constructed ten watershed dams between 1976 and 2000. Kansas Department of Agriculture Watershed Program Manager Hakim Saadi said the total detention storage capacity of the Sand Creek Watershed sites is approximately 2.2 billion gallons of water. "Watersheds are the silent protectors," Saadi said. The Natural Resources Conservation Service estimated that statewide the watershed dams provided $7 million of flood reduction benefits from the rains that fell between May 6 and May 8 and $18.3 million of flood reduction benefits for the May 20 and May 21 rains. "Add to this the flood reduction benefits from 500-plus state Kansas Department of Agriculture's Division of Conservation-funded dams and you can see how Kansas benefits from the watershed district programs," said State Association of Kansas Watersheds Executive Director Herb Graves. [source

 

KDHE Announces Public Availability Session for Former American Cleaners Groundwater Contamination
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has announced a Public Availability Session scheduled for Tuesday, June 18, at the Haysville High School Gymnasium, during which the Bureau of Environmental Remediation Dry Cleaning Program will update residents on the status of the former American Cleaners site and what is currently being done to assess the source area contamination associated with the former dry cleaning facility. The public availability session will include an update on how KDHE will be performing corrective action at the property to assess the contaminated source area soils contributing to the contaminated groundwater plume. Discussed will be a timeline for demolishing the building, performing an excavation of the contaminated soils, and backfilling of excavated area with clean soils. After the update, KDHE will facilitate a question and answer session to answer any questions or concerns that residents may have. Residents in the area are encouraged to attend the session. [source

 

KC Water Pumping Wastewater into Missouri River Due to Broken Sewer Mains
KC Water said it is releasing wastewater directly into the Missouri River because of two broken sewer mains. Officials said a 30-inch force main and a 12-inch sludge line broke underneath the street at 1200 Woodswether Road. Because those lines are not in service, KC Water is unable to pump wastewater to the treatment plant and it's going into the river. Officials said they are in contact with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. Because those lines are not in service, KC Water is unable to pump wastewater to the treatment plant and it's going into the river. Officials said they are in contact with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. [source

 

Arkansas and Missouri Rivers Continue to Wreak Havoc in Neighboring States
Levee breach at Dardanelle, about 60 miles northwest of Little Rock. (Yell County Sheriff's Department via AP)As Kansas reservoirs continue to release large amounts of water, the U.S. Army Corps also increased the amount of water flowing from the Gavin’s Point Dam at the South Dakota-Nebraska state line. The USACE reported last week that it expects water releases from reservoirs on the Missouri to be above average through the summer and possibly until November. Flooding was occurring last week just east of Kansas City, where two levees were breached along the Missouri River near the town of Levasy. The floodwater closed parts of U.S. 24 on either side of the town, while further east Missouri 224 is closed from Napoleon to Wellington and from there to Lexington. Flooding was also occurring at Hardin, in Ray County, Missouri. Last Monday, water was starting to approach Hardin Cemetery, reminding locals of the Great Flood of 1993, when water lifted coffins from their graves, starting a search for the 1,500 bodies that went missing. The National Guard, volunteers and prisoners from St. Joseph last week were all preparing the town for the worst by stockpiling sandbags. Meanwhile, Lexington residents were in danger of losing their water plant, which was built in 1863, Mayor Fred Wiedner said. While the town itself isn’t going to flood, there’s potential for about 4,700 residents in Lexington to be without water for about a month. Though a new water plant is being built on higher ground, it’s not projected to be completed for about three more years. In the interim, the mayor asked Lexington residents to conserve water. As of last week they were using about 30% of the water they would normally use, Wiedner said. Damage also extends along the Arkansas River, from Tulsa area downstream into Arkansas. Vice President Mike Pence visited homes damaged by flooding in Oklahoma, last Tuesday, as residents and volunteers worked toward recovery. Pence said he will offer federal assistance to those who have been impacted by flooding that has waterlogged homes along the swollen Arkansas River. Communities in Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma ravaged by floods and tornadoes will be getting much needed federal relief dollars now that Congress has approved a $19 billion disaster aid bill following weeks of delay. Rep. Ron Estes, a Wichita Republican, was one of 58 Republicans to vote against the bill and the only Kansan in either the House or Senate to oppose it. Estes pointed to the dollar figure and the fact that the final bill didn’t include additional border security dollars sought by President Trump. [source

 

KRWA Training Calendar

 

June 11: Grandview Plaza
Water and Wastewater Math

 

June 11-12: Pratt
Programmable Logic Controllers 

 

June 12: Liberal
Competent Person for Trenching and Excavation

 

June 12-13: Junction City
Activated Sludge

 

June 13: Liberal
Confined Space Training

 

June 25-26: Hays
Advanced Electric Schematic Reading & Troubleshooting

 

Drought Monitor
Kansas remains free of drought and dryness, according to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor. The National Weather Service reported last week that in more than 120 years of records, this is the wettest year on record for the Kansas City area. "We're around 5 inches higher than the second wettest year, which was 1999," Scott Watson one of four NWS hydrologists serving Kansas and Missouri told KMBC News. By comparison, the floods of 1993 ranked as the ninth wettest. "It's really incredible how much rain we've had in our area." Watson said the pattern moving into summer is similar to 1993. June and July are typically among the wettest months of the year." For some of these areas, it could get worse," he said. Moreover, the NWS reports that only half of the Rocky Mountain snow pack has melted, meaning water levels along the Missouri River likely will remain high and possibly rise higher, even if it stops raining. “The main difference between now and (the historic flooding of) 1993 was that when we were getting those record rains (17.56 inches in July), the entire upper Midwest was getting drenched, too, 5 inches a time over a swath of entire states,” Mary Knapp, K-State climatologist, told the Manhattan Mercury. “This year, since their big flood event in March, Nebraska has been relatively dry.” Last month for Manhattan was the second-wettest May in history at 14.12 inches, nearly triple the average of 5.09. The most rain recorded there in a May was 14.73 inches in 1994. Below normal temperatures and above normal precipitation are expected to continue in Kansas.
Latest 8 to 14 day precipitation outlook from NOAA/NWS.
Current U.S. Drought Monitor maps for:
Arkansas River Basin, High Plains Region, North-Central RegionSouthern Plains Region and State of Kansas