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October 14, 2012

Norman’s water future at forefront

NORMAN — A public meeting on from 7- 9 p.m. on Wednesday at City Council Chambers, 201 W. Gray St. will be the second in a series of public meetings to provide information about the progress of the 2060 Strategic Water Supply Plan and to gather public input regarding key aspects of the plan.

 The city is updating its plans for supplying long term water solutions to its customers. The SWSP builds on previous planning efforts discussing water demands, supply options, and infrastructure as well as significant new developments in water supply regulations, new technology and availability of water.

Regulatory changes on drinking water quality affecting local groundwater supplies, new limits on the amount of groundwater and Lake Thunderbird water Norman will be allowed to use. Evolving opportunities to increase water conservation and reuse in the community also will be discussed.

The city is evaluating a wide range of potential water supply sources and identifying those that will best meet the community’s short and long-term needs. The long-term water supply “portfolio” for Norman will likely include a combination of existing sources and new sources.

Sources that pass the initial screening criteria will be combined into portfolios for further evaluation in the second phase of the project.

Public input will be sought throughout the process. An Ad Hoc committee has been appointed by the city council to help guide this planning process and enhance feedback and communications. The Oct. 17 public meeting will include a presentation on the goals and drivers for water supply planning in Norman, a description of the local and regional supply sources under consideration, a relative comparison of the supply options and a supply option screening to reduce the number of options to those most viable for further analysis.

Meeting participants will have an opportunity to review supply options and to provide feedback on the evaluation criteria and the relative importance of planning drivers.

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