Over the last few days, many of our Plano residents expressed concerns about the safety and quality of our drinking water, which we get from our regional supplier, North Texas Municipal Water District.
The District started a 28-day chlorine maintenance program on February 26. It will end March 26.
On February 19, we issued a press release advising the community that the annual maintenance would begin soon and that residents may notice a slight change in the smell and taste of their water. In the release, we emphasized Plano’s tap water would remain safe for use and consumption.
Activist Erin Brockovich’s recent posts on social media called out Plano for the chlorine maintenance practice. Remember, the maintenance practice is not Plano’s practice. It is the North Texas Municipal Water District’s (NTMWD) practice. The NTMWD serves as Plano’s water supplier, along with 12 other member cities and 34 customer cities in 10 North Texas counties. The chlorine maintenance program is not new. It was a regional decision approved by the district’s member cities years ago. It is a common practice across the country.
We want to assure our residents Plano’s water is safe.
While Plano doesn’t test individual homes, we do test our water via an independent lab. Our most recent test was in January. Our next test is scheduled for April. The City of Plano Public Works department also conducts our own testing to ensure water safety and quality.
Here is a link to our water quality reports over the last five years: https://www.plano.gov/1503/Water-Quality-Information
The NTMWD also tests the water supply. Their test results also show the supply is safe for consumption.
The NTMWD provided the public with answers to frequently asked questions regarding chlorine maintenance.
To ease your concerns about the quality of our water, we’d like to direct you to what the federal government says about chlorine maintenance and drinking water.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says chlorine levels up to 4 milligrams per liter are considered safe in drinking water. At this level, no harmful health effects are likely to occur. Test results confirm our drinking water is below that level.
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says ammonia added to chlorine, known as chloramines, has been used by water utilities since the 1930s. More than one in five Americans uses drinking water treated with chloramines. Water that contains chloramines and meets EPA regulatory standards is safe to use for drinking, cooking, bathing and other household uses. North Texas’ water meets EPA regulatory standards. https://www.epa.gov/dwreginfo/chloramines-drinking-water
** MEETING INFORMATION **
There will be a joint presentation by the NTMWD and the City of Plano's Public Works Director, Gerald Cosgrove, during the March 20 (Tuesday) Preliminary Open Meeting of the Plano City Council. Their presentation will focus on the North Texas Municipal Water District Water Testing and Quality Update. Council meetings are held in Plano Municipal Center at 1520 K Avenue.
Council is called to order at 5pm and then moves immediately into Executive Session. Preliminary Open Meeting follows Executive Session.
You can join meetings in person, on TV, online at planotv.org or via our Facebook Live stream.