In 2007, the state issued a water withdrawal permit to the city based on significant analysis by the city, HRWA, and other experts that set the limits on how much water the city could pull from the Harpeth for a drinking water plant and not cause impairment. The old plant was not replaced since the city’s own analyses showed that a drinking water plant on the Harpeth of either size will typically only work at half capacity during the summer months under the state permit conditions. Then in 2012, city consultants resuscitated the drinking water plant expansion idea by proposing to add treated sewage to the river upstream of downtown Franklin and the drinking water plant. This Toilet to Tap proposal did not get aldermen support, but it is the recommendation in the city’s Integrated Water Management Plan provided to the state and others.
This summer, the state will review issuing another water withdrawal permit to Franklin. Under the state regulations, water withdrawals of the levels the city has proposed cause degradation. As a result, the withdrawal is not to be permitted unless there is an economic necessity. The city already has a reliable drinking water supply system with HVUD. It does not need the Harpeth.
Your voice Matters! Tell city aldermen and TDEC to save significant rate payer and tax payer funds by letting go of the past and focusing on improving the river’s health through downtown Franklin.