Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

JEA Fixes Wells for Residents Private Supplies Dry Up When Utility Taps Aquifer

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

JEA Fixes Wells for Residents Private Supplies Dry Up When Utility Taps Aquifer

Article excerpt

The JEA ended up fixing the private aquifer wells of more than 50 residents after they complained about losing water when the utility turned on its latest water well on Orange Pickers Road.

But with another municipal well at Alberts Field set to be dug for a planned March startup, the JEA is hosting a public meeting at 7 p.m. Sept. 9 at the Mandarin Community Club to alert residents who live within a mile of the planned well.

Along with telling them what the utility can do to restore wells dried up when the 2,500-gallon-a-minute city well is turned on, the JEA is also hoping people with wells they don't know about will come, said Bill Cutts, vice president of JEA's customer service division.

"We are asking the residents of the Alberts Field area to come so we can explain to them why we must install the well, how deep it will go and the possible impact it may have on the aquifer and their private wells," said Cutts. "We want to know where they are to keep them from losing water."

The meeting is exactly what the JEA should have done before it turned on its Community Hall well next to the Halsema Greenhouse at 2525 Orange Pickerss Road in April, said City Councilwoman Mary Ann Southwell. She and predecessor Dick Kravitz had to deal with angry private well owners the last time, all of whom knew nothing about the Orange Pickers Road well, she said.

The JEA now has maps showing what the drop in the water table will be throughout the Mandarin peninsula, with the biggest drops immediately around an oval area west of Alberts Field to just east of the Halsema Greenhouse, Southwell said.

"The word hasn't gotten out on this new well," she said. "Even before this, residents were worried about losing their water source."

Southwell's concerns stem from problems caused when the JEA installed Mandarin's last municipal well in April. …

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