JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – On Tuesday, Jackson Mayor Chokwe A. Lumumba started off his news conference by saying that a majority of Jackson residents should have normal water pressure after issues at the O.B. Curtis Water Treatment Facility.
The majority of the news conference was spent by the mayor outlining the efforts the city has made to fix the water infrastructure issues.
Lumumba brought copies of previous documents written by the City of Jackson, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other parties showing that the city has been proactive in this issue.
He also mentioned a letter he sent to Gov. Tate Reeves (R-Miss.) in 2020 after extreme winter weather froze water services for many Jackson neighbors.
The mayor read in part, “I am requesting emergency funds funding from the state and federal government to make capital improvements necessary for the efficient operation of Jackson’s water treatment plants and distribution network. These improvements are critical to the efforts to ensure that our residents and businesses are not deprived of water, of clean water again.”
The mayor said he never received a response from the governor.
He also included a draft of that fully outlined plan he had mentioned to WJTV 12 News before, but he provided no timeline of when those plans would be implemented.
Congressman Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) said he has yet to see a finished plan on how to fix Jackson’s water issues.
On Tuesday, Jackson leaders said the O.B. Curtis Water Treatment Facility remained at a steady pressure over the past 24 hours and is operating at 86 PSI. They also said the margin of storage that was built over the weekend decreased some of the past 24 hours.
Crews have maintained stable storage in the clear wells at the plan. However, they haven’t been able to push as much into the overhead tanks as preferred.
The plant is currently producing stable pressure, but if there is a challenge with plant operation on Tuesday, it will likely impact customers.
There is currently water in all storage tanks, but the Suncrest Tank is at a lower level than preferred. All of Jackson should have pressure, and most are experiencing normal pressure.
If you are experiencing discolored water or no pressure please report using this tool https://arcg.is/0LDmjb.
According to officials, progress was made in restoring the solids treatment process on Monday. Progress was also made validating and calibrating lab and monitoring equipment.
Crews are working on both the membrane and conventional systems with city staff and mutual aid teams from Mississippi and Georgia rural water associations. Leaders said the focus on Tuesday is on continuing to restore the sludge plant to full operation to remove sediment from conventional treatment process, as well as improving plant process controls.
Officials said investigative sampling began on Wednesday in order to get an indication of water quality. This is to determine when sampling can begin to clear the boil water notice, which the city has been under since July 29, 2022.
Two rounds of clear samples are needed in order to remove the boil water notice.
Watch the full news conference below: