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HIGH SPRINGS – The Alachua County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) and High Springs City Commissioners held a joint meeting on April 14. It took no more than 43 minutes from Call to Order by BOCC Chair Robert “Hutch” Hutchinson and High Springs Mayor Byran Williams to adjournment to conclude the business of the day.

The meeting, which took place at High Springs City Hall, focused primarily on how to address the contaminated water well at the Alachua County Transfer Station and Alachua County Fire/Rescue Station #20.

As reported in late March, the water well serving the two county structures is contaminated. “County personnel are currently using bottled water for drinking and whatever cooking they might do on the premises,” said Bill Northcutt, Alachua County Fire Chief.

Following initial discussion of the issue in which the City offered to extend existing water line across U.S. Highway 441 to serve the two facilities, both Northcutt and High Springs City Manager Ed Booth researched further options.

“We've looked at the Comprehensive Plan and an adjustment would have to be made to it,” said Northcutt following the first meeting. “We are also researching options on filtration systems to determine costs and viability. We are doing our due diligence before we bring any option before the Board of County Commissioners for their determination.”

“The City is nice enough to pursue the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) for permission to do the project,” Northcutt said at that time.

During the joint meeting, Northcutt suggested the county drill another well on the property away from the existing well. Although the decision to drill another well on Transfer Station property might sound problematic, Northcutt said, “Not so. The new well would have a core around it, which is necessary for commercial use. The old well does not have that."

According to the County, a more up-to-date filtration system and updated equipment are expected to make a difference with the new well, which was also the least expensive option, said High Springs City Commissioner Scott Jamison.

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