St. Thomas Communities to get Piped Water


Residents of White Horses, Pamphret and Botany Bay in Western St. Thomas will receive piped water for the first time on Thursday, January 31, as Minister of Water and Housing, Dr. Horace Chang will commission into service, the White Horses/Botany Bay Water Project.
The launch will take place on the grounds of the old Goodyear factory, beginning at 10:00 a.m.The White Horses/Pamphret/Botany Bay water supply project is being implemented under the Rural Water Programme. It involves the pumping of water from the Springfield deep well near Morant Bay, to a reservoir in White Horses, from where a distribution system will take the water to the residents. Bacchus Engineering Works Limited was awarded the US$3.4 million contract to construct and operate the project, initially. Of this amount, US$1.7 million funded the construction, while US$1.7 million will go towards meeting operational costs.
Director, Rural Water Programme in the Ministry of Water and Housing, Ian Gage told JIS News that the project represented not just the provision of water for residents of these communities, but also the launching of a pilot management system for stand-alone water systems.
He said what makes the project a special one is the fact that the community would become the operators of the facility and not the National Water Commission (NWC), as is the tradition.
“What we do is design and build the systems and develop a community water organization or benevolent society and they run the scheme on behalf of the community. They will operate and maintain the system and will charge rates and people will pay to them. So, we work out a tariff and they will send out bills, charge water rates and that’s what pays to keep the system going,” he added.

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