11/08 The Dalles City Council Meeting

The Dalles City Council last night approved an agreement with Google subsidiaries Moraine Industries and Design, LLC that would result in Google investing $28.5 million dollars to upgrade the city’s water system in multiple ways. According to the staff report, the net result will be that the city will have new expanded capacity beyond what the two new Google plants will take out. Some citizens had expressed concerns that if climate change caused enough drought to lead to a water deficit, would Google or the city come first. City public works director Dave Anderson said flat out that state law mandates that the health and safety needs of the public are the highest priority. Mayor Rich Mays took the unusual step of asking director Anderson a series of true or false questions. We’ve edited together a few or the more pertinent ones:

Mayor Mays: “Water levels within the groundwater reservoir have not gone down in recent years; in fact, they’ve gone up. “

Director Anderson: “True.:

Mayor Mays: “Improvements as described — we’re talking about water mains, wells, emergency backup power, water pump stations, sewer pump stations, sewer force mains and utility access corridors — those together we think will cost about 28 and a half million dollars. Google is paying the entire costs for those improvements.”

Director Anderson: “True.”

Mayor Mays: “Improvements as just described as I just described them, will increase water capacity that will improve water service not just to Google, but for the rest of the City of The Dalles.”

Director Anderson: “True.”  

The vote to approve the agreement was unanimous.