Editor, Commonwealth:

This is in regard to recent complaints from Leflore County citizens who have no clean water in their area. One lady states that they have had no water in several weeks, while a man writes that he has a problematic, high-maintenance private water well system. They appealed to their elected supervisor, a local television station and even this newspaper for help with this situation. Generous people sent water as a show of concern and compassion. The elected official seemed appalled at this situation and promised to rectify the problem. I just want to say, Good luck with that.

Nearly four years ago, two family members and I met with the Board of Supervisors with a similar complaint. We live east of Sidon, and we have an antiquated shallow water well system. The well was dug in the 1960s, and it has presented numerous problems over the decades.

Each family has its own well system. Add to that the diversion of water by farmers for irrigation purposes, and you can imagine what our water pressure is like. A shower is out of the question. We have to buy our cooking and drinking water. We have to take our white clothes to the laundromat. We can’t water the garden. We can’t wash the car at home. And cleaning the tub and toilet is like a prison sentence. The list goes on.

One member of the board hinted that there were not enough homes in this area to justify the expense of providing fresh water for us (though I’ve noticed other areas have water in the middle of fields or heavily wooded areas). Others said that it’s unseemly that we should be having this problem in the 21st century. We were dismissed with the assurance that they would find a way to provide us with clean, healthy water.

Coincidentally, around that time, our elected congressman had recently visited. He stated that there were grants available to assist with clean water issues. He said the only thing our officials needed to do was apply for the grants. I emailed the congressman’s office to tell him of our plight. I asked him to have someone contact our county administrator to direct the county in applying for a grant,

It is now three years and 10 months later. We are still buying bottled water. We are still taking baths only (hard on arthritic knees). We are still going to the laundromat. I have replaced the water pump three times since that meeting.

So to those fellow clean-water-poor residents of Leflore County, I’m just gonna say, Good luck with that.

G.A. Brown

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