Perryville citizens seek reimbursements for water line breaks

Published 5:45 pm Thursday, June 6, 2024

As the Perryville Road waterline project nears completion, Perryville residents are seeking compensation for high water and sewage bills incurred from clearing lines after water main breaks.

As of May 28, there were eight water line breaks and seven boil water advisories. Many of the breaks have occurred due to construction crews accidentally hitting the water main line when they are putting the new water line in the ground. When this happens, dirt can get into the water supply and goes to the sinks in people’s houses.

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Perryville Mayor Rob Kernodle spoke at the Danville City Commission meeting on May 28 as a Perryville citizen, and explained that after the breaks, the lines are filled with unusable dirty water and must be drained until the water is clear again. Kernodle estimated it has taken 20 to 30 gallons of water to clear the lines after every break.

“It is not water that can be boiled and used; it is too dirty,” Kernodle told the commission. “You have to clean out the water in your refrigerator, ice maker, everything.”

Danville City Manager Earl Coffey explained that a Danville City Ordinance prohibits the city from providing free water and that reimbursement has no precedence in this situation.

Perryville citizens have been advised to file a compensation claim with the City of Danville’s insurance carrier.

Kernodle explained that a core part of the issue is the high cost of water and sewage in Perryville, one of the highest in the state at 14 dollars per unit of 1000 cubic feet. There have been efforts to lower the price of water and sewage in Perryville, but progress has been stagnant.

“We are paying for water we didn’t get to use and paying sewage on it as well,” Kernodle said. “I hope that we can all work together and look for an outcome that benefits both.”

Kernodle went on to say that sewage is the main reason for the high bills and that usage marked on the bill fluctuates heavily monthly.  He noted that lengthy times to fix leaks have been frustrating for many residents and that some leaks have been an issue for over a year.

“We as citizens see some inefficiencies that raise our eyebrows,” Kernodle said. “It is one of those things that make you feel like you have said all you can say.”

The Perryville Road water line project is expected to be tested and completed in June, with cleanup occurring throughout the rest of the summer.