Moline waters parts of Silvis | Politics and elections


After years of battling water pressure issues, some Silvis residents may find some relief thanks to Moline.

Moline City Council members approved an intergovernmental agreement on Tuesday for the bulk sale of surplus drinking water to Silvis, pending the construction of a connecting water main between the two cities.

Moline estimates it will receive $180,000 in annual revenue from the arrangement, which will be returned to the city’s water fund for future water system improvements.

“It’s something this council and previous councils have always wanted, and it’s one of our strategic goals,” said Bob Vitas, chief executive of the City of Moline. “It’s going to help us deal with our excess water capacity. We have so A lot of excess water capacity, produced by the city on a daily basis. With excess capacity that we don’t need, it doesn’t make the feel just sit it out.”

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Silvis City Administrator Nevada Lemke and Public Works Director Scott McKay could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

For years, some Silvis residents have refused water from their drinking taps due to complaints of poor water quality; not just the water pressure.

“It always scares me,” Jenny Sackfield said of the water entering her Silvis home. “We’ve lived here for 19 years and got Culligan water right away.”

She also blamed electrical issues for Silvis’s water, having had her water heater and dishwasher replaced three times each, as well as multiple toilet changes.

Jamie Sevier, who has lived in Silvis for 16 years, agrees that water is hard on appliances. But the taste is the most offensive.

However, only parts of the city of Silves will receive Moline Water, primarily along the John Deere Road corridor.

“Our hope in the long run is to supply water to the entire Silvis network,” says Moline Ald. Third Ward Mike Winter. “Moline will be more than happy to supply Silvis with all products. This is just the first step.”

Wendt estimates the new connections will cover more than half of the city.

Silvis recently contacted Moline for help providing water to the city’s high-pressure waters along John Deere Road to meet Silvis’ pressure needs, “which is important,” Vitas said.

“Silvis still retains ownership of its entire water system,” he said. “We’re really nothing more than a tap on the line. Since they need water in this high-pressure zone for current and future development, this (ensuring) they’ll have an adequate public water supply.”

Vitas said the agreement will benefit both communities.

“We have excess (water) capacity and we need to sell it,” he said. “It helps reduce our rates and user costs and (Silvis) is in huge demand due to water pressure issues in the systems they are getting right now from wells.”

One of the conditions of the agreement is that Silvis will not annex properties along or south of 10th Street west of the city boundary, Vitas said, adding that Moline wants the Deere & Co. world headquarters to remain in unincorporated Rock Island County.

Moline has steadily built a reputation for its high-quality drinking water and technology for treating water drawn from the Mississippi River. At the 2018 American Water Works Association (AWWA) National Conference, the city ranked third for best tasting water in North America.

As part of the agreement, Moline will design and construct a new water main to connect Moline’s water system with Silvis’ water system to supply Silvis’ high pressure area.

Vitas said Moline had already started building the water pipes and hired Hutchison Engineering to design the project.

“It’s a pressing issue, so we’ve started work on the design,” he said, noting the intergovernmental agreement is “a great inter-municipal collaboration between the two cities.”

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