Ruddy Mathison, Gleaner Writer
THE PARISH of Trelawny, which supplies some two and a half million gallons of water to neighbouring St James each day, is, ironically, facing a chronic water crisis.
Last Thursday's monthly meeting of the Trelawny Parish Council was dominated by passionate pleas, coupled with a display of frustration and anger from six councillors representing both sides of the political divide, as they impressed on the local office of the National Water Commission (NWC) the need to ease the water crisis in their respective divisions.
Of the nine divisions making up the parish council, only the Falmouth division, represented by Mayor Garth Wilkinson; Albert Town, represented by Lloyd Gillings; and Lorrimers, represented by independent councillor Paul Patmore, did not seem to be troubled by the water crisis.
Leading the charge, former mayor, Collen Gager, of the Warsop division, chided the NWC for not living up to a promise made earlier this year to have the Troy Water system commissioned so that the people in this area could have running water.
Gager said despite the assurances given to him on many occasions by the NWC, the project is at a standstill.
"I think the NWC is facing a serious management problem, and I think it should divest some of its entities so that they can be properly managed," Gager asserted.
Phillip Service, who represents the Martha Brae division, where the parish's main water source is located, agreed with his counterpart. He urged the NWC to outsource some of its operations in order to improve efficiency.
SEVERE WATER PROBLEMS
Service was critical of the authorities pumping millions of gallons of water per day to St James from the Martha Brae River while the people in the parish were experiencing severe water problems.
Donovan White, councillor for the Duncans division, expressed disgust at the NWC for the inconsistent water supply the people of Spicy Hill are currently experiencing. He said they only get water 12 hours each day.
In his response, NWC Parish Manager Orville Williams told White that the underground water source in his area is producing less than half the amount of water it once produced. As a result, the pump cannot function for 24 hours on the low water pressure.
In respect of the other concerns, Williams instructed the council to write to the NWC for answers because he was not in a position to deal with them.