Purcell City Hall

Missouri American assists Purcell in managing its water/sewer systems

City plans to ask voters for approval to have Missouri American take over the systems

Missouri American Water has already spent $16,000   – not counting labor – on equipment and supplies to correct problems with the Purcell water and sewer systems.

Mat Barnhart, manager of Missouri American Water, made that disclosure during a special meeting of the Purcell Board of Alderman on Thursday, April 15.

The city hasn’t had city staff operating the water and sewer system for several months.

Barnhart and his staff have made an effort to locate all water meters, read them and verify they are working correctly. “Accurate billing builds trust” in the community he said.

It was found that some residents not on the sewer system are still being billed, and that will be corrected.

He said the alarms on the sewer lift stations have been activated and steps have been taken to reduce electricity bills.

On the good side, the computerized collection system has been found, which Barnhart said will save $5,000.

A drop box outside City Hall where residents have been allowed to deposit their payments will be removed.

Mayor Kelsey Freelend said all payments will have to be mailed to the post office box or made online.

Voters are expected to be asked, as early as August, to approve Missouri American Water taking over the water and sewer systems.

In other action during the special meeting, Mayor Kelsey Freelend’s appointment of Justin Messer to a vacant seat on the board was approved.

She also appointed Shannon Wedge as the city clerk/treasurer.

The board approved closing the city’s current accounts at Southwest Missouri Bank and establish new SMB accounts. Freelend said the change was necessary because of discrepencies with the current accounts.

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