OP-ED by Gilbert LIvas, City Manager and Delfino Consunji, Director of Public Works
When it comes to the water that flows from your tap, you rarely think about where it comes from before it reaches your home or business or how many rigorous rounds of tests it undergoes. We worry about that, so you don’t have to.
In Downey, 100 percent of our water comes from our abundant groundwater supply. Our local supply also means that our customers enjoy some of the least expensive water rates in Southern California, as well as a trustworthy local supply that they can count on.
From time to time, organizations or individuals may make false statements that our water does not meet drinking water quality standards. Rest assured it does.
One of the substances in our water that our customers may hear about in our community, as well as nationwide, is per- and polyfluoroalkyl (PFAS) chemicals.
PFAS has been used in many products, such as stain-resistant coatings on carpet, clothing and furniture; paper food packaging; firefighting foam and non-stick coatings on cookware.
These substances may then enter groundwater supplies through the use of firefighting foam, landfills, wastewater treatment plant discharge and industrial sites.
We are pursuing legal action against several companies that manufactured the PFAS that is found in our groundwater supply.
This action will protect our ratepayers and ensure that these companies compensate our City for past, present and future costs for testing, treating and removing PFAS.
To ensure that our water is ready for our customers and complies with state guidelines and the EPA’s PFAS Health Advisory, we test it thousands of times per year.
We proactively monitor for PFAS and other naturally occurring and man-made substances in our water. Only water that meets state and federal drinking water standards and regulations is served to our customers.
We protect our water at its source and work with state experts and scientists to immediately address any pollutants. Thanks to ongoing water testing, the City’s Annual Water Quality reports show our water meets some of the most stringent water quality standards in the nation.
The City of Downey is located within the Central Basin Municipal Water District’s 227 square mile service area and its Board President Art Chacon has recently released a statement saying that Central Basin values the City of Downey as a customer and believes that our City is in full compliance with the established drinking water quality standards.
Communicating regularly with our residents on important City matters is a top priority to us.
We invite you to visit our website, www.downeyca.org/WQReport, to learn more about our commitment to delivering reliable-high quality water to our customers and to view our annual Water Quality Report that contains detailed information on our water sources and ongoing treatment and monitoring our water supply goes through.
We also welcome you to contact us at 562-904-7110 to speak to one of our knowledgeable team members to learn about our water supply.
Our dedicated team at the City of Downey looks forward to continuing to provide our residents with reliable water they can trust.