Sioux City Water Works Annual Report
The eleventh annual report recently issued under the commission form of government of the water works of Sioux City, Ia., of which Phil Carlin is superintendent, includes the period from April 1, 1920, to March 31, 1921. The total collections derived from the sale of water amounted to $268,734.97, according to the report. The total collected from sources other than the sale of water was $19,238.52, making a grand total of $287,973.49. In the previous fiscal year, beginning April 1, 1919, and ending March 31, 1920, the total amount collected was $250.512.96. The increase this year is $37,460.53. “Most of the increase was derived from the service charge of 20 per cent, in excess of the existing water rates, which took effect September 1, 1920,” the report states. “This charge will be in operation until such time as the cost of construction and operation becomes normal.”
The total cost of operation and maintenance for the year was $151,849.66. The total cost for 1919 was $123,771.54, or $28,078.12 greater than that for the previous year. The total cost of new construction amounted to $230,785.95. The total for 1919 amounted to $173,553.82. During this last fiscal year $57,232.13 more was spent for new construction than during the previous year.
Mr. Carlin continues in his report: “In my annual report of 1919, I recommended the extension of the 24-inch supply main from Twenty-fourth and Jones to connect with a 16-inch main at Seventh and Clark Streets. This was completed during the late fall. This I consider one of the most important improvements made during the year and will be of much benefit to the district known as the ‘packing district.’ By making this connection the department has been able to increase the pressure on the mains about 15 pounds to the square inch. An effort was made by water works officials throughout the state to have the legislature pass a law whereby the water works of certain cities could reduce the cost of laying mains and making extensions into out-lying districts. A great many cities in Iowa are depending on net earnings to make extensions and betterments. Sioux City is one of these, there being no levy made since 1908 for water works purposes. Our city is growing rapidly, and there are large demands for extensions, and for enlargements of old mains. We now have more than 85 miles of two-inch galvanized pipe. Our department has been able thus far to get along on the net earnings to make these extensions and betterments, but we are now up to the point where we cannot do it any longer, unless the cost of material and labor conies down.”
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Mr. Carlin recommends that in the case of extensions and improvements, rather than have the consumers and patrons using water pay for these, a more equitable plan would be to assess a frontage tax against the abutting property for the cost of laying a main not larger than six inches, the amount to be refunded to the owner when he becomes a water user. During the year 12,058 feet of pipe were laid, bringing the total number of pipes of all sizes to 629,538, or 119 miles and 1,210 feet. In addition to this the department laid 42,986 feet of twoinch galvanized pipe to supply residents in the new territory. Eleven new fire hydrants were set, bringing the total to 952. New taps on the mains during the year number 241 more than the previous year. The total number of taps in the city to date are 11,527, and the total number of meters of all sizes installed during the year were 798. E. J. Doolittle, chief engineer, reported that the output of the well system was increased 1,500,000 gallons per day by lowering the air heads in wells Nos. 11, 12, 14 and 16, a depth of forty feet. According to Mr. Carlin the department completed a new well, and a new pump house will be built over this well with machinery installed during the year. The total quantity of water pumped during the year, figured on plunger displacement at Main Street station, and venturi measurements at Lowell Street stations, with the usual corrections for slippage, amounted to 2,120,205,665 gallons, being 77,251,463 gallons less than the previous year. This loss is attributed to the falling off of consumption at packing plants. The average daily consumption for the year was 5,808,767 gallons. The total per capita consumption for the year 1920 was 77.45 gallons.