NORMAN — City council members Tuesday will consider approving a contract with Del City that would allow Norman to buy that city's surplus water from Lake Thunderbird. The council meets at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Municipal Building's council chambers, 201 W Gray St.
The contract would be effective on May 1 and expire in five years. Under terms of the contract, Norman would be allowed to buy Del City's surplus, untreated water from Lake Thunderbird at a price of 33 cents per 1,000 gallons.
Norman, Midwest City and Del City rely on Lake Thunderbird for a water supply, supplemented by water wells.
The three cities share an allocation of 21,600 acre-feet of lake water annually. Norman has 43.8 percent of the total allocation. Midwest City has a 40.2 percent allocation, and Del City's allocation is 15.8 percent.
Del City does not use the full amount allocated each year, but Norman does. City Manager Steve Lewis said Del City is willing to sell some of its surplus water to Norman as long as their wells are up and running.
Contract terms specify that if four or more of Del City's wells cease to function, Norman could not purchase any of that city's allocation.
Increasing Norman's allocation from Lake Thunderbird by buying part of Del City's portion is a temporary means of addressing supply problems, officials said.
An ongoing drought has resulted in an unusually low level at Lake Thunderbird. The Central Oklahoma Master Conservancy District, Lake Thunderbird's governing body, already has ordered Norman, Del City and Midwest City to cut their usage by 10 percent.
If the drought continues, the cities may be asked to cut back even more. That could affect Norman's ability to buy water from Del City, officials said.
In other business, council members will consider a contract with Allied Waste Systems to provide recycling services for the city.
A contract with Waste Management, which has provided a weekly curbside recycling service since 2008, has expired. The new contract with a different firm would change the service from a weekly curbside collection to every other week.
Residents will be provided “polycarts” for the service, which would hold more items than the bins currently in use. Cardboard would be added as a recyclable item, something not now collected curbside.