Though Attacked, I Stand By My Original Statement



I have been taken to task about public statements I have made regarding a safe yield study having been conducted on the RH2 well (Tower Well) located in Star Valley. On two occasions that I know of, anonymous rants have been directed toward me and my public comments.

One newspaper also wrote an article challenging my statements. The paper's recent editorial talked about telling both sides of the story; however, the author of both items did not contact me to determine my sources for my statements. The author did not contact the Payson Water Department to ascertain whether a safe yield study had been done on the RH2 well. The public comments credited to Buzz Walker probably referred to the Star Valley wide safe yield study, not the RH2 well study. Fair and balanced reporting is all I expect, but did not get.

If the reporter had contacted either party, he would have found out the following facts:

1. A safe yield analysis has been completed for the RH2 well by Southwest Ground-water Consultants, Inc. and the findings were presented to Michael Ploughe in a report dated Jan. 25, 2006 with the subject of "Well RH-2 Ground-water Production, Star Valley, Gila County, Arizona."

2. The method used to conduct a safe yield analysis is mathematical using a Darcy Flux calculation. Data used come from various well pumping tests. This is the industry-standard method used to conduct such analyses.

3. The safe yield calculation is for the RH2 well and its surrounding area. It is not a Star Valley-wide safe yield study. That study is still under way and the results are due later.

4. The analysis states those areas immediately nearby and within a north-northwest to south-southeast direction of the RH2 well may be affected by pumping at RH2 while wells located west of the zone (most of Star Valley proper) are not directly hydrologically connected. Therefore, I believe the Town of Payson should resume at least maintenance production from the well to protect the investment in well improvements and pipeline infrastructure. It really should be put into the rotation of producing wells in the Town's inventory.

The citizens of Payson should take comfort in the fact we have a well that can augment our water production levels and the Town's cost to obtain the original 400 gpm and piping it into our town system is zero, nothing, nada.

I am sure some will find fault with my analysis of the facts, but I stand by my original comments.

Robert Henley, Payson

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