Request for injunction against ECUA tanks denied

September 28, 2017

Judge James Fensom of the Florida 14th Judicial Circuit denied yesterday an emergency injunction to halt the construction of the ECUA emergency wastewater storage tank. Residents of the North Hill and Long Hollow neighborhoods located near the tank site had filed the lawsuit against ECUA on Sept. 13, alleging the utility did not follow Florida law when it decided to build the emergency tank without seeking prior approval from the Pensacola City Council.

Judge Fensom affirmed that ECUA, as an independent special district, has acted in accordance with Florida law and does not require approval from the Pensacola City Council to construct the emergency tank.

In a press release, ECUA said, “The covered 6-million-gallon capacity emergency storage tank, to be constructed adjacent to the ECUA’s Moreno Street Lift Station, is intended to protect the surrounding community and downtown Pensacola in the event of a breach in the sewer transmission main that transports wastewater from the downtown area to the ECUA’s Central Water Reclamation Facility in Cantonment.”

See order denying emergency injunction9-27-17

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  • Patti Salvaggio September 28, 2017 at 3:44 pm

    A five story tank, built on the down slope of a hill, with an adjacent street that floods in heavy rains. Every wonder why so many questionable projects go in around North Hill? Think about that a minute, and maybe drive around the perimeter of North Hill, and it will become very obvious. ECUA is some weird legal entity with no one able to check their actions. Yet, they drive vehicles with yellow, state license plates. So, they are a state entity? Like FDEP or FDLE? Guess not since the board members have private email that they use for “state” business and each board member handles their email records independently. This is per Mrs. Iverson, assistant to Mrs. Benson. So, again I ask, if this is a state agency of some sort, then why are they not required to have a state email address which would provide some level of comfort regarding Sunshine law and public record request. On another point, has anyone checked their bills lately? ECUA has all sorts of capital improvement fees and now, just today, voted to increase their water and sewer rates. Maybe that is their way of spreading the cost of that new tank to all the customers but it still stinks and it will, for decades to come.

  • James Whaley September 28, 2017 at 1:46 pm

    According to the ECUA attorney, ( which has now been affirmed by the judge in this case) both the city and county have ceded all plenary power to ECUA in terms of water and sewage services so basically they can do whatever they want to whoever they want, when and wherever they want. Evidently they are a government unto themselves with very little recourse left to the citizens or local government if they happen disagree with ECUA decisions.

  • Just a Bystander September 28, 2017 at 1:40 pm

    Mr. McBride I think you need to get your locations a little more on point. Distance from tank to pool as a crow flys about 0.30 of a mile which is right around 1600 ft away then to the skate park it is over a mile away. I would rather have sewage in a tank then in the pond if that lift fails. If a pipe breaks upstream and as a result sewer is stopped it goes in this tank. As everyone know money is always the issue when building. You are a contractor if I am not mistaken, you are more knowledgeable about that than most. I don’t recall the exact plans but what I do recall most of the tank is underground. Or you would only see like 20 ft of it from palafox. Saying it will be an eye soar I don’t think it will be any worse that the old medical building tha has been vacant for who knows how long and falling down. Take a different stance then the city and lick your wounds and move on. North hill can not win everything they try to fight which appears to be everything.

    • Tom LaNasa September 28, 2017 at 4:07 pm

      Just A Bystander, It would be nice to know your name and where you live in relationship to this tank. Otherwise, you are just shilling for ECUA.

    • Bill McBride September 28, 2017 at 5:09 pm

      I thought the skate park was going straight north of the tennis gourds, my error if not. Not sure how it could go south, that gets into Loaves & Fishes. You should drive by and take a look, nothing is going below ground. The top of the tank will be at about the level of the top of the brick veneer of the four story building next to it. It will serve as a shining beacon to the shortsidedness of the leadership of our region, visibly from every direction. It’s an embarrassment to our city and will forever impede progressive growth in the northern entrance to our precious downtown. Would you, Mr Bystander, live in an apartment in that mow vacant building? I’ll bet the rent will be very cheap.

  • Bill McBride September 28, 2017 at 12:54 pm

    So the city paid almost $20M to get Old Stinky out of the city and now it’s back. Why was this facility not included in the original design of the new system? Why did ECUA have to resort to subterfuge to site this monster tank in a residential neighborhood, in a stormwater facility and across that pond a long block from the Cecil Hunter pool, playgrounds and a planned skate park. Oh. Silly me. ECUA is a rogue organization operating inside the city limits but outside the city’s jurisdiction. Shame on ECUA and their lapdog board.