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Real victory comes with safe water

For an American town in 2014 not to have a clean water supply just seems almost unfathomable.

The Town of Ferriday broke ground, Tuesday, on a much-needed new water plant. The move comes after decades of problems with the town’s existing water plant.

Discolored, smelly water has been the rule of the day for Ferriday. Things have become so bad at times that town residents have endured nearly yearlong boil-water advisories.

Once the National Guard had to truck in fresh water supplies so residents could safely drink the water.

Construction on the new water plant is made possible by a $5 million grant and a $1.6 million loan to Ferriday. The project is expected to be complete in 2016.

The challenge ahead for Ferriday’s leaders is to not allow the water system to fall into disrepair again. In addition to having a bad water source, contributing factors in Ferriday’s decrepit water system include shoddy maintenance and questionable billing practices in the past. Those need to be things of the past and leaders need to take care of the new water system’s infrastructure.

Monday’s groundbreaking is truly a day to celebrate for Ferriday citizens, but the real fun will begin when a turn of the tap yields a sense of confidence that what comes out will be safe to drink.