Williamson County declares state of disaster to help handle boil water notice

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Williamson County Judge Dan Gattis issued a proclamation declaring a state of disaster for Williamson County on Tuesday morning.

During the Williamson County Commissioners Court meeting, Jarred Thomas, director of the Williamson County Office of Emergency Management, said continued severe weather, flash flooding and potable water outages led the county to issue the declaration.

The state of disaster will continue for no more than seven days unless continued or renewed by the Commissioners Court, the county said.

Williamson County is actively working with the city of Austin to set up a water distribution point near Parmer Lane for the 80,000 Williamson County residents affected by the boil water notice. Details were not readily available, but the county plans on having the service available by this afternoon.

The declaration allows for the county to obtain state funding to pay for overtime employees that will be needed to run the water distribution point. The city of Austin will be providing and paying for the water, officials said.

“Our current role is man-power support and operation for Williamson County only,” Thomas said.

The Office of Emergency Management also will work with Round Rock ISD and Leander ISD to assist them in obtaining water for their schools under the boil water notice. In the two school districts, 25 schools are affected, county officials said.

On Monday morning, Austin issued a boil water notice for all customers of Austin Water until further notice. The city has since asked residents to reduce water usage as the city attempts to clean water from sediment in the storm water.

Austin city officials announced Tuesday morning that the boil water notice could last up to 14 days.

While only a small portion of Williamson County is affected by the notice, Thomas said, “It’s going to be a huge economic impact the longer this goes.”

In other business:

  • The court voted to not hold regular meetings Nov. 27 and Dec. 25 for the holidays. The court will hold a meeting with a limited agenda Jan. 1.

 

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Ali Linan
Ali Linan began covering Georgetown for Community Impact Newspaper in 2018. Her reporting focuses on education and Williamson County. Ali hails from El Paso and graduated from Syracuse University in 2017.
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