Kenedy City Manager Ford Patton declined to comment on the situation, but referred comment to Kenedy Water and Wastewater system Superintendent David Wallace.
Wallace was able to comment on the issue by email late last week.
“On June 1, someone dumped an illegal toxic substance into our wastewater collection system which travelled to our wastewater plant,” Wallace explained. “Once this unknown toxic substance entered into our wastewater plant, it started killing our aerobic bugs (bacteria that eats up raw waste) resulting in our wastewater plant problems.”
Wallace said that the city of Kenedy notified the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) immediately about the problem and the city started to take steps to correct the problem at the plant.
“Testing was started and is continually ongoing to try to correct this problem,” Wallace said. “We have not been able to identify the toxic substance.
Officials with TCEQ have visited the city’s wastewater plant, Wallace explained, as well as representatives from Texas Rural Water and the San Antonio River Authority in an effort to help the city correct the problem.
“The City of Kenedy has and is still trying to locate how this toxic substance entered into our wastewater system,” Wallace said. “We have not been able to locate the toxic source yet and we are still waiting on lab results to help us determine what the toxic substance was.”
“We are encouraging all citizens of Kenedy to report any suspicious activity of illegal dumping into the wastewater system (manholes, storm drains, cleanouts) and to contact the police department immediately,” Wallace said.