Sebring Village invited people to check out millions of dollars worth of water quality improvements to its treatment system.
 
For years ago, the system was at the center of controversy after the former water superintendent failed to notify some families about high levels of lead in some homes for five months. So Sebring officials invited water customers to an open house.

Sebring's Village Manager, Jack Haney, said, "Two and one-half million dollars has been spent to upgrade the process of treating the water we get from the Mahoning River, then treating it more before it gets to people's homes or business. We are in compliance for 40 consecutive months. We have had no lead at all, not even a trace amount detectable in our water system."

The new water superintendent, Karl Reed, explained part of the process includes adding orthophosphate to the water with a news system.
 
Reed said, "The orthophosphate is a protective coating that goes down through the system, and keeps the lead from leaching from people's service pipelines. The lead never came from the plant itself. That is a misconception."

Another $60,000 a year is spent on carbon for the water filtration system, which helps remove a by-product of chlorinating or disinfecting water. 
 
High levels can be associated with cancer risks.  The carbon filtration also makes the water taste better.
 
To be transparent, Sebring invited folks to check out the water treatment plant themselves so that they can be sure about the quality of their water.

The Ohio EPA mandated the upgrades. 
 
"Our service crew has replaced some new water lines, and there are lines the homeowners have replaced themselves," said Haney. "We have replaced about 4,000 feet of water lines, so that includes a good number of streets which have been upgraded. We are working to keep going forward while we address issues that were mandated. There will be more upgrades. Within the next year, we are going to be doing the controlling system for the whole plant, and also the water storage for the facilities so that we have more than one day's water if something would happen to the plant. If there were an interruption to power to the plant, we would have enough to serve the whole community."

Sebring provides water for over 8,000 customers in Sebring, Beloit, and Maple Ridge.