Cheney Free Press -

Staff Reporter 

Airway Heights officials still share update on water contamination solutions


Last updated 8/29/2019 at 8:04am

An Airway Heights City Council study session and community meeting was cancelled Monday when a quorum could not be formed due to the absence of several council members.

Slated for discussion was an update on the city’s ongoing water contamination issues, a beekeeping code revision, and information on affordable housing, among other topics.

Following the meeting’s cancellation, Airway Heights Public Works Director Kevin Anderson said the Air Force is currently working on a study seeking long-term solutions for the city. That study includes the hiring of a hydrogeologist to look into the feasibility of well sites outside the contamination area.

Earlier this year the city filed a pre-lawsuit letter seeking more than $40 million in damages from the Air Force. According to City Manager Albert Tripp, the government has officially received that letter and has six months to respond, confirming or denying their claim. Lack of action is a tacit denial and at that point the city can file a lawsuit seeking damages, but “hopefully it won’t come to that,” Tripp said.

At the moment, city officials are also meeting with the legal counsel of Lakewood, Wash., a city pursuing legal action for similar contamination issues, to discuss the possibility of lending resources to help with their complaint; however, no firm decisions have been made on the subject.

Several of the agenda items intended to be discussed this week, including a utility tax ordinance amendment and appointments for the Spokane Regional Transportation Council, will be on next week’s City Council agenda.

Shannen Talbot can be reached at


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