Five houses without water after a decade in Muskogee County

FORT GIBSON, Okla. -- Five homeowners are trying to find out why they, unlike their neighbors, cannot get rural water after more than a decade.

David Stringer said, "We pay our taxes like everyone else, and we just want an explanation as to why they won't include us on the water system."

Jackie Webb added, "We've gone so far as to giving our deposit for the meter of $2,000, which we're happy to do to get water."

But those deposits were returned twice with no explanation. Stringer said, "I'm sure a lot of it might be due to funding or whatever, but they should tell us that at the time instead of promises of water and not bringing it through."

About two months ago, the families saw crews installing a water line about a quarter of a mile from their homes.

Webb said, "My husband called the water board, and we were just basically told that five families does not justify laying line to get water."

They were told one option is to pay for it themselves. But Jared Cariker said, "It was going to be over $20,000 just to run it a quarter of a mile."

Cariker has a family of five and said it is difficult to live off the water their well provides. He said, "We're concerned, at some point, we're going to have to replace most of the plumbing in our house. We've already had to replace a dishwasher and we've had to replace a hot water tank because they rust out . . . because it's so corrosive."

When asked why the families don't just move, Cherylee Perry said, "We love our land. We love our privacy up here. This was my husband's dream to come back home."

2 Works for You reached out to Rural Water District 7 to get answers, but our calls have not been returned.

Perry added, "This is our home. We just want the same advantages as our neighbors. There's just five of us left. I just don't understand why we're being left out."

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