Mason City Manager John Palacio spoke to members of the Bluebonnet Study Club on Monday, January 16. His first topic was the new reverse osmosis water system located on the grounds of the Richard P. Eckert Center. He told the group that water that has been cleaned of radium and other impurities is available to Mason residents free of charge now. They can fill containers as of the middle of December. Mr. Palacio said that basicly Mason has good water, but because of the decaying granite in our underground water source, there is a radium content. The new R.O. system removes the radium and will save members of the community money because they do not have to purchase bottled water for drinking as many do now, and it will save the environment because the plastic bottles will not be added to the landfill.However, he told his audience, the plastic water bottles can be recycled at the recycling center. He noted that there are containers to receive clear plastic, mixed plastic, milk jugs, cardboard, paper such as newspapers or books, glass, electronic discards, aluminum cans, and steel cans. The only restriction is anything that contains freon gas such as refrigerators. He said that each day the center recycles 2500 pounds of cardboard totaling about 21 bales a month. Other daily amounts recycled include 150 to 200 pounds of mixed plastic, 100 pounds of milk jugs, 150 pounds of clear plastic, 2000 pounds of newspapers, 900 pounds of school paper, 1300 to 1400 pounds of books, 1600 to 2600 pounds of plasstic sacks, 500 pounds of aluminum cans, and about 300 pounds of electronic discards which are sent to Austin for recycling. In a year’s time, the county recycles 1,527,000 pounds of items keeping them out of the landfill. He noted that glass is ground into a fine powder and used to cover the landfill. The money received from this endeavor is put back into improvements for the project. Grants were received in the beginning to purchase the equipment for processing all this waste. Mr. Palacio said that Mason residents had done a good job of recycling and that he is very proud of them. In the future, he hopes to have recepticles in the neighborhoods to make it easier for depositing the items but right now the funds are not available for that.Another project mentioned was recycling of trees, leaves, and brush into mulch which is given to those who want it.Mr. Palacio told his audience that he has roots in Mason and wants to do everything that he can to make life better for those who live here. He related the fact that he was the last baby born in the old Mason Hospital. His education at Texas A & M University and previous work experience helps him to find solutions to problems and he takes great pride in making things better for his home town.After a question and answer period, hostess Mary Carlman served refreshments to Mr. Palacio, Sherie Clarkson, Mary Hemphill, Tanya Lamoreaux, Mary Ellen Merkel, Betty Meyer, and Sabin Nelson and to one new club member Mary Donley.A short business session was called to order by President Sabin Nelson. Pledges to the flags and the Club Collect was led by Tanya Lamoreaux, Minutes were read and approved, a financial report was given, a Federation report was given, and a letter of gratitude from the Haven was read thanking the club for its continued support and for last month’s donations.Under new business a motion was made and approved to donate $500 to the dual credit program for Mason students which is handled through the Mason Child Welfare Board. Students are given the opportunity to take courses that count toward a high school diploma as well as count toward college credits through the program. Funds donated are used to defray a part of the tuition. Because students are not eligible for loans or Federal grants, funds are greatly needed from the community at large. Doantions are tax deductible and anyone in the community wishing to support this worthwhile cause can contact the Mason Child Welfare Board for instructions on how to make the donation.Current club officers were reelected for another two year term by acclamation. They are president Sabin Nelson, vice president Tanya Lamoreaux, treasirer Mary Ellen Merkel, recording secretary and reporter Betty Meyer, corresponding secretary Mary Carlman, and Federation Counselor Tommie Luckenbach.Mason Bluebonnet Study Club is a member of Alamo District of Texas Federation of Women’s Clubs, a part of General Federation of Women’s Clubs which is an international service organization headquartered in Washington, DC.