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County, town approve water study

Davie County and Mocksville officials came a step closer to a regional water system at a special meeting last month.

The boards of both groups agreed to get more specific details about plan that would place a new water treatment plant on the South Yadkin River at Cooleemee, and upgrade the Sparks Road water plant in Farmington on the Yadkin River.

Consultants Hazen & Sawyer gave three potential scenarios to the boards, with the above plan meriting further study.

Mocksville’s water treatment plant on Bear Creek is nearing the end of it’s life, and is on a small stream. The South Yadkin plant is also nearing the end of it’s life.

The plan will also include buying some water from Davidson (County)Water.

The plan will require some rate increases in addition to those normally experienced, said Johnny Lambert, Davie public utilities director. “Davie County and the Town of Mocksville’s rates are really low right now,” he said. The water fund is an enterprise fund, meaning that users of the system pay for its construction and upkeep.

County Manager John Eller said the decision was directing a path to proceed, not making a commitment.

County engineer John Gray said the time is running out to make a decision, as it will take about two years to make improvements once the plan is final. Town engineer Chuck Willis said the approved plan is the most resilient, and has the best long-term financial plan.

The boards will get an updated report – with details about costs to the town and county and their customers – in a couple of months. Although Mocksville would be losing a water intake site, it could still keep a water department to maintain the system.

“Regionalization of utilities makes sense,” Lambert said. “It’s what the state is pushing … to be so much more affordable for the customers.”