Polk County moving ahead with purchase of Lake Adger for water supply

Published 3:43 pm Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Polk County Board of commissioners is moving ahead with plans to purchase Lake Adger despite not receiving support from Henderson County. Polk commissioners have agreed to schedule a class III watershed hearing with the state and to review stability studies of the Lake Adger dam.

Polk County Manager Ryan Whitson has said the county could possibly close on the lake purchase sometime in November.

Commissioners last week approved scheduling a hearing with the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Control in an effort to get the watershed III classification for Lake Adger. The classification is needed in order for the county to use the lake as a water source.

Whitson also told commissioners that stability studies on the Lake Adger dam have been completed and are being reviewed by engineers.

Engineers are scheduled to attend the commissioners&39; meeting on Nov. 2 to give their opinion on whether the dam will require less than $2 million worth of repairs over the next several years. The county&squo;s purchase of the lake is contingent on the studies determining how much work could be required on the dam over the next decade. The county is able to opt out if those repairs are estimated at more than $2 million.

Polk is moving forward with the reclassification of the lake despite opposition from the Henderson County Board of Commissioners. Henderson County officials have said they would pursue legislation to stop Polk&39;s attempt to get the lake reclassified as a class III watershed.

Polk asked all state legislators recently not to support any bills against Polk County&39;s Lake Adger plans. Polk commissioner Tommy Melton reported that a few state legislators had replied that they would support Polk&squo;s efforts, although Polk County&squo;s representatives Rep. David Guice and Sen. Tom Apodaca had not replied to Polk&squo;s request as of last week.

Polk agreed last year to purchase the lake bed of Lake Adger for $1.6 million and to use the lake as a future water source.