County, towns to meet on water issues tomorrow

Published 1:17 pm Monday, September 27, 2010

Columbus, Saluda and Tryon town officials and Polk County officials will hold their third joint meeting tomorrow. The group will continue discussions on the possibility of forming a joint water authority.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. at Columbus Town Hall.

Last months joint meeting included a presentation given by the Tuckaseigee Water and Sewer Authority about the process of creating such a joint water authority. Tuckaseigee representatives said they had faced similar challenges when they formed their joint water and sewer authority in Jackson County in 1992 but that the process was well worth the effort.

The county and towns last month agreed to prepare detailed reports on each of their utility systems, including debts, assets, operating personnel, current rates, gallons per day of water and sewer and any other information pertinent to a possible joint water authority. The purpose of tomorrows meeting will be to discuss those reports.

Polk and its towns have tried meeting jointly several years ago but could not come to a consensus on how to form the authority.

The current elected and appointed officials of the county and towns decided last spring to try meeting again on common issues, and the first meeting was held this past June. Initial discussions quickly turned to joining efforts on water again.