Polk moves forward with next phase of dam repairs

Published 10:00 pm Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Following a proposed water contract with Inman-Campobello Water District (ICWD) falling through, Polk County is now looking at $200,000 in Lake Adger Dam repairs over the next few years.

Polk commissioners met Monday, Nov. 16 and heard from county engineer Dave Odom that the county is at a point where its needs to move forward with the next stage of dam repairs.

Odom recommended the county approve him developing requests for proposals from Black & Veatch and AECOM in order to submit proposals to the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

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Commissioner Michael Gage asked Odom what costs the county should anticipate.

Odom said the two phases will cost $100,000 each, so the county is looking at $200,000 total.

Commissioner Ray Gasperson asked how soon construction would begin after the design work is complete.

Odom said he would recommend the construction be done over the next two fiscal years. He said it will probably take a year and a half before the county will ever go to bid on the project.

Commissioners approved Odom moving forward with seeking requests for proposals unanimously.

Polk County was anticipating for the past year to not have to make initial repairs to the dam after consulting with ICWD on a contract to share water resources. The county and ICWD negotiated a contract where ICWD was going to pay for initial repairs to the dam. After hiring consultants Black & Veatch, ICWD pulled out of the contract in October saying the contract was more favorable to Polk County than ICWD.

Originally, ICWD said it would make initial repairs to the dam, estimated by Black & Veatch to be $3.6 million. Polk County’s revisions to ICWD’s contract included that ICWD maintain the dam for the full 75 years of the contract. Black & Veatch advised ICWD not to enter into maintenance of a dam it would never own.

Polk County has been saving money for the last several years to make the necessary repairs to the dam. The current amount saved is more than $700,000. The county began saving money in 2010 after being advised by Black & Veatch to save at least $50,000 per year to make the necessary repairs to the dam.

Polk County purchased Lake Adger for $1.6 million in order to have a future water reservoir for the county. The county does not currently use the lake as a water source as it does not have a water plant, but provides water service to customers through an agreement with the Broad River Water Authority, with the water administration done through ICWD. The county has spent more than $7 million on its water system to date with the most recent decision being to construct a pump station for future water lines in the Sunny View area for $330,000.