The fate of Greenville’s water system has been tied to legal complications over a water system on the other end of the state, city officials and local legislative delegates confirmed on Thursday.
A new law that allows the state to transfer ownership and operations of water systems from municipalities to a group of regional systems took effect in May for municipalities that meet specific criteria. Greenville and its state-chartered water authority, Greenville Utilities, were exempted from the law.
But revisions being fashioned by the Senate Agricultural, Environment and Natural Resources Committee to another bill could eliminate that exemption.
If amended in its current form and signed by Gov. Pat McCrory, the new law automatically would transfer ownership and operations of Greenville’s public water system out of the hands of the city and Greenville Utilities Commission to Grifton and the Contentnea Metropolitan Sewerage District, a metropolitan water and sewage system, without any compensation.
The action is being taken because the city of Asheville in Buncombe County filed a lawsuit on May 14 challenging the General Assembly on the utilities transfer law, based on its narrow focus on that city alone.Read the full article