Supervisors seek funds

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 17, 2003

to provide water lines



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The Natchez Democrat

NATCHEZ &045; Something most people take for granted &045; water &045; took up much of Adams County supervisors’ time at their Monday meeting.

Roy Geoghegan of the Southwest Mississippi Planning & Development District told supervisors that funds are available from the state for water system improvements.

The district can apply for up to $75,000 from the Mississippi Development Authority, provided that the money is needed due to an emergency situation, he said.

The problem is that that is only half of the money needed to run water lines to the Lake Montrose area, &uot;where people are on private wells and are having problems with them,&uot; Geoghegan said.

But water problems exist elsewhere in the county, too, said Margie Elan, a resident of York Road.

There, residents have lobbied for water service ever since she was born, Elan said.

&uot;I have to haul water to my house, and a five-gallon jug is only enough to flush a toilet,&uot; Elan said. &uot;

And when the power breaks down, you can’t get water (from the wells).&uot;

However, Board Attorney Marion Smith said he is concerned that the situation does not qualify as an emergency.

&uot;When storms knock out power, they can’t get water, Š and think about the elderly people&uot; and how that affects them, said supervisors Vice President Darryl Grennell. &uot;That’s enough to justify an emergency.&uot;

In the end, supervisors voted to ask for an attorney general’s opinion on declaring an emergency. They also voted to, if the opinion says it is legal, declare an emergency and direct the district to apply for grant funds for both the Lake Montrose and York Road areas.

But Ken Herring, executive director of the Adams County Water Association, said that organization has spent millions of dollars in recent years upgrading its system.

And at the rate it is going now, the association will be spending its time and money for the next 1 1/2 years just revamping its current system, much less adding new households, Herring said.

&uot;After we get through with our upgrades, maybe we can pick them up,&uot; he said.