Water board committee to finalize county brochures

Feb. 07, 2014 @ 08:54 PM

After some confusion over the approval process, the Vance County water board committee decided to meet next week to finalize and approve the informational brochure for the county’s water system.

Planning Director Jordan McMillen said his department is putting together times and dates for community informational meetings where the brochures will be passed out.

“We are going to be sending out brochures to everybody in phase 1A in advance of those meetings,” he said at the county board of commissioners monthly meeting. “There are going to be letters sent out to everybody with the brochures in phase 2 as well. Our marketing efforts are really starting to gear up now, and we will also have a phone call out to everybody in those areas.”

But Dan Brummitt raised his concern that the brochures were going out before being approved by the water board committee.

“It’s my understanding, at out last water board committee meeting, that we would review the brochure prior to it being issued,” he said. “My understanding was that we were going to have another meeting to discuss all these things.”

McMillen said he was under the impression that a draft of the brochures would be handed out to the commissioners, who would provide feedback.

“But if you think we need to have a meeting, we certainly can, and I welcome any comments,” he said.

The brochures are part of a revamped marketing effort designed to raise awareness about the system and increase customers.

At the commissioners recent annual planning retreat, the board established two goals related to the county water system:

• Increase the number of customers in phase 1A, in the Sandy Creek Township area, 5 percent by the end of fiscal year 2015.

• Increase the number of customers in phase 2A and 2B, Dabney, Willamsboro and Townsville townships, by 30-35 percent by the end of fiscal year 2015.

McMillen said his department is expanding outreach for both phases.

“In phase two, we are putting more door hangers out ahead of construction, and we are seeing more interest, more phone calls and you can see that translates into sign-ups,” he said.

“So we have had more sign ups in phase 2 in the last month than we have in the last six months. In terms of 1A we are not seeing as many sign-ups now. But when the new roads come in, we are.”

Earlier this month, the county began construction on phase two of the county water system and turned on the system for some residents in phase one.

The county water district estimates there will be 329 residential customers with active connections and 224 residential customers paying only the $30 base fee during this first year.

The total number of customers is projected to increase to 620 in 2015-’16, 977 in 2016-’17, 979 in 2017-’18 and 980 in 2018-’19.

Contact the writer at smansur@hendersondispatch.com.