Vance County 2012: Long-awaited water flowing

Jan. 12, 2013 @ 09:07 PM

Vance County reached a major milestone last year in the effort to provide all citizens with fresh tap water, when construction on Phase 1 of the county water project began.

“We have accomplished a number of things this calendar year,” Terry Garrison said during December’s board meeting of the county commissioners. “One major accomplishment is that we now have water flowing through pipes.”

Work on Phase 2 of the project is moving forward, and is estimated to begin as early as April.

Rock was struck during construction of Phase 1A, providing some setbacks, and adding costly provisions to the project.

Permits are currently in the works for 2A and 2B, but the process for approval is detailed and lengthy. Upon approval of all permits, Vance County can proceed with the bidding process for construction of 2A and 2B.

In a recent tabulation, 830 people in phase 1A have signed up to receive water, 364 sign-ups have been received for 2A, and 368 for 2B.

Long-time county commissioner Tim Pegram ended a 48-year term, the longest in the state, when he retired in December. Pegram was once the owner of Henderson Truss Supply, and many remember him as a sharp businessman.

John Watkins purchased the truss supply company in 1996. He spoke of hearing Pegram’s name mentioned often in conversation.

“People still talk about him and the truss business,” Watkins said. “Tim was a businessman, and I like his style.

“When he told you something, you could take it to the bank.”

Another commissioner noted for his dedication and contribution to Vance County this year was Garrison, enshrined in August to the Hall of Fame for the N.C. Association of County Commissioners.

Garrison is in his 25th year of service as a Vance County commissioner.

In early fall, Vance County received a $100,000 grant for their farmers market project, one of 19 projects funded with over $2 billion from the N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund Commission.

The $100,000 grant will be used to help fund expenses for a new farmers market structure near Beckford Drive.

Paul McKenzie, agriculture extension agent for Vance and Warren counties, hopes to have the new farmers market venue up and operating at the start of this year’s season.

Vance County has received a total of $400,000 from the N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund, and an additional $100,000 from the North Carolina development and farmland preservation trust fund.

Contact the writer at amauser@hendersondispatch.com.