July 13, 2008

Annex Will Receive Utilities: D’Iberville Will Provide Them

By Mary Perez, The Sun Herald, Biloxi, Miss.

Jul. 13--D'IBERVILLE -- Water and sewer service will be provided by the city of D'Iberville so construction can begin on 10,000 homes plus retail and medical space in Harrison County.

The area northwest of the city is 4.4 of the 12 square miles of land both Biloxi and D'Iberville want to annex, and officials from both cities agreed to the temporary certificate to get work going.

"We want to help that area develop," said D'Iberville City Manager Richard Rose. "That temporary certificate will expire when the annexation case finally is resolved." The hearing in Harrison County Court is set for Oct. 6.

Rose said the agreement was finalized recently between D'Iberville and Biloxi, which "saw the greater need is bigger than both of us," and the Mississippi Public Service Commission.

"We had all these developers needing water and sewer," said Rose, including Paradise Bay with 7,500 housing units and D'Iberville High School that is under construction. "We are nine-tenths of a mile away from the high school," and Rose said Biloxi's nearest service lines are seven miles away.

Work will start as quickly as the developers can get their applications approved by the Harrison County Planning Commission. Rose estimates they can start running pipe in 45 days.

He is meeting with developers to work out an equitable division of the expense.

"Everyone will pay their own way including the city of D'Iberville. We want a larger pipe because there's going to be more growth down the road," and he said the city will recoup the costs for the lines and the expansion of the sewage plant from future development.

"We all share in the costs and we'll all share in the benefits," Rose said.

A priority of the D'Iberville mayor and council is to get housing for the area and look at long-term growth of the city. Rose said the development created by the extension of the water and sewer service is going to spur residential, retail and commercial growth and that D'Iberville, Biloxi and Ocean Springs all will benefit from the 10,000 houses built in the area.


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