July 15, 2008

Pearl River County First to Produce Utility Authority Project

By Jeremy Pittari, Picayune Item, Miss.

Jul. 15--POPLARVILLE -- The first completed Utility Authority project in five counties held a grand opening Monday in Poplarville.

Of the five coastal counties participating in the Gulf Region Water and Wastewater plan, Pearl River County is the first to use part of their share of the $641 million designated for water and wastewater projects.

"Everyone on that board is an example of what a leader is in making this project happen," said Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality Executive Director Trudy Fisher.

The new well and water treatment system will be able to provide an additional 2,600 connections to Poplarville and the surrounding area, said Pearl River County Utility Authority Engineer Brooks Wallace. The above ground tank holds 500,000 gallons of water while the underground treatment tank holds 40,000 gallons.

About 1,600 of the new connections are designated for Poplarville, allowing growth in the city to continue. A 16-nch water line will run water to the south end of the city, providing much needed fire flow.

Water from this tank also will be offered to north Lumberton under an agreement that provides them with water at wholesale rates if they need it, Utility Authority board president Steve Lawler.

Another project on the horizon for Pearl River County's Utility Authority will be another water well and treatment tank near Wheat's Curve on Miss. 43 N., Lawler said. That tank is proposed to be 50 percent larger than the one that opened in Poplarville.

"That area's in dire need of water and waste water (treatment)," Lawler said.

The project is slated to go out for bids in the next 90 days and Lawler hopes to break ground on the site by the end of the year. It will serve the areas north and west of Picayune. The City of Picayune also will have the option to purchase water.

Lawler thanked the county Board of Supervisors and Poplarvile's Board of Alderman and mayor for their cooperation.


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