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Raleigh Debates Expanding Water Line to Zebulon

Posted January 28, 2008

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— A development project being considered in Zebulon would extend water service along the Johnston and Wake county line.

As the continuing drought adds pressure for strict conservation measures, some Wake County residents are questioning if it is the right time for a water-line expansion.

Levels in Falls Lake have dropped 8½ feet below normal, and officials believe Raleigh's normal allocation of water from Falls Lake, which serves as the city's primary reservoir, will last only until mid-May.

Zebulon is one of six Wake County communities that buy water and sewer  service from Raleigh.

“And you look down at the entire area and you say, 'My gosh! It is everywhere,'” Raleigh Council Member Rodger Koopman said.

“I guess it would be a much easier decision if the lake were full,” Zebulon Town Manager Rick Hardin said.

Hardin asked Raleigh to allow an extension of water and sewer service to about 85 acres of land in Johnston County along the Wake County border.

“It would be a significant development. We're talking about an expansion of our tax base, the creation of new jobs,” Hardin said.

Some Raleigh residents are asking if the water-line extension should go forward while they are forced to cut back on usage.

“They cannot just keep developing and expect us to just simply furnish the water. We have a crisis. It's a regional problem,” Koopman said.

“It's the worst drought conditions in North Carolina in over 100 years. So that requires some unusual things, but doesn't necessarily mean that you change your long-term policies for water supply,” Raleigh City Manager Russell Allen said.

Allen said Zebulon would not max out its allocated water usage, even with the Zebulon expansion.

Koopman argued approval would set a bad precedent.

The argument would be, “Well, he was allowed to do it. Why can't I?” Koopman said.

Hardin said the project would be a minor expansion of water use. Even with the drought, he said, the economic impact is too good to pass up.

Raleigh's Department of Public Utilities could make a recommendation about the expansion to the City Council sometime this week.

11 Comments

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  • likemenow Jan 29, 2008

    This makes perfect sense....lol...nice work Raleigh

  • DontLikeTheSocialistObama Jan 29, 2008

    If they allow Zebulon to send water into Johnston County, everybody in Wake County should stop conserving water and water their yards.

    It seems that Meeker wants us to only use 25 gallons a day so that he can sell the rest of the water to Johnson County.

    Raleigh needs new leadership badly.

    Seeing that Meeker is in his fourth term, the liberals and socialists can't blame our current problems on Fetzer and Coble.

    Meeker let the City Manager put us in this situation. The City Manager should be fired. The only thing the City Manager wants to do is raise taxes and fees so that we stay competitive with other cities that also raise taxes and fees.

    We need a City Manager who wants to be competitive by seeing how much he can lower taxes and fees.

  • foetine Jan 29, 2008

    does this mean we shouldn't flush the toilets at Mudcats games?

  • lolly Jan 29, 2008

    "Raleigh to allow an extension of water and sewer service to about 85 acres of land in Johnston County along the Wake County border."

    Wake is out of water, but they want to ship water to Johnston County?????????? Our leaders are tripping...there is no other logical explanation.

  • TechRescue Jan 29, 2008

    Zebulon is already added, as is Rolesville, Wake Forest, Garner, Knightdale, Wendell, and host of other areas. Back when Falls Lake provided more water than Raleigh could use, they used clout and incentives to talk everyone else into shutting down their water systems and buying water from Raleigh. Now those systems are cost-prohibitive to bring back on-line.

    Such foresight and competence is the norm for Raleigh leadership. Y'all must be proud.

  • RK01 Jan 29, 2008

    You've got to be kidding me...Please someone tell me this is a joke...we have enough water as it stands, "now" to last until May...and our politicians are discussing....adding Zebulon???

  • coolwill Jan 29, 2008

    Sorry wasn’t there some bonds voted to pay for roads and parks? Who are they fooling? I think there needs to be a recount on who voted for theses bonds, they might be by deceased people. This guy needs to go.

  • coolwill Jan 29, 2008

    The city manager needs be fired.

  • wolfpack_girl1976 Jan 29, 2008

    How could this be considered when you have asked the citizens of Raleigh to conserve???

  • justjean Jan 29, 2008

    As the continuing drought adds pressure for strict conservation measures, some Wake County residents are questioning if it is the right time for a water-line expansion.

    Answer to the question = NO!

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