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Spencer Alderman Approve Warren Utility Takeover

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Spencer Alderman Approve Warren Utility Takeover

Spencer Aldermen approved the contract Thursday night allowing the Warren County Utility District to take over operations of Spencer’s utilities.

Mayor Alisa Farmer said the State Comptroller’s Office and TDEC forced the deal. Farmer said they have to look at what is going to benefit their customers in the long run, not their boards or any one person.

“The Warren County Utility has the resources more so than what Spencer Utility does as far as, as the manpower and the finances and things to be able to financially be able do this and it not hinder or hurt our customers,” Farmer said.

Farmer said there are still many legal and financial aspects of the deal that have to be worked out as the Warren County Utility District slowly takes over the whole operation. Farmer said the majority of the changes will be behind the scenes and will not initially affect how customers use their utilities or pay their bills.

“You’re going to see both Spencer Utility and Warren County Utility working hand-in-hand,” Farmer said. “We’ve already been doing that in the last three or four months as a partnership trying to better the circumstances.”

Farmer said there are about $14 million that have been set aside for upgrades to Spencer’s utilities.

“Roughly four million of that the Spencer utility had already got possession of,” Farmer said. “Warren County’s coming in with – they were able to be awarded a nine and a half million dollar grant, Spencer putting in half million of that, making that a ten million.”

Farmer said it is important for customers to be patient and understand that there are still two to three more years of work before the project is fully completed.

“We’ve got a lot of construction that’s got to be done bringing the water from the Caney Fork, a lot of legalities with that even that’s got to go through,” Farmer said. “There’s going to be some upgrades to our water plant. There’s going to be upgrades to some of our service lines. But it’s – we’ve not even broke ground, we’ve not even issued bids for contracts.”


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