Pell City to pay more for water
by David Atchison
PELL CITY – The city, along with other members of the Coosa Valley Water Supply District, will pay more for water this year.

According to figures released Thursday, Pell City, along with Springville, Odenville, and the St. Clair County Commission, will each pay $42,474 a month or about half-million dollars for the 2013 calendar year for CVWSD water. Each entity can receive up to 750,000 gallons of CVWSD water per day under the joint agreement that established the CVWSD.

The monthly cost last year each entity paid for water was $34,460.56, about $8,000 a month less than this year.

CVWSD officials say the cost basically pays for the bond issue that was secured to build the $32 million surface water treatment facility on Alabama 144, and officials say the cost for participating entities should not fluctuate much in the coming years.

Pell City City Manager Patrick Draper said the increase in CVWSD water cost should not impact Pell City water rates.

“There is an automatic 2-percent rate increase each year, but that has nothing to do with the increase in water cost from Coosa Valley Water,” Draper said.

CVWSD board members approved a resolution Thursday establishing the estimated fixed amount charged, the District variable charge, and the operating expenses for the 2013 calendar year.

A grant through the St. Clair County Commission will pay for all operating expenses, estimated at $1,197,004 for the 2013 calendar year.

“…the entire sum budgeted for the Operating Expenses shall be paid by the application of grant funds, resulting in no charge to the Participants for the Operating Expenses for calendar year 2013,” states the resolution passed by the CVWSD board Thursday.

Operating costs include a $535,000 annual contract the CVWSD has with ClearWater Solutions of Opelika. The private utility company handles the day-to-day operations of the plant.

Operating costs include an estimated $252,000 for electricity, $230,000 for chemicals and an annual $165,000 water withdrawal fee CVWSD pays to Alabama Power Company for water withdrawn from the Coosa River or Logan Martin Lake.

According to the resolution, the St. Clair County Commission will also pay the District variable charge for the 2013 calendar year, estimated at $120,000, through a grant.

The District is suppose to establish, within the first 15 days of January, the amount each participant must pay for the upcoming year, the fixed amount, the District variable charge and the operating expenses for the upcoming year.

Contact David Atchison at

© 2013