Statement on Resolution Supporting HB 516

Commissioner Frank Williams released the following statement after voting for a resolution supporting House Bill 516, which would authorize counties with populations over 100,000 to put a referendum to dissolve sanitary districts before the voters, at the Monday, May 4, 2015 Board of Commissioners meeting:

“At tonight’s board of commissioners meeting we unanimously approved a resolution supporting House Bill 516, which would allow for dissolution of sanitary districts by referendum.

“As I stated in the meeting, there are several reasons I supported this resolution and moved for its adoption:
– Numerous citizens have approached us and asked us to consider this issue.  In the past few weeks, this has been far and away the most talked-about issue in District 5, which I represent.
– My support for this bill was about what is best for the citizens in my district and countywide, not about siding with or opposing any towns that have weighed in for or against this bill.
– My understanding of this bill is that it would NOT allow a board of commissioners to arbitrarily dissolve a sanitary district.  What it WOULD do is allow us to put the matter before the people in the form of a referendum.
– The final line of our resolution clearly states our board’s position that no utilities in any portion of a city or town should be managed or operated by a competing city or town.

“My hope is that, if this bill passes and such a referendum is put before the voters, that we can have an intelligent discussion about this issue and about who can best provide safe, clean drinking water to the citizens of Brunswick County in a cost-effective manner. “