A water utility in Ballard County is working to abandon operations that serve 55 people and help them find another water source.
Public Service Commission spokesperson Andrew Melnykovych says the utility is the smallest in the state, making it a hard sell to merge with water districts in nearby counties.
“They’re down in the very southeast corner of Ballard County,” he said. “The nearest utilities to them are water districts in Carlisle County and in McCracken County. When this utility was sold in 2010 there was an effort made at that time to see if West McCracken Water District would be interested in taking them over and they were not.”
Melnykovych says this is an unusual situation because of the utility’s size. Even the nearest utility in West McCracken County isn’t willing to take over the Lovelaceville Water.
“The cost of absorbing that utility, including running four miles of pipe at several million dollars of cost, would have to be spread out over all the customers of the district,” Melnykovyvh said. “And if you’re a county government official in McCracken County it’s going to be very difficult for you to explain to your constituents why you’re spending all this money to bail out a small utility with 50-something customers in an adjoining county.”
Ballard County has three municipal water districts in Wickliffe, Kevil and Barlow and they face the same challenges as those in McCracken and Carlisle counties.
Melnykovych says the other solutions for the small utility’s customers include asking their county government to form a water district, forming their own water association or digging their own wells.
The PSC is holding a meeting to discuss the options 6 p.m., Monday at the Lovelaceville United Methodist Church.