Voters Approve MAWSS Takeover of Prichard Water

Voters Approve MAWSS Takeover of Prichard Water

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UPDATE: Wednesday June 4, 2014

Voters approved the amendment to have the Mobile Area Water and Sewer System (MAWSS) take over the Prichard Water and Sewer System.

With all precincts reporting, the unofficial results were 52.5 percent (19,989) for and 47.5 percent (18,093) against. 


Voters headed to the polls today to determine whether the Mobile Area Water and Sewer System should take over the Prichard Water and Sewer System.

Many residents have complained about high water bills and hope a MAWSS takeover would help give some relief. However, Prichard Mayor Troy Ephriam is against the takeover - saying the Prichard Water board is a vital source of revenue for the city and without the city of Prichard would also dissolve.

“We have a very small dwindling tax base. That's what we have. They are the largest source of tax base that we have. If you take that, that leaves us in a very bad situation. If people are being concerned about water they are also going to be concerned about how trash coming off the street? How is garbage being picked up? You don't fix a problem by creating a worse problem and that's what this bill is essentially trying to do,” Mayor Ephriam said.

MAWSS has also said there is no guarantee it would be able to decrease water bills, which is another reason the mayor is against dissolving the Prichard water board. 

However, State Representative Napoleon Bracy is for the takeover saying the Prichard water board has been is making it difficult for rates to be decreased, after renewing another 5 year contract with Severn Trent, the company that currently handles operations for Prichard water.

"We haven't received a copy of that contract. So how can somebody say they are not going to reduce the rates. You are creating a situation where you are trying to make it impossible where somebody is trying to reduce the rates on the citizens. I think it's a scare tactic that they are using to try to get the residents to continue to take the abuse of the Prichard water board and people are fed up. They are tired of it. They cannot afford it,” Rep. Bracy said.

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