LITTLEVILLE — Colbert County Engineer John Bedford is recommending the town of Littleville negotiate long-term agreements to purchase water from Tuscumbia Utilities and the Spring Valley Water System.
Littleville raised the ire of some county and water system officials when it announced it was considering ending long relationships with the two water providers to enter into a contract with nearby Russellville, which has a lower cost per thousand gallons for water than Tuscumbia or Spring Valley.
Littleville has a council meeting Monday, but Mayor Kenneth Copeland said the water issue will not be on the agenda.
Copeland said he and the council want to meet with Spring Valley board members to discuss the system's proposal and a counter-proposal offered by the town.
"We want to meet with them before we make any kind of decision," Copeland said.
Bedford, who oversees the county Road Department and Water Department, said he was asked by the Colbert County Commission to help Littleville officials determine the pros and cons of offers that have been submitted by Tuscumbia and Spring Valley.
Bedford said he's had several meetings with officials in Littleville to discuss the different proposals.
"My recommendation to them is to try to work out a long term contractual agreement with Tuscumbia and Spring Valley," Bedford said. "I felt like that was the best move for them."
Attorney Tina Parker, who represents the Spring Valley Water System, said the system has submitted a proposal to Littleville.
"They have sent us a reply, and we are going to be meeting with them to discuss our offer and their offer," Parker said.
Parker said she is trying to set up a meeting between the Littleville mayor and council and the Spring Valley Water System's board of directors.
Copeland said Thursday he expects to meet with Spring Valley officials in a couple of weeks.
Tuscumbia Utilities General Manager David Thornton said he hand delivered a proposal to Littleville two or three weeks ago.
"I talked to Kenneth a little while to see if he had any questions," Thornton said. He said the mayor was given a tour of the city's new water treatment facility.
"David Thornton has stepped forward and is showing very good interest in working with Littleville on a 20-year contract," Bedford said.
Bedford said he hopes Spring Valley will be willing to negotiate with Littleville on a new contract.
Copeland said once the council has met with Spring Valley, he would schedule a meeting to discuss the water issue and possibly call for a vote.
Bedford said even if the town stays with its current water providers, it should still consider making a connection with Russellville in the future so it has the ability to get water from other sources in times of emergency.
Russ Corey can be reached at 256-740-5738 or russ.corey@TimesDaily.com.