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LETTERS / Boone Should Be Next: Watauga County Should Manage The Water

Dear Editor,

A recent letter to the editor under the headline, “Your City Could Be Next”, intrigues me, even as I take the opposite view from the author of that letter. According to the letter the City of Asheville is concerned about the real possibility that the State of North Carolina and/or Buncombe County may take over the water system of Asheville and Asheville’s watershed. I do not pass judgment on issues affecting Asheville. However, how the idea might apply to Boone intrigues me.

For years the Boone City Government’s [henceforth, Boone] water policy has been at once ideologically driven and incompetent. To wit: –IDEOLOGICAL: In attempting to control the type of economic growth and whether there should be economic growth at all throughout the entire High Country, Boone has chosen to go as far a field as possible into Ashe County to obtain water from the New River. –IDEOLOGICAL: Boone has picked winners and losers in how it has allocated water to city’s businesses, giving or withholding water depending on whether the business fits or not specific preconceived molds. –INCOMPETENCE: Boone has failed to control run-off rainwaters and waters from brooks that cross the city. In this way Boone has caused severe hardships to many businesses that are frequently subjected to floods. This has tipped some businesses into bankruptcy, sometimes with tragic consequences. –INCOMPETENCE: Boone has failed to harness run-off rainwaters and waters from brooks that cross the city so as to make these waters contribute to the city’s water supply.

Watauga County should control Watauga’s water supply and Boone’s water system. In this way much can be achieved. To wit: –The county is best equipped to take into account economic development throughout the county, and not just Boone; –The county is best equipped to allocate water in an economical rational manner, without picking winners and losers based on preconceived criteria; –The county is best equipped to harness run-off rainwater and water from the rivers and tributaries in a more systemic manner to augment the county’s water supply. Lastly Watauga County and the Town of Boone could share water revenues to be collected by the county according to some formula to be determined. Please contact State Representative Jonathan Jordan (jonathan.Jordan@ncleg.net), State Senator Dan Soucek (dan.soucek@ncleg.net) and Governor McCrory (www.patmccrory.com/contact/) to voice support for this idea.

Nate Di Cola