Pender to call on Rocky Point businesses with sewer capacity

By Tyra M. Vaughn,
Staff Writer

Burgaw | Pender County officials will be asking some Rocky Point business owners with extra sewer capacity for a portion of it back in the next few months so work on a planned medical complex can proceed.

The Board of Commissioners voted Monday to explore temporarily borrowing about 1,500 gallons of sewer capacity from existing businesses in the N.C. 210 and U.S. 117 corridor.

The proposed medical complex needs a minimum of 1,500 gallons of sewer capacity daily. The county already buys 75,373 gallons of sewer capacity a day from the city of Wilmington. But the city has notified the county that it can’t allocate any more capacity. That means the medical complex can’t begin construction until another solution is found.

In August 2006, the board gave the developer of Rocky Point Medical Center approval to design lift stations to transport the sewage to the Wilmington treatment plant. When the developer sought approval from the Wilmington City Council, however, he was turned down. That’s because Pender County is already using all of the capacity it buys from the city, said Assistant County Manager Paul Parker.

Now, Pender County officials want to help the developer move forward with his project anyway.

Businesses that donate extra sewer capacity to help with the project will get it back once the county is able to purchase additional capacity from Wilmington in 2009, Parker said. Businesses are allocated a maximum amount, but they don’t always use that much, which is how they would be able to help the medical center.

“We had already approved his request. We just wanted to make good on our promise,” Parker said. “This was the only way we could figure to do it.”

Tyra M. Vaughn: 343-2070

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