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Public Service Commission Gives Go Ahead to Close Lovlaceville Water Company

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The Public Service Commission has given permission to a small Ballard County water company to cease and abandon its operations.

PSC Spokesman Andrew Melnykovych says Lovelaceville Water Company will stop its service in February 2015. The remaining 42 Lovelaceville customers will have until then to build their own well or cistern for water.

“The one plus to this situation is that they are located in one of the better in Kentucky for getting easy access to groundwater through a well,” Melnykovych said. “You know, you can get some freezing just below the surface and still drill a well without any problem. Unless the weather gets just unusually cold very soon I don’t anticipate that that’s going to be much of an issue.”

Melnykovych says customers have been dwindling as they build their own wells in anticipation for the system’s abandonment. He says the water system is deteriorating and no nearby utilities would take the system on because of its cost.

“It was just not sustainable. Because it’s a privately owned enterprise the company’s not eligible for the kind of grants and low interest loans that a water district or a municipal utility might be eligible for,” Melnykovych said. “The system needs a minimum of $150,000 in repairs. Mr. Young, the owner, testified that it was just impossible for him to get financing to do that at any kind of a reasonable rate.”

Another issue for the company was disconnecting customers behind on their bills. The owner testified that of the 42 customers only 25 are current on their payments. A PSC statement said customers who are disconnected from service often restore service themselves.

Lovelaceville Water Company filed an abandonment petition with the PSC in March.

Whitney grew up listening to Car Talk to and from her family’s beach vacation each year, but it wasn’t until a friend introduced her to This American Life that radio really grabbed her attention. She is a recent graduate from Union University in Jackson, Tenn., where she studied journalism. When she’s not at WKMS, you can find her working on her backyard compost pile and garden, getting lost on her bicycle or crocheting one massive blanket.
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