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County delays discussion of Gray’s Creek water agreement


The Cumberland County Board of Commissioners on Monday night had been expected to consider a bulk water purchase agreement with the Public Works Commission for the Gray’s Creek community, but the item was pulled from the agenda.

County Manager Amy Cannon asked that the board remove the item so the county and PWC could further discuss the matter. It is expected to come back to the board later. 

The county and PWC are trying to negotiate an agreement to provide water to the Gray’s Creek area, where wells have been polluted with per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances known as PFAS, or forever chemicals. Water has been found to have a PFAS substance known as GenX from the Chemours plant off N.C. 87 in Bladen County.

The county last week filed a lawsuit against the Chemours and DuPont chemical companies, saying they caused severe groundwater contamination in the county. The lawsuit also names Corteva Inc. as a defendant.

In other business, the board:

*Adopted the schedule for the fiscal 2023 budget work sessions. The proposed budget is expected to be presented May 26, and a public hearing would be held June 6.

*Approved a bid to work with Brightspeed as part of a GREAT Grant partnership to provide broadband services to areas of Cumberland County that do not have internet service.

The board met in closed session for about an hour and a half to discuss confidential information and for  attorney-client privilege.

Commissioner Larry Lancaster remembered former Sheriff Earl “Moose’’ Butler at the start of the meeting in his prayer. Butler, who served 22 years as sheriff, died Sunday.

“The life of Earl ‘Moose’ Butler should remind each of us that (our) joys will be greater, our love will be deeper and our lives will be much fuller, thank you Lord for sharing with each of us, our friend EMB,’’ he said. 

Keyona Smith covers Cumberland County government for CityView TODAY. She can be reached at ksmith@cityviewnc.com. Have a news tip? Email news@CityViewTODAY.com

Cumberland County, Board of Commissioners, Gray's Creek, water, Public Works Commission, water