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Can old Blackey water plant help Cumberland River area?

Can the idle Blackey Water Plant be used to help get public water to Letcher County residents who live on the south side of Pine Mountain?

The Letcher County Fiscal Court is now seeking the answer to that question at the behest of District Five Magistrate Wayne Fleming of Jenkins.

At the fiscal court’s December meeting on Monday, Fleming asked his fellow magistrates and Letcher County Judge/Executive Jim Ward to approve a motion to study the possibility of dismantling the now-defunct Blackey Water Plant and moving the equipment to the Cumberland River side of Letcher County.

Fleming said that moving the usable parts of the plant across Pine Mountain might be the county’s best answer to getting potable water to residents who live between Partridge and Oven Fork. The Letcher County Water and Sewer District has been negotiating with the City of Cumberland and the Wise County Water District in Virginia in hopes of providing water to Cumberland River residents, but the talks continue to produce little.

“That’s a big area that needs help,” said Fleming. “We need to make a move now. A lot of equipment in Blackey is just sitting and doing nothing.”

The court voted unanimously in support of Fleming’s motion.

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