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Regan to speak at Oxford event announcing statewide plan


The head of the state Department of Environmental Quality will be in Oxford today to announce the roll out of a statewide plan detailing how cities and towns can better prepare for their water and wastewater infrastructure needs.


DEQ Secretary Michael Regan will be the keynote speaker for the 1:30 p.m. event at the Oxford Wastewater Treatment Plant, 1649 New Commerce Drive. In case of rain or severe weather, the event will be at the Oxford City Hall Auditorium, 300 Williamsboro St.


“North Carolina’s Statewide Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Master Plan: The Road to Viability” presents the state’s roadmap for viable water and wastewater utilities that safeguard public health, protect the environment, support vibrant communities and encourage economic development. The plan applies to owners and operators of water and wastewater utilities and systems that serve the public.


North Carolina’s need for water infrastructure rehabilitation and modernization is great, with many towns and cities operating with underground systems more than a century old. During the next 20 years, cost estimates for water system needs statewide climb to as much as $15 billion and wastewater needs could reach $11 billion.


The plan is available online at:


Organizers decided to hold the rollout of the master plan in Oxford, a town with its own challenges for replacing its century-old water and wastewater infrastructure. The town has embraced the state’s master plan to help the town prepare for its future water and wastewater needs. Amy Ratliff, Oxford’s city engineer, discovered that some of the city’s waterline maps were linen maps stored on wooden scrolls since 1930, with infrastructure dating back to 1905 still in place.

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