MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - Mobile Area Water and Sewer will take over water and sewer services for the residents of Prichard, at least for now.
A judge signed an order Friday, dissolving the Prichard Water Board.
"The judge wants this case to go forward on appeal, he is going to enter an order today that in essence is ordering that as of today MAWSS takes over the Prichard Water and Sewer System," said MAWSS attorney Jim Atchison.
Judge Michael Youngpeter ruled that the corporate framework of the board will remain but only because the board plans to appeal to the Supreme Court of Alabama.
"He is allowing an appeal to go forward so that the Supreme Court can make a final decision because of the case is so unique," Atchison said.
This fight has been going on for more than a year. It was put to a state wide vote in November.
When MAWSS won that battle, the Prichard board filed suit to prevent the takeover. Jay Ross, attorney for the Prichard board said that state wide vote is a major reason the board wants to take this to a higher court.
"The issue for the court is whether the Alabama legislature acted properly in how they brought this vote to the public," said Ross.
The court order also said the five board members on the Prichard Water Board can no longer be paid and that they cannot meet as a board. Members are said to have been making around $18,000 to $20,000 a year.
The judge also said the appeal must be filed to the Supreme Court by February 27. Many Prichard residents showed up to the hearing as well as State Senator Vivian Davis Figures and State Representative Napoleon Bracy.
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