Jefferson Co. judge blocks push to force city of Bham to take over BWWB

Jefferson Co. judge grants Birmingham Water Works
Jefferson Co. judge grants Birmingham Water Works
Published: Jan. 10, 2023 at 3:45 PM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - A Jefferson County judge has granted the Birmingham Water Works request to block an effort by a group of voters to force the city to take over control of the utility board.

A group of citizens put together a petition that would force the city of Birmingham to pay off the Water Works debts and take control of managing it - and under state law if a petition like this gets enough signatures, the probate judge has to certify it and forward it to the city council for a vote.

BWW is asking a judge to block the probate judge from certifying this effort because it’s been tried at least twice in the last 20 years, but the Alabama Supreme Court ruled the petition’s plan unconstitutional in 2003 and another court stopped a similar plan in 2006.

Circuit Judge Pat Ballard agreed with the utility and is blocking Jefferson County’s probate judge from certifying this petition for now.

The two sides will be in court for a hearing on this preliminary injunction on Thursday.

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