Two Cities, Water, and a Metropolitan University


  • Gary D. Chamberlin


Metropolitan Universities, Water Departments, City Department Mergers


In 2000, officials in the cities of Little Rock and North Little Rock asked the University of Arkansas at Little Rock to assist in resolving a difficult and long-standing conflict over water rates and the provision of drinking water. A task force of 6 faculty members recommended that the cities merge their water departments, appoint a new water commission with members from both cities, and join with other municipalities in identifying a new raw water source for the future. Although a surprise to most observers, the water departments were merged in 2001 and a study of future water sources has been started. Since the merger, a similar study in another community has been requested.