Fairfax Water has expressed interest in buying or merging with Falls Church Water in order to provide lower rates to customers and expand their service area.
On Wednesday, Fairfax Water responded to the City of Falls Church’s February Request for Expressions of Interest, which alluded to a future merger.
A sale or merger of Falls Church Water would require approval by way of a vote from City of Falls Church residents. If it is decided that a sale is the preferred option, the issue would be presented for a vote in the Nov. 6 General Election. Public responses to the REI are due by 2 p.m. on Friday.
In the letter, Fairfax Water said an agreement would allow Falls Church Water customers to pay a lower rate for service. Fairfax Water would work on a unified rate for the entire system if the merger happens, according to the letter.
The Town of Vienna buys water from the City of Falls Church. Town officials offered no comment on the possible acquisition or merger of the two systems.
Wyatt Shields, city manager for the City of Falls Church confirmed receipt of the Fairfax Water response to the REI.
“We look forward to reviewing it along with the other responses that we receive, as the city council evaluates preferred options for the future of the city's water and sanitary sewer systems," Shields said in a statement Thursday.
Falls Church Water has provided water to homes in the city for more than 80 years and has grown to supply water to the surrounding Fairfax County. The system covers about 33 square miles and provides water to more than 34,000 customers, 90 percent of them in Fairfax County. Fairfax Water serves more than a million customers including more than 230,000 retail customers. They also have six wholesale water customers including the Town of Herndon, Virginia-American Water, the Prince William County Service Authority, Loudoun Water, Dulles Airport and Fort Belvoir.
Founded in 1957, Fairfax Water was created to operate a comprehensive and integrated water system.
To read Fairfax Water’s full response, click here.