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City thanks Lee Smith for excellent management of water system

City Manager John Connet congratulates water and sewer director Lee Smith on his retirement after the City Council honored him. City Manager John Connet congratulates water and sewer director Lee Smith on his retirement after the City Council honored him.

The Hendersonville City Council honored retiring water and sewer director Lee Smith this month, heaping accolades on a career that has seen the water system grow from 22,000 to 31,000 customers and the sewer system grow from 6,800 to more than 10,000 users.

During Smith's 18-year tenure, the water and sewer department increased its workforce by 30 people and grew its annual budget by $10 million, to $24.2 million.

Among notable improvements completed under his leadership were a major water treatment plant renovation, advanced metering implementation, French Broad River water intake, Etowah and Fletcher area water improvements, sewer treatment facility equipment replacements/upgrades and Jackson Park sewer interceptor.

The City Council on July honored Smith on July 6 with  resolution recognizing his leadership and thanking him for serving Henderson County residents by managing the system and maintaining the high quality of the water they drink. Here's the resolution:

WHEREAS, Lee Smith has announced his intention to retire as City of Hendersonville as the Director of the City’s Water and Sewer Department, effective July 31, 2023; and
WHEREAS, Lee Smith will depart leaving behind an impressive legacy of public service to Hendersonville and surrounding Henderson County, organizing, directing, and managing the day-to-day operations of the utility; and
WHEREAS, Lee Smith has had several noteworthy accomplishments during his tenure as City of Hendersonville Utilities Director and oversaw the growth and expansion of the utility from 2005 to the present; and
WHEREAS, the number of businesses and homes connected to the water system increased from approximately 22,000 to over 31,000 and the water system grew from approximately 500 miles of pipe to over 680 miles of pipe; and
WHEREAS, the number of businesses and homes connected to the sewer system increased from approximately 6,800 to over 10,000 and the sewer system grew from approximately 135 miles of pipe to over 180 miles of pipe; and
WHEREAS, full-time personnel supporting the utility grew from 66 employees to 96 employees and the annual operating budget increased from $14.2 million to $24.2 million; and
WHEREAS, Lee Smith ensured the provision of a high-level of water and sewer service to the community in an operationally and financially efficient manner; and
WHEREAS, Lee Smith led the utility through several notable improvement projects including but not limited to: water treatment facility renovation, advanced metering infrastructure implementation, French Broad River water intake, Etowah and Fletcher area water improvements, sewer treatment facility equipment replacements/upgrades, Jackson Park sewer interceptor; and
WHEREAS, Lee Smith developed and oversaw the implementation of utility policies, long-range plans, procedures and standards and prepared and administered many years of annual utility operating budgets.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the City Council off the City of Hendersonville, on behalf of the citizens and employees of Hendersonville, that the Mayor and City Council extend to Lee Smith, their sincere appreciation for all of his loyal and dedicated service to the betterment of the City of Hendersonville for the past 18 years.