RANKIN COUNTY, Miss. (WJTV) – The Pearl River Valley Water Supply District (PRVWSD) Board of Directors approved several rule changes and a rate increase which will go into effect on January 1, 2022, for all campgrounds operated by the agency at the Ross Barnett Reservoir.

Board President Billy Cook said the action ended a two-year process by the agency to update the rules and regulations, and to establish new fees consistent with the market. In the past four years, PRVWSD leaders said more than $2 million has been spent to renovate and upgrade the five campgrounds – Timberlake, Goshen Springs, Coal Bluff, Leake County and Low Head Dam.

“There are a lot more improvements we’d like to make to our campgrounds, and have plans to do so, but to fund them we have to raise our rates,” Cook said. “The rates we approved today are comparable to both public and private campgrounds in our area.”

The new rate schedule varies by campgrounds. Nightly rates for RV pads will increase $10 per night at all locations, while the 30-day rates will increase $100. A 10 percent discount will be given to persons 65 and older; persons with a 100 percent disability; active and retired military, including Guard and Reserve members; and active or retired first responders.

Here are some of the other changes:

  • PRVWSD will also begin supplying the electricity to each pad; campers will no longer be required to establish an account with a power provider. That change will be phased in over the next year.
  • Mail service will no longer be allowed within the campgrounds beginning in March. Long term campers will have to make other arrangements for off-site mail delivery.
  • Beginning in 2022, no campers will be allowed to occupy a single campsite for more than 12 consecutive months. Long-term campers will be assigned a new site after 12 months.

“These are campgrounds and were never meant or designed to be permanent residences,” PRVWSD General Manager John Sigman said. “These changes will help return us to that concept. That said, it is not our goal or intention to force our existing long-term campers to leave our campgrounds. It is unlikely that long-term sites will be unavailable, and new sites will be assigned. It is the camper’s responsibility to maintain his or her property, like an RV camper so that it remains as designed – to be mobile.”

Leaders said many of the other changes are designed to support the campground concept, including a ban on building permanent structures such as decks, porches, and other similar platforms. However, steps and ramps that allow access for people with disabilities will be allowed with approval from PRVWSD’s Parks Director and Building Department Director.

To see a complete list of the updated campground rules, rates and regulations, visit PRVWSD’s website.