Mission & History

Main Office

Mission Statement

BVU is committed to providing safe, efficient, and reliable electric, water, wastewater services, in the most courteous and professional manner, at the lowest possible cost.


Corporate History

Overview. Established as an independent political subdivision of the Commonwealth of Virginia, BVU provides electricity, water, and wastewater services to areas of Southwest Virginia. Headquartered in Washington County, Virginia, BVU serves more than 16,000 homes and businesses across a 125-square mile area. Customers span regions that include the City of Bristol, Virginia; Washington County, Virginia; Scott County, Virginia, and Sullivan County, Tennessee.

BVU employs approximately 65 employees and is currently governed by a five-member Board of Directors.

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Electric Division. June 30, 1945, the City of Bristol, Virginia, purchased electric distribution facilities of the former East Tennessee Light and Power Company from the Tennessee Valley Authority. The Bristol Virginia Power Board was created to manage the electric system.  On November 13, 1951, the Power Board was succeeded by the Bristol Virginia Utilities Board. In 2010, the Virginia General Assembly passed the BVU Authority Act transitioning BVU from a municipally-owned system to a political subdivision (Authority) of the Commonwealth.

BVU´s Electric System provides power to over 16,300 homes and businesses. BVU customers are served from ten substations, 29 miles of transmission lines, and 577 miles of distribution lines.

The Tennessee Valley Authority is the wholesale electricity provider to BVU customers with a current 20-year termination power supply contract.

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Water Division. BVU´s water treatment plant was constructed in 1954 with 5 million gallons per day (MGD) capacity and was expanded to a capacity of 10 MGD in 1978. Raw water is pumped approximately two miles from South Holston Lake to BVU’s Water Filtration Plant in Abingdon, Virginia.

The Water System serves approximately 7,900 consumers in the City of Bristol, Virginia, and portions of Washington County, Virginia.

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Wastewater Division. BVU administers a sewer collector system in Bristol, Virginia, and portions of Washington County, Virginia. Flows are transported to a 15 MGD wastewater treatment plant in Sullivan County, Tennessee. The wastewater treatment plant is jointly owned by the BVU Authority and the City of Bristol, Tennessee.

The Wastewater System serves approximately 7,700 consumers in the City of Bristol, Virginia, as well as the industries located in the Bristol-Washington County Industrial Park.