Elbert County Revists Water System Expansion

March 13, 2013

The county is revisiting a water system expansion for county residents and economic development.

The expansion could come on the back of a five county regional agreement. Elbert County Administrator Bob Thomas says Madison County has gotten the ball rolling on this idea.

“They want to connect up the five adjoining counties with them”, said Thomas. “They have a fairly extensive water system, and so what the goal is to be able to provide water within this five county area, where we have a lot of supply so we could sell water to these other counties.”

The county plans on paying for a feasibility study at a cost of up to $10,000 with a goal of having the study complete before April 30th of this year.

Reason for the deadline is so that the county can apply for potential grants or loans that will be coming from the state on projects similar to this one.

According to Thomas, grants will most likely be handed out in late August or early September.

Commission Chairman Tommy Lyon said that there is a verbal agreement in place between the county and the city of Elberton.

“The whole idea behind this is that if we can get water going down Highway 72 then we can branch off and provide service”, said Lyon. “Our basic verbal agreement with the city is that we, as the county, would draw commission on water sold outside of the county, but if the water remains in the county, then the city would have the option to collect on that.”

If the county moves forward with the expansion, then the city of Elberton’s treatment facility will also need to be expanded.

The commission approved a motion to conduct the study with a unanimous vote earlier this week.