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FRONT PAGE - OCTOBER 6, 1999 - HOMER, GA

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COMMUNITY


LARGE CROWD ATTENDS FESTIVAL
A large crowd was on hand for the 32nd Maysville Autumn Leaf Festival in the city park last weekend. The event included a parade, entertainment, food and arts and crafts. It was sponsored by the Maysville Community Improvement Club.


Maysville works toward improving water system
BY SHERRY LEWIS
Maysville officials want to know how they can better serve their existing water customers and plan for future growth.
The city council voted Monday to hire Precision Planning to do a complete water and sewer analysis to give them suggestions on how to improve the water supply. Jerry Hood, of Precision Planning, has not given the council an estimated cost of the project but the council and water superintendent Ralph Sailors all agreed that the work needs to be done. Mayor Richard Presley said the city has Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) funds available that could most likely cover the cost of the project.
Sailors told members about the history of the system that was built around 1950.
"We have a very old water system," he said. "It has been patched, repaired and kept going. The only improvement we've done over the years is add one storage tank."
He told the council that the system has gone from serving 300 to 650 customers in the last five years. Presley agreed that the city needs to take care of those customers and plan for growth.
"We've got to start somewhere," he said. "We can't do anything until we come up with a water source. The growth is here. The growing pains hurt but we've got to deal with it."
Sailors went a step further and asked the council to place a moratorium on all future development except subdivisions that are already in the planning stages and single-family dwellings. Sailors based this request on discussions with Precision Planning following a request to extend water lines up West Ridgeway Road. Property Development Group wants the city to annex a piece of property and supply water to a proposed 50 house subdivision. The property is currently owned by Robert Holland.
"We are in very serious condition due to the availability of water and water storage," Sailors said. "We don't need to jeopardize our fire rating. There are areas where the flow is just not there. We have two and three inch lines that were put in a hurry just to get water to a certain area."
The city attorney advised members not to consider a moratorium until after the complete analysis is done.
"A moratorium is a sticky issue," he said. "There is a lot of litigation on that right now."
He also reminded council members that they are not required to provide water or annex the property.
"The city is not required to annex anything," he said. "In fact, they have the absolute right not to. You don't have to provide the water. That is a discretionary service."
Precision Planning conducted a study on providing water to the proposed subdivision. Their suggestion was to install a new 10-inch water main from the six-inch main at Oak Ridge Subdivision to the new subdivision, continue it through the subdivision to Mangum Bridge Road and connect it to the city of Commerce water main on Yarbrough Ridgeway Road to loop the system. Also, they suggested that the city replace the existing six-inch main from the elevated storage tank in town to the entrance of the proposed subdivision. The estimated cost of this project is $275,000.
The council agreed to delay any action on extending the water to that area until the
complete analysis is done.


News wins five national awards
The Banks County News won five awards in the National Newspaper Association's Better Newspaper Contest.
The awards include: first place sports feature; second place best writing; third place freedom of information; third place best sports pages; and honorable mention excellence in layout and design. The awards were for newspapers with circulation of 5,000 or less.
The awards were presented at the annual NNA convention last weekend in Boston, Mass. Only six other Georgia newspapers won awards in the contest, including three others owned by MainStreet Newspapers.
The Commerce News won honorable mention for best editorial. The Jackson Herald won second place for public notice and promotion and The Madison County Journal won third place for community service and honorable mention for best feature photo.


BOE considers how to move on supt. search
BY SHERRY LEWIS
Getting professional help to find a new superintendent could cost the Banks County Board of Education from $3,500 to $10,000 or more.
The BOE is mulling over whether to hire a professional search company to find potential candidates or conduct the search themselves.
On Thursday, Russ Cook, regional director from the Georgia Department of Education, gave the BOE three possible candidates to do the search. The Georgia School Board would conduct a search for $5,000; the Institute of Continuing Education for School Leaders' price tag would be from $3,500 to $6,000; and Rogers, Hight and Associates would charge $10,000. The prices do not include the cost of travel.
The BOE will hear a presentation from each of the groups later this month before making a decision on how to proceed.



The Banks County News - Homer, Georgia
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