The Lula City Council is moving forward with plans for a new well. During a meeting held Jan. 13, city manager Dennis Bergin said plans to convert an existing well located along 365 on the Ace Hardware property for commercial use is slated to go out for bids by the end of this month.

In addition to conversion of the well, a new water line will be constructed along 365 right of way to Lula Road, connecting to an existing line at Burton Drive.

“It is quite an extensive project when you consider the upgrades to the well and installation of a new water line,” Bergin said.

The city has applied for funding through the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA) for this project and a sewer line extension project. The combined total for the two loans is a little over $2.4 million. Typically, an organization is required to hold one year of payments in an escrow account for the term of the loan, which in this case would amount to over $400,000.

“We were able to negotiate today and, on approval of the two new loans, all escrow requirements will be eliminated from the city of Lula,” Bergin said. “I think that is a credit to the city on how they stand in past performance.”

Although the provision was eliminated by GEFA, Bergin said the city will still set up its own escrow accounts. The loan applications will be taken under consideration by GEFA on January 27.

In other business at the meeting:

•the council discussed the list of 17 capital projects they would like to complete and earmarked $566,000 during the current budget cycle to fund the improvements. To date, the city has completed nine of those projects, including depot renovation, park improvements, a new walking trail and road resurfacing, at a cost of $509,000.

•the council discussed a request from Bill Rush to place a shipping container on his property located in the Rivermist Subdivision. This request will be reviewed by the zoning and planning committee with a recommendation forthcoming.

•Bergin stressed the importance of an accurate 2020 census count and encouraged all city residents to participate. Citizens will have the option of completing the census questionnaire through various outlets such as by phone, online or in person. Bergin said an accurate account can make a difference in the amount of funding the city receives from state and federal agencies.

•the council discussed expanding the Railroad Day festival by adding one or two more days to the event.

•the January council meeting was rescheduled to Tuesday, January 21, due to the observance of Martin Luther King Day on Monday, January 20.

The Ladies Gathering luncheon and dinner is scheduled for January 23.

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