Peach County commissioners review 2015 projects

chwright@macon.comMarch 6, 2013 

FORT VALLEY -- Peach County commissioners reviewed two projects funded in the 2015 special purpose local option sales tax at its Thursday work session.

The commissioners reviewed options to make the bathrooms at North Peach Park operational and pay for the Workforce Development Center before the penny sales tax money begins flowing.

Phil Schwindler, public works director, said the bathrooms at the park were originally meant to accommodate patrons of a walking trail.

“We’ve had quite a few events there, and it seems every event we have a large crowd,” he said.

He presented several options, including a $43,000 project to latch the park onto Byron’s sewer system, to accommodate these larger crowds.

But commissioners asked him to try to extend the current septic line to accommodate a higher capacity.

“You’re going to have to keep locking them up (for events), and they’ll have to bring in whatever Porta-Potty’s,” until the SPLOST money begins, said Commissioner Roy Lewis.

The commissioners also reviewed funding options for the $4.8 million Workforce Development Center, which will be built at South Peach Industrial Park off of Ga. 341 and University Boulevard.

The county can’t wait until 2015 to build the project, meant to be a job training facility, because it received two $1 million grants last year that must be used within two years.

Commissioners, County Attorney Jeff Liipfert and County Administrator Marcia Johnson talked at length about several ways to pre-finance the anticipated $3 million from the SPLOST. Options included lending from a bank or bond, the Association County Commissioners of Georgia or the county itself. The latter seemed the most popular, but a review of finances is needed to determine if the county can afford it.

“We’re trying to figure out a way for us to use the $4 million in a legal way where we stay compliant with everyone,” Johnson said.

The commissioners also reviewed two designs of the building. They’ll vote at Monday’s regular meeting on the design.

Also at Thursday’s meeting, the commissioners reviewed options for radio equipment and a tower the county no longer needs after building its own tower.

To contact writer Christina M. Wright, call 256-9685.

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