For now, Peachtree City is not quite ready to extend their sewer lines to Tyrone. At Thursday night’s city council meeting, Peachtree City came up with a lot more questions that need to be answered before they are ready to fully offer the partnership.
Peachtree City Water and Sewerage Authority (PCWASA) General Manager Stephen Hodge outlined the feasibility of providing sewer service to Tyrone in a presentation to council. The current system for the city offers a total permitted capacity of six million gallons per day, with current average use of 3.1 million gallons per day. Tyrone currently uses 109,000 gallons per day as part of Fairburn’s capacity, with a proposed cap of 350,000 gallons, leaving Peachtree City roughly 1.5 million gallons in reserve for future allocation. Once the treatment facility reaches 85- to 90-percent capacity, expansion planning would then be needed, but current projections show that would likely not be necessary before 2035.
Tyrone is in need of a new sewer setup because Fairburn, who has been their provider, has asked for their capacity back. To help sweeten the deal, Fairburn has earmarked $1.5 million from a bond for Tyrone to pay for their next connection. Fairburn received those bond proceeds in September, and it is typically required that funds be used in three years, meaning there is not unlimited time to work with. Hogan noted that, were the design process to start in July of 2016, construction of the sewer pipeline would have an estimated completion date of January 2018.
The total cost of connecting Tyrone with PCWASA is estimated at just over $2.1 million, with the funds from Fairburn knocking out the biggest chunk of the costs. PCWASA estimates that adding Tyrone to its list of customers could bring in additional revenue, helping cover the shortfall with a bit of extra revenue left over, potentially helping to stabilize rates for all customers.
Council was not yet ready to approve any agreement, citing a fear that it could place undue stress on the system and require an earlier expansion of facilities.
“We don’t want to overdo ourselves,” said council member Mike King.
Among the questions posed by council were a potential ceiling on capacity of usage, how to ensure that future developments cannot take advantage of the agreement, and a possible fee structure.
“I want to further the conversation,” said council member Kim Learnard. “We’re neighbors, but we have to do it with our eyes wide open, and I don’t feel like I have the information I need to say yes tonight.”
Tyrone Mayor Eric Dial, who said he was missing his first Town of Tyrone Council meeting in five years to be in Peachtree City, expressed an eagerness to get the ball rolling quickly.
“We’ve delayed this an incredible amount of time. What more do we need to do to make this happen?” asked Dial. “If you are putting this off again tonight, let us know what you need from us to make this happen.”
Council voted to continue the discussion to a future meeting, with no date set yet, until more information can be gathered with the help of staff.