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Sewer rates in South Hall will be determined today

Commissioners to vote on fee structure

POSTED: January 8, 2009 12:23 a.m.

The Hall County Board of Commissioners will decide whether to raise South Hall sewer rates at its 5 p.m. meeting today.

The new fee structure is included in a South Hall sewer ordinance. County officials acknowledge that the rates, based on usage, would be high, at least initially.

District 1 Commissioner Bobby Banks, who represents South Hall, said he has received numerous e-mails asking him not to support the rates.

"I quit counting at 225 e-mails," said Banks, who said he will not support the fee increase. "I can’t justify them doubling the sewer rate."

At the first reading of the plan in December, Flowery Branch Councilman Craig Lutz spoke out against the rate increase and plans to do so again at today’s meeting.

"As a community, we’re still very concerned about what the Hall County
commission has done as far as sewer down there, and whether or not they have painted themselves into a corner and having to force these rates on us by running up their debt too high," Lutz said.

The vote is likely to draw many South Hall residents to speak in opposition of a rate increase. Lutz expects a large showing of residents from the Sterling on the Lake and the Village at Deaton Creek communities.

Commission Chairman Tom Oliver said he thinks the board can come to a decision that will satisfy all parties involved.

Oliver said there are still kinks to be worked out with the South Hall sewer rates.

"We are a startup project," Oliver said.

"Sometimes in startups, there’s learning curves. I think that’s what we’re seeing."

Oliver said the board will come to a decision at its 5 p.m. meeting.


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