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Lula sewer plant likely topic at closed meeting; no action taken

The Lula City Council met in a closed-door executive session with its attorney to discuss a “potential purchase or sale” of property.

The matter taken up at the meeting Friday morning likely had to do with Hall County’s interest to acquire the city’s more than $9 million wastewater treatment plant. Following the executive session, Mayor Milton Turner said no action was taken by council.

Afterward, Turner told The Times that he expects city and county officials to meet some time in December to talk about the sewer plant.

“We’ve all seen the county’s letter,” Turner said. “Members of council want to hear what county officials have to say before they make up their mind one way or the other.”

In the letter dated Oct. 19 that was addressed to Turner and signed by Hall Board of Commissioners Chairman Richard Higgins, the county suggested having a meeting in mid-November.

The letter briefly states: “As a result of the recently completed and approved Service Strategy Agreement, Hall County and the City of Lula are required to enter into good faith negotiations to discuss the potential acquisition of the Lula Sewer System by Hall County.” The letter adds, “Please accept this letter as Hall County’s request to initiate these discussions.”

Lula was the only city in Hall County that did not sign the Service Delivery Strategy Agreement, which is required by Georgia law to minimize the duplication of services by local government.

Lula completed its wastewater treatment plant in 2011. Although Lula took out a 20-year loan to pay for the plant, City Manager Dennis Bergin said the city is on track to pay off the loan well ahead of schedule. He said the balance on the loan is around $1 million. 

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