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Columbia County Commission OKs stormwater change, backs new health facility

Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012 7:48 PM
Last updated Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012 1:54 AM
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Population growth provided the impetus for a pair of decisions at Tues­day’s Columbia County Commission meeting.

Increased population near the Riverwood development off Washington Road and in the Wrightsboro Road area near Grovetown prompted a proposal to amend the boundaries of the stormwater service area to include about 673 additional parcels.

All commissioners present – Commissioner Trey Allen was in Atlanta – approved the resolution, which will get a second reading at an Oct. 16 meeting.

The commission also approved a letter of support regarding proposed plans by Doctors Hospital and University Health Care System to build and staff an emergency health facility in the county. The letter will be sent to the Georgia Department of Community Health, which determines the need for such facilities.

“It’s a real addition to have any medical facilities, whether it’s this one or not, in Columbia County,” Commission Chairman Ron Cross said.

Columbia County is the only county in Georgia with a population exceeding 70,000 without a dedicated emergency care facility.

Other issues discussed Tuesday included an honorary sign designating Allen Drive as TaxSlayer Drive and the approval of a new rate and rental agreement package for Evans Towne Center Park, bringing rates in line with similar facilities in the market.

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dwb3080 10/02/12 - 10:12 pm
Charles Allen

According to he supported the repeal of the Storm Water Tax but tonight he voted to extend the coverage area. I know its official a fee but a fee is a tax if it can't be avoided, just like that stupid tag fee. That's a tax as well and another Allen. Here is the context from his reelection:

Repealing the Storm Water Tax

Grumpy ole man
Grumpy ole man 10/03/12 - 04:31 am
Thats it, increase the

Thats it, increase the Counties liability, they want responsibility for storm water and are forcing this on their residents, they will be expected to cover storm water/flood damage. When the lawsuits come, and they will, it will be the County tax payers that suffer. And call it what it is, a tax increase for the areas that are not already being extorted.
And Richmond County is also looking into taking on this responsibility, maybe they should all just add a fee for lawn care and tree trimming maintenance also.
Poor planning on the part of developers and folks that buy property in a flood zone should not become the responsibility of the rest of the community.
But I guess people who disagree with the local government do have the option to move out of the County if the majority doesn't mind their hard earned dollars paying to fix someone elses problems and mistakes.
Grow that Government, we will all be renters paying Government to stay in our own homes if we aren't already.

my.voice 10/03/12 - 06:36 am
The Stormwater tax, while

The Stormwater tax, while unpopular, is a worthy taxation vehicle. Stormwater infrastructure is the only "utility" not directly supported by tax evenie directly, yet it's by far the most costly of all utilities. The projects it supports are critical to areas within the county that need attention.

And yes, I realize my comment is going to be unpopular, but Stormwater is a serious matter, much like traffic and public health and safety.

soapy_725 10/03/12 - 08:02 am
Stormwater yes, but who caused the flooding?

You cannot stop the rain ( but some politicians can convince you other wise), but you can do a better job of engineering, zoning and planning. A better job of requiring contractors to build adequate infrastructure as they develop housing units. Building in the swamp. Flooding. Can you drain water from the swamp in case of a flood? Can you build foundation one foot above street level grade? Can you push wet dirt into the swamp and pour concrete the next day? Why do lots next to each other in Riverwood Plantation sell for $45K and $15K respectively? The later is in the Little Kiokee swamp.

CC is one continuous flood plain from Harlem to the Savannah River. Look at a map sometime.

Urban sprawl is the goal of CC and nothing will prevent the paving with concrete and asphalt.

The developers who are making a fortune in the housing industry should install as a part of their project the necessary infrastructure to prevent flooding of homes. Why is this not done? Why does CC continue to say "stormwater is a forgotten issue"? A forgotten issue when they have a master plan study which includes the gallons of water runoff produced on a square foot of none absorbing surface by one inch of rain.

Stormwater is not a forgotten issue. It is deliberate excuse to not require developers, who control CC, from installing proper drainage at the outset of a project.

Stormwater is not a forgotten, just discovered missing piece of the puzzle of urban sprawl. It like , maintenance of government (public trust ) facilities is either left out of the budget or stolen for other projects. Hey, there is some money that we are not using right now. It only floods every one hundred years. If CC knows it only floods every one hundred years, the powers that be just hedge their bets that they will have "manifest denyability" or be dead when the rains start.

Who is to blame? Flooding is not an act of God. Is the purchaser of a new home who does not have a bulldozer and an engineering degree? Who is offering a product for sale that should be free of flood waters? Should all prospective buyers be advised of flooding potential?

Were are told by CC it is something that must be done. But by whom is the question? If it were something that must be done in 2012, why was it not a part of the design and implementation in 1970 as the county began its quest for concrete and asphalt parking lots.

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