Wiping slate clean for new partnership

An inter-government agreement, along with “SWAG”—a sewer and water agreement—have for years specified the criteria for undertaking utility projects in Oconee County. But there was general agreement during a late afternoon meeting at the county’s Pine Street office complex to wipe the slate clean of those agreements and start a new partnership to finally begin to lay sewer pipe in rural parts of the county. Yesterday’s meeting featured some of the same questions and confusion at a similar meeting last Friday. What appeared to be different about yesterday’s meeting is that Tally Grant, a Walhalla representative to the Joint Regional Sewer Authority, showed his willingness to change his stance about a $610 thousand payment that Oconee County annually makes to the JRSA. Grant and other Walhalla JRSA members see that money as a payment to allow the JRSA to replenish its deprecreation fund, from which monies were drawn to help retire a construction loan from the 1990s. But Grant said, “I stand corrected” after hearing Seneca JRSA representative Greg Dietterick insist the money was never intended to repay the depreciation account. And Scott Moulder, Oconee County administrator, read terms from a 2008 agreement which specified the money to be used for sewer projects in unincorporated areas.