The proposed contract would require the Alabama Department of Transportation, the only customer of the facility, to reimburse the county $10,000 a year for its role in managing the facility. In addition, the county will be reimbursed $5,000 for the work attorney Doug Ghee did reviewing and negotiating the contract, said Grady Parsons, who has been working with the county on the project.
ALDOT also will have to approve the proposal.
About a year ago, Parsons, general manager of Living Water Services, approached the commissioners with a proposal to build the facility on county property under the direction of a county Government Utility Corporation. His company would manage the facility for the county, he said. But the county would have to apply for the permit through the Alabama Department of Environmental Management, Parsons said.
ALDOT was interested in having a facility to save money on treating wastewater generated at the rest area on Interstate 20 in Cleburne County, he told the commissioners in February.
ALDOT had been transporting the 120,000 to 150,000 gallons of wastewater generated at the site each month for treatment elsewhere at a cost of about $3,000 a day, Parsons said. The wastewater treatment facility would save the state money and would be safe for area residents, he told them. The commissioners created the corporation at their meeting in March but they didn’t hear from Parsons until their work session this month.
Parsons apologized for the delay and explained it had to do with establishing his new company, which turned a year old on Dec. 1.
He needed just a verbal agreement from the commissioners to finish writing the contract, he told them Monday.
“Now we’re not obligating anybody for anything,” Parsons said. “We just need a consensus from the commission for me to just put those two numbers in my spreadsheet and send it to the DOT.”
The commissioners didn’t vote on the issue, but gave their verbal OK for Parsons to take the contract to ALDOT.
“We hope to come back by the middle of January after the go through their review,” Parsons said. “This process would actually start at that time.”
In other business the commission:
— Reauthorized the widening and repaving of County Road 10.
— Approved a project on County Road 24. The project will not start until after the county replaces its bridges, possibly five years from now, County Engineer Shannon Robbins told the commissioners. However, it was important to commit federal funds to the project or risk losing the funding, he said.
— Declared a mobile travel trailer the county received from the Federal Emergency Management Agency after Hurricane Katrina surplus so the county could dispose of it.
— Heard the county will be adding some new monitoring wells around its landfill. The wells allow the county to see if anything is leaching out of the landfill and where it is going, said County Administrator Steve Swafford. The cost could be anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000 depending on where, how deep and how many wells the Alabama Department of Environmental Management requires, Swafford said.
The next County Commission work session will be Jan. 6 and the next meeting will be Jan. 21.
Staff writer Laura Camper: 256-235-3545. On Twitter @LCamper_Star.