Stephens Co. Commission To Meet Later Today

Stephens County Commissioners are expected to re-visit discussions today about a letter of support the county has issued for a proposed multi-million dollar project to interconnect area water systems.

Madison and Elbert County officials are seeking $10 million in state grant funds from the Governor’s Water Supply Program to interconnect water systems in five northeast Georgia counties, Stephens, Franklin, Madison, Elbert, and Oglethorpe.

Last month, Stephens County Commissioners signed a letter of support for the project, but only after Toccoa Mayor David Austin told county commissioners the city had signed a letter of support for the project.

However, city commissioners had never discussed that letter and Wednesday, the commission voted to revoke the city’s letter of support.

County commissioners Dennis Bell and Debbie Whitlock both attended Wednesday’s city commission called meeting and expressed their own concerns about the project. Bell has said previously that when county commissioners voted to sign the letter of support, they assumed the city had looked at it closely.

The county commission will start its meeting at 5:30 p.m. today in the second-floor courtroom of the historic Stephens County Courthouse in downtown Toccoa.

Prior to their work session and business meeting, Stephens County Commissioners will hold a public hearing on a proposed amendment to the county’s ordinances regarding timber harvesting.

A first reading of that ordinance amendment is also on the agenda for today’s county commission meeting.