Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Construction To Start On Upgrade To Sewer Line From Epps Bridge Parkway To Calls Creek Plant

***12-Inch Forced Main***

After a two-month delay due to the disruption in supplies because of Hurricane Harvey, construction crews are ready to start work on the upgrade to the sewer line from Epps Bridge Parkway to the Calls Creek wastewater treatment plant outside Watkinsville.

Piles of 12-inch pipe are stacked at locations on the route along Old Epps Bridge Road, the Oconee Connector and Daniells Bridge Road.

While Oconee County is promoting future use of gravity lines, the sewer line will be pressurized and will carry sewerage from the county’s commercial Epps Bridge Parkway corridor to the Calls Creek Plant, which is being expanded to be able to handle the increased effluent.

A gravity line currently is being built along sections of McNutt Creek upstream from Epps Bridge Parkway.

When that line is completed, sewage from as far away as Bogart will be pumped from an already upgraded pump station at the corner of Epps Bridge Parkway and Parkway Boulevard to the new Calls Creek plant on the northern edge of Watkinsville.

Notice To Proceed

The county gave Griffin Brothers Inc. of Maysville the notice to proceed with construction of the $1.9 million project on Nov. 1 of last year.

Pipe At Daniells Bridge Road And Hog Mountain Road

At its meeting on Jan. 2, the Board of Commissioners finalized temporary and permanent sewer easement purchases from Tommy Kittle, 2030 Daniells Bridge Road, on whose property the line runs after crossing under SR Loop 10.

Oconee County Water Resources Director Wayne Haynie said the contractor expects to complete work on the 21,300 linear feet of sewer line by July 1.

Haynie told me in an email message last week he will need to ask the Board of Commissioners to extend the contract to accept that July 1 date, made necessary because of problems in manufacturing the pipes.

Hurricane Harvey shut down the resin plans in the Houston area, causing the delay in manufacture of the pipe, Haynie said.

Route Of Pipe

The pipe will run under Epps Bridge Parkway at Parkway Boulevard and then follow Tanglebrook Drive to a sewer easement along a creek that links to the roadway through Pinewood Estates mobile home park.

It then will follow Old Epps Bridge Road to the Oconee Connector stub behind Home Depot.

From that point, the line crosses under SR Loop 10, connecting to Daniells Bridge Road just west of Chestnut Hill Road.

The line flows down the west side of Daniells Bridge Road to Hog Mountain Road and then down Government Station Road to Lampkin Branch of Calls Creek, where it will connect to an existing gravity line running to the Calls Creek plant off Durhams Mill Way on the north side of Watkinville.

The new pipe will be put down beside the existing 6-inch forced main pipe following that same route.


Water Services Department Director Wayne Haynie had said in July that he expected construction on the line to start in late September or early October, but that was before Hurricane Harvey hit Texas in late August.

Route Of Sewer Line Upgrade (Click To Enlarge)

The contract allows 180 days for completion from the notice to proceed.

The upgraded sewer line will allow the county to divert sewage now being pumped to the Land Application Site on Rocky Branch Road to the Calls Creek plant.

The pump station on Daniells Bridge Road at Barber Creek will be put out of service by the upgrade but will remain in place in case of future need, Haynie said.

The contract documents require that traffic will continue to flow on roads along the construction route at all times, Haynie said.

Haynie said he expects to have the system operational by Sept. 1, in coordination with the commissioning of the opening of the new Calls Creek wastewater treatment plant, which will have a treatment capacity of 1.5 million gallons per day.

The current plant has only a .667 million gallons per day capacity.

Pump Stations

At the public hearing last week on the county’s water and wastewater master plans, Haynie said one of his goals is to reduce the number of pump stations in the county.

Pump Station Epps Bridge Parkway and Parkway Boulevard

At present, the county has 35 stations, including the key one at the intersection of Epps Bridge Parkway and Parkway Boulevard.

That Epps Bridge Parkway pump has been upgraded and will provide the power to flush the sewage from that location to the gravity line at Lampkin Branch.

Because the county has not built any lines further down McNutt Creek or built a sewer plant on the Middle Oconee River to replace the Calls Creek plant, it is dependent on the pump station at Epps Bridge Parkway and on the forced main flowing from it to get sewage to the Calls Creek plant.

The Land Application Site on Rocky Branch Road is operating at capacity.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Oconee County Magistrate Court Judge Finds Oconee Waste Transport Not Guilty Of Noise Ordinance Violation

***Jan. 12 Trial***

Oconee County Magistrate Court Judge Samuel Barth on Friday ruled Oconee Waste Transport not guilty of the county’s charge that the trash hauler violated the county’s noise ordinance by tipping dumpsters from a commercial site on Epps Bridge Parkway sometime between Dec. 29, 2016, and Jan. 20, 2017.

Clyde Edwin Pittman, an Athens plastic surgeon who lives at 1591 Tanglebrook Drive just off Epps Bridge Parkway, testified in the trail before Barth on Jan. 12 that he observed OWT emptying trash before 7 a.m. at IHOP on Epps Bridge Parkway and called the county to complain.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Decision On Future Of Oconee County Animal Shelter Likely To Be Addressed In Spring, County Administrator Says

***Flooding To Be Fixed***

Oconee County Administrator Justin Kirouac wants the Board of Commissioners to make a decision on what to do with the Animal Shelter this spring.

The Board needs to decide if it wants to retrofit the existing facility on 1171 Branch Road, south of Farmington, or if it wants to build a new facility, Kerouac told the commissioners at a strategic planning work session earlier this month.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Superior Court Judge Refuses To Force Oconee County To Issue Permit For Storage Facility On U.S. 441

***Case Can Be Reopened***

Oconee County Superior Court Judge H. Patrick Haggard has turned down a request by Broome Street LLC that Oconee County be forced to issue the company a development permit for construction of mini-warehouses on just more than 12 acres on U.S. 441 behind the Stone Store.

Judge Haggard denied the petition “without prejudice” on narrow grounds, and the case can be reopened for any reason.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Open House Discussion Identifies Major Decisions On Wastewater Treatment Confronting Oconee County

***Impact On Growth***

Oconee county is facing major decisions on wastewater treatment that will have significant impact on future residential, commercial and industrial growth in the county, a public presentation and discussion last (Tuesday) night at the Civic Center indicated.

The gathering, labeled an Open House On the Water and Wastewater Master Plan Update, was attended by 40 citizens and was hosted by Wayne Haynie, director of the Oconee County Water Resources Department, formerly called the Utility Department.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Need For High Speed Internet Access Dominated Discussion Between State Legislators And Oconee County Officials

***Session in Late December***

The lack of high speed Internet access in areas outside metropolitan Atlanta dominated discussion at a meeting of Oconee County’s legislative delegation with local government officials late last year.

“We’re committed on the Senate side for sure to try to increase access to high speed Internet throughout Georgia,” said Bill Cowsert, who represents the 46th Senate District, which includes Oconee County.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Oconee County Magistrate Court Judge Delayed Decision On Ordinance Violation Issued To Oconee Waste Transport

***Noise Ordinance Cited***

Following and hour-long trial on Friday, Oconee County Magistrate Court Judge Sam Barth postponed his decision on whether Oconee Waste Transport violated the county’s noise ordinance while operating prior to 7 a.m. behind at least one business along Epps Bridge Parkway.

Clyde Edwin Pittman, an Athens plastic surgeon who lives at 1591 Tanglebrook Drive just off Epps Bridge Parkway, testified that he has been awakened in his home going back five years by haulers picking up trash from dumpsters at businesses on Epps Bridge Parkway.