As the newly appointed Upson Water & Sewer Authority gathers information and studies water source options, members of Thomaston City Council are inviting the county group to take another look at the county's existing supplier.
At the initiation of Mayor Pro Tem Doug Head, every member of Thomaston City Council issued an invitation to the county water authority and county commissioners to begin a dialogue about the county's water needs and the city's role in helping meet those needs.
When he ran for the post of mayor pro tem last year, Head made cooperation between the city and county a centerpiece of his campaign. He said Tuesday he hasn't wavered on that goal and considers water a key starting point.
"I'm not too proud to say that all of us in this community need each other and need to work together," Head said.
Recently, members of the Upson Water & Sewer Authority listed looking for "additional sources of water" as one of their goals. Currently, the county is the city's largest water customer and some of the city's water system improvement plans hinge on the continued sale of water to supply county customers in the Northside and Lincoln Park areas.
Head said he looks forward to a dialogue with county officials regarding how the two governments can work together to meet water needs. He said a foundation of trust can be built between the two governments "by remember the incredibly solemn responsibility we have to the people of this community."
In working together, Head said, "There will never be any room for posturing. There will never be any room for trying to do anything but keep the people's interest of this community first."
Head noted the city and county have been successful in the past in working together toward important goals, such as the construction of the new airport and recruiting industry.
Mayor Hays Arnold said he has confidence the county will want to work with the city to address the water needs in the unincorporated area.
"Having attended the first meeting with the water authority, I would say at this point a little patience is in order," Mayor Arnold said, noting the county's water authority is comprised of all new members. "They feel, as we do I'm sure, an obligation to their constituents. I think if we'll be patient, they will come to the conclusion that the best game in town is the game that's been going on between the city and county for a lot of years ... I think we are going to be able to sit down and work with these folks."
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