Fri., May 6, 2011 11:59am (EDT)

Reservoir Project Raises Concerns
By Melissa Stiers
Updated: 3 years ago

ATLANTA  —  
The new bill would allow local governments to partner with private companies to build reservoirs (photo courtesy Robert Lz)
The new bill would allow local governments to partner with private companies to build reservoirs (photo courtesy Robert Lz)
The governor signed a bill this week that lets local governments partner with private companies to build reservoirs. One potential P3 project is already raising concerns.

A private developer has pitched the Calhoun Creek reservoir in north Georgia to meet the future water needs of Forsyth County. The major pitching point has been around the water demand should a federal ruling stand and the state lose its rights to Lake Lanier.

Although the reservoir would supply Forsyth county it would lie in neighboring counties so it needs their sign-off.

However Lumpkin County Commission Chairman John Raber says he’s not sold on the idea, especially after reports of locals being threatened with emminent domain in order to get them to sell their property for the project.

“Our people who came to see me were genuinely frightened. They were young people and they said this is our home and if we sell it for this amount we lose money and where do we go from here?”

Opponents of the new law say it leaves people vulnerable to private interest.