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South Georgia Local Government

Effingham County Industrial Development Authority Receives $2.65 Million GEFA Loan

Eight Georgia communities and The Nature Conservancy were awarded financing totaling $139,739,575 for water, sewer, wastewater, and land conservation projects by the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA) board of directors.

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Approved loans:

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  • Bartow County awarded a $25,000,000 Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) loan
  • Coweta County Water and Sewerage Authority awarded a $7,000,000 Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) loan
  • Culloden awarded a $750,000 DWSRF loan
  • Cumming awarded a $26,229,100 DWSRF loan
  • Effingham County Industrial Development Authority awarded a $2,565,000 Georgia Fund loan
  • Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners awarded a $50,000,000 CWSRF loan
  • The Nature Conservancy awarded a $695,475 CWSRF conservation loan
  • Oconee County Board of Commissioners awarded a $25,000,000 CWSRF loan
  • Waycross awarded a $2,500,000 CWSRF conservation loan

Project and loan details:

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Bartow County

The $25,000,000 CWSRF loan will finance the construction of a new 2 million gallons per day West Bartow Water Pollution Control Plant. The county has experienced significant population growth in recent years. This project will help the county meet the projected demand for both residential and commercial development. The county will pay 0.13% interest on the 20-year loan, which is eligible for a reduced interest rate because the county is a WaterFirst Community.

Coweta County Water and Sewerage Authority

The $7,000,000 DWSRF loan will finance the planning, design, permitting, and land acquisition for a new water withdrawal pump station. The county’s current sources of water are the Alexander and Cedar Creeks. This project will provide resiliency to the water system by supplementing its current supply with water from the Chattahoochee River. This project will increase efficiency and system reliability. The authority will pay 0.86% interest on the 30-year loan, which is eligible for a reduced interest rate because the county is a WaterFirst Community.

City of Culloden

The $750,000 DWSRF loan will finance constructing a new well and a chemical feed building and installing a backup generator and a supervisory control and data acquisition system. This project will increase system capacity and maintain a safe drinking water supply. The city will pay 1.13% interest on the 20-year loan. The city is eligible for principal forgiveness up to $377,500.

City of Cumming

The $26,229,100 DWSRF loan will finance installing and replacing water main. The city’s current water system is experiencing low, unsafe water pressures. This project will provide infrastructure improvements, reduce water loss, and help meet service demand. The city will pay 0.13% interest on the 20-year loan, which is eligible for a reduced interest rate because the city is a WaterFirst Community. 

Effingham County Industrial Development Authority

The $2,565,000 Georgia Fund loan will finance the construction of an elevated storage tank. The storage tank will help maintain water pressure, provide system redundancy and reliability, and ensure fire safety. This project will help support the growing needs of new residential, commercial, and industrial growth in the area. The authority will pay 1.63% interest on the 20-year loan.

Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners

The $50,000,000 CWSRF loan will finance constructing a biosolids dryer facility at the F. Wayne Hill Water Resources Center. Proposed regulatory changes raised concerns about the future viability of landfill disposal of biosolids. This project will provide the most effective and sustainable solution for biosolids management to accommodate the county’s future needs. The county will pay 0.07% on the 15-year loan, which is eligible for a reduced interest rate because the county is a WaterFirst Community.

The Nature Conservancy

The $695,475 CWSRF conservation loan will finance the purchase of 155 acres of land known as the Hells Hollow Tract for permanent conservation. This project will permanently preserve a valuable ecosystem, protect the Ocoee River watershed, and control nonpoint source pollution. The Nature Conservancy will pay 0.13% interest on the 20-year loan. The loan will finance a conservation project, which qualifies for a reduced interest rate.

Oconee County Board of Commissioners

The $25,000,000 CWSRF loan will finance upgrading and expanding the Calls Creek Water Reclamation Facility. Oconee County is one of the fastest growing counties in the state. This project will help the county meet the projected demand for both residential and commercial development. The county will pay 0.13% interest on the 20-year loan, which is eligible for a reduced interest rate because the county is a WaterFirst Community.

City of Waycross

The $2,500,000 CWSRF conservation loan will finance rehabilitating the city’s wastewater treatment plant. This project will improve the treatment process, reduce overflow, and increase reliability and efficiency. The city will pay 1.04% interest on the 20-year loan. The loan qualifies for a reduced interest rate because a portion of the project is a conservation activity. The city is eligible for principal forgiveness up to $1,100,000.

Other GEFA board actions:

Alcovy Water and Sewerage Authority

The board ratified and emergency loan authorized by the GEFA executive director on August 4, 2022. The authority received a $25,000 Georgia Fund loan to repair a water main. The authority will pay 1.63% interest on the 20-year loan. 

City of Carrollton

The board approved a $5,000,000 increase to a DWSRF loan approved in May 2021.

City of Hartwell  

The board approved a $4,100,000 increase to a CWSRF loan approved in November 2021.

Town of Homer

The board approved a $300,000 increase to a DWSRF conservation loan originally approved in May 2018 and a previous scope modification in May 2021.

City of Jefferson

The board approved of a modification of loan terms and a $12,150,000 increase to a CWSRF loan approved in May 2022.

City of McIntyre

The board approved a $3,128,000 CWSRF interim loan. This loan will provide interim financing to install a new sewer collection and treatment system. This project will enhance public health by abandoning approximately 325 septic tanks and constructing a viable sewer collection and treatment system. The town will pay no interest on the 5-year interim loan. 

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