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April 28, 2010

 

THE EVER CHANGING “FACTS” ABOUT JCWSA AND ITS FUNDING

 
At the last BOC meeting 4/19/10, several members of the JCWSA attended.  During the meeting they were in and out of the meeting and at one point were all called out to a “special called meeting” in the hallway by their chairman, Brack Pound.  At the end of the meeting each of them gave their version of why the county should give them money or “owed” JCWSA money.

Some of the new members that don’t know the history of JCWSA got up with their version of how things were, are, and should be.  Craig Salmon got up and said the previous commissioners had “committed” to pay for the fire hydrants.  He also said he was going to clear up some “misinformation” that was “out there.”  Mr. Salmon said that other things beside JCWSA were voted down on a referendum, including the courthouse renovation.  He is exactly correct, BUT the people did vote renovate the courthouse when JCWSA was NOT on the ballot. 

 
You can view and hear Mr. Salmon’s comments here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yln3I1Ih4o0

 
In November 1998 various items were put on a SPLOST referendum, including $2,150,000 for the creation of JCWSA.  The people did not want this water authority and voted the entire SPLOST down because of it - 1161 to 1070.

 
In July 2000 the people were again asked to vote on a SPLOST that included renovations and additions to the courthouse and fire station improvements.  This was approved overwhelmingly 1200 to 504. 

 You can see both of these referendums here:
REFERENDUMS

 
After the people voted down the JCWSA in 1998, a special interest group formed an “ad hoc” committee.  This committee was NOT appointed by the BOC.  This group went to Rep. Curtis Jenkins (related to Linda Jordan as rumor has it) and asked to have the JCWSA formed.  He took HB 972 to the floor of the State House in 1999 and JCWSA was formed.  This is NOT a county water system.  A county water system was voted down by the people. 

 
Merrill Clark, Ken McMichael, Brack Pound, and others spoke at the BOC meeting, again giving their version of why the county had to give them money.  Brack Pound even handed out affidavits, of which TWG has not been able to obtain copies, signed by Merrill Clark, Russell Bennett, Jerry Crow, and Greg Wyatt swearing that they voted on something that is not in the minutes of the county meeting.

 
Remember, these are all officials that tried to sneak Bear Creek Reservoir in on us—Merrill Clark and Brack Pound were part of that deal, too. 

 
Despite what JCWSA members try to convince citizens of, their “facts” have rarely proved to be truthful.  Do you remember these quotes in the Monticello News?

  • 3/14/02  We have to prove these loans can be repaid by income generated from this service.  So to relieve your minds this is not done with money of the taxpayers through the Commissioners office.  If the Watchdog Committee would like to know the truth.”  --  Merrill Clark, Chairman JCWSA 
  • 3/14/02  “The water lines are funded through loans entered into by the JCWSA, with the loans being repaid with funds derived from water sales revenue.  Jasper County tax revenue is not being used for loan repayment.” – Roger Bell, Vice Chair JCWSA
     
  • 3/14/02  “Once we install lines in Jasper County the JCWSA will be responsible for paying for any lines in Jasper County through water sales.  The Jasper County government will not own the lines, and will not be responsible for repaying any loans.  –Roger Bell, Vice Chair JCWSA

 

  • 7/8/04  We don’t answer to the commissioners and no authority member is served by or otherwise benefits from the system.  We will soon have over 30 miles of water line serving over 500 customers at no cost to the taxpayers.”  --Tom Brazil, JCWSA member

 

  • 7/15/04  “We then started negotiations with Newton County on partnering with them on the Bear Creek Project, as this would be our most economical source of water.”   --Merrill Clark, JCWSA

 

Oh, yes, the TWG has been blasted many times in the past for never having their facts straight.  Merrill Clark, Roger Bell, Tom Brazil and others condemned TWG for “stopping” the all important Bear Creek Project (BCR).  If they had had their way, the Jasper County taxpayers would have been paying Newton County every quarter for FIFTY YEARS starting in 2004 for a reservoir that did not exist then and still doesn’t exist today.  Mr. Clark said in 2004 that they had “foresight” and the BOC should be praised for wanting to buy into Bear Creek Reservoir.

 
See entire comments including the above quotes here:

EDITORIALS AND QUOTES BY JCWSA

 
Before Ken McMichael was a member of the JCWSA, he fought the Bear Creek Reservoir project with many editorials.  He wrote an editorial on 5/13/04 and said,

“Do not believe someone who pulls numbers and opinions out of the air and cannot back them up with the facts.” 

 
Ah, so true!  But JCWSA has always been more about opinion and changing facts than truth.  The facts were that JCWSA had to pay for the loans themselves with water revenue and JCWSA would be responsible for the payments, not Jasper County taxpayers.  Now that so many poor decisions have been made, the taxpayers are obligated, the BOC has committed, etc., etc.  It is time the JCWSA got their facts straight.  If the affidavits say what we hear they say, the word perjury does come to mind.

 
Remember all these things as you pay your extra “fire hydrant tax” to support the failing JCWSA.  They will need your support for many years to come.


TWG
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