Newton schools under budget on sewer work

Photo by Howard Reed

Photo by Howard Reed

COVINGTON — The Newton County School System is expecting to pay less than budgeted for sewer work at its new elementary school.

During its monthly work session last week, the Board of Education unanimously approved a recommendation by Superintendent Gary Mathews for the construction of a sewer outfall at the elementary school being built on Airport Road near Ga. Highway 142 in north Newton County.

The project is scheduled to cost $215,274, which is under the budgeted $250,000, according to Deputy Superintendent Dennis Carpenter. The project is funded from the Capital Projects SPLOST III fund, he said; SPLOST funds may be used only to pay for projects previously advertised and voted on by the public.

The contract includes installation of piping, manhole structures and erosion control measures needed to connect to a sanitary sewer pump station operated by the Newton County Water and Sewerage Authority, according to the recommendation to the board.

The work will be completed by low bidder Strack Inc. of Fairburn. Carpenter said NCSS checked the company's references, which indicated the company could handle the job well.

Last year, NCSS had to contract with the WASA regarding the pump station.

As part of the contract, the WASA would engineer, construct, operate, maintain and repair the sewer pump station and line to existing sewer in the city of Covington. WASA will contribute $125,000 to the project, and the city of Covington will contribute $125,000 in the form of credits toward the purchase of sewer capacity.

The Industrial Development Authority will give a reimbursement to the BOE of $179,650 toward the cost of the pump and line construction. WASA will reserve for a period of 10 years 29,840 gallons per day of waste water treatment capacity to serve the site; after that, unused capacity will be surrendered to WASA, according to the contract that the board previously approved.

The $13 million school, which is being built by Ricks Contractors Inc. of Buford, is about 44 percent complete and is expected to be open in time for the 2011-12 school year. Contractors said some parts of the project are about two weeks behind schedule due to weather, but the main building is on schedule, according to Carpenter's Operations Report he presented to the school board last week.