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Hinesville ponders drainage improvements, paying for it
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Hinesville city officials may have a plan to lessen the impact of storm-water pollution, which has reportedly played a significant role in disrupting the ecosystem of the marshes.
John Ferris, a water engineer and representative of Earthtech, spoke to the Liberty County Citizens Advisory Committee on Monday concerning the benefits of initiating a storm-water utility in the city.
As stormwater runs off impervious surfaces, pollutants — motor oil, pesticides and sediment — are collected in the water that drains into the sewer system and out to Peacock Canal. In turn, the water of the canal drains into and pollutes the marshes, he said.
If Earthtech is given the green light to initiate the storm water utility, a $15 million reconstruction effort would commence to update the drainage infrastructure in town, he said.
Hinesville’s pipes are about 30 years old and they allow a considerable amount of polluted water into the sewer system — something that increases the workload of the water treatment plant.
Earthtech estimates a monthly stormwater utility bill would cost between $2.55 and $7.23 per month based on the square footage of a property owner's impervious surfaces, like rooftops and driveways, he said. Collectively, if this utility is introduced, it would cost the property owners of Hinesville an extra $2 million.
Besides capital improvements, the money would also go to inspection and enforcement, operation and maintenance and engineering and planning. But this is a long-term program that could take 10 to
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