By Nick Nunn staff writer

During a work session on May 2, the Madison City Council discussed a proposed agreement with Georgia-Pacific Wood Products, LLC, that would extend Madison’s sewer infrastructure so that the city would be able to treat the sewage generated at Georgia Pacific’s mill in Madison. Madison City Manager David Nunn stated that “the city would expend no dollars” on the project, which would require a $300,000 to $400,000 investment on the part of Georgia Pacific. Nunn said that Georgia Pacific, instead of rebuilding their existing treatment facility to keep up with regulations from the Environmental Protection Division, would install a sewer pump on its own property and a force main line, which would feed into the city’s existing gravity system. The agreement document states that Georgia Pacific will “construct the sewage pump station at the Mill and a length of force main sewer pipe,” which will extend from the pump to the right of way near the entrance of the mill at the existing right of way. Madison will be responsible for constructing a force main line from the manhole at 1600 Athens Highway, Madison to the connection point near the entrance of the mill. In the document, Georgia Pacific agrees to “reimburse Madison’s reasonable out-of-pocket expenses incurred… in connection with the design and construction of Madison’s portion of the project” according to a set fee schedule. The document estimates that the cost of Madison’s portion of the project will be “approximately $300,000.” According to the agreement, Madison will then “treat all non-hazardous, non-industrial household type sewage generated by the Mill and pumped to Madison’s sewage treatment infrastructure.” The city will charge Georgia Pacific at a rate of $6.30 per thousand gallons.

Nunn said that Georgia Pacific currently uses approximately 11 percent of the city’s daily flow. The council also reviewed the Greenspace Conservation Commission’s (GCC) recommendation for the construction of a skateboard park at a city park. The GCC recommended that “adequate land be made available for a skateboard park,” basing their suggestion on a survey done at Morgan County schools, which indicated that 54 percent of 500 students polled would use such a park. The recommendation also noted that as an “active recreational facility,” the park could be created as a part of the Morgan County Recreation Department. Planning Director Monica Callahan stated that the city is currently engaged in attempts to provide “passive recreation” possibilities, noting that the skateboard park project possibly “should be handled by the recreation department” and that the request, therefore, “needs to be properly filed with the right agency.” Callahan said that the location of greatest interest for the group that proposed this project, which was led by Chad Foster, was on College Drive, near the Morgan County schools.

She said that the only possible site in that area that would be located on city property would be directly behind the Recreation Department and that the location would suffer from visibility issues. Mayor Fred Perriman agreed that the proposal would be better for another agency that could provide better choices for an appropriate location in the area. The council was also approached by Mike Torino of Amici Food Group, LLC, requesting an amendment to Madison’s sidewalk cafe ordinance. The ordinance currently restricts outdoor service to before 10 p.m. and outside consumption to before 10:30 p.m., but Torino asked that those times be extended to 11 p.m. and 11:30 p.m., respectively from Sunday to Thursday and to 11:30 p.m. and midnight, respectively, on Fridays and Saturdays. Torino said that the early time restrictions are “inconvenient” and are “not conducive to customer relations,” stating that customers like to sit out near the street late during the summer hours. Perriman said that he thought that the amendment would “put everybody on the same page.” Madison Finance Director Karen Guinn said that there would be an audit committee meeting to discuss the city’s 2013 audit by the end of May and that the second budget workshop would take place on May 9.