The station is located in an extremely remote and mountainous section of Dawson County near the Pickens County line. It has been operated as a joint venture between the two counties. The initial memorandum of understanding (MOU) called for Pickens to pay the cost to build the station and Dawson to provide the equipment and train personnel.
There are no fire hydrants in the community. The closest is approximately six miles away at Fausett’s Lake. When a firefighters arrive at the scene of a fire, they fight the fire and if more water is needed, they have to drive back to Fausett’s Lake to refill then return.
Commissioners have discussed relocating the old water tank which is approximately 14 miles away to a location near the fire station.
But, Dawson County Fire Chief/EMA Director Danny Thompson appeared before the Board of Commissioners work session Thursday to say that no vendor had been located who would provide a price quote for relocation. Thompson pointed out that even if a vendor could eventually be found, the operation would be costly and there is no guarantee of structural integrity once the tank was on the ground.
So the discussion turned from relocation to replacement. Thompson said a reasonable estimate to purchase a new 20,000-gallon water tank and have it installed would be approximately $35,360.
He added that Pickens County had already spent $10,000 to construct a concrete pad for the tower.
Chairman Billy Thurmond called for more discussion between the two counties on how the cost would be split.
“If you’re asking this Board to fund $35,000 for a water tank that is a joint venture, I don’t know what the Board thinks, but I think there should be more play from Pickens County before we consider spending taxpayer dollars,” he said.
Commissioner Julie Nix said, “The question is how much is all this going to cost and then we should split the cost.”
In other business before the Board:
- There was a presentation of a request for funds to renovate the Chamber of Commerce office for Economic Development;
- Planning Director Jason Streetman presented a proposed site plan for Dawsonville Self-Storage facility;
- Streetman also presented a request to adopt an update to the Capital Improvements Element of the Comprehensive Plan.
Commissioners do not vote during work sessions but the items discussed are placed on the agenda for the next voting session.
Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com