Abie Ladson, Director of Engineering in Augusta says, "The whole purpose of the consultant is to basically get the expertise in implementing the program for a city of this size."
Ladson says hiring consultants to help manage and implement the storm water utility fee is important.
"They will actually look at implementing the billing system, studying the rate structure," said Ladson.
The rate structure will be completed by the end of the year.
So what's the next step? Going back to the commission?
"We would come before them in January to actually get Phase 2 of the storm water approved which is the storm water utility fee," said Ladson.
And if that's approved by the commission?
"It'll probably take about seven to eight months to actually implement a fee, to get the billing system and everything set up," said Ladson.
Ladson says no one has been billed yet.
But if it is approved billing would start in the latter part of 2014.
So where did the 484,000 dollars come from in today's agenda?
"It came out of SPLOST6 so it doesn't have anything to do with the general budget. This was dedicated just for the implementation of the storm water," said Ladson.
North Augusta also used consultants when they launched their storm water fee program.
And they were awarded the South Carolina chapter of soil conservation award.
Tom Zeaser, Director of Engineering of North Augusta says, "We used a consultant to really fine tune the utility and do some analysis of the economic analysis and sort of project the utility out and help us make some decisions based on their experience in other communities."
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