The Newton County Board of Commissioners (BOC) signed off on changes to its intergovernmental agreement (IGA) with the Newton County Solid Waste Authority (SWA) during a special called meeting Thursday.
During the meeting, which followed an all-day retreat for county leaders and its constitutional officers, the BOC also ratified the hiring of Greg Mann as the county’s new IT Director.
The revised IGA, approved by the SWA at a Monday meeting, grants the SWA an exclusive franchise to provide solid waste services in unincorporated areas of the county. It also states that the county will “pass such ordinances and resolutions are reasonably necessary to support the grant of this exclusive franchise.”
Additionally, it states “The ordinance need not impose mandatory participation in such services upon residents and businesses in unincorporated Newton County.”
The IGA does give the SWA the right to request mandatory service. It also gives the BOC the right to approve or deny the request at its discretion.
The new IGA also states if SWA elects to sub-contract for waste collection services, it should give local businesses - those with a business license and office in Newton County or an established customer base in the county - a “full and fair opportunity to compete for the contracts.”
It also requires some of the 11 existing convenience centers stay open for at least one year from the effective date of the agreement and for some to remain open an additional two years, provided they can be supported on a cost neutral basis. The IGA explains the cost neutrality calculation and lists the factors to be considered by the SWA in keeping the centers open.
The full IGA is available on the Newton County website.
The BOC will hold a public hearing May 16 at 7 p.m. to consider public comments on the proposed revisions to the IGA.