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NCWSA breaks ground on new facility
Groundbreaking 11-15
Several elected officials and leaders 'broke ground' at Stanton Springs on Wednesday. - photo by Evan Newton

NEWTON COUNTY — The Newton County Water and Sewerage Authority (NCWSA) officially broke ground on the new reverse osmosis facility in Stanton Springs on Wednesday.

The new project will take water from commercial and industrial usage that will be treated properly and sent back into the community and industrial partners in Stanton Springs. It will be built with funds coming directly from the $100 million dollar ARPA grant.

“What you’re seeing today is another partnership, another great move forward for our community,” said Mike Hopkins, executive director of the NCWSA. “As we continue to have these large industries and commercial development come into this Stanton Springs park, we felt like we had to put another tool in the tool box. And so, the re-use project was certainly that tool.”

Several hundred people consisting of employees, elected officials and representatives from the state were in attendance.

One of those in attendance was state representative Tim Fleming who said he has been a supporter of the Stanton Springs development for over a decade.

“Vibrant economic development doesn’t happen by accident,” Fleming said. “It is a true partnership with a strategic vision.”

Fleming also stressed the importance of teamwork and how the collaboration of all of the different municipalities and organizations have come together to build sustainable jobs for citizens across the county.

“Because of this team, and I want to stress the word team… these folks have worked together and grind everyday to make sure these great opportunities are provided to our citizens,” Fleming said. “Because of this team, this facility will continue to help our citizens and job creators thrive, not just here in Newton County, but in the entire region of Georgia for decades to come.”

One of the members of that team is Joint Development Authority (JDA) chairman Jerry Silvio who spoke on behalf of the JDA. 

“I’m honored to be here on behalf of the JDA,” Silvio said. “Thanks to the planning and investment years ago we have the unprecedented opportunity to improve the quality of life for our region and the state of Georgia. I congratulate the entire NCWSA on this remarkable achievement and look forward to the tremendous impact this reverse osmosis facility will make for years to come.”

Following the ceremony, Silvio spoke with The Covington News to share what the groundbreaking meant to him.

“I’ve lived in Covington for 25 years. For me, it is a fulfillment of a vision that in a very small way I was involved with,” Silvio said. “It’s kind of refreshing to see this many jobs come in.”

Hopkins, who was one of the first employees of the authority in the 1970’s, also shared his thoughts about the groundbreaking. 

"It means the legacy that the employees and I are leaving is one that includes sustainability,” Hopkins said. “That is the important thing to me, leaving it better for the next group that comes in behind us and the next industries that come in, that they will have opportunity and the ability to come to Covington and Newton County.”