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EPD: Fayette-run Brooks water system not tested for lead, copper for 3 years

The Fayette County Water System failed to conduct adequate lead and copper sampling of the former Brooks Water System for three straight years, according to a notice sent to system customers in the small south Fayette town.

The county took over the Brooks water system in June 2010.

The lack of state-required testing was contained in a notice mailed to water system customers in Brooks, and it has led to concern from a Brooks resident and several members of the Brooks Town Council as well.

The Brooks Council agreed Monday night to have Mayor Dan Langford write a letter asking the water system to send a representative to the next council meeting Sept. 16 to explain the matter. Langford said he would run the letter by council members via email before sending it later this week.

Brooks resident and former councilman Steve Hayne brought up the matter, saying he was concerned that the water system knew about the violation for three years and has done nothing about it until now.

While the city has “leased” the town’s water system to the county, Langford agreed the town has responsibility for insuring citizens’ safety.

The notice states that the county plans to take new lead and copper samples this month. According to state standards, the tests must occur during the months of June through September.

Councilman Ted Britt said council “needs to hold them accountable.” Britt noted that any time work is done on the water lines, the water in his home turns brown and county officials advise him to turn on an outside water spigot until it turns clear. Though other council members said they haven’t had such discoloration problems, Britt theorized it might be because his home rests in a low area.

“I’m going to run the water and send it off next time,” Britt said.

Claiming that the county hasn’t replaced the water lines in Brooks as initially pledged, Hayne questioned what benefit the town received by having the county operate the town water system beyond not having to handle the water billing process.

Hayne said he was serving on town council when Water System Director Tony Parrott and then-County Administrator Jack Krakeel negotiated the lease of the water system with the Brooks Council.



What say Mr. Barlow? Are these allegations unsubstantiated as well? Is the EPD wrong again? Will you confirm or deny by performing an independent assessment with the Barlow & Friends engineering firm?

We find the water dept not performing their duties correctly. Don't blame the workers Mr. Barlow. The leadership placed them in position to fail. Mr. Barlow, grow a pair, pray if you must, but throw that second stone before someone gets sick or worse.

Enough mudslinging and name calling. Obviously the Water System needs some new adult supervision that knows what the heck they are doing.

And competitively bid contracts (Thank you Mr. Brown... YOU ARE CORRECT AS USUAL).

Business case would be to clean house... Recruit new talent... move forward. We will all be "healthier" for it!


Competitive bidding is the way to go, if the bid package is written correctly and there is a way to easily compare apples to apples. Too many times, the bid packages are thrown together quickly and not vetted properly.

I've been evaluating bids for 20+ years. Half the contractors, due to workload, wait until the last minute to pull them together and therefore miss something and hope to make up for it on change requests.

If not vetted, interviews performed to meet the players, and discounts should those companies remove their team (bait and switch), the process doesn't work very well.

I don't know about you, but I am always leery of the low bidder. What did they miss?

Case in point is the PTC library roof.

If the county put the bid package out this quick, there are bound to be errors. There must also be a way to evaluate progress along the way.

Have you checked out the actual proposals on the county website under purchasing? 3 addendums included. If you read it, you will see this bid will also include the engineer in charge for the eventual dredging of Lake Peachtree, whenever they get around to it.

It also includes the Sanitary Survey...all 5 pages that when you read it in it's entirety you will be just blown away by the deficiencies that the state of Ga. found. Not just at the 2 treatment plants, but also the distribution system, storage tanks, wells and intakes at all the water supplies (lakes Horton, Kedron, Peachtree, Starrs Mill, and Flint River). I mean, is there anything left of the water system that IS running properly?

The first 2 deficiencies at Crosstown Treatment Plant?

1) Update Emergency Response Plan to include:
a) EPD contacts and phone numbers
b) An emergency response plan for spills at or near the raw water intakes
2) Expand SOP manual to include all component of the water treatment plant (pumps, filters, online instrumentation, etc.)

Just read the above a few times. Good grief.

You know, last October, there was an article in The Citizen about the Water System closing down a well over next to the First Presbyterian Church on Willowbend. There were higher than normal levels of a chemical nicknamed "perc" that is used in the dry cleaning industry and as a degreaser and solvent.

Read the article below and pay attention to what the assistant to Parrott said was the reason for the shutdown and what Parrott said was the reason for the shutdown. Which was the real reason for the shutdown?

Also, in the Sanitary Survey, which was done June 7th, it is noted under deficiencies that Willowbend is one of 3 wells listed that "must be filled and capped. The ground water withdrawal permit and the permit to operate must be modified to take these wells off the permits." This inspection (survey) was done at least 8 MONTHS after this well was supposed to be shut down and these procedures had still not been performed?

Finally, how about this one? In the Survey, under Distribution system (that's our water mains, folks.....the last thing our drinking water touches before it comes thru our home water line and out our faucets):

#4) Develop a procedure for disinfection and testing of repaired water mains.

Uhhh, DEVELOP a system?? As in there is currently NO SYSTEM in place??

Check out the separate proposal on the county website for dredging of the sludge lagoons from the 2 holding ponds over at Crosstown.

This was last done in 2002 and 2003.

There will be no restrictions on the hours or days the contractor can work.

The contractor shall take title of the dewatered sludge upon removal from the Crosstown plant. 5 feet deep, Two lagoons (holding ponds) 5 feet deep, 185 feet by 270 feet each.

This minor little project was also strongly recommended on the same Sanitary Survey by the GA EPD.


I can only hope that Commissioner Barlow is still not defending the water director guy any more!

NUK_1's picture

Not that I don't like the area, but this is an abomination and such a derelict of a basic function that I cannot believe Parrot and his crew of idiots are still running the FC Water Dept.

3 YEARS of not testing? When does this end?

Someone call Harold Bost Hogg and ask his permission to dump Tony Parrot and his management staff already.

What did the EPD report state? "Fraud, deception" or absolute INCOMPETENCE?
How much clearer can it be? Obviously clearer than the water that some folks have been drinking for a few years that hasn't been tested. How the hell does this happen besides incredibly stupid management?

PTC Observer's picture

Mr. Brown can't do anything without first hiring a consultant to tell him what he needs to do. Meanwhile, he continues to put the citizens at risk.

The longer this drama runs, the less like Mr. Brown will be able to attain higher office outside of the county. Like most professional politicians, this upwardly mobile aspiration is clearly his end game.

So, naturally he will act, when it best suits his purposes. First, to cover every eventuality of escape of responsibility he must first hire a consultant. It's a win, win for Mr. Brown, taking this approach. This NUK_1, is how it works in the world of the politicians.

NUK_1's picture

Brown/They already have the consultant part in place. It's now time for some action and I'm sure it's going to be a crowd-pleaser with Tony Parrot and maybe others suddenly announcing "planned retirement." If County Mgr Steve Rapson is able to cleanse the Water Dept, I'm sure Steve will be taking loads of credit for it, along with his "my commission."

I have no doubt that Brown's aspirations go much higher than FC Chairman, but his last run for higher office was such a disaster vs. Matt Ramsey that I think it's a while off. After his SPLOST fails miserably, it will be back to the drawing board and disavowing having anything to do with it. Some will still believe him but the question is how many?

PTC Observer's picture

we should be happy at times that quick action is not a hallmark of government. This sadly is not one of those occasions, but what can one expect when it's the government that has failed us once again.

Unfortunately, the traits of democracy are working in favor of Mr. Brown's long term success in the political arena. Voters typically vote for two reasons, one and it's the most powerful, is to serve their own interests and the second is because it's "the right thing to do". This latter reason is also known as the "uninformed voter". They typically vote on name recognition or because someone "recommended" the candidate. Either way it is these two faults of democracy that have caused most of our current ills, including putrid water.

Mr. Brown, just like Mr. Ramsey and Senator Chance, will be successful for these reasons. Recall that Mr. Ramsey and Senator Chance supported TSPLOST at the state level. The voters have not punished them, on the contrary, they have continued to strengthen their support under the dome and at the polls. They too are destined for higher political office.

Sadly, NUK_1 we are in a societal and philosophical decaying orbit and when we all burn up in the atmosphere of reality, there will be a lot of people wondering what happened.

Robert W. Morgan's picture

He knows he's on his last term as commissioner. District voting will be underway in 2 years and the odds of him getting elected from a district that is almost exclusively Peachtree City are about equal to Eric Holder coming forward and repenting for all of his race baiting witch hunts.

He can't risk a do over with Ramsey because that would put him on the sidelines for years, so he will go after Westmorland's seat. Westmoreland might even make it easier by retiring, then Ramsey and Chance and others would run for Congress leaving their seats open or vacated. That's probably Brown's best hope - a special election for a vacated GA House or Senate seat.

And my gut tells me there will be a job opening up at the head of the water dept. sometime soon. He could do that. After all he's run a dog park and dogs are more complicated than lakes. Aren't they?

Live free or die!

Some sort of lawsuit from Brooks may wake people up. They at least should get a hefty discount, say $50 per meter per month for the 3 years they failed them.


Unless Brown has very deep personal pockets,no contest. Rep. W has big money in the District locked up.

Robert W. Morgan's picture

I think it is about $2-3million to get elected to the House of Representatives. Think that will be a problem?

Live free or die!

NUK_1's picture

He has and gets the votes. I don't think it's necessarily because of money or incumbency. He hasn't had serious opposition in a long time. He's pretty solid as a fiscal conservative and does enough to keep getting re-elected I guess. I'm not a big fan but there could be worse.

The last guy Kingsley that ran against him and posted here that our biggest threat to our oil supply is from the same continent the USA is located in and that happens to be Venezuela? HUH? Geez. Talk about not knowing geography or much else. The largest exporter of oil to the USA is, and has been for years, CANADA, a country that DOES in fact happen to be located in the same continent, unlike Venezuela. Hard to take Kingsley seriously after that remark.

MajorMike's picture

Don't be surprised to see supposed conservative Saxby Chambliss retire before the end of his term. Whoever Deal appoints to fulfill the unexpired term would then be running as the incumbent. Look closely and you'll see that Johnny Isakson, just like Chamblis, is not "walking the walk" either. Can you guys spell "we've been sold out again"?

Westmoreland is already re-posturing himself (his voting stance) to be more acceptable in a senate environment. This change is, in most part, NOT reflected on his website. reference: gun control and immigration positions.

Anyone ready for the vacancy and armed with the proper endorsement, is going to have a very good chance.

Bear in mind that Westmoreland's claim to fame (from day one) is/has been "Right to Life". That position is going to be an absolute given for anyone seeking his endorsement. It would not be hard for a current office holder and tea party supporter to fit the bill.

You might be right--I never knew about the 'Right to Life' deal--I personally spoke with w'moreland prior to his first election (at the FayCo Fair) and his big deal was the GA Lottery and how he was against it--called it a progressive tax. Gee, seems as if the Lottery has been somewhat of a boon to the state, wouldn't you say? Wonder what it would take for Zell Miller to come out of retirement--probably nothing short of a miracle! Too bad.

yearly sends those pretty little letters telling you how safe and healthy your tap water is ...
yet does not even test...

There should be discipline for these folks - they should be disciplined (fired) in public.

This is not an OOOPs, we blew it, this is continued negligence, laziness and disregard for your patrons health and safety.

abeautifulday4us's picture

Include PTC and Brooks in the mess, too. You hit the nail on the head, jackyldo----"continued negligence, laziness and disregard for your patrons health and safety."

Steve Brown is used to doing this PR nonsense. He was part of PTC, as mayor, that neglected their stormwater agency and now he is doing it at the county level. Same for County Manager Steve Rapson. He has to look the other way for the same reason.

PTC Observer's picture

I wonder if there was anything on Mr. Krakeel's hard drive that referred to the Brooks deal?

Why is Mr. Parrot still employed? Could something on Mr. Krakeel's destroyed hard drive tell us the reason.

I guess we'll never know, and we could speculate that was the whole point of Mr. Krakeel's destruction of county property. Just another example of how Mr. Krakeel's reputation was "wiped out" right along with the hard drive. Poor personal judgement that bordered on criminal neglect. What ever happened to the "investigation" into this event? It came and went pretty quietly.

I think it's still ongoing at Sam Olens office(AG). I don't really think there was a conspiracy going on. Jack, was on cruise control for a while and so was Parrott (until caught).

Speaking of the investigation, I wonder if any of our commissioners thought about this when developing the work from home policy? How are they documenting all these emails? Are they using personal emails? How are they backing things up?

Have they done anything with the computer policy, or does Rapson now have authority to authorize wipes?

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