Water plant contract with ESG amended

Published 9:58 am Thursday, June 9, 2016

ESG Operations, the Georgia-based company presently operating the city’s Water Treatment Plant on Haining Road, will remain on the job while city and company officials negotiate a contract to manage and operate the water plant for 10 years.

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen Monday amended the company’s contract to have it run the plant on a month-to-month basis at a charge of $6,500 per month — the same fee the city is currently paying — until a long-term agreement is reached.

City Attorney Nancy Thomas requested amending the current contract with ESG “so we can keep the water operator up there and he can assist us in developing long-term plans for renovations and some other immediate things that need to be done up there, and just allow him to continue what he’s been doing.”

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The board hired ESG in 2015 on a temporary basis to operate the plant after then-water plant director Pat McGuffie resigned to go work for the Culkin Water District, leaving the city without a certified water plant operator.

When the city this year advertised for bids for a company take over plant management and operations, ESG was one of three submitting proposals.

Other proposals were submitted by Veolia Water North America, a subsidiary of Veolia, an international environmental company based in France with offices in several cities in the U.S., and Severn Trent, another international company based in Coventry, England, with an office in Houston, Texas.

The board selected ESG because of the work its employees were doing at the plant and authorized Thompson to begin negotiations.

In a related matter, the board authorized Mayor George Flaggs Jr. to sign a contract with Fordice Construction Co. to modernize the water plant’s elevator.

The 47-year-old elevator has been condemned by the State of Mississippi, and has been shut down by the city since August, when a short in the elevator’s system knocked out power to the water treatment plant, forcing city officials to declare a boil water notice.


About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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