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Kudos for county honors
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Forsyth County News
Sometimes it is easy to become so focused on the shortcomings of governmental entities, that it’s hard to recognize the accomplishments. This is particularly true in tough economic times, when the collection and expenditure of every tax dollar gives pause for question and concern.

But twice in recent weeks efforts by divisions within the Forsyth County government have garnered special recognition at the state and national level.

The county’s Sawnee Mountain Preserve project, which includes the protection from development of more than 900 acres on the historic mountain, won a top prize in a competition sponsored by the Association County Commissioners of Georgia and Georgia Trend Magazine.

The ongoing development of passive parks and natural areas in the preserve includes hiking trails, a visitor center, amphitheater, tree house and canopy walk. The county has plans to spend more than $3 million o expand the preservation effort at the mountain.

Phase 1 of the preserve opened in 2005, with Phase 2 opening last year. It previously had been recognized for excellence by the Georgia Urban Forestry Council.

An independent panel of judges selected the preservation effort as one of the state’s best, which county park’s director Jerry Kinsey described as “as honor.”

The county’s water and sewer department also was honored recently with recognition at the national level for its operation of a wastewater treatment facility.

The Manor Water Reclamation Facility was one of only 24 in the nation to receive the 2008 Regional Clean Water Act Recognition Award presented by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

The treatment facility was recognized for its 100 percent record of permit compliance, in addition to its automation, proactive maintenance and environmental commitment. The county contracts with Jordan, Jones & Goulding, a privately owned company for maintenance and operation of the Manor facility.

Tim Perkins, head of the county’s water department, praised the company for its operation of the plant, adding that the county “takes a tremendous amount of pride in providing safe and reliable water and sewer services.”