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Mayor updates Rotarians on city affairs
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Cumming Mayor H. Ford Gravitt was the guest speaker at Tuesday's meeting of the Lanier-Forsyth Rotary Club. - photo by Jennifer Sami

Cumming's mayor told Rotarians on Tuesday that residents are in "good hands" with the city when it comes to water and wastewater.

"We're taking means and looking at the long-range plan to take care of the water situation," H. Ford Gravitt said. "As long as Lake Lanier's going to have water, we're going to have water for Cumming and Forsyth County."

As the guest speaker at the Lanier-Forsyth Rotary Club, Gravitt offered an overview of the city's activities the past few years.

In addition to its $30 million wastewater treatment plant expansion, completed earlier this year, and a $15 million water intake facility that is under construction, Gravitt was also proud of recent improvements to the third floor of City Hall.

As of Sunday, that area became home to the North Georgia College & State University Mike Cottrell School of Business' master's of business administration program.

"This MBA is just a stepping block for what we're going to have," he said.

A college was something the community sought during the strategic planning program Envision 2030.

Being a public servant, Gravitt said, is like being a parent.

"You have kids and you want to put everything in front of them ... and you feel like if you don't do that, you've failed as a parent," he said.

"As a public servant, we feel like if we don't give our community access to everything we talked about in this Envision 2030 and beyond, I've failed as a public official and public servant."

The mayor also talked about some of the disagreements between the city and county, including distribution of the recent 1-cent sales tax extension.

Though the city does not assess special property taxes, Gravitt said the city is debt free and has been able to fund its big projects through reserves.