Fairburn, Tyrone in Atlanta, GA await wastewater plant decision

Officials in the small Southside cities of Fairburn and Tyrone are hoping regional and state officials will allow construction of a wastewater treatment plant between the two cities. The plant would be built on about 300 acres on the border of Fayette and Fulton counties and treat about 1 million gallons of sewage per day. The city of Fairburn, which would operate the facility, is asking state officials and the Atlanta Regional Commission to sign off on its plans. If approved, the plant could open in 2004. Fairburn's wastewater is treated by Fulton County, but city officials have feuded in the past over the cost. Having their own plant would make them sellers of treatment capacity, rather than buyers. The proposal is running into some local opposition. Some people who live in the Line Creek area use wells and are concerned about possible contamination. The state Environmental Protection Division is evaluating the plan, and the ARC could make its recommendation this fall. The ARC has only reviewed a handful of plans by local governments for wastewater treatment plants, and this is the first one that proposes to spray treated waste over land.