Richland Creek Reservoir
The Richland Creek Reservoir (RCR) is part of the Richland Creek Water Supply Program. It is a new 305-acre reservoir that once completed, will store up to three billion gallons of drinking water to supply to existing and future populations in Paulding County. Located on approximately 700 acres of County-owned land in northern Paulding County, plans include development of a reservoir, a raw water intake and pump station, a raw water pipeline, a new water treatment plant, and distribution system improvements. The RCR will be on Richland Creek, but will be filled with water from the Etowah River.
Paulding County residents currently purchase needed water from the Cobb County Marietta Water Authority (CCMWA). The RCR would create an independent drinking water supply for Paulding County, making it unnecessary to rely on CCMWA as the sole water provider. The financial analysis Paulding County had prepared to identify the most fiscally responsible approach to developing the RCR indicates that water rates for customers will increase slightly over time to support maintenance of the new reservoir, intake, water treatment plant and distribution lines. However, once established, these rates would be in place for a long time and customers would not be subjected to rate fluctuations that could be imposed by CCMWA.
Funding for the development of the RCR and associated infrastructure will be obtained through a combination of low interest loans provided by the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA) and utility bonds. Application has also been sent to GEFA for consideration of funding through the State Direct Investment, (SDI), program. The RCR is one of four new reservoir projects being funded by GEFA’s Governor’s Water Supply Program (GWSP). Although GEFA has provided funding, the state will not have control over project development, implementation, or operation. Kevin Clark, Director of GEFA commented, “These… projects are the best, most strategic investments the state can make at this time to secure water supply in the right places and to tackle some of Georgia’s most significant water supply challenges.”