A partnership between Fort Gordon and Columbia County will result in saving taxpayers big money while bringing improvements to Fort Gordon’s roadways, according to government officials.
Fort Gordon Garrison Commander Col. Shaw Pick and Chairman Doug Duncan, of the Columbia County Board of Commissioners, signed an Intergovernmental Support Agreement, or IGSA, on Oct. 20. The agreement was voted on and unanimously approved by the Columbia County Board of Commissioners in a meeting on Oct. 5.
IGSAs are fairly common between military installations and surrounding communities, but this is the first between Fort Gordon and Columbia County that will help with procurement of road services for Fort Gordon.
“It’s hugely important in that it meets a requirement on the base we would’ve had to fund through other means, but it leverages capability that exists in Columbia County to meet a federal requirement on the installation, and so thankfully there’s a mechanism for that – called the Intergovernmental Support Agreement – where we’re going to bring the Columbia County capability on the base to handle our road and infrastructure improvements,” Pick explained.
“We have a full department, so we’re actually able to save the taxpayers significant money by helping Fort Gordon purchase the roadwork that they need,” Duncan added.
Based on analyses conducted on Fort Gordon, Pick said they expect to spend an estimated $1.5 million annually over the course of the 10-year agreement, at a savings of between 30-40 percent. That amount could change as time passes.
“If we have a surge in requirements … that may result in some increased requirements, which is increased savings, so it’s a good deal all around,” Pick said.
As with any city, road construction/repairs are nothing new to Fort Gordon. The question has always been, “How much value can we get for every taxpayer dollar to meet that requirement?” Pick said, “That’s the great news story about this – we’re leveraging local capability to partner with the base and save everybody money.”
Cassidy Harris, Columbia County Public Relations manager, said discussions over the IGSA began about three years ago before coming to fruition.
“It’s been a lot of hard work behind the scenes, a lot of meetings taking place,” Harris said.
“Nobody loses on this one,” Pick said following the signing. “That’s why we’re so excited about it.”