Apparently Valdosta city employees can’t get wet. That includes the Stormwater Division.
So if you see any Valdosta City employee in a creek, river, pond, or swamp, whether in a boat or in mud boots, it seems they must be off the clock.
This could explain why Valdosta has a contractor clean out stormwater pond facility clusters.
In Valdosta’s GEORGIA INTERLOCAL RISK MANAGEMENT AGENCY COMBINED AUTOMOBILE, CRIME, LIABILITY AND PROPERTY COVERAGES MEMBER COVERAGE AGREEMENT, see especially under GENERAL EXCLUSIONS APPLICABLE TO THE PROPERTY COVERAGE SECTIONS on page 7:
M. any flood, surface water, waves, tides, tidal waves, overflow of any body of water or their spray, all whether driven by wind or not (including storm surge and tsunami); mudslide or mudflow; waterbome material carried or otherwise moved by any of the foregoing or material carried or moved by mudslide or mudflow; water that backs up from a sewer or drain; or water under the ground surface pressing on, or flowing or seeping through: (a) foundations, walls, floors or paved surfaces, (b) basements, whether paved or not, or (c) doors, windows or other openings except to the extent of coverage provided for “Flood” as defined in Property Coverage Section II. D. (p18) under Property Coverage Section I. E.1.a. (p18) of this Coverage Agreement; however, if loss or damage by fire, explosion or sprinkler leakage results, GIRMA agrees to pay for that resulting loss or damage; this exclusion applies regardless of whether any excluded peril is caused by an act or nature or is otherwise caused—for example, due to the whole or partial failure of a dam, levee, seawall or other boundary or containment system.
The policy document is dated May 1, 2021, but I confirmed this year that the same policy is still in effect.
I cannot explain why any city that has to deal with stormwater and wastewater would sign such an insurance agreement.
So apparently when the Mayor and City Manager paddled on the Mayor and Chairman’s Paddle on the Withlacoochee River, they were not on the clock and not covered by the City of Valdosta’s liability insurance.
Fortunately, they were covered by the liability insurance WWALS carries, which applies to anyone who signs the insurance waiver before a WWALS outing.
Ditto on the Two Mile Branch Cleanup.
The entire policy, received in response to a WWALS open records request, is on the WWALS website.
Some people will recognize who signed the policy on behalf of GIRMA:
That’s right, former Valdosta City Manager Larry Hanson, as Secretary/Treasurer of the Georgia Interlocal Risk Management Agency (GIRMA). One of many friends Valdosta has in high places.
-jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®