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Officials may have reached service delivery agreement

LAWRENCEVILLE - After more than 20 hours of court-appointed mediation, city and county officials may have hashed out an agreement on the delivery of services to 800,000 citizens.

Suwanee Mayor Dave Williams declined to outline the discussions but said county leaders have been tasked with presenting a proposed solution in writing.

The governments began meeting Wednesday, after a state-mandated service delivery strategy expired at the end of February and ended up in court.

"Even though the formal part of the mediation has concluded, the work is continuing," he said after leaders broke from a seven hour session behind closed doors Friday. "It's hard for me to predict how much resolution we have until something is put on the page."

Williams said the discussions on Friday focused on transportation, and representatives from all 15 of Gwinnett's municipalities were on hand.

During negotiations for the past two years, leaders also disagreed on police services, with city officials saying their citizens should not pay the county taxes for services delivered by the city.

Chairman Charles Bannister also declined to give specifics on the discussions this week.

"We've made a lot of progress," he said. "We won't know until we get some initials on paperwork."

If officials do not accept the agreement, mediation is scheduled to resume in mid-May.