Ga water negotiator’s role may be seen as conflict

ATLANTA (AP) — One of
Georgia's negotiators in a tri-state water dispute is president of a
lobbying firm that has sought to develop a technology touted as a
partial solution to that feud.

A top state official and others say the situation could look like a conflict even though it is legal.

Allen
Barnes previously led Georgia's Environmental Protection Division. He
is now president and CEO of Joe Tanner and Associates. That lobbying
firm gets paid $5,000 a month for Barnes' work as a negotiator in a
water conflict with Alabama and Florida.

Until last week, the firm
was going to be hired in a project testing technology to store water
underground. Project supporters say it could help ease the tri-state
conflict.

Barnes says his roles do not constitute a conflict.