They vote 5:30 PM this evening on what they discussed this morning. Longest at two minutes was 5 g. Abandonment of McLeod Road, followed by 5 i. Speed Zone Ordinance (apparently something was not right at exit 2), and then at just under a minute: 6 a. Paving on Parker Road and Simpson Road. Will Scruggs or Reames get the $2 million-plus contract for paving? (Hint: Reames is the low bidder.)
Oops, sorry: the unscripted 7. Reports – County Manager actually came in second at 1 minute and 44 seconds.
Finally, after 9. Adjournment, there was a reminder of some mystery swearing in at 5PM.
Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, followed by a LAKE video playlist. See also the previous post with the agenda and some questions about Simpson Road. And see last month’s approval of paying for right of way on Simpson Road.
- 1. Call to Order 4. Minutes for Approval
- 5 a. Special Assessment Rate for 2019
- 5b. Beer License – Race Way #1177 – 1177 Lakes Blvd.
- 5c. Beer License – Eagle Food Mart – 4357 Bemiss Rd.
- 5d. Beer and Wine License – JP Foods #2 – 3663 New Statenville Hwy.
- 5 e. Wine License – Triangle Foods – 4946 US Hwy 41 S.
5f. FY 2018 Performance Partnership Agreement and EMPG Application
Video. The county “currently receives $32,770 annually” as part of an agreement with the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) for “FY2018 EMPG funding, and reporting and other requirements”. Maybe the county could use some of that funding to organize testing water wells for the firefighting chemicals (PFAS) spilled by Moody AFB.
5 g. Abandonment of McLeod Road
County Engineer Mike Fletcher said it’s a horseshoe loop with minimal traffice, and the property owners of all the adjoining property (two parcels) asked for it to be closed, mostly because of illegal dumping. They each have other access to paved roads.
How can that be? Back in January 2013 when the county decided to close its trash collection centers and to replace them with privatized curbside pickup, County Clerk Paige Dukes told us in the Valdosta Daily Times that there would be no increased littering. In February the VDT reported County patrols for garbage dumping. In October 2013, Dukes said in the VDT that “illegally dumped trash has been on the decline”. So according to the county, this illegal dumping problem was solved five years ago. Nevermind what anybody can see for themselves alongside most any rural county road.
Commissioner Demarcus Marshal wanted to know how the county knew. The Engineer said the landowners sent in a petition. This turned out to be a letter from Danny McCleod and Michael Hurst, the landowners.
- 5 h. Adopt Resolution accepting infrastructure for Livingston Subdivision II
5 i. Speed Zone Ordinance
Video. They say they’re changing speed limits on Lake Park Bellville Road, but they don’t say if they’re changing speed limits on any other roads, and, as usual, they didn’t publish the list, so you don’t know whether they’re changing the speed limit on your road.
The County Engineer said the speed limit on Lake Park Bellville Road was 55 MPH crossing I-75. It had been signed at 45 and then 35, but it had never been officially changed on the speed zone ordinance.
Commissioner Mark Wisenbaker asked what, then, would the speed limit be? Answer: 55, then 45, then 35.
- 5 j. 2019 Public Defender Contracts
- 5 k. Solicitor-General’s VAWA Grant Award Activation
5 l. Highway 84 Water Main Underground Boring Agreement
Video. The county wants to spend $73,000 to “jack and bore under Highway 84 west at James Road to extend the water main” to reach three property owners on the south side of US 84. “After discussions with the three owners and the Utilities Department, an agreement was drawn up to split the cost evenly between the four parties.” The three property owners are never named, nor does the county say how far south of Highway 84. Immediately south there are three about 1.5 acre lots. A bit farther across the railroad tracks there are much bigger parcels owned by Loch-Winn Farms, Langdale Capital Assets, and Griffin LLC.
6 a. Paving on Parker Road and Simpson Road
Video. The County Engineer bragged about how good the two bids are. Commissioner Mark Wisenbaker wanted to know if the bids including surveying. Answer: surveying and engineering has already been done. There was no explanation of why the county was willing to pay for right of way on this road but no other for the past decade.
7. Reports – County Manager –
Video. Emergency Management Services Director Danny Weeks asked to add an item to the agenda to modify some wording in a previously approved contract to clarify the other company’s name.
Video. After adjournment Chairman Bill Slaughter can be heard reminding Commissioners of some swearing in at 5 o’clock.
Here’s a LAKE video playlist:
Videos: Mystery Simpson Road paving, taxes, alcohol, emergency, roads, and law
Work Session, Lowndes County Commission (LCC),
Video by Gretchen Quarterman for Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange (LAKE),
Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia, January 22, 2019.
Investigative reporting costs money, for open records requests, copying, web hosting, gasoline, and cameras, and with sufficient funds we can pay students to do further research. You can donate to LAKE today!