Category Archives: Lowndes County Commission

Teleconference: Stream monitoring, trash franchises, wetlands credits, force main, quit claims, paving, and Accountability Court @ LCC 2020-04-28

Update 2020-05-10:

Update 2020-05-09: Board packet.

Update 2020-05-02: Gretchen’s notes on each agenda item.

Was this even a public meeting? The Lowndes County Commission approved everything on its agenda yesterday, even though only really perceptive citizens could figure out how to listen to the teleconference. In which they approved everything, with only one split vote, for a $45,120.00 single-source item.

[Agenda Versions]
Agenda Versions

At 2:38 PM, less than three hours before the 5:30 PM voting Lowndes County Commission Regular Session, they made this one change to the online agenda:

Old:
“The call in number is 813-769-0500 and the access code is 373-829-614#”

New:
“The call in number is 813-769-0500 and the access code is 584-852-611#”

Can you spot the change? It’s the access code.

I didn’t notice the agenda had changed, so I used the old access code. Which only started a teleconference five minutes late, and then had 18+ minutes of silence.

Gretchen did notice the agenda had changed, but there was no indication of what had changed. She carefully looked to find that different access code. It’s a good bet Gretchen was the only citizen on the conference call, because likely few other people figured that out.

But that didn’t stop the Commissioners from approving everything on the agenda.

The only split vote was for: Continue reading

Videos: Val Del rezoning, Appointments 3 Boards, Road abandonment, additions, and paving, fire dept. bids @ LCC 2020-03-09

Eighteen minutes for the whole meeting, mostly consisting of reading out the agenda sheet text for each item. The longest item was 7b. Accept Gaines Lane Quit-Claim Deeds, apparently because of a need for a title search and to prepare a plat, and who would pay for it, the county or other.

Here are the costs found in the agenda sheets for each item, most expensive first:

CostWhat
$399,414.00 Bid for a 3,000 Gallon Tanker for the Fire Department
$28,327.04 Request to Purchase New Firefighter Turnout Gear
$19,167 Solicitor-General’s Office 2020 VAWA Grant Award Activation
$4,836.00 Approval of Clyattstone Rd.-Simpson Ln. ROW Purchases
$451,744.04Total

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, with a very few comments, followed by a LAKE video playlist. See also: Continue reading

Packet: Val Del rezoning, Appointments 3 Boards, Road abandonment, additions, and paving, fire dept. bids @ LCC 2020-03-09

The board packet for the March 9 and 10 Work and Regular Sessions of the Lowndes County Commission is on the LAKE website, received 3:00 PM Tuesday, March 10, 2020, in response to a LAKE open records request. I did not have time to process it before the Regular Session 2.5 hours later.

Here are the costs found in the agenda sheets for each item, most expensive first:

CostWhat
$399,414.00 Bid for a 3,000 Gallon Tanker for the Fire Department d
$28,327.04 Request to Purchase New Firefighter Turnout Gear d
$19,167 Solicitor-General’s Office 2020 VAWA Grant Award Activation d
$4,836.00 Approval of Clyattstone Rd.-Simpson Ln. ROW Purchases d
$0 Abandonment of Unopened Right of Way – Hart Road d
$451,744.04Total

[Zoning Location Map]
Zoning Location Map
PDF

Of course, all those dollar figures are immediate costs. They do not include future costs such as road paving related to new subdivisions.

See also the LAKE videos of the preceding Planning Commission meeting. That GLPC meeting’s item 3. REZ-2020-03 Wetherington Property, Val Del Road RA to PD, re-appears on this Lowndes County Commission agenda as 6.b. REZ-2020-03 Wetherington Property, Val Del Rd. R-A to P-D, County Water and Sewer, ~72.54 acres Districts 2 and 5.

And see also Continue reading

Videos: Oak St. Pregnancy Clinic, Val Del Wetherington, Baytree Nijem @ GLPC 2020-02-24

The longest time, almost 16 minutes, was for Pregnancy Support Clinic of Valdosta at 2203 N. Oak St., followed at 14 minutes by REZ-2020-03 Wetherington Property, Val Del Road RA to PD, with 12 minutes for the Jon Nijem rezoning and Planned Development at 406 & 410 Baytree Road, in a relatively short February meeting of the Greater Lowndes Planning Commission.

VA-2020-05 Pregnancy Support Clinic

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, with a few notes. See also Continue reading

Videos: Hamm Estates roads, Deannexation, Rezonings, Right of Way, Software, Health Insurance, Repairs, KLVB @ LCC 2020-02-25

The longest regular item at 4 minutes on this voting Regular Session agenda was 6.b. Accept Hamm Estates Dr. into the County Road Inventory. Longer were two Citizens who spoke at the end about Keep Lowndes-Valdosta Beautiful (KLVB).

Hamm Estates

Here again are the costs found in the agenda sheets for the items, from most expensive down, with links back into the agenda.

CostWhat
$290,000.00 2020 Administrative Services Agreement with Allied Benefit Systems, Inc.
$50,433.00 Bid for Repairs to Knights Academy Road; emergency repairs for Culvert Aprons
$43,245.50 Approval of Clyattstone Rd.-Simpson Ln. ROW Purchases
$24,613.44 Microsoft Server 2019 Data Center License
$11,535.00 Approval of Clyattstone Rd.-Simpson Ln. ROW Acquisition
$419,826.94Total

The actual cost for the Clyattstone Road-Simpson Lane project is larger; more like $77,696.50 so far, before grading, base, and paving; see the LAKE notes on the preceding morning’s Work Session.

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, with a few notes. See also Continue reading

Videos: Deannexation, Rezonings, Right of Way, Software, Health Insurance, Road Repairs @ LCC 2020-02-24

The longest item of those I videoed (yes, I was late to this Work Session) was 6.f. Deannexation of Ganas Property by Lake Park, which apparently doesn’t cost the county anything. Directly, at least. Maybe even net positive, due to property taxes.

Deannexation

Here are the costs found in the agenda sheets for the items, from most expensive down, with links back into the agenda.

CostWhat
$290,000.00 2020 Administrative Services Agreement with Allied Benefit Systems, Inc.
$50,433.00 Bid for Repairs to Knights Academy Road; emergency repairs for Culvert Aprons
$43,245.50 Approval of Clyattstone Rd.-Simpson Ln. ROW Purchases
$24,613.44 Microsoft Server 2019 Data Center License
$11,535.00 Approval of Clyattstone Rd.-Simpson Ln. ROW Acquisition
$419,826.94Total

The actual cost for one item is larger; see below for Clyattstone Road and Simpson Lane ROW Purchases.

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, with a few notes. See also Continue reading

Trash franchises, Stream monitoring, wetlands credits, force main, quit claims, paving, and Accountability Court @ LCC 2020-04-28

Bids or negotiations for everything except the Professional Services for Sampling, Monitoring, and Reporting of Impaired Streams, which is on the agenda for Tuesday as a single proposal from an engineering firm. The agenda sheets are on the LAKE website. We do not yet have the full agenda packet.

This April 28, 2020, Regular Session of the Lowndes County Commission will be held by teleconference. There will be Citizens Wishing to Be Heard, but as usual that will be after the Commissioners vote. This is the only County Commission of the many counties I’ve been to in two states that does not let citizens speak either at the beginning of the session or on each agenda item as it comes up.

Citizens wishing to be heard should email County Clerk, Paige Dukes at pdukes@lowndescounty.com or call 229-292-6142 during normal business hours to register to speak. Please register prior to 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 28th. Thank you.

Notice no Work Session is listed on the agenda, and a Commissioner tells me there will be no Work Session, which is marked in the county calendar as Cancelled.

[Map: Coleman Road, VALORGIS]
Map: Coleman Road, VALORGIS

These are the costs of the agenda items, sorted most expensive first:

Continue reading
CostWhat
$6,545,729.00 5.h. Coleman Road Force Main Replacement
$228,400.95 6.a. LMIG Resurfacing Contract
$48,079.00 5.f. Approval of Clyattstone Road-Simpson Lane ROW Purchases
$45,120.00 5.c. Professional Services for Sampling, Monitoring and Reporting of Impaired Streams
$26,246.11 5.i. Lowndes County Accountability Court Grant Approval and Cash Match
$20,000.00 5.e. Purchase of Wetland Credits for Clyattstone Road – Simpson Lane Paving Project

Notes: Special Called Meeting @ LCC 2020-04-16

Twelve minutes for their first-ever dial-in Lowndes County Commission meeting.

That’s longer than many of their in-person meetings, maybe because the Chairman had the Clerk call roll for the Commissioners for each vote. Both votes were unanimous with no discussion. Nobody explained why these items were important enough for a Special Called Meeting.

[Only two items]
Only two items

Before the meeting, in the room they had already Continue reading

Dialin to Special Called Meeting, Lowndes County Commission 2020-04-16 @ LCC 2020-04-16

Update 2020-04-16: LAKE Notes taken during the conference call.

Something good out of a pandemic: the first-ever telephone listen-in for a Lowndes County Commission meeting.

[With dialin instructions]
With dialin instructions

I assume listen-in because there is no Citizens To Be Heard on the agenda. While Madison County, Florida, BOCC, weeks ago had a participatory conference call meeting, I can’t imagine Lowndes County Commission doing that.

The only agenda items are how to spend the Hotel/Motel Tax (assuming there is any) for Tourism, and paying for right of way (ROW) for one parcel so TSPLOST paving of Clyattstone Road and Simpson Lane can continue. I don’t know why that one paving project is so important.

Special Called Meeting
April 16, 2020, 9:30 AM
@ In an effort to respect social distancing, a conference call line has been set up for this meeting. The call in number 813-769-0500 and the access code is 373-829-614#

There are only two items being addressed due to them needing immediate attention.

More Details

That “More Details” link goes to a page that has exactly the same information.

Agenda

However, unlike most Special Called Meetings, for this one they did post an agenda. We don’t know whether they will video the meeting. That would be good, since LAKE can’t go into the building to do that. See also Continue reading

Val Del rezoning, Appointments 3 Boards, Road abandonment, additions, and paving, fire dept. bids @ LCC 2020-03-09

The Val Del Road rezoning for a subdivision on the Wetherington Property near Nelson Hill is on the agenda for this morning’s Lowndes County Commission Work Session, to be voted on Tuesday evening at the Regular Session.

Probably not coincidentally, Right of way purchase for Clyattstone Road is also on the agenda.

[Wetherington watershed]
Lowndes County Property Appraiser, Wetherington watershed

The Bids for Fire Department equipment previously tabled and discussed at length in the recent all-day planning sessions are back on the agenda.

Frank Morman doesn’t want to be reappointed to the Continue reading