Category Archives: Transparency

Videos: Finance, WM absorbed ADS, Meetings by zoom, Valdosta assistant manager @ DSSWA 2020-11-18

The most interesting parts were not on the agenda at the DSSWA meeting Wednesday evening.

[Richard Hardy, Elizabeth Backe, Steve Edwards, DSSWA]
Richard Hardy, Elizabeth Backe, Steve Edwards, DSSWA

Steve Edwards explained that the WM acquisition of Advanced Disposal Services (ADS) Continue reading

Waste Management bought ADS, finances, officers, DSSWA 2020-11-18

The Deep South Solid Waste Authority (DSSWA) disburses grant money from landfill tipping fees to participating local governments.

This meeting will be in the new Southern Georgia Regional Commission (SGRC) office, 1937 Carlton Adams Dr., across from the Lowndes Board of Education and next to the Goo Goo Car Wash.

[Agenda and WM acquisition schedule for ADS]
Agenda and WM acquisition schedule for ADS

I’m of a mind to zoom the meeting.

Here is the agenda. The entire board packet is on the LAKE website, thanks to Elizabeth Backe of SGRC.

DEEP SOUTH
REGIONAL MUNICIPAL SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT AUTHORITY

Meeting of the Board of Directors
Deep South Regional Municipal Solid Waste Management Authority

November 18, 2020
6:00 PM
Southern Georgia Regional Commission
Valdosta, Georgia

AGENDA

  1. Welcome and Introduction
  2. Minutes of July 15, 2020 Meeting e Draft attached for review and motion
  3. Financial Report Jan-September 2020
  4. Financial Audit Engagement Letter
  5. Royalty Disbursement for Period of Jan 1 — June 30, 2020
  6. Grinding Reimbursement Request — City of Valdosta
  7. New application format for future grinding reimbursement requests
  8. Appointment of Nominating Committee for Election of Officers in January 2021
  9. Other Business e Waste Management letter for review and discussion
  10. Adjourn
    Next regular scheduled meeting will be on January 20, 2021 at 6 p.m.

Phone: (229) 333-5277
Fax: (229) 333-5312
1937 Carlton Adams Drive
Valdosta, Georgia 31601

-jsq

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!

2 Appointments, 3 rezonings, MIDS Bus, WM buying ADS, Debris Removal @ LCC @ LCC 2011-05-09

Waste Management has bought Advanced Disposal Services.

Lowndes County, Georgia, is buying up three Lee Street lots north of the County Palace, adding to the county’s holdings between Ashley and Lee Streets south of Webster Street in Valdosta. They will discuss 8:30 AM Monday and vote 5:30 PM Tuesday.

[3 Lots Map and Agenda Item]
3 Lots Map and Agenda Item

Clint Joyner wants his new roads in Knights Landing Subdivision off of Knights Academy Road to be called Countess Court, Bishop Court, Duke Court, and Duchess Court.

Commissioner Joyce Evans and Michael Smith want to be reappointed to the Valdosta Lowndes County Conference Center and Tourism Authority. J.D. Rice wants to be appointed to a vacant seat on the Lowndes County Public Facilities Authority.

Here is the agenda. The entire board packet is on the LAKE website, as a result of a LAKE Open Records request.

LOWNDES COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
PROPOSED AGENDA
WORK SESSION, MONDAY, NOVEMBER 9, 2020, 8:30 a.m.
REGULAR SESSION, TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 2020, 5:30 p.m.
327 N. Ashley Street – 2nd Floor

Continue reading

Videos: budget and wood pellet plant at Adel City Council 2020-09-21

The wood pellet plant annexation had one vote against, and two against the rezoning.


[Reporters, Council, Opposition, Agenda]
Reporters, Council, Opposition, Agenda

The budget, millage, and alcohol license passed unanimously.

There was little discussion and no public input. There was a Public Hearing two weeks before.

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, with a very few notes, and a few more pictures. Continue reading

Budget and wood pellet farm –Adel City Council 2020-09-08

Adel staff answered extensive questions about the budget, in the Adel City Council meeting, Tuesday, August 8, 2020. The proposed wood pellet plant for export to Europe was criticised by several local citizens, and defended by members of local authorities and commissions, as well as its CEO, speaking from Houston, Texas, on a laptop screen.

Budget & Wood Pellet Plant @ Adel City Council 2020-09-08

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

Update: rezonings w. Tiger Creek, whose communications tower? @ LCC 2020-09-08

Here are the answers to these questions from Saturday:

  1. Why is the owner of the planned 300-foot communications tower off US 84 a secret?
  2. Why does the agenda sheet for REZ-2020-11 Bella Mill Plantation, 8450 Ousley Rd., next to Tiger Creek and a short distance upstream from the Withlacoochee River, make no mention of sewage or the size of the septic system relative to the number of expected attendees at the planned event facility?

[Proposed interior sketch]
Proposed interior sketch

  1. TWR 2020-02 is by Diamond Communications and AT&T.
  2. REZ-2020-11: the Department of Public Health determines septic system sizes. That Department won’t issue a septic system permit until they are satisfied.

These answers came from JD Dillard, Lowndes County Planning and Zoning Director. I called him yesterday before the Regular Session Tuesday, and he called back with the answers.

How does the Department of Health determine septic system sizes? Partly by Continue reading

Reappointment to GLPC, three rezonings w. Tiger Creek, whose communications tower? @ LCC 2020-09-07

Update 2020-09-09: Update: rezonings w. Tiger Creek, whose communications tower? @ LCC 2020-09-08

Why is the owner of the planned 300-foot communications tower off US 84 a secret? The Lowndes County Commission will deliberate on that rezoning and three more Monday morning at 8:30 AM and vote on it Tuesday at 5:30 PM, after these rezonings were heard Monday at the Planning Commission.

Why does the agenda sheet for REZ-2020-11 Bella Mill Plantation, 8450 Ousley Rd., next to Tiger Creek and a short distance upstream from the Withlacoochee River, make no mention of sewage or the size of the septic system relative to the number of expected attendees at the planned event facility? Why is there no mention of any speakers against this rezoning, even though there was at least one at the Planning Commission?

[Conceptual Plan]
Conceptual Plan
PDF

In addition to two other rezonings, the County Commission will most likely reappoint Tommy Willis to the Planning Commission.

Here is the agenda. The entire board packet for Monday and Tuesday is on the LAKE website, along with the minutes for the previous meetings two weeks ago, in response to a LAKE open records request. Thanks to new County Clerk Belinda Lovern and Sabrina Denson for speedy responses to such requests.

LOWNDES COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
PROPOSED AGENDA
WORK SESSION, TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 2020, 8:30 a.m.
REGULAR SESSION, TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 2020, 5:30 p.m.
327 N. Ashley Street – 2nd Floor

  1. Call to Order Continue reading

Education, Extension, Prisoners, Fire, Water, Sewer, Nelson Hill, Wages, Taxes, Clerk @ LCC 2020-08-24

A busy agenda for 8:30 AM Monday morning, with voting 5:30 PM Tuesday, includes especially taxes, and alcohol, sewer, twice, education, extension agents, Prison Work Details, and Architectural Services for Lowndes County Fire Station #5 – Bemiss Road Fire Station Alterations and Additions.

[Aerial Map]
Aerial Map for Uncle Carlo’s Italian Ristorante, 1024 Lakes Blvd., Lake Park, GA.

Plus appointment of a new County Clerk, Belinda Lovern, and Deputy Clerk, Sabrina Denson. No posting of the positions is mentioned.

Cost What
$147,954.00Annual Contract Renewal, Georgia Department of Corrections – Prison Work Details
$141,841.00Contract for Extension Agents and Staff
$110,000.00Peterson Road Lift Station Emergency Repair
$44,400.00Architectural Services for Lowndes County Fire Station #5 – Bemiss Road Fire Station Alterations and Additions
$41,840.00Nelson Hill Discharge Manhole
$5,699.35Tax Commissioners’ Back Wage Settlement with Department of Labor
$-32,000.00USDA Building Lease Amendment No. 4
$459,734.35Total

The Lowndes County Commission is Repealing Approvals Authorizing the Tax Commissioner to Waive Penalties and Interest, apparently because of a Tax Commissioners' Back Wage Settlement with Department of Labor.

After last year’s vote of the people to ask the Georgia legislature to make the Tax Assessors appointed, not elected, the legislature did that. Now the County Commission is setting the number of Assessors at three, with initial staggered terms of 3, 4, and 5 years, and after that 3 years for each.

This is after two weeks ago the Lowndes County Commission rolled back the tax millage rate slightly.

Here is the agenda. The entire board packet, together with the Minutes of the meetings of two weeks ago (Work Session, Millage Hearing, and Regular Session) is on LAKE website.

LOWNDES COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
PROPOSED AGENDA
WORK SESSION, MONDAY, AUGUST 24, 2020, 8:30 a.m.
REGULAR SESSION, TUESDAY, AUGUST 25, 2020, 5:30 p.m.
327 N. Ashley Street – 2nd Floor

Continue reading

Videos: Maybe revisit lowering millage rate @ LCC 2020-08-10

There was pushback on lowering the millage rate at the Lowndes County Commission Work Session yesterday morning. They will decide this evening at 5:30 PM at the Regular Session.

The Commissioners, like some of the public, also wanted to know when there will be a new County Clerk. Answer, from the former County Clerk, Paige Dukes, who is now the County Manager: not yet; maybe next meeting (two weeks from now).

The $0.9 million low bid from Reames for road paving and a box culvert got no discussion from Commissioners.

The Scruggs Company was offered a special exception to the Comprehensive Plan; one that actually makes sense.

Yes, the Copeland property backs up to PCA.

The Verizon tower got no questions from Commissioners.

Below are links to each LAKE video with a few notes, followed by a LAKE video playlist. See also the agenda and board packet, and the millage rate hearing at 5PM today (Tuesday).

Millage Rate Meeting @ LCC Millage 2020-08-11

The board packet for the Tuesday Lowndes County Commission Regular Session says, on page 65, which is the agenda sheet for agenda item 6.a. Adoption of Millage Rate:

HISTORY, FACTS AND ISSUES: The Board of Commissioners is required to set the county-wide millage rate for 2020. A public hearing was held prior to this adoption as required. The county-wide millage should be set at 10.851 mills with the County receiving 8.601 mills, the Industrial Authority receiving 1.00 mill and the Parks and Recreation Authority receiving 1.25 mills. This represents a reduction of 0.087 mills.

I wondered: when was this public hearing?

[10.851 mills, 8.601 County, 1.00 VLDA, 1.25 VLPRA. reduction of 0.087 mills.]
10.851 mills, 8.601 County, 1.00 VLDA, 1.25 VLPRA. reduction of 0.087 mills.

According to the county’s online calendar, it hasn’t hapened yet, because it’s 5:00 PM that same Tuesday.

So if you’re going to the Regular Session, might as well show up half an hour earlier for the Millage Rate Meeting. Chances are, you’ll be the only member of the public there.

-jsq

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!