Category Archives: Transportation

COVID-19, Ballyntyne Subdivision, County expenses for Hightower Road, Sewer, Moody AFB, Fire Pumper @ LCC 2021-01-11

The agenda sheet for rezoning REZ-2020-20 Ballyntyne (back again from last month) claims no budget impact, but that ignores the many thousands of county tax dollars already spent on Clyattstone Road, as well as followup maintenance of roads, sewer, and water, not to mention School Board expenses for sending buses, as well as Fire Department and Sheriff Department expenses whenever called.

[WRPDO Site Map]
WRPDO Site Map

This is what I’ve found the Lowndes County Commission has already spent on Clyattstone Road, and I may have missed some.

Cost What When
$1,681,770.84Grading, Drainage, Base, and Paving of Clyattstone Road and Simpson Lane. 2020-09-21
$1,417,333.98Clyattstone Water Main Extension 2020-09-21
$43,245.50 The stated ROW cost in the agenda 2020-02-24
$23,590.50 Approval of Clyattstone Rd.-Simpson Ln. ROW and Easement Purchases (Parcels 26 and 34) 2020-07-14
$20,000.00 For wetland credits acquisition 2020-04-28.
$11,535.00 and the other stated ROW cost in the agenda
$2,916.00 Up to that amount for an acre of drainage for Simpson Lane 2020-04-16.
$1,085.00 Approve Purchasing ROW and Drainage Easement for Clyattstone Rd.-Simpson Ln. TSPLOST Paving Project 2020-05-27
$3,201,476.82 County tax dollars so far spent on Clyattstone Road

So that’s more than $3 million tax dollars the county has already spent subsidizing subdivision developers on Clyattstone Road, before getting into maintenance and later School Board and Fire and Sheriff Department expenses. Remember that when somebody says public transportation has to be subsidized.

Here are the expenses acknowledged in agenda sheets for this coming week’s Commission meetings:

Cost What
$351,115.00Bid for a Pumper for the Fire Department
$315,557.58Approval of Railroad Agreement for Hightower Road Project
$96,556.75Low Pressure Sewer Force Main Upgrade on Old Bemiss and Bemiss Knights Academy Road
$28,000.75Approval of Hightower Road and Cooper Road NE, Right of Way Purchases
$2,500.00Moody Water Treatment Plant Emergency Repair
$793,730.08Total

The board packet, received in response to a LAKE open records request, is on the LAKE website:
http://www.l-a-k-e.org/govt/loco/2021-01-11–lcc-packet

Here is the agenda.

LOWNDES COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
PROPOSED AGENDA
WORK SESSION, MONDAY, JANUARY 11, 2021, 8:30 a.m.
REGULAR SESSION, TUESDAY, JANUARY 12, 2021, 5:30 p.m.
327 N. Ashley Street – 2nd Floor

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FFA, Appointments, Liquor, Rezonings, Roads, Forestry, DUI, Holidays, Insurance, Calendar, Trucks @ LCC 2020-12-07

Update 2020-12-15: Board packet is on the LAKE website.

A million and a half dollars, mostly for insurance, on the agenda for the final Lowndes County Commission session of 2020, and that’s not counting the many-years-long ramifications of rezoning for new subdivisions and acquiring right of way for a new road.

[Rezonings: REZ-2020-17 3833 Inner Perimeter Road; REZ-2020-19 3435 Bemiss Knights Academy; REZ-2020-20 6712 Clyattstone Road]
Rezonings: REZ-2020-17 3833 Inner Perimeter Road; REZ-2020-19 3435 Bemiss Knights Academy; REZ-2020-20 6712 Clyattstone Road

Cost What
$1,240,297.002021 Stop Loss Insurance Coverage Renewal Through Symetra Life Ins. Company
$174,759.002021 ACCG Workers’ Compensation Insurance Renewal
$60,862.00Bid for 2 – Three Quarter Ton Trucks for the Engineering Department
$27,367.00Bid for a Sport Utility Vehicle for the 911 Center
$920.50 Georgia Forestry Commission Services [LAS prescribed burns] Agreement
$381.00Office of the Governor Criminal Justice Coordinating Council Accountability Court Lowndes County DUI Court- State Court
$1,504,586.50Total

Lowndes County Development Authority Terms are up for Brooks Akins, Gary Cannon, and Jerome Tucker. Cannon and Tucker want reappointment, and the Commission almost always reappoints.

Resolution Rejection Quitclaim Deed; Affidavit Regarding Title- Branch Point. The County has laid out the right-of-way for a county road known as Fender Road between Williams School… Trading a parcel to William Q. Touchton, Jr. for another parcel for the road.

REZ-2020-20 Ballyntyne 6712 Clyattstone Road (0071 008) R-1 to R-10, Water & Sewer, ~40.3 acres . For 105+ house lots. In 2006, for a more complicated plan on the same site, GLPC recommended denial 7:0, County Commission denied 2:0. What did GLPC vote this time? And how about factoring in all the costs of paving Clyattstone Road over many previous Commission meetings? Continue reading

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

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Public Facilities Authority, Water tank, dump trucks, VOCA, VAWA, road abandonment @ LCC 2020-10-26

This morning the Lowndes County Commission will discuss abandoning a driveway, er road, a couple of grants for legal purposes, relining a drinking water tank for a fancy subdivision, dump trucks for Public Works, and reappointing Michael Walker, Crawford Powell, and Scott Purvis to the Public Facilities Authority, plus a vacant seat. They will vote Tuesday evening at 5:30 PM.

What does PFA do?

Created via Resolution 05-1130, the general purpose of the authority is declared to be that of providing through the acquisition, construction, installation, renovation, expansion, modification or rehabilitation, any buildings, structure, facilities, improvements, furnishings, fixtures, machinery, equipment and services for the citizens in the county. Members are appointed to three year terms and meet as needed. For more information, contact the Office of the County Clerk, 229-671-2400, or email the County Clerk.

[Map: Road to be Abandoned]
Map: Road to be Abandoned

Cost What
$464,196.00Bid for Four 10-Wheel Dump Trucks for the Public Works Department
$148,000.00Stone Creek Elevated Tank Coating
$17,326.00 Solicitor-General’s Office 2021 VAWA Competitive Application
$6,000.00 Solicitor-General’s VOCA Continuation Grant
$635,522.00Total

How the Abandonment of Artherman Lane can be considered not to affect the budget is mysterious, since Public Works will no longer need to spend to maintain that driveway.

On the Solicitor-General's VOCA Continuation Grant, VOCA is the Victims of Crime Act. The $6,000 cost is health insurance premiums for the two Victim Advocates ($3,000 each).

On the Solicitor-General's Office 2021 VAWA Competitive Application, VAWA is the Violence Against Women Act. The $17,326 is for Cash Match, about $2,000 lower than last time. Lowndes County funnels grant money for five counties, by delegating the District Attorney (DA) to receive and distribute the funds.

Here is the agenda. The board packet is on the LAKE website due to a LAKE open records request. 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

Lift Station Pump, Juvenile Justice Grant, Fees for Web and Telephone Payments, 3 rezonings, 1 withdrawn, 1 lighting, beer @ LCC 2020-10-12

Here is a map of “North Central Lowndes County” which is the area the county wants most to develop with subdivisions. It’s in the board packet materials for Addition to Basic Decorative Street Lighting District – Coventry Villas Subdivision, for last week’s Lowndes County Commission meeting.

[Exhibit B: Basic Decorative; North Central Lowndes County 2; Revised 9/2020]
Exhibit B: Basic Decorative; North Central Lowndes County 2; Revised 9/2020
PDF

This the first table of tax dollar amounts we’ve had add up to a positive total.

Cost What
($1,107,500.64) 2021 LMIG Resurfacing Grant Application
($99,938.00)2020 Addressing Victimization within the Juvenile Justice System Grant Application
$42,067.69 Nelson Hill Lift Station Pump Upgrade
$5.00Approval of Increase in Convenience Fees for Web and Telephone Payments
($1,165,370.95)Total

The real total should be both less than that (the LMIG grant has a 10% match) and more (the $5.00 is times each telephone or online payment).

Here’s a list of what they plan to do with the 2021 LMIG Resurfacing Grant Application: Continue reading

Appoint Tax Assessors, 3 water, 3 road, 1 pandemic, 1 software @ LCC 2020-09-21

Applying this morning for Board of Tax Assessors are Mr. Gene Felts and Mrs. Gretchen Quarterman. The Lowndes County Commission will vote tomorrow (Tuesday) at 5:30 PM. That and almost $4 million in water, road, software, and fire items.

Cost What
$1,681,770.84Grading, Drainage, Base, and Paving of Clyattstone Road and Simpson Lane.
$1,417,333.98Clyattstone Water Main Extension
$489,310.00Motorola SUAII (Evergreen)
$128,075.58Firefighter Personnel Request
$41,217.6.00Foxborough Lift Station Pump
$34,169.28Drainage Improvements to Brinson Lane and Oak Hill Drive
$22,500.00FY2021 Joint Funding Agreement with USGS
$19,800.00Land Application System (LAS) Expansion Agreement
$3,834,177.28Total

Apparently paving does not solve all problems, because one of the four water items is Drainage Improvements to Brinson Lane and Oak Hill Drive to “eliminate flooding issues as a result of the paving of Oak Hill Drive.”. The other three water items are FY2021 Joint Funding Agreement with USGS for the Folsom Bridge (GA 122 Little River & Skipper Bridge (Withlacoochee River) USGS gauges, Foxborough Lift Station Pump, and Land Application System (LAS) Expansion Agreement.

In addition to Brinson Lane, there are two more road items: Grading, Drainage, Base, and Paving of Clyattstone Road and Simpson Lane (how much have they spent on that project combined so far?) and Acceptance of Infrastructure for Val Del Villas. The latter is listed as no cost, despite the Brinson Lane episode.

[Survey Plat]
Survey Plat

Also on the agenda: Grant Submission Request – COVID-19 Response Grant Application, partly to “Recruit and hire a sufficient number of poll workers and inspectors to ensure polling places are properly staffed,” , a Firefighter Personnel Request, and Motorola SUAll (Evergreen) software.

Received in response to a LAKE open records request, the board packet is on the LAKE website. Here is the agenda.

LOWNDES COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
PROPOSED AGENDA
WORK SESSION, MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2020, 8:30 a.m.
REGULAR SESSION, TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2020, 5:30 p.m.
327 N. Ashley Street – 2nd Floor

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

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).