Tag Archives: April Huntley

Transparency not a problem –Bill Slaughter @ VLMPO 2013-10-23

Defining away another problem, like he already did Internet access, Lowndes County Chairman Bill Slaughter said:

I can’t honestly just buy into the real problem of transparency in this community.

This was after numerous people in the room at the VLMPO Open House on Common Community Vision at Mildred Hunter 23 October 2013 expressed concerns about needs to video local government meetings and put them online, and to make various processes more open.

Regarding videoing, Slaughter trotted out former Valdosta Mayor John Fretti’s old chestnut about allegedly in cities where meetings are televised citizens grandstand and the meetings drag on forever. Nevermind that there are numerous ways to do it, such as putting videos on the web and not simulcasting, and in places like Tallahassee that do both not many citizens usually show up. The people I’ve seen grandstanding consistently at local government meetings around here are Continue reading

No contract and no bids for County Attorney, yet 20% raise to $300,000

In response to (a second) open records request, County Clerk Paige Dukes stated in writing that Lowndes County does not have a contract with the person referred to in numerous minutes as “County Attorney”, and that no bids have been entertained for legal services for the county. According to the budget documents the Clerk referred to, the county raised the County Attorney’s budget 20% to $300,000 for 2013. Illustrations below (some with links) were added by me. -jsq

From: pdukes@lowndescounty.com
To: b-ahuntley@hotmail.com
CC: asmith@lowndescounty.com; JPritchard@lowndescounty.com; bswaller@bellsouth.net
Subject: Open Records Request
Date: Mon, 23 Sep 2013 13:22:08 +0000

Good Morning Mrs. Huntley,

In response to your open records request Continue reading

Where is the Alapaha Water Treatment Plant?

Where is the Alapaha Water Treatment Plant that has had 20 violations in the past 10 years, for which the Lowndes County Commission had Lovell Engineering write a letter to GA EPD and then approved a no-bid contract to the same firm? April Huntley supplied this pictorial answer. -jsq

Take Highway 84 east from Valdosta GA:

Take Highway 84 east from Valdosta GA.

After passing through Naylor GA look for this neighborhood on your right (Lake Alapaha Hidden Cove):

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Grassy Pond Sinkhole –April Huntley

When I was going down there from 2010-2011 this area of land was roped off with caution tape (not the temporary kind). I was told when they had problems with their piping and had to drain down the pond to fix it, when they refilled it, they did so too fast and caused a sink hole here. I’m not sure what kind of info can be found on it since it is a military installation. Chris says years back he went down there and the docks were sinking, he was told there was a sinkhole in the pond, I think. A couple more pics of the area I saw to follow. I guess it was remediated.

-April Huntley

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7.b. Lovell Eng. letter to EPD for Lowndes County @ LCC 2013-07-23

in the 22 July 2013 Work Session Here is the letter discussed (“So at this point, in order to comply with the deadline submitted by EPD, it was necessary to go ahead and work with Lovell on this.”) and approved (“The water is good, right?”) at the 23 July Regular Session of the Lowndes County Commission, obtained through an Open Records Request by April Huntley, plus a transcription. You may wonder, as I do, why the county didn’t just put it online along with the agenda, like so many other county commissions and city councils do. Continue reading

County setting parks legacy –April Huntley

LTE in the VDT today. -jsq

I would like to inform the community that the Lowndes County Board of Commissioners has announced their “Consideration of Proposed List” for Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax VII on July 22-23, 2013. It can be viewed on LowndesCounty.com.

The part of the budget that is most impressive to me is the allocation to Parks & Recreation. Its allocation is 3.5 million dollars. We need good recreation for our families in Lowndes County and to me this number sounds like our county commissioners take it serious.

I would also like to send out a big thank you to the commissioners for putting a Community Center in Naylor and a boat ramp on the Alapaha River as part of the purpose for the Parks and Recreation allocation.

Lowndes County needs public access to the beautiful Alapaha River as residents have enjoyed the river for generations. I hope the community will come together over this project and create a legacy for generations to come. Please send thank yous, ideas and comments to the commission about the Naylor project:

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Really, really, shocking and surprising that this road would be closed as much public purpose that it serves —April Huntley @ LCC 2013-02-26

April Huntley responded in shock to the Commission’s mysterious ruling against the public at the 26 Febuary 2013 Lowndes County Commission meeting, to close the only public access to the Alapaha River in Lowndes County. The County Attorney and the County Manager appeared to be busy working on something else and paying no attention.

I don’t know there’s a whole lot more to say. Really, really, shocking and surprising that this road would be closed as much public purpose that it serves.

[long pause]

I’ve done so much research on it and it’s in the best interests of the public to have this access that’s been there for over 100 years.

The 2030 plan that the county has, this would cause less destruction

to that area; less change. There’s already a road there. It only needs parking, and signs, and rules and regulations that people can abide by. And the county, after the last time when it was denied, should have worked with the landowner to mediate things, to get a decent set in place where this could kept for hundreds more years for our county.

And I hope there will be a way to open it back up.

Here’s the video:

Really, really, shocking and surprising that this road would be closed as much public purpose that it serves —April Huntley
Regular Session, Lowndes County Commission (LCC),
Video by Gretchen Quarterman for Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange (LAKE), Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia, 26 February 2013.


Please deny the closure of County Road 16 leading to the Alapaha River —three neighbors

Received today; they sent it to all the Commissioners. -jsq

To the Lowndes County Commission:

It has been quite an experience dealing with the proposed closing of a portion of County Road 16. Our quaint spot on the river in Naylor, Lowndes County is something that can easily be taken for granted, but it is something that should be treasured and appreciated by the entire county. While we have learned a rich history about Naylor and the County Road proposed to be closed, we will not encumber you with these details. We will let you know in this letter the laws and reasons why the proposal should be denied.

First off, the landowner did not legally own the land when he made his request for the closing of the road. The legal date this property was deeded to Phillip Connell is February 8, 2013. The day his request was made is unknown because the letter sent had the date whited out and is an exact copy of the September 10, 2010 letter he submitted. It is known that the proposal for a public hearing was made in the Commission meeting January 22, 2013. The county should not be hearing this proposal for being misled by Phillip Connell. Why instead is the County claiming that a legal transaction for this land occurred 2 or 3 years ago and now has extended it to 3 or 4 years ago? Where is the proof for this claim?

Second, the landowner’s claim about liability, trash and trespassing is

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Tabled for two weeks: proposed Old State Road to Alapaha River @ LCC 2013-02-12

The good news: they didn’t close the road to Hotchkiss Crossing at the Alapaha River. Lowndes County Water Resource Protection Districts Ordinance (WRPDO) Overlay Map They tabled it until their next meeting, which is in two weeks, 26 February 2013. Video will follow tomorrow, in which you will see the room was packed, mostly with people opposed to the road closing, some from as far away as Tifton. All concerned now have two weeks to absorb all the new information and work out a solution.

Below is what I sent to the Lowndes County Commission at Commissioner Joyce Evans’ request before the meeting tonight, followed by a bit more information.

Subject: River Corridor Protection Plan
Date: Tue, 12 Feb 2013 16:49:50 -0500

Dear Commissioners and County Planner,

When I was talking to Joyce Evans just now, I mentioned the 100 foot natural vegetative buffer state law requires local governments to establish next to perennial rivers. Here is a summary of the state law, the definition it contains, the GA EPD rules, and some notes on the relevant parts of the Lowndes County Comprehensive Plan.

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Letters against closing Old State Road to the Alapaha River @ LCC 2013-02-12

Here is a list of the letters I have copies of that oppose closing Old State Road to the Alapaha River; probably more have been sent. The vote is tonight 5:30 PM 12 February 2013 at 327 North Ashley Street 2nd Floor, Valdosta, GA. According to state law and the public hearing notice,

Any citizen of Lowndes County or any person wherever residing may be heard by the Lowndes County Board of Commissioners during the aforesaid public hearing.

That means anyone from anywhere may speak.

Here’s the list.

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