A million dollar loan wasn’t worth scheduling on the regular agenda for the May 9, 2023, Lowndes County Commission Regular Session?
Two weeks ago the Lowndes County Commission appointed Brenda Mims to the Board of Health, Victoria Copeland and Marion Ramsey to ZBOA, and Jane Peeples to the Library Board, all unanimously.
Everything else (except one item) also passed unanimously, including 8.b. Amend 2015 Solid Waste Ordinance raising waste collection fees and reducing collection center hours, as requested by the haulers.
It became even more obvious why they tabled it a month before: All the Lowndes County Commissioners apparently already knew how they were going to vote on the Howell Road halfway house rezoning before they held the Public Hearing.
The vote was the same as Continue reading
All letters were opposed, of those sent to GLPC or LCC by December 12, 2022, about the rezoning for a Dollar General on GA 122 at Skipper Bridge Road.
Thanks to Lowndes County Planner JD Dillard for sending this correspondence on REZ-2022-20 last Monday in response to an open records request, before I mentioned it in the Lowndes County Commission meeting Tuesday.
There are letters from Joyce Jones, Jamie Rowntree, and Gwen Rowntree. Gwen Rowntree sent a letter to the Greater Lowndes Planning Commission (GLPC) and followed up with a similar letter to the Lowndes County Commission (LCC).
It appears that while there may be people who have spoken to Commissioners in support of the rezoning, as of Monday a week ago nobody had written in support. All the letters are in opposition.
As you can see, Continue reading
Update 2022-12-18: Correspondence: Proposed Rezoning on GA 122 at Skipper Bridge Road 2022-12-12.
County Manager Paige Dukes said they are legally required to table the rezoning for a Dollar General, because they were a day late on getting notices out, although she twice blamed that on the Valdosta Daily Times.
County Chairman Bill Slaughter said the applicant had requested tabling, and he recommended the second meeting in January (January 24, 2023). Commissioner Demarcus Marshall wanted to know why. The Chairman said, “It works out for two of the parties involved, the county and the developer.” (Nevermind the people.) Commissioner Scottie Orenstein said “I’m not in favor of tabling something only to give the developer more time… If he has true intentions on meeting with the community and having a meeting with them, a town hall, something a little more official, then I’m OK with that. But not to just give them more time.” The Chairman disagreed, “Well, I don’t think time is going to resolve anything in this particular situation.” Plus regarding the applicant, “We’re here to give them the courtesy if they make a request through that application process.”
Commissioner Mark Wisenbaker wanted clarified that the main issue was the date issue. Alleged County Attorney G. Walter Elliott reminded them they have to vote to table (the Chairman cannot just unilaterally table).
Commissioner Demarcus Marshall wanted to know if the Planning Commission knew about the timing issue. Continue reading
They rolled back the millage slightly. Millage rates for Parks and Rec and Development Authority were unchanged, also for the unincorporated county fire district.
As usual, no citizens showed up for the millage rate public hearing. Gretchen was the only person there who was not a Commissioner or staff, and since she is a Tax Assessor, I guess she’s staff, too, although she was there for LAKE, taking these videos.
Two of the Lowndes County Commissioners also did not show up for that meeting nor for the Regular Session that same evening. But they voted to adopt the millage anyway.
Two weeks ago, the six-minute Reports took almost as long as the entire rest of the Regular Session of the Lowndes County Commission.
Clay Griner did show up to vote on an item in his district, but Scottie Orenstein did not: 6.b. Adopt Resolution Accepting Infrastructure for Grove Pointe Phase V Sect 2. Commissioner Demarcus Marshall was also absent. Commissioners Joyce Evans and Mark Wisenbaker were present both at the Work Session and this Regular Session. Chairman Bill Slaughter was present.
County Manager Paige Dukes was also present, giving many Reports, assisted in a video about Griner Park at Webster and Ashley Street.
Commissioner Joyce Evans provided some amusment, Continue reading
Update 2022-05-23: Regular Session Videos: Seven minutes for three appointments, one subdivision streets, and alcohol, plus long County Manager Reports @ LCC 2022-05-10.
In the five-minute Work Session yesterday morning, the few Commissioners who showed up breezed through everything with no discussion. Commissioners Scottie Orenstein and Clay Griner were absent, even though this is in their districts: 6.b. Adopt Resolution Accepting Infrastructure for Grove Pointe Phase V Sect 2. But of course it is expected that the Commission will approve that item this evening at 5:30 PM. County Manager Paige Dukes was also absent, in her case due to illness.
Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, followed by a LAKE video playlist. There are no notes, because nothing happened worth commenting on. See also Continue reading
The Lowndes County Commission continues to pretend that accepting streets for a subdivision won’t cost taxpayers anything in future maintenance, nor previously in running water and sewer there. Back in October 2019, when the county accepted infrastructure for Phase V, County Engineer Mike Fletcher said that was “the last phase of Grove Pointe”. Yet here we are with Adopt Resolution Accepting Infrastructure for Grove Pointe Phase V Section 2.
Connecting Grove Pointe to Val Del Road by the Nelson Hill subdivision was planned since at least 2006, and that’s why Simpson Lane and Clyattstone Road got paved. Despite all that, today’s Grove Pointe agenda item is marked “BUDGET IMPACT: N/A”.
Also on the agenda Continue reading
As expected, the Lowndes County Commission at its Regular Session passed the half million dollar bailout for a developer.
Not expected, they changed the agenda at the beginning of the meeting to approve new Commission district maps and a resolution supporting them, for immediate transmission to the state.
One citizen wishing to be heard spoke about the never ending noise from the 15 month old Arglass factory.
For 5.k. Property Purchase – Building Valdosta, LLC County Manager Paige Dukes said staff acted at the direction of the Commissioners, seeming to distance herself and staff from this action.
I’m guessing the added agenda item was 5.l..
Vice Chair Joyce Evans, presiding over the meeting in the absence of Chair Bill Slaughter, introduced the agenda change for district reapportionment indicating the Commissioners all already knew this was going to happen. Continue reading
Here are LAKE videos of (most of) yesterday’s Southern Georgia Regional Commission (SGRC) Council meeting yesterday in Pearson, Georgia.
For some of the items, I have included photographs of the first sheet of the relevant handout(s). For the rest of each handout, please contact SGRC.
Thanks to SGRC Council Chair Joyce Evans and Assistant Director Chris Strom for inviting me to come speak about the Okefenokee Swamp in my other hat as Suwannee Riverkeeper; see the WWALS blog post.
Collage: Audit; New member John Clayton (Nashville); DCA Small Cities Conference; Okefenokee Swamp Resolutions –Suwannee Riverkeeper; Jody Redding, GA Gov. Field Rep.
Here is the complete agenda. Continue reading