Tag Archives: Lanier County

Deep South Solid Waste Management Authority after privatized landfill

Local counties and cities sold off one landfill in Lowndes County in the late 1990s, and a second one in 2005 through the Deep South Solid Waste Management Authority. Yet in 2007 the Deep South Municipal Regional Solid Waste Management Authority (WMA), with the same county and city member governments, was still active, discussing a regional recycling station. And it is still active today, including some of the same board members the entire time since 2005, such as Valdosta City Manager Larry Hanson. Hanson was not present last week when Valdosta Mayor John Gayle said Valdosta does not control the landfill, or perhaps he would have mentioned that Valdosta through its longterm seat on the WMA board does have some degree of control over the landfill’s operations.

I notice quite a few of the Valdosta City Council’s own minutes record discussions and votes related to that WMA including this item from their Regular meeting of 4 October 2014, which was called to order by Mayor Gayle:

  1. Boards, Commissions, Authorities, and Advisory Committees
    1. Consideration of an appointment to the Deep South Regional Municipal Solid Waste Management Authority. — Appointed Richard Hardy, Public Works Director (7-0 Vote).

There must be some advantage to the City of Valdosta to have two members (Hanson and Hardy) on the WMA board. Certainly the average citizen or organization does not have that.

Bill Roberts, VDT, 5 December 2005, Authority closes on landfill deal, Continue reading

Why people don’t speak up: they owe their soul to the company store

Some of our elected officials wonder few people ever speak up around here. It’s simple: they owe their soul to the company store. If you don’t go along, you don’t get business.

As Tennessee Ernie Ford sang in that old Merle Travis song:

You load sixteen tons, what do you get
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don’t you call me ’cause I can’t go
I owe my soul to the company store

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Live Oak bus service starts Monday 2015-07-20

How come Live Oak (pop. 6,974) in Suwannee County (43,734), Florida can do what mighty Valdosta (56,481) in Lowndes County (112,916), Georgia can’t?

Amber Vann, Suwannee Democrat, 17 July 2015, Live Oak bus route starts Monday,

The Suwannee Valley Transit Authority’s Live Oak bus route will begin operating on Monday, July 20, running continuously from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. throughout every direction of the city, Monday through Friday. The route’s unofficial stops include apartment complexes and other residential neighborhoods, public schools, grocery stores, parks, government offices, nursing homes, the library and the hospital.

The route starts at the intersection of Walker Avenue and US 90 West Continue reading

Don’t Frack Georgia –sing along

Alton Paul Burns commented yesterday on Fracking south Georgia and north Florida?

Mr Emmet Carlisle wrote a song about fracking Florida “Don’t Frack Florida”. So in support of that movement I wrote another verse:

The battle is on in Bama & Georgia too
Spectra wants to run a pipeline through,
They could care less ’bout me or you,
And they lie to FERC more than they have too,

More Solar energy, Yeah that’s the thing
To everyone this message we bring,
We don’t need Spectra’s pipeline, That’s a fact!
And we don’t have to Frack!

-apb

So this would be the chorus for that verse: Continue reading

Fracking south Georgia and north Florida?

Potential fracking in north Georgia was too close, but what about right here in south Georgia? Florida has a snowballing anti-fracking movement. Looks like Georgia needs one, too.

300x149 South Georgia and North Florida Basins Map, in Shale gas basins in South Georgia and north Florida, by USGS, 4 June 2012 Dan Chapman, AJC Online Athens, 10 March 2013, Gas drillers turn to Georgia,

Jim Kennedy, the state’s geologist, says another company is considering the shale gas fields of the Mesozoic Basin that covers 60 percent of the Coastal Plain in South Georgia.

Most of the story is about proposed fracking in north Georgia that we noted back in 2013, plus fossil fuel industry propaganda about how great they say that would be for the local economy, with very little about the immense destruction, environmental hazards, and invasions of private property that would ensue. The AJC version of that Dan Chapman story didn’t seem to have Continue reading

2 megaWatts solar in Lanier County

Somebody told me a few weeks ago there’s a big solar farm near Lakeland. He was not very specific about where, but it’s big: two megawatts, organized by a company out of Chicago. Can anybody point me to where it is so I can go take pictures?

Evergreen Solar Services says,

2.0 MW Lakeland, GA
Completed in 2014, 2 — 1.0 MW Georgia Power ASI projects. Fixed tilt PV with central inverters, medium voltage interconnected.

You can see by this Evergreen Solar Services picture that Continue reading

Lanier County Advocate and Lakeland City Council

Local newspaper videos local government and puts it on YouTube! They have city council, county commission, board of education since September last year. It’s the Lanier County Advocate, videoing the Lakeland City Council, the Lanier County Commission, and the Lanier County Board of Education, plus the Lanier County Historical Society on their YouTube channel.

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Want knowledge-based jobs? Welcome gays and lesbians

The Chamber, the Industrial Authority, and various other local leaders say they want knowledge-based jobs, or creative jobs. We won’t get those just by teaching students to show up on time and do what they’re told: that’s how you train factory workers, not knowledge-based employees. For creative jobs we also need Technology, Talent, and Tolerance. How do you measure Tolerance? One key component is the concentration of gays and lesbians. So today’s South Georgia Pride Festival is a good sign for creative jobs in south Georgia!

Richard Florida wrote 16 July 2012 for The Atlantic, The Geography of Tolerance,

The map above shows how metros across the U.S. score on the Tolerance Index, as updated for The Rise of the Creative Class, Revisited. The chart below shows the top 20 metros. Developed by my Martin Prosperity Institute colleague Kevin Stolarick, it ranks U.S. metros according to three key variables—the share of immigrants or foreign-born residents, the Gay Index (the concentration of gays and lesbians), and the Integration Index, which tracks the level of segregation between ethnic and racial groups.

Do you recognize that shape in the middle of south Georgia? That’s the Valdosta Metropolitan Statistical Area, consisting of Lowndes, Echols, Lanier, and Brooks Counties. Looks like about 0.4 on the Tolerance Index. So sure, we’re no Austin, Texas, but we’re in the same range as oh, Charlotte, NC.

If you want to help promote creative jobs in south Georgia, there’s a festival going on today:

South Georgia Pride Festival
noon until 6PM
John W Saunders Park
1151 River Street
Valdosta, Georgia
food and music all day

Who knows, the Mayor of Valdosta might even be there; what do you think? He certainly gave the festival plenty of earned media.

-jsq

Aviation Projects, and Valdosta is a substantial donor –Larry Hanson @ T-SPLOST 2011-09-19 @ SGRC 2011-09-19

Larry Hanson, Valdosta City Manager, asked for the regional council to reconsider aviation projects, especially considering that the tax was supposed to be for projects of regional significance. Then he pointed out

Out of that $503 million about 40% of it or $212 million is projected to be generated here in Lowndes County. And when you look at what's being returned, for instance to the city of Valdosta, it's $47 million. It is certainly one thing to be a donor, but that's a pretty substantial donor.

He said he appreciated all the other counties, but much of the money would go to counties that are not contiguous to Lowndes County and are not part of the Valdosta Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), which includes the four counties of Lowndes, Brooks, Lanier, and Echols. He continued:

Lowndes County is about 26% of the region's population and we generate about 38% of the revenue, and we're not quite getting that back in terms of the distribution.

You may wonder why a City of Valdosta official was speaking for Lowndes County. County Manager Joe Pritchard was there at the start of the meeting, and I think County Engineer Mike Fletcher was, as well. County Chairman Ashley Paulk came in late and summoned Pritchard and Fletcher outside the glass doors of the meeting room. They stood there for quite some time, peering in, and then vanished.

Here's the video:

Aviation Projects, and Valdosta is a substantial donor –Larry Hanson @ T-SPLOST 2011-09-19
T-SPLOST Public Meeting, Southern Georgia Regional Commission (SGRC),
Corey Hull,
Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia, 19 September 2011.
Video by Gretchen Quarterman for Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange (LAKE).

-jsq

Jack Kingston has a green tongue —Gretchen Quarterman

VDT LTE today. -jsq
Georgia has gained enough population in the past ten years to add a congressional seat. This means redrawing the Congressional district lines not only to balance population, but to also add another representative in Congress. Lowndes County has been split between the first and second districts, and all spring rumors of where we might end up were circulating. Eventually we saw a draft map that had Lowndes completely in the 8th District,

Before
along with other counties along Interstate 75. That map made some sense south of Macon. Some communities of interest were preserved (most of the Lowndes-Valdosta MPO was in the same district) and the hospitality corridor of I-75 was in one district, along with the rural farms that surround it. Valdosta to Macon is easier to traverse than Valdosta to Savannah, or Valdosta to Columbus.

But then Congressman Jack Kingston stuck out his green tongue.

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