Tag Archives: revenue

Videos: Roads, rezoning, sales tax, Sunday alcohol, and Troupville River Camp @ VCC 2019-12-05

Other than the three Awards and Presentations, the longest agenda item was 5.a. Alcohol Ordinance Revision (Brunch Bill), which had already been approved by a referendum of the voters. On implementing it, all voted aye except one.

Almost as long was 7.b. Request for letter of support by WWALS for the Troupville River Camp project. Valdosta City Manager Mark Barber described the project and the situation. In Citizens To Be Heard (CBTH), WWALS Executive Director Gretchen Quarterman thanked Council for approving the letter.

The first speaker in CTBH asked for the city to rebuild streets in the Highland subdivision. He said there had been insufficient engineering and lack of maintenance of streets, including for water flow.

Unfortunately, can’t really make out what the pair of second speakers were asking for.

Below are LAKE videos of each item, followed by Continue reading

Roads, rezoning, sales tax, Sunday alcohol, and Troupville River Camp @ VCC 2019-12-05

Unusual on the Valdosta City Council agenda for Thursday are an award to Valdosta Main Street and a request by WWALS Watershed Coalition for support for its Troupville River Camp project; see also WWALS blog post.

Downtown Valdosta aerial logo
Photo: via Valdosta Today.

Possibly controversial is the item to allow Sunday Alcohol Sales to begin at 11:00 a.m. Business as usual includes a rezoning several road widening and other traffic improvement items.

Here is the agenda.

AGENDA
REGULAR MEETING OF THE VALDOSTA CITY COUNCIL
5:30 PM Thursday, December 5, 2019
COUNCIL CHAMBERS, CITY HALL

  1. Opening Ceremonies
    1. Call to Order
    2. Invocation
    3. Pledge of Allegiance to the American Flag
  2. Awards and Presentations
    1. Special Recognition of the Valdosta Main Street Program as a Georgia Exceptional Main Street (GEMS) by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs Office of Downtown Development.
    2. Consideration of a request for a Special Presentation at the December 5, 2019 Regular City Council Meeting.
    3. Consideration of the December, 2019 Employee of the Month Award (Sergeant Heather Willis, Valdosta Police Department).
  3. Minutes Approval
    1. Valdosta City Council – Regular Meeting – Nov 7, 2019 5:30 PM
  4. Public Hearings
    1. Consideration of an Ordinance to rezone 6.70 acres from Planned Mixed Use Development (PMD) to Highway-Commercial (C-H) by Quick Trip Corporation (File No. VA-2019-08). The property is located at 1394 North St. Augustine Road. The Greater Lowndes Planning Commission reviewed this request at their November Regular Meeting and recommended approval (8-0 Vote).
    2. Consideration of an Ordinance for Text Amendments to Chapter 102 – General Provisions, Chapter 106 – Definitions, Chapter 242 – Zoning Procedures, Chapter 302 – Subdivision and Site Development Standards, and Chapter 332 – Infrastructure and Site Improvements of the City of Valdosta Land Development Regulations (File No. VA-2019-09). The Greater Lowndes Planning Commission reviewed this request at their November Regular Meeting and recommended approval (8-0 Vote).
  5. Ordinances and Resolutions
    1. Consideration of an Ordinance to amend the City of Valdosta’s Alcohol Ordinance to allow Sunday Alcohol Sales to begin at 11:00 a.m.
    2. Consideration of a Resolution authorizing the Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Revenue to provide sales tax information to the City of Valdosta’s Finance Director.
    3. Consideration of a Resolution authorizing the acceptance of a Contract with the Georgia Department of Transportation for the Eager Road/Jerry Jones Widening Project.
  6. Bids, Contracts, Agreements and Expenditures
    1. Consideration of bids for traffic improvements at the intersection of Park Avenue and Forrest Street.
    2. Consideration of bids for a Front-End Loading Dumpster Garbage Truck for the Public Works Department.
    3. Consideration of a request to approve a Contract for new water meters for the City of Valdosta.
  7. Local Funding and Requests
    1. Consideration of a request to approve street selections for the Georgia Department of Transportation’s Local Maintenance and Improvement Grant (LMIG) Program.
    2. Consideration of a request from the WWALS Watershed Coalition for a Letter of Support for the Troupville River Camp.
  8. City Manager’s Report
  9. Council Comments
  10. Citizens to be Heard
  11. Adjournment

-jsq

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Videos: Budget Public Hearing #2, Lowndes County @ LCC Budget 2015-06-23

Only one citizen spoke at the second Budget Hearing 5PM 23 June 2015: Gretchen Quarterman asking for approval of the VLMPO request for funding for a public transportation study. The Chairman said they weren’t going to, and shortly afterwards at their Regular Session they didn’t, although they did approve more than that for a water main subsidy for private developers.

The 5PM meeting was billed on the county’s website as Budget Adoption Meeting and the previous morning by the Chairman as a presentation by the Finance Director. Is it a public hearing if it’s never advertised as a public hearing?

At least the proposed budget is on the county’s website, just not where Continue reading

Budget Adoption Meeting, Lowndes County @ LCC Budget 2015-06-23

A Budget Adoption Meeting 5PM before the 5:30 PM Regular Session, as alluded to at yesterday morning’s Work Session. Is this a second Budget Hearing? Does it count if it’s not advertised as a Hearing? And it turns out the proposed budget is on the county’s website, just not where they previously said it would be.

Budget Adoption Meeting,

[5:00-5:30PM] Tuesday, June 23 Continue reading

Valdosta budget with goals and accomplishments for each department

It’s too bad nobody came to Valdosta’s two public budget hearings, because the city prepared 183 slides with details for each department, including goals and accomplishments. On the LAKE website is that presentation sent on request by City Clerk Teresa Bolden, and converted to HTML by LAKE. Plus the actual budget. No open records requests were required. Oh, and Valdosta runs garbage collection on a balanced budget without any exclusive franchises.

Valdosta News PR 20 June 2013, City Delivers a Balanced Budget: No property tax increase proposed for citizens,

The Valdosta City Council approved the fiscal year 2014 budget for the City of Valdosta at the June 20 City Council meeting, after having the opportunity to hear the proposed budget at the hearings on June 11 and 12. City staff presented the council with a balanced budget, as required by the City Charter, possibly one of the most challenging and difficult budgets prepared in years.

City leaders decreased the overall city budget from $86.2 million to $77.3 million, a result of Continue reading

Waste offer letter: take it or….

Unsigned trash letter from Lowndes County I received the appended unsigned letter from Lowndes County recently, which says the 5,000 residents of the unincorporated parts that currently use the county’s waste disposal sites can sign up with Advanced Disposal (of New York City) for curbside pickup or…. There is no or. So look forward to trash dumping long roadsides, in parking lots in town, and on your property. And neither outgoing County Chairman Ashley Paulk nor County Manager Joe Pritchard even had the courtesy to sign the letter.

After noting that back in June the county changed waste permit cards from 12 months to 6 months, the letter says:

At purchase, information was made available regarding possible future options for solid waste management in unincorporated Lowndes County.

So the county is backing off from claiming card buyers got a letter spelling out options. I got no such letter with card purchase.

This consideration became necessary due to revenue generated by the sale of the permit cards, not covering the cost of operating the centers.

And that’s all the accounting we get. Where is the summary of expenses for the centers compared to revenue? The VDT reported from the Commissioners’ stealth retreat back in April:

“In total, the county is currently spending $782,058.34 each year for solid waste disposal, a reduction from $1,176,207.75 in 2007.”

As I pointed out then, “So that’s a rapid reduction in cost to less than a third of what it used to be, and less than half of what it was only a year ago.” Later Joe Pritchard said those numbers didn’t include everything being spent. So what was actually being spent? We the taxpayers and we the card payers don’t know. After a long series of meetings to which the public was either not invited at all or was not invited to provide input, at its last meeting of the year (exactly as I predicted), Commissioners approved changes to the solid waste ordinance eliminating the collection sites and granted a monopoly to Advanced Disposal Services of New York City.

Former Chairman Ashley Paulk recently complained Moody AFB had become “privatized”. Yet at his last Commission meeting he presided over privatizing the county’s public service of solid waste collection.

Three new Commissioners were just sworn in yesterday, including a new chair. The new Commission in the new year is not, so far as I know, bound by the decisions of any previous Commission. It could undo the damage the old one just did. Or it could, like the old one, ignore concerns of public health, safety, and the environment that the state requires them to implement, plus concerns of local waste collection businesses, of local residents about recycling and about the lack of any other option than curbside; will the new Commission continue to kick 5,000 county residents towards curbside collection or tossing their trash in the your yard?

Unsigned trash letter from Lowndes County:

Continue reading

Shadowy LOST talks tomorrow morning among all the local elected governments @ LOST 2012 04 09

It’s great that the local cities and the county government think they can negotiate how to share Local Option Sales Tax (LOST) money this time without spending a lot of money suing each other like they did back in 2002. It’s not so great that they’re doing it at an unannounced time and place.

Kay Harris wrote Saturday in the VDT, LOST talks set to begin: County, cities to meet Monday,

As required by state law, Lowndes County issued a letter to the mayors of all the municipalities in the county, requesting they attend a renegotiation meeting Monday, April 9 to discuss LOST (local option sales tax) distributions.

“This has to be done and approved by the end of the year in order to stay in place, so we have to start the process now,” said Commission Chairman Ashley Paulk.

Well, that’s interesting. When is this meeting? Ah, the time of day wasn’t included in the article.

There’s a clue in David Rodock’s 31 March 2012 writeup about the Commission retreat, Continue reading

SGMC Hospital Bonds go for sale this week

The bonds the Lowndes County Commission is guaranteeing for South Georgia Medical Center (SGMC) are up for public auction this week.

According to the NYTimes yesterday, Treasury Auctions Set for This Week

The following tax-exempt fixed-income issues are scheduled for pricing this week:

ONE DAY DURING THE WEEK

Hospital Authority of Valdosta and Lowndes County, Ga., $148.5 million of revenue anticipation certificates. Morgan Keegan

-gretchen

Double Lowndes County Commission tonight: Work 4:30 PM Regular 5:30 PM

Alcohol, rezoning, hospital, debt, and an election! Because Tuesday is Election Day, the Lowndes County Commission changed its regular meeting to Monday. Work sessions are usually Monday in the morning; today the Work Session is at 4:30 PM, just before the Regular Session at 5:30 PM. It’s a busy agenda, including two alcohol licenses, two rezonings, and an appointment to the Hospital Authority of Valdosta and Lowndes County (VLCHA); that’s the body that authorized South Georgia Medical Center (SGMC) buying Smith Northview Hospital, after which SGMC got the County Commission to have we the taxpayers guarantee $100 million in bonds for expansion. Hm, and “SGMC Revenue Certificates” is on this agenda, too.

Here’s the agenda:

LOWNDES COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
PROPOSED AGENDA
WORK SESSION, MONDAY, NOVEMBER 7, 2011, 4:30 p.m.
REGULAR SESSION, MONDAY, NOVEMBER 7, 2011, 5:30 p.m.
327 N. Ashley Street – 2nd Floor
Continue reading

Millage and Budget

What will Lowndes County do with that millage it’s going to adopt Tuesday? That would be in the budget.

Maybe they think they sufficiently discussed that at the budget hearing where no citizen questions were entertained. About the budget they refused to post online until after they approved it.

So, did they post it by that Friday, 1 July 2011, as County Manager Joe Pritchard promised? Continue reading