Tag Archives: Transportation

Videos: Church, Personal Care Home, RV vendor, Lake Park Zoning Ordinance @ GLPC 2021-08-30

Almost half an hour on the church on Woodlawn Drive (sidewalks and building size), eleven minutes on the personal care home on Slater Street, and three minutes each on the RV sales expansion and the Lake Park Zoning Ordinance amendments. That was a slack evening for the Greater Lowndes Planning Commission (GLPC), at 47 minutes total.

[Welcome, Lake Park, RV expansion, Board]
Welcome, Lake Park, RV expansion, Board

GLPC recommends. The Lowndes County Commission is already meeting about its items. Lake Park and Valdosta Mayor and Council will decide their items.

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, followed by a LAKE video playlist. See also the agenda. Continue reading

Videos: Commissioner Comments, Mud Swamp Road, Fire Millage, Hightower Road, GEFA @ LCC 2021-08-24

Very unusual: two Commissioners commented at the end. Chairman Bill Slaughter had already been quite clear that the new fire department millage was to aid population growth in unincorporated parts of the county. Mark Wisenbaker thought the fire department millage was premature because it did not consider land with no structures, agricultural land, etc. He was the only Commissioner to vote against 5.l. Adoption of Unincorporated Fire Millage. Clay Griner thought it was something they could improve as they go along.

None of them mentioned that the fire millage applies to personal property as well as to real estate (land). At least one of the Commissioners was unaware of this, and, since none of them ever seem to have mentioned it to the public, I’d bet the public is unaware unless they carefully examined their property tax statements. Applying that fire millage also to personal property is apparently how they kept it as low as they announced in the millage rate hearing. Nevermind such a personal property millage falls heaviest on companies with the most personal property, which would likely be Packaging Corporation of America (PCA), commonly known as the paper mill at Clyattville. It’s not clear that companies with much personal property are the most in need of new fire services.

[Hightower Road, Fire Millage, Mud Swamp Road, Commissioner Comments]
Hightower Road, Fire Millage, Mud Swamp Road, Commissioner Comments

The County’s support of unincorporated growth apparently includes building next to wetlands, or in areas the Army Corps of Engineers recently declared not to be wetlands, since that had just been discussed by County Manager Paige Dukes and the Chairman.

I have an idea! How about build only close in to existing services, instead of sprawling farther out, where no taxes will ever pay enough for sending school buses, Sheriff, and Fire. See this report the County commissioned: The Local Government Fiscal Impacts of Land Use in Lowndes County: Revenue and Expenditure Streams by Land Use Category, Jeffrey H. Dorfman, Ph.D., Dorfman Consulting, December 2007. As Dr. Dorfman summarized in a different presentation,

Local governments must ensure balanced growth, as
sprawling residential growth is a certain ticket to fiscal ruin*
* Or at least big tax increases.

sprawl Trees and crops don’t call the Sheriff or the Fire Department much and don’t need school buses, but subdivisions do, so forestry and agriculture are far more cost-effective in tax collection vs. services.

Everything except the Fire Dept. millage passed unanimously. Even the late-added mystery-location 5.j. Proposed Sale of County Real Property to Industrial Authority, which came with no map, no street address, and no parcel numbers.

Here are LAKE videos of each agenda item, followed by a LAKE video playlist. See also the Continue reading

Outgrant: Moody AFB Hightower Road easement to Lowndes County @ LCC 2021-08-23

Another LAKE open records request yielded the missing Exhibits for Approval of Easement Documents for Hightower Road in the agenda for the August 23 and 24 Lowndes County Commission meetings:

Exhibit A – Description of Premises
Exhibit B – Map of Premises
Exhibit C – Physical Condition Report
Exhibit D – Environmental Baseline Survey

The entire document with the Exhibits is now on the LAKE website: Instrument Number: USAF-ACC-QSEU-21-2-0318: DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE GRANT OF EASEMENT FOR LOWNDES COUNTY, GEORGIA ON MOODY AIR FORCE BASE, GEORGIA, SAF/GCN 7 July 2021 Approved B. Hood.

[Exhibit B: Map of Premises]
Exhibit B: Map of Premises

There’s good news at the end of Exhibit D: Continue reading

Videos: Potential litigation, Millage, Hightower Road, Bellsouth, Val Del Estates, 911, Alapaha Plantation, Manhole Emergency, Private Roads, Alcohol * 2 @ LCC Work 2021-08-23

The Lowndes County Commission votes tonight at 5:30 PM, after minimal discussion yesterday morning.

At the end of yesterday morning’s Work Session, County Manager Paige Dukes asked for an Executive Session to discuss pending litigation, plus a bigger than usual room to meet in, due to wanting many department heads there.

Earlier, Chairman Bill Slaughter asked to add an agenda item for sale of real property to the Industrial Authority. There was no discussion of this item, simply the addition of the item to the agenda for the voting session. Apparently all the commissioners know all about this from some executive session. The public knows nothing.

Also, Commissioner Mark Wisenbaker asked to move the two millage adoption items to the end of the agenda for tonight.

The only thing they spent more than two minutes on was 5.h. Adding Dispatch Consoles 11 and 12 for the 911 Center. 5.h. Adding Dispatch Consoles 11 and 12 for the 911 Center

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, with a few notes, followed by a LAKE video playlist. See also the agenda and the board packet.

Millage, Hightower Road, Bellsouth, Val Del Estates, 911, Alapaha Plantation, Manhole Emergency, Private Roads, Alcohol * 2 @ LCC 2021-08-23, GA-EPD

Three million dollars for discussion this morning and voting tomorrow evening at the Lowndes County Commission, including an emergency manhole repair, 911 consoles, and roads north of Moody AFB.

Plus more expenses will come from accepting two subdivision roads plus two dirt roads as county roads. And the never-ending Lake Alapaha subdivision water treatment plant, which has attracted a GA-EPD Consent Order.

The County will be reducing the overall millage rate, while adding the the unincorporated fire millage.

Cost What
$2,775,068.91TIA-03 Hightower Road and Cooper Road NE
$162,308.45Whitewater Road Manhole Emergency Repair
$155,697.00Adding Dispatch Consoles 11 and 12 for the 911 Center
$2,520.00Approval of Lease Amendment Number Three to Bellsouth Telecommunications, LLC
$3,095,594.36Total

[Alcohol, Subdivision, Communications]
Alcohol, Subdivision, Communications

Here is the agenda. 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/2021-08-23–lcc-packet

LOWNDES COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
PROPOSED AGENDA
WORK SESSION, MONDAY, AUGUST 23, 2021, 8:30 a.m.
REGULAR SESSION, TUESDAY, AUGUST 24, 2021, 5:30 p.m.
327 N. Ashley Street – 2nd Floor

Continue reading

Deannexation of Cherry Creek Wetlands Mitigation Bank @ VCC 2021-08-05

The Greater Lowndes Planning Commission recommended 6-3 to deny the de-annexation of 310 acres of the Cherry Creek Wetlands Mitigation Bank. Thursday evening at 5:30 PM the Valdosta City Council decides.

[Map, Agenda]
Map, Agenda

Among other items on the agenda are Consideration of an Ordinance for Film Production in the City of Valdosta and Consideration of an appointment to the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) Citizens Advisory Committee. We don’t know who they are considering appointing.

AGENDA
REGULAR MEETING OF THE VALDOSTA CITY COUNCIL
5:30 PM Thursday, August 5, 2021
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. Consideration of the August, 2021 Employee of the Month Award (Patrol Officer Jermaine Johnson, Valdosta Police Department).
  3. Minutes Approval
    1. The Minutes from the July 22, 2021 Regular Meeting are forthcoming.
  4. Public Hearings
    1. Consideration of an Ordinance for a Conditional Use Permit for a Car Wash and Quick Oil Change business in a Community-Commercial (C-C) Zoning District as
      requested by SHJ Construction Group (File No. CU-2021-03). The property is located at 3205 Inner Perimeter Road. The Planning Commission reviewed this at their July 26, 2021 Regular Meeting and recommended approval with four conditions (9-0 vote).

    2. Consideration of an Ordinance to rezone 0.59 acres from Single-Family Residential (R15) to Community-Commercial (C-C) as requested by SW North Valdosta, LLC (File No. VA-2021-15). The property is located at 3277 North Valdosta Road. The Planning Commission reviewed this at their July 26, 2021 Regular Meeting and recommended approval (9-0 Vote).

    3. Consideration of an Ordinance to deannex 310 acres from the City of Valdosta as
      requested by Uvalde Land Company (File No. VA-2021-16). The property is the City portion of the Cherry Creek Wetlands Mitigation Bank property which is located between the Withlacoochee River and the Cherry Creek residential neighborhoods. The Planning Commission reviewed this
      request at their July 26, 2021 Regular Meeting and recommended denial (6-3 Vote).

  5. Ordinances and Resolutions
    1. Consideration of an Ordinance for Film Production in the City of Valdosta. (First Reading)

    2. Consideration of a Resolution to approve an Amendment to the Georgia Municipal Employees Benefit System (GMEBS) Master Defined Benefit Retirement Plan.

  6. Bids, Contracts, Agreements and Expenditures
    1. Consideration of bids for 95 Gallon Roll Out Cart Containers for the Public Works Department (Bid No. 58-20-21 95).

  7. Local Funding and Requests
    1. Consideration of a request to declare two vehicles from the Valdosta Police Department as surplus property.

  8. Boards, Commissions, Authorities, and Advisory Committees
    1. Consideration of an appointment to the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) Citizens Advisory Committee.

  9. Citizens to be Heard

  10. City Manager’s Report
  11. Council Comments
  12. Adjournment

-jsq

Investigative reporting costs money, for open records requests, copying, web hosting, gasoline, and cameras, and with sufficient funds we can pay students to do further research. You can donate to LAKE today!

Videos: Bandit film, air conditioning, insolvent taxes, Fender Road Improvement Project, VLPRA @ LCC 2021-06-08

Just before adjournment, County Manager Paige Dukes said the Bandit film continued filming downtown. She answered Commissioners Demarcus Marshall and Mark Wisenbaker saying the new millage letters were going out, with the exemption for the new fire tax, At the June 8, 2021, Lowndes County Commission Regular Session.

Everything passed unanimously.


[Chairman, Finance, Attorney, Griner, Manager, Audience]
Chairman, Finance, Attorney, Griner, Manager, Audience

The Minutes record the County Manager also said in Reports:

Mrs. Dukes stated staff will be meeting with our Southern Marketing Coordinator, with the Georgia Department of Agriculture, Beth Meeks next week regarding a Farmer of the Year recognition. Additionally, Mrs. Dukes mentioned State Court Judge, John Edwards, was notified that Judge Melton has sent the last order extending the emergency order for the courts through June 30th. Lastly, Mrs. Dukes commended Mr. Tye’s leadership in providing a renewal of our ‘storm ready’ designation in Lowndes County; Mrs. Dukes asked Mr. Tye to give the commission an update. Chairman Slaughter stated this would not have happened without the partnerships with emergency management and thanked Mr. Tye for his efforts and dedication.

See also the LAKE videos of the preceding morning’s Work Session, and the agenda and the board packet.

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, followed by a LAKE video playlist. Continue reading

Videos: Court * 4, Boards * 2, Sewer * 4, Beer, Computers, Pest, Fire, Grounds, Road truck @ LCC 2021-06-21

They spent the most time discussing the several court funding cash match requests, two weeks ago at the Lowndes County (GA) Commission Work Session. At the end, Project Manager Chad McLeod had updates on the Courthouse renovation and the Commission Chambers audio and video restoration.

Judge Golden, Accountability Court

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, followed by a LAKE video playlist. See also the agenda. The board packet is on the LAKE website, received in response to a LAKE open records request.
http://www.l-a-k-e.org/govt/loco/2021-06-21–lcc-packet Continue reading

Boards * 2, Sewer * 4, Court * 4, Beer, Computers, Pest, Fire, Grounds, Road truck @ LCC 2021-06-21

The biggest item on this week’s Lowndes County Commission agenda, for voting this eventing, is Grounds Maintenance. Planting some native shrubbery, flowers, and trees instead of all that lawn would reduce that cost.

Three sewage system items add up, for Whitewater Lift Station Control Panel Emergency Repair, Bemiss Low Pressure Sewer Main Replacement Change Order, and the $2,500,000.00 GEFA Loan for the Sewer System Rehabilitation Project. That last does not show up in the agenda sheet as BUDGET IMPACT, but county taxpayers will pay for it over time. However, proactive sewer system fixes are lot better than reactive sewage spill repairs.

Four courts in three agenda items require cash match. Plus a road work truck and pest control round out the dollar figures.

Cost What
$158,140.00Bid for Grounds Maintenance for County Buildings
$53,140.00Whitewater Lift Station Control Panel Emergency Repair
$48,307.21Compute and Storage for South Lowndes Data Center
$46,777.50Purchase of Fire Turnout Gear
$39,135.00Office of the Governor Criminal Justice Coordinating Council Accountability Court Lowndes County DUI Court Grant Award – State Court
$33,989.00Bemiss Low Pressure Sewer Main Replacement Change Order
$28,074.84Purchase of a Truck for Public Works
$23,557.16Lowndes County Accountability Court Adult Drug Court Program – Grant (Cash Match)
$10,000.00Lowndes County Juvenile Accountability Court – Drug Court Program – Grant (Cash Match)
$6,734.40Bid for Pest Control Service
$447,855.11Total

There’s a reappointment to Children’s Services and a new appointment to the Library Board.

And there’s a beer license, which brings in fees of $250 Off Premises + $150 Administration = $400.

[Beer, Lawns]
Beer, Lawns

Here is the agenda. The board packet is on the LAKE website, received in response to a LAKE open records request.
http://www.l-a-k-e.org/govt/loco/2021-06-21–lcc-packet

LOWNDES COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
PROPOSED AGENDA
WORK SESSION, MONDAY, JUNE 21, 2021, 8:30 a.m.
REGULAR SESSION, TUESDAY, JUNE 22, 2021, 5:30 p.m.
327 N. Ashley Street – 2nd Floor

Continue reading

Videos: air conditioning, Insolvent taxes, Fender Road Improvement Project, VLPRA @ LCC 2021-06-07

Air conditioning, a quit claim, and, by far the longest, those incorrect tax assessment notices were the big items at the most recent Lowndes County, Georgia, Commission Work Session, June 7, 2021.

[Manager and Chairman, Demarcus Marshall, Engineer]
Manager and Chairman, Demarcus Marshall, Engineer

See previous post for the agenda and the board packet.

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, followed by a LAKE video playlist.

Continue reading