BOC to hold final public hearing on 2019 budget

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DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – Dawson County citizens will have one last chance to express their views on the proposed 2019 budget when the Board of Commissioners holds the third and final public hearing Thursday at 6 p.m. in the County Administration Building.

Following that hearing, commissioners can vote to approve the $27.1 million spending plan that includes 23 new employees –19 full-time and four part-time.

The full-time positions include a legal assistant for County Attorney Lynn Frey, a training captain for emergency services, an administrative assistant for fleet maintenance, a human resources specialist, IT coordinator, two park maintenance employees, a building inspector for planning and development, an assistant public defender, three public works employees, a custodian for the senior center, two patrol officers for the Sheriff’s Office and two transfer station workers.

The part-time positions include, a weekend judge for Chief Magistrate Lisa Poss-Thurmond’s court, a clerk for the probate court and a deputy coroner.

The 2019 budget is about $700,000 higher than this year’s budget. The new positions will cost taxpayers approximately $932,632.

Commissioners are also expected to vote on:

  • An application for a new alcohol license for Blackrock Food Service, LLC D/B/A Crave Hot Dogs & BBQ located in the Dawson Crossroads Shopping Center;
  • A request to accept a 2019 Victims of Crime Act Grant funds in the amount of $74,088.84. No county match is required;
  • A request to apply for a Department of Natural Resources Land & Water Conservation Fund Grant to repair/replace the fishing pier at War Hill Park. The minimum fund grant that can be applied for is $25,000. The maximum grant if $100,000 and the county will have to provide a 50 percent match;
  • A request to hire a legal assistant. The position is already included in the 2019 budget, but the request is to fill the position this year at an additional cost of $6,956.20 for five pay periods through the end of December;
  • A Service Delivery Strategy Agreement;
  • A request by Michael Turner, executor for the estate of Kenneth K. Turner to have property located at the intersection of Perimeter Road and Allen Street annexed into the City of Dawsonville. The Dawsonville Planning Commission will hold a public hearing on the issue on Oct. 8. The Dawsonville City Council will hold a public hearing on Oct. 22 and the annexation could be awarded final approval on Nov. 5;
  • A request by Board of Tax Appraisers Chief Appraiser Elaine Garrett to approve a contract for the services of an additional appraiser for the current year and next tax year.

 

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

 

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BOC holds second public hearing on budget

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Dawson County BOC

 

DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – The Dawson County Board of Commissioners held a work session and the second of three public hearings on the proposed 2019 budget of $27,130,089 Thursday. Commissioners will hold the final hearing Thursday Oct. 18 at 6 p.m. in the County Administration Building.

The proposed budget includes 23 new employees –19 full-time and four part-time — at a cost of a little over $932,000.

During the work session, commissioners voted to table the consideration of annexations until the Oct. 18 meeting.

KARE for Kids Board Member Tom French presented a request to use the several county facilities’ parking lots to park cars during the Mountain Moonshine Festival. Those lots requested include the Justice Center, Sheriff’s Office, K Long Building and Voters’ Registration (Sunday only).

Family Court Treatment Services Director Debbie Mott presented an application grant for supplemental funding for creation of the Dawson County Family Treatment Court. Mott is seeking $67,642 in funding from the Criminal Justice Coordinating Committee. To be approved the county must provide $7,516 in matching funds. If approved, Mott said Treatment Services would use the funding to create the Dawson County Family Treatment Court, hire a full-time case manage and buy office furniture, equipment and supplies.

Department of Emergency Services Director Danny Thompson asked commissioners to approve a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) that would create a local collective operating group to disseminate warnings for specific emergency alerts.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency is the designated agency in the Department of Homeland Security that implements the policy of public alerts on a national level. IPAWS is the platform used. However, FEMA recognizes that most alerts and warnings come from the state or local level, therefore there is a need for an authorized group of individuals to disseminate those alerts.

Thompson also presented a request to apply for an Assistance to Firefighters Grant that would allow the department to purchase self-contained breathing apparatus. FEMA will provide 90 percent of the total cost. Dawson County would provide the other 10 percent.

Director of Public Works Director David McKee asked commissioners to consider acceptance of Marketplace Parkway into the county road maintenance program.

Marketplace Parkway, formerly Gordon Moss Road, was developed as a commercial subdivision by Hendon Properties. The developer has built and posted maintenance and performance bonds for the roadway. Staff has performed all required inspections and has deemed the road completed.

 

 

 

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

 

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Commissioners want more information on the replacement or relocation of water tank

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DAWSONVILLE, Ga. — Dawson and Pickens county officials have been looking for ways to improve the efficiency of Fire Station 8 in the Wildcat community.

The station is located in an extremely remote and mountainous section of Dawson County near the Pickens County line. It has been operated as a joint venture between the two counties. The initial memorandum of understanding (MOU) called for Pickens to pay the cost to build the station and Dawson to provide the equipment and train personnel.

There are no fire hydrants in the community. The closest is approximately six miles away at Fausett’s Lake. When a firefighters arrive at the scene of a fire, they fight the fire and if more water is needed, they have to drive back to Fausett’s Lake to refill then return.

Commissioners have discussed relocating the old water tank which is approximately 14 miles away to a location near the fire station.

But, Dawson County Fire Chief/EMA Director Danny Thompson appeared before the Board of Commissioners work session Thursday to say that no vendor had been located who would provide a price quote for relocation. Thompson pointed out that even if a vendor could eventually be found, the operation would be costly and there is no guarantee of structural integrity once the tank was on the ground.

So the discussion turned from relocation to replacement. Thompson said a reasonable estimate to purchase a new 20,000-gallon water tank and have it installed would be approximately $35,360.

He added that Pickens County had already spent $10,000 to construct a concrete pad for the tower.

Chairman Billy Thurmond called for more discussion between the two counties on how the cost would be split.

“If you’re asking this Board to fund $35,000 for a water tank that is a joint venture, I don’t know what the Board thinks, but I think there should be more play from Pickens County before we consider spending taxpayer dollars,” he said.

Commissioner Julie Nix said, “The question is how much is all this going to cost and then we should split the cost.”

In other business before the Board:

  • There was a presentation of a request for funds to renovate the Chamber of Commerce office for Economic Development;
  • Planning Director Jason Streetman presented a proposed site plan for Dawsonville Self-Storage facility;
  • Streetman also presented a request to adopt an update to the Capital Improvements Element of the Comprehensive Plan.

Commissioners do not vote during work sessions but the items discussed are placed on the agenda for the next voting session.

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Millage Rate Will Remain the Same in FY 2018 But Property Taxes Are Still Going Up

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DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – If you are as mathematically challenged as many of us are, the calculation of a millage rate for property tax purposes is about as clear as hieroglyphics. Throw in something called a “rollback rate” and you may need to start searching the medicine cabinet for the Extra Strength Tylenol.

So here is the bottom line for Dawson County homeowners. The Dawson County Board of Commissioners intends to keep the millage rate at 8.138 mils in FY ‘18. But the amount you will pay for county services will tentatively increase by 4.45 percent. That’s because property values in the county have increased. Your house is worth more, therefore you will pay more in taxes. The owner of a $250,000 home will pay about $34.70 more than last year.

It is a tentative increase because before the millage rate can be adopted and the budget voted on, the county is required to hold three public hearings to give residents a chance to voice their opinions. Those meetings are set for August 10 at 4 p.m. and August 17 at 9 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Not to increase your anxiety, but that is only one-third of the story. The 8.138 mils is just for services provided by the county such as public safety, water and sewer, roads and bridges and law enforcement. It does not include a budget for the county’s schools which costs almost twice as much to operate as the rest of the county.

But that’s a headache for another day.

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Christie Haynes Presents Chamber Update

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Christie Haynes Chamber of Commerce President

DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – Dawson County Chamber of Commerce President Christie Haynes presented an update of the Chamber and Office of Tourism Development activities at Thursday’s Board of Commissioners meeting.

Among the highlights:

The county’s revenue from the hotel/motel tax continues to grow. In 2015, the tax generated $386,297. That grew to $430,876 in 2016 and continues to grow month over month in 2017;

9,381 visitors to Dawson County stayed at Amicalola Falls Lodge from January through July of this year;

Five new stores have opened in North Georgia Premium Outlets in 2017 and an Old Navy store will be opening soon;

The recent ‘Shine Pedlars Metric and Half-Metric continues to grow with 244 cyclists participating this year, an increase of 59 percent since 2016;

There have been 34 ribbon cuttings in the first seven months of 2017 compared to 30 all last year;

The Chamber of Commerce will celebrate its 40th anniversary this year;

Eighteen young people graduated from the Chamber-sponsored Leadership Dawson in April.

Haynes continues to be honored for her work with the Chamber.

In 2015, she was only the second recipient of the Young Alumni Award from the University of Georgia. Within two years of graduation she became the youngest president of a Georgia chamber. She is a 2012 UGA 40 Under 40 honoree, and is a past president of the School of Public and International Affairs Alumni Board.

This year, she received the coveted Georgia Certified Chamber Executive award.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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