Recycling budget increase proposed to Board of Commissioners

Community
Recycling budget increase proposed at Board of Commissioners meeting.

DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – At the Dawson County Board of Commissioners meeting held on Jan. 20, the Public Works Department requested a recycling budget increase as well as direction in repairing the transfer station.

The Board of Commissioners listened to a presentation on the recycling budget.

The Dawson County Board of Commissioners discussed the grant and budget proposals presented at the Jan. 20 meeting.

Denise Farr, the director of the Public Works Department, explains the county currently uses the single-stream recycling process. This process handles cardboard, paper products, plastics, glass, aluminum and metal cans.

The county budgets $13,000 for recycling but spent $18,090.70 in 2021. With waste management significantly increasing its costs, Public Works estimates a yearly recycling cost of $57,222.

In her presentation, Farr outlines the current recycling process’s positives and negatives for the Board to consider an increased budget or economical alternative.

The single-stream system encourages recycling since people do not have to separate materials. It also gives municipalities lower upfront costs.

However, the quality and number of useable recyclables are lower because of contamination and issues separating materials. And although the system offers lower upfront costs, the sorting and processing rates lead to higher costs.

Farr elaborated on issues with the current system saying, “Sometimes in the compaction, especially with the metals, they can’t get everything apart so some of that is ending up in the landfill that really shouldn’t be.”

After listening to her presentation, the Board asks Farr to return with alternative recycling processes which could be more beneficial and financially effective.

In addition to recycling budget, transfer station requires examination

The Public Works director also presented to the Board the structural issues of the county’s transfer station. The station can no longer accept construction or commercial debris.

Recycling budget and transfer station damage presented at meeting.

Farr included examples of the damage in her presentation to the Board.

Farr explained how the impact force and positioning of construction, commercial dumping and packing equipment have caused damage to parts of the building, including the loading area’s steel plates and beams.

Example of damage at transfer station.

Excessive loads and continued force of debris and clearing equipment have damaged the transfer station’s loading area.

Replacing and installing additional steel beams, along with the steel plate flooring, is estimated to cost $120,000. To replace siding and siding supports, the estimated cost is $25,000.

When considering the facility’s future with construction and commercial dumping, Farr states, “If we’re going to continue with that, then we’re going to have to have a whole different design in mind.”

The Board agrees with Farr’s analysis that the station requires repairs for safety and efficiency. During the voting session, the commissioners decide to send out a bid for an engineer to inspect the site.

To access the agenda and voting session packets, visit https://www.dawsoncounty.org/meetings?date_filter%5Bvalue%5D%5Bmonth%5D=1&date_filter%5Bvalue%5D%5Bday%5D=1&date_filter%5Bvalue%5D%5Byear%5D=2015&date_filter_1%5Bvalue%5D%5Bmonth%5D=3&date_filter_1%5Bvalue%5D%5Bday%5D=20&date_filter_1%5Bvalue%5D%5Byear%5D=2022&field_microsite_tid=All&field_microsite_tid_1=All

To view the sessions, visit https://www.facebook.com/DawsonCountyGovernment

Rezoning application heard at Planning Commission meeting

Community
The Dawson County Planning Commission addressed a rezoning application at its Jan. 18 meeting.

DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – Reconvening for the first time since December, the Dawson County Planning Commission addressed a new application for rezoning.

Michelle Lipham voiced her intentions regarding her request after the approval of minutes from the previous meeting held on Dec. 21, 2021. She wants to rezone the land from RSRMM (Residential Sub Rural Manufactured Moved) to R-A (Residential Agricultural).

Concerning the agricultural purposes, Lipham wishes to sell flowers, shrubs and perennials to landscapers and florists as well as other interested parties.

As part of the application process, the applicant must include a list of adjacent property owners who have property touching the applicant’s or directly across the street. Lipham’s application affects six properties.

The surrounding properties to the North, South, East and West are classified R-A, RSRMM, RSRMM and RSRMM, respectively.

Dawson County Planning Commission reviewed new rezoning application at meeting.

The aerial view provided in the agenda packet shows Michelle Lipham’s land and the neighboring properties.

Staff analysis and impacts of rezoning application

When considering the possible effects on property values, the staff analysis concluded the land use classification should not negatively impact the area.

The nearby area and the size of Lipham’s land allow for the pursuit of agricultural activities, which the Planning Commission sees as a relative gain rather than a hardship to the public.

While the Planning Commission encourages the conservation of agricultural land, Lipham must consider soil and erosion control and natural buffer maintenance along property lines.

Lipham will also need to observe Best Management Practices, which the Environmental Protection Agency defines as effective techniques to control nonpoint source pollutants, when clearing and grading the site.

The observation of these practices concerns the containment of stormwater run-off and soil erosion in this case.

If any work on the land will impact the existing water main, then Lipham will need to contact the Etowah Water & Sewer Authority.

Lipham may need to contact more public facilities regarding her rezoning efforts. Any additional structures with restrooms require a septic system permit and all proposed structures require a building permit.

The Planning Commission will hold its next meeting on Feb. 15 at 6 p.m.

https://www.dawsoncounty.org/meetings

 

Investigation leads to suspect taken into custody

Police & Government, Press Release
Vehicles broken into in Dawson County.

PRESS RELEASE – As an update to the Entering Autos and stolen vehicles from earlier in the week – this is an ongoing investigation and we will update as we are able. Currently we have one suspect in custody and 2 of the 4 stolen vehicles have been recovered. Please continue to forward any footage or report information you have regarding this investigation.

Previously, the Dawson County Sheriff’s Office advised residents to ensure they locked vehicles and removed valuables from cars.

https://dawson.fetchyournews.com/2022/01/17/vehicles-burglarized-in-dawson-county/

Vehicles burglarized in Dawson County

Police & Government, Press Release
Vehicles broken into in Dawson County.
PRESS RELEASE – The Dawson County Sheriff’s Office is currently investigating a rash of Entering Autos and stolen vehicles which took place across Dawson County last night.
If you had any items stolen from your vehicles, please give us a call at 706-344-3636.
We ask that everyone please ensure your vehicles are locked and valuables are not left in your car overnight.
If you have any information or footage that would help in this investigation, please reach out to us today.

Dawson County Sheriff’s Office advises staying home

Press Release, Weather
Community urged to stay home with winter weather approaching.
This is your friendly reminder to plan on being home this weekend. With snow and ice extremely likely, DCSO kindly requests that you stay off the roads and not make cause for emergency response.
If it’s difficult for you to drive, it’s also difficult for us. Slower response times, reports via phone, power outages and road closures are all distinct possibilities. Be smart! Plan ahead! Do not wait to get firewood!
Please share this post with your Dawson County neighbors.

Verizon Wireless to Conduct Balloon Test for Proposed Cell Tower on 1/12

Community, News
Verizon Wireless will complete a balloon test on Wednesday, January 12, 2022 between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. This balloon test is a requirement for a zoning application for a proposed wireless telecommunications facility on parcel 049 001 located at Wesley Chapel Road. They will have an alternate weather day on January 14, 2022, if required.
The proposed telecommunications facility will be a one hundred ninety-foot (190′) monopole tower. According to a letter sent to surrounding parcel owners on January 5, 2022, Verizon Wireless states that in order to improve coverage and capacity issues as a result of increased wireless congestion, it requires a new cell site in this portion of Dawson County. Upon concluding there are no available suitable structures in the area upon which to co-locate, the only option is to build a new telecommunications tower.
This zoning application was heard by the Board of Commissioners on December 16, 2021 and was tabled to its February 3, 2022 Voting Session. This application was tabled to allow Verizon Wireless to facilitate a balloon test for at least 4 hours with adequate notification to the Board of Commissioners to attend as well as surrounding land owners so they may gain a better understanding of the proposed location in which the cell tower will be physically located.
~ Laura Fulcher, Public Affairs Officer

Search Warrant Leads to Six Arrest & the Discovery of Over 100 Animals

Press Release
In late December, the DCSO Crime Suppression Unit conducted a search warrant at a home off Goldmine Rd in Dawson County. Investigators with CSU had previously become aware of drug sales at this location and after multiple investigative steps, applied for a search warrant of the home.
Upon execution of a search warrant, deputies made arrests on a total of six individuals with charges ranging from Distribution of Methamphetamine, Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine, Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana and Disorderly House.
While at the home, deputies observed over 100 different animals living in deplorable conditions. Deputies contacted the Dawson County Animal Control who advised they would take custody of the animals and with the help of the Dawson County Humane Society, nurse them back to health.
We are extremely proud of the Crime Suppression Unit along with the Dawson County Marshall’s Office and Dawson County Humane Society for working to make our county a better place.

Crime Suppression Unit search warrant leads to arrests

Police & Government, Press Release
DCSO Crime Suppression Unit's search warrant leads to arrests.
DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – Following the execution of a search warrant, the Dawson County Sheriff’s Office announced the outcome on social media:
In late December, the DCSO Crime Suppression Unit conducted a search warrant at a home off Goldmine Rd in Dawson County. Investigators with CSU had previously become aware of drug sales at this location and after multiple investigative steps, applied for a search warrant of the home.
Upon execution of a search warrant, deputies made arrests on a total of six individuals with charges ranging from Distribution of Methamphetamine, Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine, Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana and Disorderly House.
While at the home, deputies observed over 100 different animals living in deplorable conditions. Deputies contacted the Dawson County Animal Control who advised they would take custody of the animals and with the help of the Dawson County Humane Society, nurse them back to health.
We are extremely proud of the Crime Suppression Unit along with the Dawson County Marshall’s Office and Dawson County Humane Society for working to make our county a better place.

Public Affairs Officer Speaks on the Incident at the COVID Testing Location

Community
Today I learned about an incident that allegedly occurred between Christmas and New Year’s Day regarding the long lines for COVID testing in Dawson County.
While people were waiting in line for COVID testing, many were apparently shouting in protest at how long it was taking. One man allegedly walked in with a golf club and shattered the door to the testing center. Another man allegedly took the door off the hinges.
I am appalled that this happened in our county.
A year and a half ago, everyone cooperated and waited patiently in long lines for COVID testing. What has changed? I think it is reacting to two full years of frustration on many levels, including other situations, both political and worldwide. However, that is not an excuse for bad behavior. We are all better than that.
The reason I am posting this is to remind everyone to act better, to be patient, to understand that all healthcare workers are there to help you and that they are working as quickly as they can.
I have included a Be Kind coloring page and would love to see your artwork – color it and post for all to see!
~ Laura Fulcher, Public Affairs Officer

Dawson County Traffic Delays

Press Release

PRESS RELEASE – Dawson County Government posted on social media that due to road work, citizens should expect delays through the end of the week:

 

GDOT will have lanes closed December 7 – December 10 on Hwy 400 North Bound – Carlisle Road to Dawson Forest Road and Hwy. 400 South Bound – Dawson Forest Road to Whitmire Drive.

 

Also, possible delays on Lumpkin Campground road at the new roundabout as crews finish paving.

Dawson County Thanks Veterans

Press Release
Veterans Day graphic with a star

PRESS RELEASE – In a post issued by Dawson County Government’s Facebook, the county remembers all those who made sacrifices to protect Americans and their freedoms.

Thank you to ALL the men, women and their families for your service to our country that provides the FREEDOMS we all enjoy today!

Please be sure to thank a veteran, not just today, but everyday.

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” – John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Dawson County Government Offices will be closed today in observance of Veterans Day!

To see a list of events for Veterans Day, please visit The Veterans Affairs of Dawson County’s Facebook page  for more information.

Free Community Drive Thru Thanksgiving Dinner

Community

Lee Castleberry Road Closure 11/8-11/22

News
**LEE CASTLEBERRY ROAD CLOSURE
MONDAY NOVEMBER, 8, 2021 – MONDAY, NOVEMBER 22, 2021***
There will be a HARD CLOSURE at the end of Lee Castleberry Road starting MONDAY, NOVEMBER 8 – MONDAY, NOVEMBER 22, 2021 as crews work to install sanitary sewer and finish pouring concrete for the roundabout.
LOCAL TRAFFIC ONLY starting at the intersection of Lee Castleberry Road/Stacie Lane & Shade Tree Road. Local traffic WILL NOT be able to access Lumpkin Campground Road past the hard closure. There will be no truck turn around past the intersection of Lee Castleberry Road/Stacie Lane & Shade Tree Road.
DETOURS to Lumpkin Campground Road will be in place via Whitmire Drive or Jot Em Down Road.

DCSO HEAT Deputies Bring Home Awards

Community, News
We are extremely proud of Deputies Provost and Amoling, DCSO’s Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic (HEAT) Deputies funded by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (GOHS).
DCSO was awarded the HEAT Grant in October of 2020, more than 3 months into the GOHS fiscal year, but that didn’t stop our DCSO HEAT Deputies from giving it their all and bringing home some well-deserved awards.
Deputy Provost (pictured left):
• GOHS Appalachian Trail Traffic Enforcement Network (ATTEN) Deputy of the Year
• Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Bronze Award: 25-49 DUI Arrests
• MADD Drug Recognition Expert White Pin: 25-49 DRE Evaluations
Deputy Amoling (pictured right):
• Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Silver Award: 50-99 DUI Arrests
• GOHS Appalachian Trail Traffic Enforcement Network (ATTEN) Deputy of the Year

33rd Annual Lake Lanier Shore Sweep

Community, Press Release
People cleaning up Lake Lanier

DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – Dawson County is preparing for the 33rd annual Lake Lanier Shore Sweep to take place this Saturday, on Sept. 25, from 8 a.m. to 1p.m.

The Shore Sweep, which is put on by Lake Lanier Association, is expected to help collect and properly dispose of tons of trash.

In fact, “over 32 years of Shore Sweep cleanups have removed 2.16 million pounds of trash and debris from Lake Lanier’s shorelines”, according to Lake Lanier Association.

This year, there are 13 locations spread across Forsyth, Gwinnett, Hall and Dawson Counties, where the shore sweep will be taking place.

Dawson County sites are located at Toto Creek and War Hill Park.

Billy Thurmond, Chairman for the Dawson County Commissioners, spoke about the importance of the event at the last Commissioners meeting held last week.

“This is something that we have helped with every year for as long as I can remember, trying to clean up the shore of Lake Lanier,” Thurmond said.

Thurmond said that this year he spoke with Lake Lanier Association President John Barker about allowing an extra dumpster to be put at the Toto Creek site for easier disposal of trash for volunteers.

“Normally they have to bring all the trash they get from [Toto creek] to War Hill Park. It makes more sense to put an extra bin there when they pick it up,” Thurmond said.

Thurmond addressed the board to see if there would be any issues or if they could move forward with the request as he said he believed that cleaning up is a good thing.

Fellow Commissioner Sharon Fausett enthusiastically agreed and said, “lets help them and not hinder them.”

For a full list a clean-up sites, visit the Lake Lanier Association website and click here to register to be a part of the 33rd annual Lake Lanier Shore Sweep.

Etowah Water and Sewer Authority vote to replace water main line

News
Main Sign at Etowah Water and Sewer Authority

DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – The Etowah Water and Sewer Authority voted to replace the water main line on SR136 from Toto Creek Bridge to Chestatee Bridge and approved a lift station for Dawson Forrest Road.

Brooke Anderson, the General Manager of the Etowah Water and Sewer Authority, said that there were two projects already in place to do some repairs on the lines at Toto Creek Bridge and at Chestatee Bridge. However, the gap between the bridges on Price Road is presenting some concern.

“We didn’t really think there was an issue but here in the last few months, we have had a couple of main breaks on that section and it is starting to cause some problems,” Anderson said.

They intend to now combine this project with the current bridge replacement project.

Approximately 25,000 feet of pipe will be replaced during this project, and they approved $200,000 for the total cost of the project.

Anderson explained that many things can cause this problem to occur such as material deterioration, but the main goal is to provide a solution.

“We try to be proactive when an area becomes chronic in breaks, that way we can eliminate that issue,” Anderson said.

Another topic voted on was the Lift Station for Dawson Forrest Road.

This project would consist of two parts – an 18-inch gravity sewer and a lift station.

The total cost for both parts of the project is estimated to be around $700,750, but the cost for the lift station alone is around $390,000.

Anderson commented it could take several months to go through the procurement process of getting the project underway, and a vote was needed now if they wanted to move forward on the lift station.

“By October 1 of this year, pipe prices will have risen by 30% and lead time on pipes are up to nine months,” Anderson said.

Anderson explained that one of the overlying issues that has come up in the last year and a half is severe supply chain issues. In order to make sure they are moving forward with projects, they are having to predict and be proactive when it comes to projects or issues that arise.

 

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