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July 21, 2020 City Council Recap

Happy Wednesday! I hope everyone is doing well. Before getting into the recap I wanted to thank everyone who made the Back to School Bash / Drive-Thru a success this weekend! Over 300 backpacks, food and books given away. We had help from multiple community groups.

And also thank you all for tuning into the Zoom meetings. Although I am VERY tired of Zoom meetings, we definitely have better participation in them than the in person meetings.

Last night we had a special call meeting and the work session. A very long night but here is the recap:

Special Call Meeting:

New Business:

A. The Bid Award for repairing and repaving Mountain Village Court ($99,655) ended in a split vote. However, the Mayor broke the tie and the award was approved. This is the only road in the subdivision that was never repaved since the subdivision was built the early 1980's. It is the street I happen to live on and has been on the list to be repaved for years. This will be similar to the repaving projects recently completed in Pepperwood, Lucille, and Zachary Drive.

New Resolutions:

A. Resolution to Encourage the use of face coverings during COVID-19 was adopted. Due to recent action taken by the Governor to sue the City of Atlanta, we opted to encourage and not mandate face coverings.

B. Budget amendment resolution was adopted. Budget amendments were to cover the extra cost of the paving bid, it was about $4000 hire than the engineering estimate. And to cover the cost of cell phones for Council members Bryant and Monroe.

C. Resolution for open container exemption for Sweet Potato Cafe's Summer Harvest Dinner event was adopted. This allows the business to utilize the City's outdoor cafe permit for the event to be held on July 29th from 4-8pm and extend the normal alcohol service into their extended dining area within the public right-of-way / closed road.

Work Session:

Reading of Communication: Mayor Wheeler read and signed the Proclamation Establishing Annual Commemoration of Juneteenth.

Committee Discussion Items:

DDA / Economic Development: A presentation of the draft downtown master plan was given by the consultant, POND and Co. The draft master plan will be submitted by C.O.B. this Friday. It is tentatively slated to be approved by Council in mid August. Additionally, it will be used to apply for the rural zone tax credit. More information on the program can be found here. More information on the master plan can be found here.

New Business:

A. Refinancing the loan for City Hall was discussed. The refinancing would reduce annual interest rate from 4.26% to 2.56%, with an anticipated savings of $102,426.25 over the life of the remaining 10 years of the loan and reduce the annual payments by approximately $11,320.

B. Discussion was had on the intergovernmental agreement between the City and SMMA to provide GA Crime Information Center Monitoring Services after hours. Currently we have one employee who is on call 24-7 to answer these calls, which deal, as an example, with a suspect wanted in our jurisdiction that is apprehended elsewhere. There is no cost associated with the agreement.

C. Tennis and Basketball Court repairs were discussed. This is the 3rd time the City has put a bid out to have the courts repaired. Two bids were received, with the apparent low bid of $89,500 to Court Makers, Inc. The second bid was much higher, $169,900 with Signature Tennis Courts. Director Tavenner is researching to see why such a big difference in the costs. The courts to be repaired are Leila Mason Park basketball court and Medlock park basketball and tennis courts.

D. The bid award and agreement between NOVO Soultions and the City was discussed. They would provided a storm water system management and mapping software. This will help the City stay in compliance with the EPD.

E. Bid award and service agreement between Citywide Maintenance and the City was discussed. This would provide janitorial services to City Hall. Prior to the pandemic janitorial services were completed by public works. However, due to the increased cleaning requirements we are looking for a third party to provide the service.

New Ordinances and Resolutions

A. Ordinance 2020-09 to Amend Chapter 23 signs was discussed. Proposed changes would remove the maximum facade/wall sign of 40 square feet and replace it with wall signs not being larger than 10% of the facade/wall area. This would allow for larger signs on larger buildings, which has been an issue brought up by business owners in the past. The amendment would also establish regulations for awning signs, there is no language in the current code to regulate awning signs.

Disclaimer: This City Council Recap is taken from my personal notes and memories of the meeting. For the official minutes of the meetings please visit the City web page.

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