- AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN ACT OF 2021: On March 11, 2021, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act Of 2021 into law. This is a 1.9 Trillion Dollar spending package. 65.1 Billion Dollars is provided in direct aid to counties. I have read estimates that Gordon County may be entitled to receive several million dollars. We are diligently studying this new law and waiting for guidance from the U.S. Treasury Department to determine the allotment for Gordon County, the permissible uses, administrative requirements for record keeping and reporting.
SIGNIFICANT PROJECTS AND ACTIVITY
- COVID-19: The Covid-19 task force met on March 9, 2021. There is less testing taking place now so the number of confirmed cases may not be the best measure of active cases. So, looking at hospitalizations, Advent Health reported 6 active cases on March 9 compared to 16 cases on February 23. Looking further back, Advent Health had 40 Covid positive patients on January 12.
- JUDICIAL BUILDING CONSTRUCTION: Construction continues on or ahead of schedule. County staff has been working on needs for Furniture, Fixtures and Equipment.
- EMERGENCY RADIO COVERAGE: Proposals from prospective vendors are due March 24 at 2 p.m. for a new radio system provided a s a service.
- ELECTIONS: The ESPLOST referendum for the public school systems in the county ends tonight at 7 p.m.
- JUDICIARY: The Superior Court will resume Jury Trials on Monday March 22.Gordon County has been working with the Superior Court to provide a safe environment for jury selection and trials.
- BROOKSHIRE PARK: Gordon County continues to pursue a DNR grant to match SPLOST funds for renovations to this park.
- HAZARD MITIGATION PLAN UPDATE: EMA continues to lead a 5 year update to the County Hazard Mitigation plan as part of our emergency preparedness.
- JOHNSON LAKE ROAD REALIGNMENT: Buc-ee’s is nearing completion of the Johnson Lake Road realignment. This project includes installation of a traffic light at the intersection of Johnson Lake, Belwood and Union Grove roads but, we still do not have a date of expected installation.
- CALHOUN AND GORDON COUNTY MEETING: Paul Worley, Mayor Palmer and I met yesterday for an informal discussion of general topics of common interest.
- JUVENILE COURT BUILDING: Building and Grounds Director, Jeff Champion, and I looked at the “Adjust” building on Newtown Road to determine feasibility of conversion of that space into the temporary (permanent?) home of the Juvenile Court during renovation of the main courthouse which will start in 2022 upon completion of the Judicial Building project. The Adjust building has 7,000 square feet of space.
- OLD CHEROKEE GROCERY: The purchase of the 2.08 acres by Gordon County closed last week as scheduled and approved by resolution of the Board of Commissioners.
- RECREATION AGREEMENT: I have met with County School Superintendent, Dr. Fraker, and School Board attorney, Elinor Portivent, regarding a recreation agreement to allow the School District to make and fund improvements to the baseball field at Sonoraville that will benefit high school baseball and the public. More details will follow.
- HAZARD MIIGATION PLAN: EMA continues to lead a 5 year update to the County Hazard Mitigation Plan as part of our emergency preparedness.
- BROADBAND INITIATIVE: I am meeting with Comcast next week to resume discussions about plans to bring broadband access to un-served areas of the county. In addition, I am scheduled to attend an online Broadband Deployment Initiative technical workshop next Wednesday.