- SPLOST AND LOST: SPLOST and LOST revenue shown in the report dated July 31, 2021 reflect collections reported for June 2021. For that period, SPLOST collections were $994,769 which is a $147,016.40 (17.34%) increase over the same period last year. LOST collections were $630,507.80 which is a $93,255.18 (17.36%) increase over the same period last year.
- FISCAL YEAR 2020-2021 SPLOST AND LOST: Total SPLOST collections for F/Y ending June 30, 2021 were $1,640,990.62 higher than the previous year. LOST was also up in the amount of $1,045,829.01. Both funds increased by about 17% last year over the year before. However, the increases in collections are still being outpaced by construction costs which seem to be up at least 30%.
- AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN ACT OF 2021: Jason Brown, Chad Steward and I met with Al Leonard for an extensive planning session on July 23.
- DIGEST CONSOLIDATIONS: The County continues to review property value consolidations. It appears that the likely date for the BOC to set the millage rate will be at the regular meeting on September 21, 2021. We expect the timetable to be as follows:
Sat. Sept. 11 – run 5 year history in Calhoun Times
Monday, Sept 13 – Gordon County Schools set their millage rate
Tues, Sept 21 – Gordon County sets their millage rate
SIGNIFICANT PROJECTS AND ACTIVITY
- DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER: The DPH issued the 15th amendment to its administrative order on Covid exposure on August 2, 2021. The most relevant provisions of this order to County operations are:
#1. – on page 4 – definition of exposure – (within 6 feet for 15 minutes or more);
#5.- on page 4 – Critical Infrastructure – exposed workers may continue to work if: asymptomatic and wear masks while on duty;
#8 on page – 5 – Asymptomatic vaccinated workers not required to quarantine following exposure if no fever, cough chills, loss of taste/smell etc.
- JUDICIAL BUILDING CONSTRUCTION: Phase One construction on the Courthouse Annex renovation and addition continues to proceed well. Phase Two consists of renovations to the Main Courthouse and is set to begin next February or March. Extensive inflation in the costs of construction materials is impacting the budget. However, we still expect the completion of both phases without needing to borrow any money. Cost savings on already completed SPLOST projects, interest earnings on SPLOST funds and budget reimbursements in the first round of Covid funds are estimated to offset increases in construction costs.
- PUBLIC WORKS: Newtown Loop Road between has been repaired and is open. Harbor Road remains closed while we are waiting on bridge materials to arrive. Paving is proceeding so long as the spreader quits breaking down.
- ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT: I attended the Development Authority meeting last week. Gordon County continues to experience the highest growth rate for industrial warehousing ever. I gave a response to the Regional Commission on a DRI (Developmental Regional Impact study) on a proposed 1,200,000 sq. foot retail warehouse and distribution facility on Salem Road. I expressed concerns over the impact of 1,900 vehicles per day exiting Salem Road to Highway 41 and its impact on the flight path to the airport. I also recommended the community needs to have discussions with Calhoun and GDOT for comprehensive planning for the impact of over 7,000,000 sq. ft. of warehousing expected in the Highway 41 and Union Grove Road area.
- BROADBAND: Gordon County is seeking to partner with a major service provider to bring broadband to virtually all un-served homes. This would encompass over 5,000 locations. There are State and Federal grants to assist with the costs. In addition, a primary permissible use of ARPA funding is providing broadband to un-served areas. Therefore, we think this can be accomplished using Federal money and without spending local tax revenue on the project. Gordon County is currently publicly advertising a request for proposals seeking a provider to work with us to make this happen. We hope to have a recommendation to the BOC in September.
- NEW HEALTH DEPARTMENT: The Board of Health has asked Gordon County to pave its back parking lot. This had been left out of the scope of work initially to save costs. The Public Works Director estimates the cost at $25,000. We have sufficient funds remaining in the project account to cover the costs.
- In addition, Keith King provided assistance on the following:
- Met with Chief Deputy Paris, Major Bedford, Captain Henson, Lt. Roberts and Sgt Rogers concerning Courthouse Security on the new Courthouse.
- Evaluated software for citizen engagement and departmental services.
- Met with Ben Carter and evaluated storage needs for Elections and Probate and also visited the 1960s courthouse in Dalton to gain a perspective of what our courthouse is made up of.
- Began construction on the Newtown project. Everything is going well and should be finished by October 2021
- Met with the Finance Committee and Momon Construction to review current cost and future projections.
- Continued to assist with ADP and assisted in other areas as needed.