2018-05-09 / Front Page

County approves proposed poultry operation permit


Rep. Gerald Greene, pictured with Commission Chair June Merritt and Mayor Anthony Howard, presented House Bicentennial Resolution at Monday’s county commission meeting. Rep. Gerald Greene, pictured with Commission Chair June Merritt and Mayor Anthony Howard, presented House Bicentennial Resolution at Monday’s county commission meeting. The Early County Board of Commissioners approved a recommendation from the Early County planning commission Monday to grant final permit approval for a poultry operation.

The proposed operation, consisting of eight broiler houses will be located on a 134.6 acre tract of land on the Damascus-Hilton Road, approximately a mile east of the Three Notch Road intersection.

Following a comment period during which several citizens expressed concerns over impact to surrounding properties and residents, the board approved the recommendation with Commissioner Taylor Bridges voting no.

The planning commission approved the permit application at their April 26 meeting. The applicant is Phong “Andy” Dao.

Minutes approved by the board included those from a special April 20 meeting at which the commissioners accepted an auction bid of $55,000 for two Dream Big Development LLC properties — the freezer locker and Sevola Jones house — on Magnolia Street. The properties were collateral for an AIM project loan.

The board also directed county attorney William Mills to determine payoff of the first lien on the Big Dream property — the “Totes” building — on Magnolia Street.

Bicentennial

Resolution

Representative Gerald Greene presented a resolution from the Georgia House of Representatives... “congratulating the citizens of Early County on their achievements and accomplishments as they celebrate Early County’s bicentennial.”

During his report to the board, Administrator Spencer Mueller note the county had been notified by GDOT it was scheduled to receive funds from the “Low Impact Bridge Program” for replacement of bridges on Sowhatchee, First Kolomoki, Spring Creek and Colomokee Creek roads.

Mueller also told the commissioners the county has the opportunity to fast track a project for the DOT to replace the airport lighting.

The $800,000 project for which the airport had qualified was not scheduled until several years later. “It’s important that we have the opportunity to go forward with this project.” Mueller noted. “If we wait, the airport may not qualify at a later date, or the funds might not be available.”

The county’s total cost of the project will be less than $60,000.

He also discussed the purchase of a trailer for hauling waste to the Campbellton, Fla. landfill and needed repair at the transfer station. The cost of both would be shared 50/50 with the city.

The board approved a resolution authorizing a contract with the Athens, Ga., law firm Blasingame, Burch, Garrard, and Ashley to handle opioid litigation.

Mills noted the opioid litigation, unlike the tobacco settlement is not a class action suit and any settlement monies would go directly to the county, not to the state to be disbursed. It was also noted the litigation is against the drug companies and distributors, not physicians.

In other action the board reappointed Mike Newberry and Dee Grist to six-year terms on the Development authority and noted two other needed appointments, one to replace Jay Palmer who resigned from the Tax Assessors board and one for the DFACS board.

Budget Meetings

The county held its first of a series of budget meeting Monday afternoon. Additional budget meetings are scheduled for 5 p.m. on the following dates: May 14, May 21, June 4 and June 14. The proposed budget is scheduled to be adopted at 6 p.m. June 14.

Executive meeting

The commissioners voted to go into executive session to discuss pending litigation and negotiations for the purchase or disposition of property.

Upon returning to ope session, the board voted to authorize the administrator to negotiate the purchase of undisclosed real estate.

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