By REBECCA HAZEN
Jamey Blevins, of Blevins Construction Management, gave an update on the historical courthouse restoration project to the commissioners during the Dade County Board of Commissioners meeting on Thursday, April 7.
Blevins noted that the first bid process has been completed. Request for proposals were sent out for mechanical, plumbing, and electrical.
The commissioners approved the bids of Reeve Heating and Air for $169,028, Tri-State Enterprise for $46,935, and Lawson Electric for $112,680.
“Mechanical is way left field of what we had budgeted,” Blevins noted. “The flip side is that Lawson came in significantly lower than our electric budget. So, the net effect on the budget is relatively small. I am comfortable with our budget.”
It was noted that the mechanical expenses could be paid for with American Rescue Plan funds, as an option. Financial Officer Don Townsend said that the second half of their allotted funds is expected to come in May.
Also, during the meeting Alex Case spoke to the commissioners about purchasing a new generator and automatic transfer switch for the Justice Building.
“We have an issue when we lose power over there. We have about 90 people over there,” Case said.
Case recommended the bid from Stowers Cat for $76,163 for the generator and $20,174 for the switch, for a total of $96, 337. It was noted that the equipment from Stowers Cat has a longer, 10-year warranty.
The commissioners approved the bids.
There was a first reading of the proposed ordinance 05-05-22, the second amendment ordinance, which is to prohibit the use of county resources to enforce gun restriction or gun accessory laws in violation of state laws.
“I have worked on this for about a year with a lot of help from [Attorney] Robin Rogers. We have seen a lot out of Ukraine in the last six weeks, those people were out there practicing with plywood guns to learn how to protect themselves. If that were to happen here in America, we would be armed,” Commissioner Lamar Lowery said.
“I think the majority of the county would be behind this,” County Executive Ted Rumley said.
The commissioners also approved an intergovernmental agreement to provide the softball and baseball field at the Dade County Sports Complex for use by the Middle School softball team in the fall and the Middle School baseball team in the spring. The Board of Education will pay $5,000 to the county each year that the contract is in place. The fee for the current 2022 seasons is $4,000.
The commissioners approved the appointments of Leisa Cagle, and George Williams to the Dade County Industrial Development Authority board, to replace Peter Cervelli and Larry Case.
There needs to be a replacement for Cervelli on the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission Board of Directors. Rumley asked the commissioners to help look for someone to fill that spot.
The commissioners also approved the reappointment of Donna Street to the Dade County Public Library Board of Trustees.
There were multiple proclamations approved for the month of April, including Child Abuse Prevention Month, National Donate Life Month, and National Arbor Day on April 29.
Lowery reported that there were 205 EMS calls, 290 fire department calls, and 2,391 police calls for the month of March.
Lowery also noted that he recently toured Murphy Hollow Road.
“They have done a lot of work on that road to get ready to pave. It is one of those roads that when the interstate is backed up, these trucks have found it on the GPS,” Lowery said.
Lowery noted that a fiber optic line was being run on Sand Mountain, and someone cut the line looking for copper.
“That is a big setback and cost for the telephone company. If anyone knows anything about this, let us know,” Lowery said.
Commissioner Phillip Hartline reported that recreation baseball and soccer have started at the Sports Complex. There will be a girls softball tournament on April 29 and 30, and 15 teams have already signed up.
Hartline also noted that there were 44 electrical permits in March.
Commissioner Robert Goff reported that the SPLOST intake, $264,312, was down about $6,000 from the prior month, but he also noted that it is the best March they have had in a while.
Commissioner Melissa C. Bradford reported that there were 195 road work orders for the month of March. Bradford also reminded citizens that Tire Amnesty Day is Saturday, May 7.
Rumley reported that he has received some questions about the county’s bridges.
“Our county bridges are inspected every two years. They give us an itemized note of anything that needed to be repaired. There is nothing to worry about right now, our bridges are all good,” Rumley said.
Rumley also noted that work on the third storm shelter site in the Davis community will start next week.
Laura Beth Cunningham, Dade County 4-H Educator, reported that there were three District Project Achievement first place winners: Braxton Wood, Carrigan Davison and Liam Davison.
Cunningham noted that 13 students registered for the chick-to-chicken project, with a lot of those participating for the first time.
Sarah Dyer announced that there would be a new Greater Gardener Series starting on April 26 at 6 p.m. at the Dade County Ag. Center. April 22 is the deadline to register. Meeting topics will include vegetable gardening, fruit tree management and canning and food preservation.
George Williams, Chair of the Alliance for Dade, reported that there are 105 investors, and they are currently working on signing renewals.
Williams said that the Career Fair at the high school was a success, and they are already beginning to plan a fair for next year.
“We had great comments from the companies. The students were respectful, and they had good comments,” Williams said.
Williams also noted that the next Lunch and Learn event will be on May 5 and will feature speakers Jeff Mullis and Mike Cameron.
Audrey Clark with the Bank of Dade informed the community that the Bank is sponsoring a free shred day on Saturday, May 14, from 9 a.m. to noon. This will provide an opportunity for citizens to discard papers. People are asked to bring no more than five boxes of papers.
Citizens are encouraged to visit the Commission meeting room in the Administrative Building to view pictures drawn by Dade County Elementary and Dade Middle School students, for Child Abuse Awareness Month.
Townsend presented the financial report. The general fund balance as of March 31 was $2,515,987. There was $1,041,517.040 in revenue for the month of February. $631,106.77 was budgeted for the month. Expenses for the month were $889,284.39, and $972,285.31 was budgeted.
The next Dade County Board of Commissioners meeting will be May 5.