By REBECCA HAZEN
The Industrial Development Authority met with Spencer Hogg, Project Manager of the Northwest Georgia Joint Development Authority, during the IDA meeting on Monday, July 18. It was noted that either Hogg or President and CEO Jeff Mullis would attend each IDA meeting in the future, in an effort to work together more going forward.
“We want to be more intertwined with them, and we want to work hand in hand on projects,” Executive Director Evan Stone said. “I am glad that they are willing to be able to help us.”
“We have been proud to work closely with Evan Stone, William Back, George Williams, and the team of county commissioners in Dade County. When it comes to economic development, it takes a team, and we’re blessed to have a good team,” Hogg said.
According to Hogg, there has been an uptick in RFIs (request for information) throughout the year. RFIs are requests from companies looking for property sites. Hogg also noted that the Northwest Georgia Joint Development Authority (JDA) is currently focusing on finding grant funds.
“We have been successful with that; we have crossed over $37 million so far in grants for our four counties this year. A lot of that came to Dade County through some broadband grants.
The JDA is also focusing on tourism this year and is continuing to work with their partners on the McLemore resort project.
“We think this will have a true regional impact in terms of tourists,” Hogg said.
Also, during the meeting the IDA also discussed a potential residential development. The IDA members have had two meetings with representatives from the engineering firms.
“They are still trying to get their due diligence done, as far as infrastructure, sewer, and water, but it seems like they are moving ahead with it. It’s still not been made public though. They have asked us to facilitate another meeting,” Stone said.
Bids have been received for the CHI Memorial building roof replacement project. Three bids came in, and the lowest bid was for $55,000. However, the IDA members estimated that the cost would be lower than that at last month’s meeting, and there is not enough room in the budget. The IDA members agreed to let Stone try to negotiate a lower price, and then try to amend the budget.
The IDA accepted the resignation of Sharon Moore, who held the vice-chair and treasurer positions. The IDA voted to approve Lisa Cagle as the new vice-chair and treasurer. George Williams was also voted in as the new secretary. Cantrell was previously the secretary before becoming the new Chair.
The IDA voted to approve Seth Houts, with the Bank of Dade, as a non-voting advisory committee member.
Chair James Cantrell also noted that, because there are new members to the IDA, he would like to see that all the members do a tour of the IDA’s properties.
“This way we have a better visual view of how the county is laid out. Everyone on the board would be more efficient when we’re talking about properties,” Cantrell said.
The IDA went into executive session to discuss a lease with Integer. After coming out of executive session, the IDA voted to allow Stone to negotiate a long-term lease with Integer.
The next IDA meeting will be Aug. 15.