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County Hears Bids on Airport Extension with Vote Expected Next Week

The County Commissioners are readjusting to their schedule this week. After rearranging some of the schedules over the past month, they had a regular meeting this past Tuesday morning, July 11th and then returned this Thursday morning, July 13th with a new work session. They will have another regular meeting scheduled this upcoming Tuesday, July 18th. They have been hard at work pouring over business for the County before the summer comes to an end.

One of the main items of business that the commissioners heard this past Thursday morning was a follow up on the Callaway Airport Runaway Extension/ Rehabilitation Bid. At the meeting this past Tuesday, the Commissioner’s accepted the allocation of federal funds to complete the project. In total, the project will cost a little over 5 million dollars with 90% coming from federal funds, 5% from the State, and 5% from local sources (a $319,600 local cost). At the work session, Dexter Wells gave further information on this and presented two bids for the project.

The Callaway Airport is 743 acres. It is a level three airport with two runways and is jointly owned by the County and the City. There are plans for major upgrades at the facility. These plans include a 900 foot extension on one runway and extensive maintenance to the other. There will also be some replaced lighting, signing movements/ updates, and the clearing of some trees. For an airport that hosts 17,000 flights a year, this is a big improvement projects. Two companies have placed bids, Peed Bros. for the amount of $4,360,241.05 for the bulk of the project and TCA Electrical Contractors for the amount of $260,348.50 for the electrical upgrades. There is an allowed 209 days from notice to proceeding, scheduling the project to hopefully begin around the end of the year and finish around next summer.

The next item on the agenda dealt with a preliminary plat on Thrash Road near Mountville. There have been early talks with developers for placing housing in that area but the Commissioners are concerned with how the roads would work. There are options to build a cut through road behind the existing properties or allow for the options of two properties to share driveways. These talks have just been preliminary and have many more discussion to go through before any real progress/decisions are made.

There were two requests that morning from two different departments for lifting of some hiring freezes. First, the Building, Planning, and Zoning requested a lift on a hiring freeze to replace a Code Enforcement officer that they have just lost. Additionally, the Drug and Lab Administrator position has become available after a departure and that department is seeking a hiring freeze lift to replace that position. Both of these positions are budgeted.

The board next heard on the Georgia Initiative for Community Housing, a new project that is looking for support. Essentially, this is just a way of saying that the County supports the movement and the program as it begins to pick up and build steam in helping find housing for those that need it. The board will hear more on this in future meetings.

The last thing that the Commissioners discussed was the agreement of the intergovernmental SPLOST V vote. All three cities and the county will vote to put this item on the ballot for the November 7th election this year. Both the counties and all of the cities have met and discussed the various projects they would like to complete on this next SPLOST. This items and all of the other are vote eligible (with the exception of the plat) at this upcoming Tuesday morning meet, July 18th, a the government center at 9 am.