November 25, 2015
By: Jimmy Joines
The Eastman City Council met Monday, Nov. 23, 2015 for a regularly scheduled meeting.
City Manager Bea Edge announced in her City Manager’s Report that the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) is planning to host an informational meeting concerning the proposed Roundabout for Griffin St at Legion Dr. on Monday, Dec. 14, 2015. However, no time has been determined for the meeting. Time to be announced at a later date.
Business Owner, Freddie Dwozan, appeared before Council during the public comment time, inquiring as to whether the roundabout is a GDOT or a City project. Councilman Milton Johnson assured that it is solely a City project and not a GDOT project.
Dwozan has said in past meetings that as a business owner involved in some of the properties that may be affected, and a concerned member of the public, he has concerns about the roundabout and if it is the correct choice for the location. Dwozan has also, on several occasions, challenged the Council to be good stewards of the taxpayer’s money.
In other, non-routine, actions by the council, Manager Bea Edge informed council that the City had received only one bid for Workers Compensation insurance and it was from the Georgia Municipal Association for $68,858.00. A $2785.00 increase from last year. Council voted unanimously to accept the bid.
The Occupational license tax will remain unchanged for 2016. Councilman Johnson proposed cutting the restaurant serving alcohol tax in half, from $3000 to $1500, in order to promote new start-up restaurants, but could not garner support. Councilman Bobby Sly did comment that it would be worthwhile to bring up the idea at a later date.
Council approved plans for the annual Martin Luther King parade to be held on Jan. 18, 2016 but no time was mentioned.
Edge reported it was time to renew the contract for the City Auditor. The contract is for a three year period. Edge said that Frank Irwin is the current auditor and has been for many years. Edge said that the last time bids for the contract were solicited, three years ago, they only received two bids. No bids were solicited this year and Edge told council that this was a professional service and that bids were not required, but City Attorney Rita Llop corrected the statement saying that the City was not required to accept the lowest bid.
The annual City Christmas Luncheon was set for Dec. 21, 2015 at 12:00pm.
Council heard a request from Edge for two street lights to be installed. One on 7th Ave and one on Karen Dr. Both requests were approved.
City Attorney Rita Llop addressed an action taken by Council at the last meeting where it was approved to give the Dodge Historical Society a contribution on an annual basis. Llop told the Council she was concerned about doing it automatically on an annual basis since it would encumber future councils. She recommended that Council change the action to require all entities requesting donations to have to do so each and every year. Council voted to change the action as suggested by the Attorney.
There were a few other items addressed by council and the video of the entire meeting is below for your convenience. Click on the video to watch.