COMMISSIONERS APPROVE PAVING
OF JACKSON LAKE ROAD—From Hwy 16 to Hwy 212 only
Commissioners voted 4-1 with Pennamon against to Establish a ‘Designated Fund
Balance’ for Road Improvements. Comm.
Bernard moved to establish the fund in the amount $500,000 this year and $500,000 next
year. The County CFO
asked, “Is this a fund or a fund balance?”
Comm. Bernard said, “Yes, a fund balance.” Comm. Johnson added, “It’s a designated fund
balance” and 2nd the motion. Comm. Pennamon asked, “How can you designate funds if you don’t have
money?” Please note: The public had
never seen copy of this resolution before the meeting. This
resolution states that “surplus” money over and above 90 days of operating
money will be used for Road Improvements.
the Agenda Comments, a citizen reminded the
Commissioners that over $3 million of tax receipts were put into the General
Fund in 2007 that were for 2008 expenditures.
The citizen questioned if there was really a surplus and
brought up the fact that Atlanta
thought they had a surplus last year too only to find they were $60 million in
the red now. No one on the BOC seems to
recall that tax receipts all come in at the end of the previous year and are
operating funds for the entire current year.
in the meeting the Jackson
Lake Road Paving item on the agenda was addressed. Commissioner Bernard said the County Engineer
prepared 4 different project costs--$87K, $189K, $412K, and $1.6M. He wanted to know “which one we are going
with?” He said, “This is a health and
safety issue. This is an emergency. We just
created a road fund so now we can do this.”
Comm. Bernard made a motion--$187K to repair
very poor areas on Jackson Lake
Rd. this year and then increase to $412K in next
year’s budget. Comm. Johnson
2nds. Comm. Johnson said, “This is a
temporary quick repair.”
Pennamon asked if this would be taken out of SPLOST. (Remember this road is on the SPLOST list and
is being moved ahead. Taxpayers will all
pay for this road repair cost; it will come out of the General Fund.)
Comm. Johnson replied, “No, not until everything else on SPLOST is done
first. We have to do something because
the road is in bad shape. I ride it
every day.” Comm. Yarbrough then chimed in with “We have roads in the county that
are in worse shape. But this is a major
thorough-fare with lots of traffic.” Comm.
Yarbrough did mention County Line
Rd but said “It’s not got any through traffic.” Comm. Pennamon said, “This is a Political year—this is a
political road—Jackson Lake Rd. The only thing Jackson Lake Rd needs right now is
Bernard added, “We can use rest of the $500K in the fund to do County Line Rd. We’ll have $300K left.” Comm. Hill asked the CFO if this money exists. The CFO replied, “ NO. There can not be a cash transfer.” (Folks, the Commissioners don’t understand a
designated fund is much different than having FUNDS to use.) Even though there are no funds, Comm. Bernard was determined
this project would be done and stated, “THIS IS NOT a POLITICAL THING!” The
vote was to approve 3-2 with Johnson, Bernard, and Yarbrough approving.
At the end of the meeting a citizen made the following
comments. “My wife and I rode down Jackson
Lake Rd. The problem is the design of the road in
the first place. The condition of road is not nearly as bad County Line. I can’t believe Comm. Yarbrough voted to do Jackson Lake Rd.
and not County Line Rd.
which is much worse.”
Several people have attended BOC meetings and brought up
this same issue. County Line Rd is in need of repairs and
has been talked about for several years with nothing being done.
Remember, it’s still a few months before voting takes place
and anything can still happen. It always
does during an election year. It’s the
time our Commissioners become responsive to the citizens in their district.