2017 October Regular Council Meeting Minutes

posted in: 2017, Council Meeting Minutes | 0

Download PDF

TOWN OF TALLULAH FALLS

STATE OF GEORGIA

REGULAR MEETING

OCTOBER 5, 2017

MINUTES

 

The regular monthly meeting for October 5, 2017 of the City Council of Tallulah Falls, Georgia was called to order at 6:00 p.m. by Mayor Teri Dobbs.

  • Mayor Teri Dobbs
  • Councilperson Deb Goatcher
  • Councilperson Bill Coldren
  • Councilperson Larry Hamilton
  • Attorney Allyn Stockton
  • Fire Chief Mike Early
  • Town Administrator/Clerk Patti Polk
OTHERS PRESENT:

See attached sign-in list. (for attachments, contact Town Clerk)

 

Mayor Dobbs welcomed everyone to the meeting and asked Reverend Turpen to open the meeting with prayer.

A Motion was made by Councilperson Goatcher to accept the minutes of the September 7, 2017 Regular City Council Meeting and Executive Session.  The Motion was seconded by Councilperson Coldren and passed unanimously.

A Motion was made by Councilperson Hamilton to accept the agenda for the October 5, 2017 Regular City Council Meeting.  The Motion was seconded by Councilperson Goatcher and passed unanimously.

 

.

 

Attorney Report:

Town Attorney, Allyn Stockton, discussed the process for adopting the codified ordinances.  After the first reading is documented, a call for second reading will require legal post in the newspaper due to zoning for the purpose of a public hearing.

A Motion was made by Councilperson Goatcher to approve the first reading of ordinances.  The Motion was seconded by Councilperson Coldren and passed unanimously.

 

Fire Report:

Attached hereto and made a part hereof.  (for attachments, contact Town Clerk)

Fire Chief Mike Early gave an update on the service/inspection and ladder/pump tests for the fire trucks and asked for approval to use budgeted funds to pay for these services.

A Motion was made by Councilperson Coldren to authorize the use of budgeted funds to pay for fire truck services.  The Motion was seconded by Councilperson Hamilton and passed unanimously.

 

Police Report:

Attached hereto and made a part hereof.  (for attachments, contact Town Clerk)

Water Report:

Attached hereto and made a part hereof.  (for attachments, contact Town Clerk)

Mayor Dobbs announced the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) pre-application was submitted by the Georgia Mountain Regional Commission (GMRC) on behalf of the Town but additional information is required before it can move to a full application.  The “NEEDS MORE INFORMATION” finding by ARC is based on an unresolved service delivery agreement for Rabun County making Tallulah Falls ineligible for application as well as not being eligible for the drinking water exemption.  The next full application date is October 13, 2017.  The Town’s pre-application will remain on file in an active status meaning another pre-application does not have to be filed.

Mayor Dobbs gave an update on the water system evaluation being conducted by Rindt McDuff Associates (RMA).  She stated RMA is prepared to give their recommendations and called for a Special Meeting on October 19, 2017 at 6 p.m. for them to present on the existing water system.  The meeting will be open to the public with legal notice posted in the newspaper.

Mayor Dobbs noted the water valve for emergency services had been completed and tested with the City of Demorest.  The contract for emergency water services has been negotiated at a rate of $3 per thousand gallons, with a 10% late fee and agreed upon rate increases after 1.5 million gallons are used.

A Motion was made by Councilperson Hamilton to accept the water agreement with the City of Demorest for emergency services.  The Motion was seconded by Councilperson Goatcher and passed unanimously.

 

Financial Report:

Attached hereto and made a part hereof.  (for attachments, contact Town Clerk)

 

Street Report:

 

Public Safety Report:

 

Mayor’s Comments:

Mayor Dobbs commented on the recent hurricane storm and how the community came together at Town Hall to cook, recharge their electronics and provide work stations for citizens.  She recognized Fire Chief Mike Early and asked him to discuss the need for a mass notification system for future emergency purposes to keep town residents and business owners abreast of updates.

Chief Early discussed using one of two options, Code Red or DialMyCalls.  Before the Council votes, Chief Early will confirm with Rabun County if Tallulah Falls has the ability to utilize their Code Red Alert System and report at the November 2017 Council Meeting.

Mike Early, representing M & K Design, demonstrated the Tallulahfallsga.gov web site.  Several points of interest were made and navigation to Council Minutes and featured events in the area for tourists.

 

Mayor Dobbs noted the Sign Ordinance Committee met on September 28, 2017.  The meeting was very informative and the overall concensus was to enforce the current sign ordinances.  Several follow up items would include partnering with the State Park and the Department of Transportation.

 

Mayor Dobbs reminded residents of the upcoming November 2017 election and introduced all the qualifying candidates including Deb Goatcher, Larry Hamilton, Paul Marsteller, and Carol Nelms.  Early voting will be October 16 – November 3rd, Monday – Friday, 8:30am – 5:00pm at the voting office in Clayton.  The November 7th election will be held at Tallulah Falls Town Hall, 7:00am – 7:00pm.

 

Mayor Dobbs recognized Dan Hayes and asked him to give an update on the Habersham Bicentennial.

Mr. Hayes gave an overview of marketing and promotions being done for the event.  Each city is also being asked to develop a brochure for distribution at public events.  Effective 2018, the Big Red Apple Festival in Cornelia will be held on a different date so it does not compete with the Tallulah Falls Founder’s Day event.

 

Mayor Dobbs gave an update on Founder’s Day; the fundraising event for the volunteer fire department on October 7, 2017.  Tickets for BBQ are being pre-sold at Town Hall for $10, t-shirts are $15.

 

Mayor Dobbs discussed the upcoming public meeting for establishing the vision for Tallulah Falls.  Carrie Barnes, who works for EMC of Georgia as a community development consultant, agreed to facilitate the meeting at no cost to the Town. The tentative date is scheduled for November 9, 2017 at 6 p.m.

Because November 9, 2017 falls on the day of the regularly scheduled Council Meeting, the Council Meeting will need to be moved to November 16, 2017 to accommodate the Community Vision Meeting

A Motion was made by Councilperson Hamilton to move the Council Meeting to November 16, 2017 at 6 p.m.  The Motion was seconded by Councilperson Coldren and passed unanimously.

 

Mayor Dobbs asked for the Council’s approval for Water Superintendent, Bill Goatcher, to attend the Georgia Rural Water Association conference being held in Helen, Georgia, October 23rd – 25th.

A Motion was made by Councilperson Hamilton to have a representative to attend the GRWA Conference.  The Motion was seconded by Councilperson Coldren and passed unanimously.

 

Mayor Dobbs announced the Twin Rivers Challenge, hosted by Tallulah Falls School, will be held on October 28, 2017.

 

Open Floor:

There was lengthy conversation among residents and between residents and Council.  Several questions were addressed regarding the water system project including the plan for an “end game,” water withdrawal permitting process, use of the Demorest system, involvement of Georgia Power and the Environmental Protection Division (EPD), funding, the possibility of a floating intake on the lake, and the timetable for which all this would occur.

In summary, Mayor Dobbs responded by outlining the process and September 15th deadline with EPD.  If EPD grants the permit, Tallulah Falls intends to sell water to surrounding communities.  Funding will come from grants, SPLOST, low interest loans, and possibly revenue bonds.  There is no intention of raising property taxes to offset the expense of the water project(s).  The business plan has to make sense and make money before proceeding.

 

Mayor Dobbs called for an Executive Session at 7:47 p.m. for the Council to discuss real estate.

 

A Motion was made by Councilperson Hamilton to go into executive session for the purpose of discussing real estate.  The Motion was seconded by Councilperson Coldren and passed unanimously.

 

Mayor Dobbs called the regular Council Meeting back to order at 8:19 p.m. and announced no actions were taken.

 

Councilperson Coldren made the Motion to adjourn; seconded by Councilperson Hamilton.  The Motion passed unanimously.

 

The meeting adjourned at 8:21 p.m.