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City Council  Regular Session - Monday June 13, 2011 at 5:30

 
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Since it's June, I should probably replace this turkey...

...maybe with a pic of the Mill?

 
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Creationists make it sound as though a 'theory' is something you dreamt up after being drunk all night.

Isaac Asimov
Underage drinking in Remerton
Saturday, 06 December 2008
(This story from last week seems to be getting a number of comments, so it's moved up the page.  Feel free to add you nickel's worth. ed.)

Everyone knows it goes on in "party towns" like Remerton.

Numerous  complaints have been received by the Remerton Police in recent weeks about local establishments serving underage persons.

ImageDuring an undercover operation Friday night bartenders at Flip Flops and Mulligan's were arrested on two counts each for serving underage drinkers.  An arrest was almost made at Milltown Groove, but the server was alerted to the presence of the undercover officer while in the process of serving, stopped, and a case couldn't be made.

Apparently, the underage patrons did not even have fake IDs in these cases.

Flip Flops is currently on probation for this violation of State as well as local law.  How many strikes before you're out?  The manager of Flip Flops who is also the owner of Milltown Groove posted on his Myspace page that he was also the manager of DT's Landing in North Georgia which was recently busted for underage and after hours drinking.

Image  Click here to check Monday's Valdosta Daily Times story about the arrests.  It includes a nice picture of Flip Flops, owned by Ace Amerson of "Girls Gone Wild" fame and managed by Heath Cox who also owns Milltown Groove.

 
City Council Regular Session - Outcome - Monday, 12/8/08
Friday, 05 December 2008
City of Remerton Regular Meeting Agenda
Monday, December 8, 2008 5:30 PM City Council Chambers

Welcome Guests
Pledge and Prayer - Prayer led by Councilman Stacks.

Establish Quorum of Council - All councilmembers were present.
Approval of minutes from Monday, November 10, 2008. - Approved with changes. 
Citizens To Be Heard - First up was Landon Lasseter, a technical manage for Mulligan's and Jac's Library.  He presented a compilation of 2-3:00 AM sales for the 5 members of the Remerton Bar Owner's Association. Unfortunately none of our councilmembers asked for a breakdwon of the percentage of sales to underage and minor drinkers.  An opportunity missed...

Next up was property owner Ashley Hill.  He presented pictures of what looked like an abandoned property on Plum Street.  He had been assured by City Manager Brian McDougal at past meetings that the owner would be contacted about cleanup.  Things have only gotten worse.

Reading of proposed ordinances:
1. Consideration regarding a second reading of an ordinance to amend and replace the alcohol regulations for the City of Remerton known and designated as Chapter 6 of the code of the City of Remerton; and for other purposes – Brad Folsom    (** The final revised regulations are available here at the CityofRemerton website. )  - 

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Passed!  Voting in the affirmative were Councilmembers Reggie Stacks, Lydia Day and  Bill Wetherington

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Voting in the negative were Councilmembers Sherry Wood and Ryan Gordon.

2. Consideration regarding a second reading of an ordinance to establish a new article regarding an identity theft prevention program to comply with federal regulations relating to red flags and identity theft; to provide for codification: to provide for severability; To provide for an adoption date; to provide an effective date; and for other purposed allowed by law - Brian - Passed unanimously.

3. Consideration regarding a second reading of a Joint Ordinance of the Lowndes County Board of Commissioners and the Mayors and Councils of the Cities of Valdosta, Hahira, Remerton, Lake Park and Dasher, Georgia continuing the Greater Lowndes Planning Commission (GLPC) – Brian - Passed unanimously.

4. Consideration regarding the first reading of an ordinance to create a new chapter of the code of ordinances for the City of Remerton, Georgia to be known and designated as“streets, sidewalks and public right of ways in the public interest and to provide for the issuance and regulation of Right-Of-Way permits –Brian - Read.

Old Business
1. Interviews of Attorneys and Residents that expressed an interest in serving on the City of Remerton Ethics Committee – Brian - Attorney Richard Coleman, Robert Horned and Sarah Flemming were unanimously approved as the first members of the Ethics Committee.
2. Interviews of residents expressing an interest in serving as our city representative on the Greater Lowndes Planning Commission (GLPC) - Brian - Former counciloman Scooter Hines was unanimously approved as Remerton's representative to the GLPC.

New Business
1. Financial Report – Lisa - We're not bankrupt yet!
2. Discussion regarding establishing the Alcohol License Fee Schedule for Liquor, Beer and Wine by the drink and related fees- Brian - The current fee schedule was left unchanged and will be revisited next year.
3. Discussion regarding our Calendar Year Work session meeting dates for Work session and Regular Council meetings – Lisa - We'll publish it when available.

Council Comments
EXECUTIVE SESSION
- Personnel - Lasted about an hour and thirty minutes.  There was no further action before adjourning.
Adjourn

Image Click here for the audio of this Council Session. (39 minutes)

 

Image  Click here for Matt Flumerfelt's coverage in the Valdosta Daily Times.

 

Image  Click here for WALB's coverage.

And here for WCTV's coverage.

 
Harassment and Intimidation of Public Officials?
Saturday, 06 December 2008

During the last few weeks of revising the Alcohol Ordinance of Remerton there have been several instances of what must be assumed to be attempts at harassment or intimidation.

Frequent phone calls at all hours of the day and night with no one on the line to the members of council who are not perceived to be "on the side" of some bars are the mildest form.

Among  other tactics have been the unfounded reports to the Department of Family and Children's Services and to the Lowndes County Fire Marshall.  These calls have be bragged about by a certain bar owner and reportedly  discussed by a student council member in class.

Direct actions have included setting fire to a foliage insulating blanket outside of a council member's residence and a group of young men kicking the garage door of of a council member, followed by a drive-by and mocking laughter while the occupants inspected the damage.

Is it time to call in the Georgia Bureau of Investigation?  Maybe...what do you think?

 
City Council Work Session for Dec. 1, 2008 - Outcome
Tuesday, 02 December 2008

City of Remerton Work Session
Monday, Dec. 1, 2008 @ 5:30 pm

(Council Members present were, Sherry Wood, Ryan Gordon and Lydia Day.  Bill Wetherington was recovering from surgery and Reggie Stacks was on his way back from an out-of-town business meeting.  Mayor Holsendolph presided.)

Welcome Guests -
CITIZENS TO BE HEARD-None
READING OF PROPOSED ORDINANCES:

1.  Consideration regarding a first reading of an ordinance to amend and replace the alcohol regulations for the City of Remerton known and designated as Chapter 6 of the code of the City of Remerton; and for other purposes- Brad Folsom - This was the biggie.  At the last Council Session it looked as if closing time would be backed off to 2:30 am and doors closed at three with only minimal food sales (if any) required. 

In the interim, and despite a campaign of harassment by persons known and unknown, a change of heart  occurred and three of five council members agreed to change last alcohol sales to 2:00 am with closing time set to 2:30 am.  Food sales minimum for non-Sunday establishments will be 30% phased in over the first three quarters of 2009. 

As expected, Council Members Wood and Gordon objected to the changes, but they were in the minority.

The second reading and vote is scheduled to happen on Monday, Dec. 8th.   For those of you who are not thrilled by Remerton becoming "Little Vegas" and hope these new ordinances will return some semblance of responsibility to the City, don't start celebrating yet.  As a City official remarked, "It ain't over 'til the fat lady sings."  There is sure to be more opposition between now and a final vote. 

If you are interested in student attitudes about alcohol and drugs take a look at the 2007 Core Survey conducted by VSU .
The statistics are enlightening.

2.  Discussion regarding a Second Reading of an ordinance to establish a new article regarding an identity theft prevention program to comply with federal regulations relating to red flags and identity theft; to provide for codification ; to provide for severability; to provide for an adoption date; to provide an effective date; and for other purposed allowed by law -Brian McDougal

3.  Discussion regarding a Second Reading of a Joint Ordinace of the Lowndes County Board of Commissioners and the Mayors and Councils of the Cities  of Valdsota, Hahira, Remerton, Lake Park and Dasher, Georgia continuing the Greater Lowndes Planning Commission ( GLPC)  -Brian McDougal 

PRESENTATION, PUBLIC HEARINGS AND UPDATES

1.  Interviews of attorneys and Residents that expressed an interest in serving on the City of Remerton, Ethics Committee - Brian McDougal- In attendance were attorney Richard Coleman, whose wife owns Southern Lamp & Shade on Baytree Place, former councilman  Scooter Hines, resident Robert Horne.  Sarah Flemming was not their due to illness and the other attorney, Kathleen Bahl was unable to attend.  The committee will be composed of three people, with one being an attorney.

2.  Update regarding the status of the Engineering Services being performed for the water looping and tie in-  Bill Kent- The project is on schedule for Valdosta water sometime in February of 2009 at which time the looping project will also get underway.

Eric Saunders, owner of the Remerton's largest water user, Charley O'Corley's, asked about water cost increases.  City Mgr. McDougal said an increase was possible.

3.  Update regarding the status of the Transportation Enhancement Grant for West Gordon Street-  Brian McDougal - Construction should start in February of 2009 and will be integrated with the water looping project.

4.  Remerton Downtown Development Authority Update- Jessica Freeman- Although the Georgia Department of Community Affairs was not impressed with Remerton's "downtown" at the last meeting, the DDA is going ahead and hiring a 20 hr/week manager for the project.

Feron Johns whose time is split between probation and the DDA is soliciting businesses for $150 donations to plant  trees on Baytree Place.  May we suggest Plastic Trees?  This will allow a dual-use capability including beautification and "public facilities" and may save some of the locals bushes. Wink

5.  Presentation by Rosanna Pounds, H & H Insurance Solutions, regarding
the renewal and rates for the City's Medical Insurance Policy with Principal Life-Brian McDougal 
- This item was struck from the agenda.  The official reason was that all the info wasn't in, yet.  The unofficial reason was that the new rates were in and there was a lot of static and resistance from city employees about large cost increases and benefit reductions.

OLD BUSINESS

1.  Discussion regarding an appointment to the Joint Greater Lowndes Planning - Names submitted include Steven Miller, son of former Councilman Richard Miller and Scooter Hines who was suggested by Council member Sherry Wood.

NEW BUSINESS

1.  Discussion regarding 2009 Budget Requests-  Brian McDougal

2.  Discussion regarding establishing the Alcohol License Fee Schedule for Liquor, Beer and Wine by the drink and related fees-  Brian McDougal 

3.  Discussion regarding our Calendar Year Work session meeting dates for Work Session and regular Council meetings-  Lisa Mashburn 

4.  Discussion of an ordinance to create a new chapter of the code of ordinances for the City of Remerton, Georgia to be known and designated as "streets, sidewalks and public right of ways in the public interest and to provide for the inssuance and regulation of Right-of-way permits-  Brian McDougal

5.  Discussion regarding suggestions for fencing requirements and possible Zoning Ordinance text amendments-  Brian McDougal - Since the City cannot prevent or stop destruction of property by folks crossing yards between our fine drinking establishments and residential areas the bureaucratic mindset naturally turns to putting the burden on those whose property is being damaged.  The Zoning code requires fences between commercial and residential areas.  The fences between Plum Street and Poplar are constantly under attack.  The solution?  Heavier duty fences.  But nothing that could hurt anyone like razor wire or electrification.  And in the spirit of our Federal Governments bailout programs they want to enter into "partnerships" with private companies to help pay for the sturdier fences. 

This item was referred to the Public Safety committee.  

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Chain link and a barbed wire top didn't help here on Dean Lane.


6.  Department Reports
 a.  City Clerk - Lisa Mashburn
 b.  Probation- Jessica Freeman
 c.  Police-  Chief Mike Terrell
 d.  Fire/Utilities/Public Works-  Ron Woods - Woods and the City crew have been fighting sewer line backups due mainly to the grease clogs which become a problem during the cold season.  He appealed to citizens to stop pouring oil and grease down their drains.  (Maybe someone could put up a facebook page to "Save Remerton's Sewers".  Think they'd get 1200 signatures from concerned students?)
 e.  City Manager- Brian McDougal- Renewal of Business licenses will be due by Jan. 31st, changed from Dec 31st.

Adjourn


Image Audio for Work Session, 12/01/2008

Image  The Valdosta Daily Times has two items in today's issue.  First is Matt Flumerfelt's coverage of Monday's meeting.

Next is an unsigned editorial titled "Our Opinion: A good nights sleep for all" .

 
Remerton in the Newspaper
Tuesday, 02 December 2008

Image  The Valdosta Daily Times has two items in today's issue.  First is Matt Flumerfelt's coverage of Monday's meeting.

Next is an unsigned editorial titled "Our Opinion: A good nights sleep for all" .

From the editorial: "Members of the Remerton City Council should keep one thing in mind when they make decisions: They were elected to represent the interests of the citizens — the men, women and children who call Remerton home — and they are responsible for creating the policies necessary to meet the needs of the community and most importantly, that they are properly enforced."

We wonder if Mayor Holsendolph, City Manager McDougal, and Council members Sherry Wood and Ryan Gordon had a good chuckle about that as they read the paper and had their morning coffee.  Or, are they texting and calling their "adviser" in Statesboro about damage control?

 
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