Monday, October 05, 2015

Oconee County Issued A Permit For LED Sign On SR 316 At McNutt Creek; Two Other Sign Applications Pending

One On Mars Hill Road

Oconee County issued a permit for an 8 foot by 12 foot LED sign at SR 316 and McNutt Creek Road Sept. 29 and is processing applications for two additional large LED signs, one at the Oconee Connector and SR Loop 10 and the other on Mars Hill Road just north of Barber Creek Drive.

A small sign on the property on the northwest corner of SR 316 and McNutt Creek Road will be removed, and the large replacement sign will be just beyond the 10-foot setback from the state right of way for SR 316.

The 1.9-acre lot is owned by Nona and Mike Thornton of Watkinsville and contains a 5,000-square-foot showroom and warehouse built in 1996. Terminix Pest Control Services Bogart Branch is listed on the web as the tenant.

The new sign will have a single pole and will tower 35 feet above the ground. The plans show the sign as two-sided.

The sign will be operated by USA Outdoor, with an Athens post office box address. Lou Ferrando is listed as the principal. The sign is valued at $35,000.

Connector And Loop

The LED sign being proposed for the Oconee Connector and SR Loop 10 is on a triangular piece of property of less than a half acre in size where Jennings Mill Road is stubbed off at the Connector. Just across SR Loop 10 is Epps Bridge Centre.

The parcel is owned by E.A. Development LLC with a mailing address of 1500 Langford Medical Drive, which is the address of the Ellis Pain Center in the Three Sixteen Professional Quarter.

The proposed sign would be 7 feet by 14 feet in size and would be 40 feet above ground level but 20 feet above the road grade. The Oconee Connector is elevated at that point to pass over SR Loop 10.

LED Sign Proposed For Here

The plans submitted to Oconee County Code Enforcement on Aug. 21 with the permit application show a two-sided sign on a single pole.

The sign is valued at $116,134 and would be operated by Adams Outdoor of Roswell.

Mars Hill And Old Mars Hill

The application for the sign on Mars Hill Road opposite Old Mars Mill Road was submitted on Aug. 11 by USA Outdoor, with an Athens post office box address.

The LED sign requested in the application would be 8 feet by 12 feet in size and stand on a single pole 35 feet about ground level. The two-sided sign would be 20 feet above Mars Hill Road, now being rebuilt.

The sign would sit on a sliver of land that was part of Daniells Bridge Road before that road was re-designed to intersect at a right angle with Mars Hill Road when the Oconee Connector was built in 1999 and 2000.

The 1.8-acre parcel, for which the sliver forms a tail, is owned by Paul Keller, Susanne Chastain and JJMB LLC. Athens dentist James McDonald is agent for JJMB.

The sign is valued at $35,000, according to the application.

Residential Neighbors

The Mars Hill Road sign would sit in front of a 14-acre parcel stretching from Mars Hill Road to Daniells Bridge Road that currently is undeveloped.

It also would be near the Barber Creek Business Park and the residential area off Barber Creek Drive behind the business park.

Across Mars Hill Road from the proposed sign are residences on Mars Hill Road, on Old Mars Hill Road, and on Hollow Creek Drive.

Oconee County Board of Commissioners Chairman Melvin Davis had proposed that the county reconnect Old Mars Hill Road to Mars Hill Road opposite Barber Creek Drive to facilitate development along Old Mars Hill Road.

At the Board of Commissioners meeting on Aug. 29, the commissioners turned back that proposal.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

Oconee County Animal Control Board To Discuss Long List Of Issues At Meeting Wednesday Night

Foster Program On List

The Oconee County Animal Control Advisory Board, meeting on Wednesday evening, will address a full slate of issues, including tethering and hoarding of animals, the status of the foster program, changes to the county’s Animal Control Ordinance, and the status of the shelter facility.

The Advisory Board also will discuss the ordinances passed by the Board of Commissioners creating the Advisory Board and consider changes to its bylaws.

Friday, October 02, 2015

Citizen Files Ethics Complaint Against Oconee County Commission Chairman Over Old Mars Hill Road Proposal

Forwarded To Special Master

Oconee County Attorney Daniel Haygood has referred to Special Master James C. Warnes an ethics complaint that Sarah Bell has filed against Oconee County Board of Commissioners Chairman Melvin Davis.

Bell contends that Davis violated at least eight sections of the county’s ethics code by “using taxpayer money to pay an employee and to prepare and purchase plans” for the reconnection of Old Mars Hill Road to Mars Hill Road proper “as a special favor for one citizen.”

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Oconee County Reports Major Spills At Its Calls Creek Plant In September And In July

Adds To Long List

Oconee County late yesterday informed the Georgia Environmental Protection Division of yet another problem with the operation of its Calls Creek wastewater treatment facility.

From 5 to 8 a.m. on Sept. 25 the plant released an estimated 50,000 gallons of discharge containing total suspended solids that exceeded the permitted level, according to the county’s report.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Oconee County Commissioners Let Proposal For Reconnecting Old Mars Hill Road Die Without Discussion

No Citizen Response Allowed

The Oconee County Board of Commissioners tonight let die without comment the proposal to reconnect Old Mars Hill Road with Mars Hill Road proper.

Board of Commissioners Chairman Melvin Davis, who initiated the redesign of the roadway to allow for the connection, brought the proposal before the other commissioners, but none of them wanted to go forward with it.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Adoptions Increased 159 Percent Since Oconee County Animal Control Began Foster Program

More Animals Kept Alive

In Fiscal Year 2013, the year before the Oconee County Animal Control Department began its foster program, it euthanized 1.4 animals for every animal it was able to adopt out.

In Fiscal Year 2015, the first full year of operation of the adoption program, Animal Control reversed the ratio, adopting out 1.8 animals for every one it euthanized.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Oconee County Utility Department Director Offers Support For Local Citizen Group’s Effort At Stream Monitoring

Answers Citizen Questions

Wayne Haynie, director of the Oconee County Utility Department, told the 25 people who turned out on Thursday night at the Oconee County Library to discuss water quality in county streams that he wants to partner with them.

It was the first time a county official has met with the public to discuss sewer issues since serious problems with the county’s sewerage treatment plants were revealed in late May, and Haynie used the opportunity to present the image of a Utility Department that is responding to those problems.