Thursday, May 29, 2014

Results Of Oconee County Republican Ballot Question Likely To Make Redistricting More Difficult

Best Available Estimate

The Oconee County Republican Party Executive Committee’s attempt to assist in reuniting Oconee County in a single district in the Georgia House of Representatives is likely to have the reverse effect.

Less than half of the Republican voters in the May 20 primary said they want to change the county representation in the Georgia House so that the county has a single representative.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Oconee County Withholding Financial Information Until After First Public Hearing On Fiscal Year 2015 Budget

SPLOST, $12 Million Loan On Agenda

Oconee County will hold its first public hearing on the Fiscal Year 2015 budget tomorrow night, but county Finance Director Wes Geddings said on Friday no details of the budget will be released until after the public hearing is held.

Geddings refused to release a summary of budget requests from elected officials and county department heads or the amount of money he is projecting that will be available to meet those requests.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Oconee County Commissioners Agree On SPLOST 2015 Project List Totaling $47 Million

Matches Revenue Projections

In a session lasting little more than an hour, the Oconee County Board of Commissioners last night all but wrapped up its discussion of the 2015 Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax referendum to be on the ballot in November.

The Commissioners agreed to include $47.3 million in projects in the list that will go before voters, who will have to decide if they want to continue the 1 percent sales tax to fund the items.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Plans Submitted for Fast Food Restaurant Freddy’s In Oconee County’s Epps Bridge Centre

Next To Cheddar’s

Epps Bridge Centre will get its first fast food restaurant if preliminary site plans filed with the Oconee County Planning Department on April 25 are realized.

TGC Development Group of Wichita, Kan., submitted plans for a Freddy’s Frozen Custard And Steakburgers to be located just west of the sign and entranceway to the shopping center off Epps Bridge Parkway.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Incumbent Commissioners Hale And Daniell Receive Most Votes In Oconee County Republican Primary, But Hale Forced Into Runoff

Broun Wins Locally

Board of Commissioners incumbents Margaret Hale and John Daniell bested their challengers in the Oconee County Republican primary today, though Hale did not get a majority of votes in the three-way race and will meet challenger Bubber Wilkes in the runoff election on July 22.

Rep. Paul Broun, seeking the Republican nomination for the open U.S. Senate seat, led the field in his home Oconee County, with 31.1 percent of the vote. David Perdue got 26.6 percent of the vote, and Jack Kingston got 21.4 percent.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Oconee County Attorney Offers Advice To Development Authority And Others On State Open Meetings Law

Two Memos Sent

Oconee County County Clerk Jane Greathouse sent a memo to the county’s Industrial Development Authority and other county advisory boards and committees on May 8 requesting that they hold executive sessions as “a rare occurrence” and only after contacting County Attorney Daniel Haygood.

Rick Waller, chairman of the county’s Industrial Development Authority, discussed the memo as part of his chair’s report at the IDA’s regular meeting on May 12, saying the IDA had not “stumped our toes as far as we know, but we want to be sure that we don’t” in the future.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Voters Given Chance To Express Views On Oconee County’s Split Between Georgia House Districts

On Republican Ballot

Oconee County Representatives Regina Quick and Chuck Williams should have a better sense on Tuesday evening of how at least a segment of the county’s voters feels about the boundaries of their districts in the Georgia House of Representatives.

That is when the results of a nonbinding question the Oconee County Republican Party placed on the ballot for the Republican primary will be announced.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Oconee County Farm Being Readied For Submission Under New Federal Farmland Protection Program

Ludwig Farm Top Rated

The Athens Land Trust is processing paperwork to submit the Oconee County farm of Carole Ludwig for protection following an announcement earlier this month that the federal government is accepting applications under the new Agricultural Conservation Easement Program.

Ludwig’s livestock farm,1510 Old Farmington Road in the south of the county, was selected by the Farmland Preservation Ranking Committee late last year after the Board of Commissioners took over review responsibility for the county’s long-successful farmland protection program.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Final 2015 SPLOST Meeting Shortest Of Four Held By Oconee County Board Of Commissioners

Reallocated 2009 Funds Explained

Only four people spoke Monday night at the final public hearing on the 2015 Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax referendum, held in the courthouse in Watkinsville.

The meeting covered little new ground and was the shortest of the four hearings held since January on projects to be funded by the 1 percent sales tax should voters approve it in November.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Bishop House Rezone Request Shows Complexity Of Oconee County Liquor Issue

Traditional Southern Fare

At a time when county officials are considering a referendum to allow the sale of liquor by the drink to entice restaurants to the area, the city of Bishop is going in the opposite direction by considering a rezone request to convert a historic home into a restaurant that will not be allowed to sell even beer and wine.

The parallel actions show the complexity of decisions that could be before voters in November.

Citizens in the county’s four cities will vote in a referendum, if the Oconee County Board of Commissioners decides to put on the ballot, as is widely expected.