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Jefferson's Kevin Jacobs bound for Buford
Just six weeks after his Lady Dragons won the state Class A basketball
championship, head coach Kevin Jacobs is headed down Interstate
85 and across Region 8-A to assume the head coaching post at
Buford. The Buford school board voted to hire Jacobs Monday evening,
but the coach said he didnít make up his mind about the
job until late Monday night.
Panthers Kubiak, Birdette qualify for state meet
Jackson County qualified two members of its track and field team
for next week's Georgia Olympics during this week's Region 8-AAA
meet at home.
Neighboorhood News ..
Ila Festival set for Sat.
The Ila Festival 2001 will be held Saturday, April 28, from 9
a.m. to 4 p.m. in Ila.
The theme of the festival is "Promoting Unity in the Community."
Eagle's Nest Christian Fellowship will host the event, which
will be located at the ballfield adjacent to the Mt. Hermon Cemetery
across from Ila Elementary School.
Uncovering the past Family in Shiloh Community works
to restore old cemetery
For many years, a clump of trees and weeds in an otherwise open
field was all that marked an old run-down cemetery near the corner
of Faye Carey Road and Hwy. 174 in the Shiloh Community.
Planned burn gets out of control
When Chuck Brown, of 151 Beaver Dam Road, Commerce, started a
fire last week to burn off some of the logs from his cleared
land, he soon found he could not control the blaze.
BJC Authority honors Barnett, Griffeth
The Banks-Jackson-Commerce Medical Center Authority honored its
two "emeritus" members during a brief meeting Monday
The authority presented resolutions honoring William Barnett,
who served on the board from 1989 until just recently, and Dr.
Joe L. Griffeth, who served from 1979 to 2000.
The Jackson Herald
Telephone: (706) 367-5233
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NEWS / ADVERTISING
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MainStreet Newspapers, Inc.
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Members of the Jackson County Comprehensive High School
Jazz 2 band are shown warming up for a band festival held last
week at the school. Shown are senior Daniel Waters (front) and
sophomore Ashley Minor (right).
Lanier Road landfill
going back before planning board
A request to locate a landfill on Lanier Road will go back before
the Jackson County Planning Commission when it meets at 7 p.m.
Thursday at the Administrative Building in Jefferson.
The planning commission was asked by the board of commissioners
to take another look at the request from Earth Resources for
a conditional use permit to locate a construction and demolition
landfill on 94.84 acres on Lanier Road that is zoned I-2. The
planning commission had earlier recommended denial of the request,
but it was asked to look at the request again because one of
its reasons for recommending denial was the impact on Lanier
Road. The developer has reportedly agreed that the entrance will
not be on that road.
The BOC has tabled the matter at the request of the developer.
County attorney Daniel Haygood said that the applicant had asked
that the request be tabled until further discussions on the conditions
and surcharge paid to the county are discussed.
As for a request to locate a landfill in the South Jackson area,
it will be another month before it goes to the planning commission.
A request from CKS Properties for an I-2 zoning for 195.08 acres
on Cedar Grove Church Road for a landfill had been earlier slated
for this week's meeting, but has been postponed to the May meeting.
The request must first go to the Northeast Georgia Regional Development
Center to review the possible impact on the region and state.
A committee of the RDC will meet at 2 p.m. Monday, April 30,
at the center in Athens to review the request. The office is
located at 305 Research Drive in Athens.
The regional review is required by state law and calls for the
RDC to declare if the project is "in the best interest of
the state" or that "it is not in the best interest
of the state." The review is based on "potential impacts
on environmental and natural resources, the economy of the region,
public facilities of the region, availability of affordable housing
and potential inter-jurisdictional conflicts."
The report will be forwarded to the planning commission to review
before taking action on the request. The May meeting of the planning
commission will be at 7 p.m. on Thursday, May 24, in the Administrative
Building in Jefferson.
The partners of CKS include: Kelly Henderson, Winder, Scott Appling,
Winder, and H. Carson Smith IV, Flowery Branch. Plans call for
one building, 15 feet high, to be located on the property, along
with six parking places.
Henderson is also one of the applicants for another landfill
request that was denied by the BOC last year. He had applied
for a rezoning for 117 acres on Hwy. 53 from PCFD to I-2 to locate
a construction and demolition landfill. Henderson later filed
a lawsuit against the county over the request being denied and
a court date has been set for 9 a.m. on Friday, April 27, at
the Jackson County courthouse.
JEFFERSON -- The Jackson County Area Chamber
of Commerce honored one of Georgia's premiere nurseries, the
chairman of the Industrial Development Authority, the chairman
of the Jackson County Water and Sewerage Authority and the owners
of Jackson County's two newspapers at its annual banquet Saturday
The presentation of the four annual awards honoring the business
of the year, volunteer of the year, citizen of the year and the
William H. Booth Award highlighted the evening, which also featured
a talk by Ninth District Rep. Nathan Deal.
GardenSmith Greenhouse and Nursery, owned by Denise Smith, was
declared "business of the year," for its contributions
not just to the chamber, but to the county as a whole. President
Pepe Cummings pointed out that the nursery "is the most
diverse vegetable producer in the United States. In 1999, the
business grew 169 varieties of tomatoes and 100 peppers. As a
result, people from all over the country make GardenSmith a destination,"
Smith hosted the sixth annual Herbal Faire at the Commerce Civic
Center, serves as a guest on Walter Reeves' radio program, and
provides plants for a number of school and other organizations.
Scott Martin was named "volunteer of the year" for
his work as head of the chamber's Economic Development Committee
for the past four years. Martin also chairs the IDA, is past
president of the Commerce Kiwanis Club and coaches T-ball. He
works for Jackson EMC.
Cummings called Martin "the volunteer that every other volunteer
looks to to actually do the work."
For his effort heading the Jackson County Water and Sewerage
Authority, Alex Bryan won the "citizen of the year"
award. Cummings noted that not only has Bryan led the county's
efforts to take "clean, pure water" throughout the
county, but he was also one of the leaders in wresting control
of the sewage system last year from a private company, one of
whose principals recently was sentenced to jail.
The chamber presented its William H. Booth Award to husband-wife
team of Herman and Helen Buffington, who purchased The Jackson
Herald in 1965 and now own MainStreet Newspapers Inc., a four-newspaper
group with more than 18,000 weekly circulation and a modern job
Cummings noted that Mrs. Buffington "was booted out of the
first county commission meeting she attended," but in the
long haul, led local officials to become accustomed to press
The chamber also presented awards to past president Jim Shaw
and to outgoing directors Ray Vaughn, Pat Bell, Larry White and
Deal's keynote address began with a light look at privacy issues
made relevant by technology. He suggested that the mapping of
the human genome could lead to DNA profiles of Americans being
misused by business.
"Why should your life insurance company have a copy of your
gene profile?" he asked. He gave the audience a "paranoia
test," asking how many believed companies were selling their
telephone numbers, if they used a paper shredder and if they
thought someone might be listening in on their cellular phone
"Some of those concerns you have are concerns the federal
government is wrestling with," he said.
Deal, a Republican, also pushed President George W. Bush's $1.6
trillion tax cut plan, saying that government "has reversed
the course of the financial future of the country in the past
six or seven years," from generating a deficit to generating
That change, he said, "places us in a stronger economic
and strategic posture in the world community," which he
said a few years earlier "wondered if we could get control"
of the federal deficit.
"The good news is we have rounded the bend," Deal said.
Sewer line change
proposal taken to water board
It seems nothing is easy about the Jackson County Water and Sewerage
Authority's first sewer project.
Last Thursday night, acting at the request of the county commissioners
and with the endorsement of its engineers, the authority changed
part of the route of its sewer line headed to Mulberry Plantation.
The route change covers approximately 5,000 feet of sewer line
along the Middle Oconee River, moving it out of the wetlands
and onto the bank of the river which is exactly where the
engineers had projected it for the original route.
Commissioners Sammy Thomason and Stacey Britt appeared at an
authority work session Thursday night an hour before the authority's
regular meeting to explain why they thought the line should be
"I was under the understanding that you could serve some
of this area (pointing to a map) easier," Thomason stated.
"Also, I assumed that because Bob (engineer Bob Sutton)
originally planned it that way, he must have had a reason."
The commissioners' concern was twofold; first, they wanted to
make sure the line could serve the intersection of Georgia highways
11 and 124 an area likely to see commercial development
and they wanted to reduce the amount of wetlands affected.
But the exact route is still not a sure thing. Superintendent
Jerry Waddell pointed out that it will be the first week in May
before the engineering company's wetlands expert walks over the
route to determine exactly which parts are wetlands and which
parts are not.
Still, changing the route made the authority uneasy.
"We had a hearing and agreed to look at an alternate route,"
noted Larry Joe Wood. "We came back with an alternate route,
now we're going back."
"If we switch over, are we going to create another public
nightmare?" asked member Elton Collins.
"You'll find out when you walk in the door at 7 p.m.,"
But there was no outcry at the regular meeting when the change
was proposed and voted upon. Alma Schell and Susan Phillips,
who live further up the proposed route of the line, each reiterated
their objections to the route and even proposed an alternate
route along Georgia 124 in the vicinity of their properties,
but no one spoke against the latest change.
Both have thus far refused to allow surveyors on their property.
Bryan suggested to each that the authority could make no decision
on the potential of their proposed route without being able to
get on their property to survey, but neither offered to allow
"It's not fair to what our responsibilities are to give
you an answer without looking at the whole thing," Bryan
The change in routes is likely to create at least one more opponent
to the project, a property owner whose line was affected by the
change. It will also delay construction of the line, which has
a Jan. 1 deadline imposed by the county's contract with Mulberry
Plantation. A schedule presented by engineer Mary Kay Jackson
of Metcalf & Eddy projects the project being completed in
three phases, the first by mid-December, the second by mid-January
and the final phase by the end of March 2002. Developer Doug
Elam's response remains to be seen, but Bryan hinted that there
are issues with Elam that provide some room for negotiating.
"As our engineers, are you telling us this is what we should
do?" Wood asked during the work session.
"Yes," said Jackson.
Asked the same question, Waddell also answered affirmatively,
pointing out that the change avoids some wetlands and that no
one was "lied to" in regard to the route.
"We told people all along that we didn't know where the
line would be until we got the surveyors in there," Waddell
In the meeting, conducted in the State Courtroom, the motion
to change the pipeline layout was made, seconded and approved
with no explanation of what was involved, other than noting that
the engineers recommended it. Collins made the motion, Keith
Ariail provided a second and the vote was taken with no discussion.
The motion also included a request that the authority try to
get "dry easements" from some of the property owners.
Such easements would make service of the affected areas easier
in the future when they are developed.
In other business:
·the authority received its audit, and CPA Duane Schlareth
said it contained a "clean opinion" of authority operations.
·the authority approved a change order to an existing
contract to provide water service to the first phase of Forest
Lakes subdivision. The service was requested by homeowners there
who complained about the quality and safety of the private water
system. The authority will provide meters at the end of the public
road, to which residents on private roads may connect if they're
willing to run lines from the meters to their residences.
·the authority authorized Waddell and attorney Julius
Hulsey to make a proposal to Hoschton to operate its sewer system,
a proposal requested by Hoschton. In addition, the authority
will look into a way to treat Hoschton's wastes at its Texfi
plant while Hoschton upgrades its facilities.
·the authority voted to pursue a community development
block grant to provide water to residents of Creek Nation Road,
Harold Phillips Road and part of Skelton Road. Officially, Jackson
County is the applicant, but the $500,000 grant would go toward
the $773,570 cost of the project.
·the authority agreed to Waddell's request that they pass
on to developers the authority's cost of reviewing subdivision
plans and to develop criteria for having pre-approved contractors'
lists for installing water and sewer lines in subdivisions.
·the authority approved three quit-claim deeds on the
abandoned Jefferson-Texfi line for Jeffco Investment Properties,
Pot Luck Properties Ltd. Partnership and one other owner. The
move stems from the county's condemnation of the Texfi plant.
·the authority agreed to serve Hurricane Shoals Park with
water. Maysville currently serves the park, but does not wish
to incur the expense of replacing lines following road work near
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Auto Parts &
Retail Stores & Outlets
lining up SPLOST support
The three school systems of Jackson County made their first stop
Friday toward lining up support for a five-year extension of
the special purpose local option sales tax for education.
Jefferson superintendent James Jackson and Jackson County superintendent
Andy Byers spoke on the virtues of the sales tax to the board
of directors of the Jackson County Area Chamber of Commerce.
Jackson took the lead, reminding the board that four years earlier,
the three school systems got together to pass a SPLOST referendum.
"With regard to the Jefferson School System, that is the
best thing that could have possibly happened," Jackson said.
Jefferson used its share of the proceeds to renovate its elementary
and high schools and is building a new middle school, all without
increasing property taxes.
The Jackson, Jefferson and Commerce boards of education are scheduled
to meet jointly May 14 to approve a resolution calling for a
September vote for five more years and up to $50 million
in proceeds of sales taxes.
Jackson called the sales tax "a wonderful opportunity for
all three systems to keep up with the growth we're experiencing
without going to the (property) taxpayers."
Byers pointed out that the $25 million estimate for the current
education SPLOST, which began April 1, 1997, turned out to be
conservative. The result is The districts also eased tensions
among the three school systems.
"It is certainly nice for the three boards of education
to be at peace with each other," commented Commerce Mayor
Charles Hardy, whom Byers praised for his leadership in helping
get the Commerce-Jackson County district established. "That
certainly wasn't the case before. Now we present a united front."
Vice president Charles Blair agreed.
"As we look back in history, I think that's going to be
one of the finest things to happen in Jackson County," he
The Jackson County Health Department reviewed a $745,364 budget
for fiscal year 2002 when it met last week, but no action was
taken due to a lack of a quorum.
The proposed budget is up six percent over the previous budget
of $706,364. It includes $110,560 in county funds, which is up
considerably over the $64,842 the county contributed to the health
department last year. The county had cut back on the funds it
allocated for the department in recent years due to a surplus
in health funds. County health officials say these extra funds
have now been depleted. The county didn't contribute any money
to the health department in 1999 and 2000.
In other business at the meeting, Dr. Claude Burnette spoke on
recent statistics on teen pregnancy rates for Northeast Georgia
and the state.
"Teen pregnancy in our district is down dramatically,"
Also at the meeting, it was reported that Shad Slocum has been
hired to serve in the environmental health department. He will
begin his duties May 1 and will replace John Hinson.
On a related matter, the health board discussed a third position
for the health department - a manager for the staff. There are
now two staff members. Roger Cooper is the other staff member
and he is close to retirement, it was reported.
The new position would be funded with fees that were increased
last year. The increases were made in part to fund a third position
due to the work load of the department.
Commission Rejects Rezoning For Rental Housing Units
Monday night was not a good night to bring
issues before the Commerce Planning Commission relating to rental
The planning panel rejected three rezoning requests that could
have resulted in the construction of 30 duplexes (60 housing
units) and turned down a request for a rezoning on the bypass
that could have resulted in the construction of 100 units of
But the planning panel's actions amount to recommendations only;
the final determination on the requests will be made by the Commerce
City Council at 6:30 p.m. May 14, when it meets at the Commerce
For the second meeting in a row, the panel voted to recommend
against a proposal by Doug Dorsey, who represented the trustees
of the Wheeler Estate, in regard to property on Stark Street.
Dorsey sought annexation of the half of a 4.14-acre tract that
is in Jackson County (the other half is already in the city)
and an R-3 (multi-family housing) zoning so his son Eric could
develop 10 duplexes (20 rental units) on the site. The planning
commission had voted against the proposal at its March meeting,
only to have the city council send the matter back for reconsideration.
"I don't know why we should allow rental units in a neighborhood
of single-family homes," observed member Greg Perry, who
made the motion to deny the request.
In a related move, the planning commission voted to deny a request
by Barbara Davis, who represented Vivian Haynes, who lives on
Haynes owns a tract adjacent to the Wheeler tract and proposed