When the Homer mayor and city council take office in January 2022, they will get an increase in pay.
On Tuesday the Homer City Council approved the increases. Each council member will receive $100 per work session or meeting, while the mayor will make $150. The council also approved a $50 stipend for other meetings in which they represent the town of Homer. That total cannot be more than 12 without the approval of the mayor.
Presently, the mayor makes $50 per session and the council receives $35.
The mayor and town council seats will all be up for grabs in a 2021 election. Qualifying fees for mayor will be $35 and $25 for council.
Mayor Doug Cheek and the town council also discussed an increase in water tap fees, deposits and reconnect fees for water and garbage service. Most of the discussion was about the water tap fees which are currently $800.
Councilman James Dumas did a cost comparison with all surrounding counties, and he reported the average cost is $1,142.
The council discussed if the town would do the taps in-house or outsource the job. If the town goes in-house, it would pay for a city employee to get certified to do this work.
This was issue tabled until next month.
In other business at the meeting, the council:
•approved Jerry Payne as Mayor Pro-Tem
•expressed satisfaction with the resurfacing of four roads in the county. Those include Sullivan Drive, McCoy Bridge, Greasy Creek and Hill Street.
•discussed citizen complaints about the garbage service provided by Waste Management. Cheek will meet with officials from the company later this week.
•discussed the possibility of raising water rates.
•discussed the Evans Street well. It is currently offline while the city leaders wait for the parts to rebuild the meter. Once the work is finished, the EPD must approve it before it can go back online.
•discussed the removal of four fuel tanks. Cliff Hill presented some bids, and the council decided to take a look at them and discuss this next month. The bids ranged from $25,000 to $34,500, but the costs of some items in the bids were unclear.
•the council reappointed David Syfan as city attorney, Carol Ayers as municipal court clerk, Judge Hammond Law, judge for municipal court, Carol Ayers as Election Superintendent, and Tracey King and Ayers as Qualifying Officers.
•agreed to extend the loan from Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA). The money is part of the Water Improvement Project.