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Hoschton qualifying is Jan. 8-10

Qualifying for the two vacated Hoschton City Council seats will take place this week.

The city will hold qualifying for the empty mayor and council seat on Jan. 8-10. During a special meeting Christmas week, the council approved moving the qualifying dates, which had previously been set for February (no qualifying will be held in February).

Qualifying begins Jan. 8 at 9 a.m. and will last through Jan. 10 at 4:30 p.m.

Fees are $27 for the mayor's seat and $18 for the council seat.

Those wishing to qualify may do so at Hoschton City Hall.

The special election to fill the two seats — which were vacated by former mayor Theresa Kenerly and councilman Jim Cleveland — will be held March 24. Both unexpired terms run through Dec. 2021.

The last day to register to vote for that special election is Feb. 24.


Also at its Dec. 23 meeting, the council:

•approved purchasing a flow meter for $3,952.

•approved the scope and contract for consulting services with Clark Patterson Lee.

•held a short closed session with no action following.

NGHS, Anthem reach contract agreement

Northeast Georgia Health System (NGHS) and Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield have announced an agreement on a new contract that covers the care NGHS provides to Anthem commercial (employer-sponsored) health plan members.

The new multi-year agreement restores in-network access for patients at all NGHS locations – including all Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGMC) hospitals, Northeast Georgia Physicians Group offices, The Heart Center of NGMC practices, Urgent Care centers and more, according to Steve McNeilly, Vice President of Managed Care at NGHS. “Negotiations are complex and we recognize that they are often frustrating to members. We appreciate the support and patience of our community," McNeilly added.

“We are happy to resume our partnership with NGHS in a new agreement that will drive quality, affordability and accessibility for those we serve,” said Pam Stahl, President of Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield. “We value the relationships we have with the providers in our network, which are absolutely critical to creating options for our consumers and fulfilling our mission of improving the lives of the people in the communities we serve.”

Patients can visit www.nghs.com/anthem or call the Patient Information Line at 770-691-3588 for more information and answers to frequently asked questions. Patients can also call the number on the back of their Anthem insurance card for further assistance.

“We look forward to providing patients with the care they deserve through this renewed agreement with Anthem,” said Carol Burrell, president and CEO of NGHS. “For 68 years, NGHS has grown as Northeast Georgia has grown, and partnerships like this are integral to that success. Our goal is always to maintain fair agreements like this that provide our patients with the coverage they need and ensure they have high-quality health care close to home.”

Townhomes, commercial project planned

A large mixed use development — with townhomes, detached residences and commercial aspects — is planned in Braselton.

Developers filed a Development of Regional Impact submission on Dec. 27 for the property located at 1187 Hwy. 124, which is located in Barrow County.

Manor Restorations, LLC, plans 147 detached residential units, 153 townhomes and plans to reserve three acres for commercial use.

Developers plan to seek a rezoning for the property, according to the DRI.

Flowery Branch Rd. bridge closed Jan. 6

The Flowery Branch Rd. bridge over I-85 will be closed for six months as construction crews demolish and replace the bridge. The project is part of the I-85 widening.

"Flowery Branch Road will be closed to thru traffic from Apple Grove Rd. to Lilly Stem Dr.," according to a Georgia Department of Transportation news release. "Temporary signage will divert northbound traffic on Flowery Branch Rd. to Spout Springs Rd. and southbound traffic to Braselton Hwy."

Flowery Branch Rd. bridge is the final bridge replacement in the I-85 widening, phase 1 project, the first Major Mobility Investment Program project to break ground.

The project adds 26 new lane miles by widening both directions of I-85 from two to three lanes between I-985 in Gwinnett County and Hwy. 53 in Jackson County and replaces three I-85 overpass bridges (Spout Springs Rd., Jesse Cronic Rd. and Flowery Branch Rd.). All three structures are over 50 years old.

Weeks to run for Hoschton mayor

Hope Weeks recently announced that she will be a candidate for Mayor of the City of Hoschton.  

Weeks has served on the Hoschton City Council since 2018.  

 “I’m very excited about the opportunity to run for mayor," Weeks said. "I’ve been on council for almost two years and while on council my focus has been on making sure the city is moving in the right direction through initiatives such as hiring a financial consultant to oversee the city’s accounting and organizing cleanup of the local park by the depot.

“This is a pivotal and exciting time for our city.  We expect a lot of changes to our community over the next few years and I want to work to be sure Hoschton is ready by updating our charter, ordinances and policies and providing oversight to major projects such as upgrades to our wastewater treatment plant, stormwater improvements and cemetery cleanup.  We have a bright future and as Mayor, I will work with our staff, council and citizens to ensure we meet the challenges along the way.”

Weeks has a background in local government and accounting.  

The mayoral election will be held in conjunction with the Presidential Preference Primary on March 24. Qualifying for the election opens Wednesday, Jan. 8 (see related story).

Construction set to begin soon on senior living community

Mansions Senior Living's 130-unit senior independent living community planned in Braselton will begin construction in the first quarter of 2020 after receiving zoning approval in 2019.

Located near the intersection of Thompson Mill Rd. and Hwy. 211 next to Chateau Elan, the community will include one and two-bedroom 55-and-older independent living apartments and cottages.

All-inclusive rent for the apartments will begin at $2,600 per month and will include a wide-range of amenities and services such as spacious apartments and cottage homes with full-size washers and dryers, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, three chef-prepared meals daily, all utilities and internet, curated activities, scheduled housekeeping, wellness programs, transportation and more.

For more information on the new development, contact Melva Noakes at 770-757-9677.