Madison County roads will get soon get a report card from a professional evaluator, who will then propose a plan for the most-cost efficient way to improve and maintain those roads.

County commissioners approved a $68,000 proposal Monday from Chris Dills of Neel-Schaffer, a civil engineering firm, to evaluate county roads and propose a road maintenance plan.

Commission chairman Todd Higdon said the plan was one of the most exciting things to come across the commission table in some time. Board members see it as a way to be efficient as they use sales tax dollars over the next five years. County voters recently approved a five-year, one-cent sales tax for county and city transportation improvements, with an anticipated $13 million in revenues for the county and municipalities.

Dills said that an overall road maintenance plan, instead of a piecemeal plan, can bring up the quality of roads in a quicker manner, with more road miles addressed, than simply focusing on asphalt resurfacing. He recently told commissioners it would take him about two-and-a-half months to complete the evaluation in Madison County.

NOISE ORDINANCE HELP

Also Monday, the commissioners approved a contract with Arpeggio to help the county implement a county noise ordinance.

Madison County commissioners have frequently heard from citizens around Georgia Renewable Power (GRP) in Colbert who say the sound from the plant is unbearable. They’ve been asked repeatedly to do something to help resolve the problem.

The ordinance won’t just address GRP. It will be a comprehensive plan to assess and address noise issues in the county.

“This development will be based on established noise ordinances deemed to have been successful,” the Arpeggio contract states.

The company will also hold a public meeting with the county for input from citizens. No date has been set. The total cost is $43,900 for ordinance development, modeling, monitoring and implementation guidance.

OTHER MATTERS

County code enforcement officer Christopher Roach was named the new head of the county planning department Monday. There was some question about whether the county building inspections office will be under Roach’s supervision. That matter will be addressed later.

Roach was also asked to evaluate requests for proposals for the county comprehensive land use plan.

The commissioners approved the installation of cameras at a variety of county properties to help document vandalism and other criminal acts and prosecute offenders.

The board approved a lease agreement with the county industrial authority for the use of the county-owned building at 94 Spring Lake Drive as an office and meeting space.

Jerry Willoughby was appointed to the county recreation board. Nathan Owens and Rebecca Scott were reappointed to the county elections board. Kenneth Bradley and Cynthia Fortson were reappointed to the planning and zoning commission.

Commission Chairman Todd Higdon reported that 51 tons of tires were collected during a recent tire amnesty event. Another event will likely be held in April.

Commissioners approved their 2022 meeting schedule, the county holiday schedule and 2022 beer and wine licenses. They agreed to abandon a portion of Osley Mill Road. They held considerable discussion about a recreation department uniform contract, finally agreeing to go with a $64,000 contract with Shuma for uniforms in 2022. The uniforms are expected to be higher quality than what was used this year. Uniform expenses are covered with sports registration fees, not taxpayer dollars.

The sides of Lem Edwards Road have been flagged for tree removal. The county will widen the road. The Brickyard Road Extension has been cleared, graded and set. The new culvert at Barwick Hill Road will be installed in January, weather permitting.

Chairman Higdon wished the board a Merry Christmas and told the board members that he is grateful for how well the commissioners are getting along as they address county business.

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(3) comments

Christine Brown

This is the first residents on Lem Edwards have heard the road is being widened. No one has approached us about obtaining right of way. We have a tree marked for removal that is on private property. In fact, all the property along the edge of this road is private property. Has anyone been notified that our property rights are being violated?

David Edwards

I can hear you.

David Edwards

I hear you. Madison County condemned 2.24 acres of my land, subdividing it, apparently, against its own A1 zoning. I apologize for sounding flippant. I spent thousands to keep that "old dirt road" as it was. In addition to the thousands I spent, I additionally lost thousands because a film company had contacted me to use that land for a bluegrass video. Yep. And thanks to the taxpayers of Madison County for buying that 2.24 acres. Sorry for your loss.

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