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City holds agenda setting meeting

AMERICUS — Americus Mayor Barry Blount and City Council met Feb. 12 for the agenda-setting meeting.

Ginger Starlin addressed the council, first thanking the members for their help in rebuilding the hospital. Starlin then discussed the hospital’s need to fill in administrative vacancy at the hospital. She expressed that a qualified candidate for the position would be an open-minded listener.

The Council then went on to discuss the fate of a property near Crawford Street. They mentioned that a local business owner, Johnny Shiver, had expressed interest in purchasing the property to expand his business and create new jobs in town.

Council then discussed the property that was formerly the site of Sumter Regional Hospital. A potential buyer for the property, which represented Publix, recently withdrew an offer on the property, deciding that the location would not meet the business’ needs. Starlin went on to speak with the Council about ideas to attract businesses to Americus, stating that she will stay in touch with her contact and revisit the contract in the future.

City Community Development Director Ben Andrews then addressed Council. asking for a public hearing for discussing the possibility of rezoning and combining three parcels of land in town to house a tractor supply company. The land would be rezoned from agricultural to commercial

Council member Walton Grant then asked Josh Roth to address a few issues in the Public Safety Building’s ongoing renovation project. Council discussed the need for added security in the evidence room as well as new cameras for the interview rooms. Council also discussed the need to renovate the sprinkler system in the Municipal Building, stating that the money left over from this undertaking could be used to address the issues with the Public Safety Building. Council decided to revisit this issue in March.

Council member Lou Chase then presented landfill closure and post-closure invoices to the City for approval. The mayor suggested tabling the issue until the next meeting. Chase motioned to revisit the issue at the next meeting and Council agreed.

Blount then asked Council to consider approving a resolution concerning the Critical Transportation Infrastructure Funding. City attorney Jimmy Skipper suggested that Council hold off on the bill until more research can be conducted. The bill will be reintroduced at a later meeting.

Billy Beckett, acting City CAO, then addressed Council to discuss an appropriate time frame for handling businesses that are out of compliance with alcohol license regulations.

A motion was then made to approve funding to repave portions of North Jackson and Rucker Street in the spring.

Beckett recommended that they use the GMA marketplace to advertise for the position of permanent city manager. He mentioned the types of questions that should be asked in the interview and showed the council sample ads from the GMA marketplace website. Beckett stated that an ideal candidate should have at least seven years experience and hold a master’s degree in public administration.

Council then went into a closed session to discuss an appointment to the Airport Authority.