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Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Pritchard Mountain - Where is it?

ReleaseFeb. 28, 2007
Contact: Bill Doughty, APR;
678.242.2492 (office) or 678.577.8152 (cell)

That's what several recipients asked regarding an earlier message about plans by the Fulton County Public Works Department to hold a public information meeting at Milton City Hall at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 6 to discuss construction of an elevated water tank on Pritchard Mountain. The purpose of the tank is to provide improved water pressure for the surrounding communities.

Pritchard Mountain is located west of Freemanville Road near the intersection of Mountain Road in the northern part of the city, close to the Cherokee County line.

Fulton Holding Meeting on Pritchard Mountain Water Tank

ReleaseFeb. 28, 2007
Contact: Bill Doughty, APR;
678.242.2492 (office) or
678.577.8152 (cell)
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The Fulton County Public Works Department is sponsoring a public information meeting at Milton City Hall on Tuesday, March 6 starting at 7 p.m. to discuss construction of an elevated water tank on Pritchard Mountain. The purpose of the tank is to provide improved water pressure for the surrounding communities.

Milton City Hall is located in the Deerfield Professional Centre, 13000 Deerfield Parkway, Suite 107, Milton, GA 30004. The meeting takes place in the city council chambers. For more information call Mike Rachelson, project manager, 404-612-0877.

The City of Milton is a community of some 20,000 residents in northwest Fulton County. With its numerous horse farms, family-friendly neighborhoods and limited commercial development spread out over 23,000 acres, Milton offers a rural, small-town atmosphere that still affords easy access to the big-city amenities of nearby Atlanta.

Nurse Volunteer Needed for Milton Applicants!

  • Hello!

    The Fire and Police Department are looking for a nurse volunteer who would be able and willing to read TB tests for all applicants who are tested. If one of you have that capability or know of someone who does and would volunteer their services, I would appreciate hearing from them. Please contact me and I will put you in touch with the right person for details, etc. Many Thanks!

    Linda M. Blow
    Project Coordinator
    City of Milton, Georgia
    13000 Deerfield Parkway, Building 100
    Suite 107B
    Milton, Georgia 30004
    678-242-2489 Direct
    www.cityofmiltonga.us

Monday, February 26, 2007

Ludlow Porch visits Alpharetta!


Saturday, March 3rd.
Ludlow: 11am-1pm
Book Sale: 10am-4pm
at the Alpharetta Library / 138 Canton Street


Ludlow will be meeting and greeting folks during the March 3rd Friends of the Alpharetta Library monthly book sale. He'll be happy to sell you one of his 13 published books, sign one of his books that you already own or just tell you a rambling yarn or two!






Sunday, February 25, 2007

Reminder: 1st Town Hall meeting is Monday Feb 26

Feb. 25, 2007
Contact: Bill Doughty, APR;
678.242.2492 (office) or 678.577.8152 (cell)


Bi-monthly sessions begin with overview of council, departments

A reminder that the first Town Hall meeting hosted by Mayor Joe Lockwood and Milton City Council members will be held tomorrow, Monday, Feb. 26 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at City Hall.
The inaugural session will provide an overview of Milton city government, including introductions of City Council members who will briefly discuss their respective districts as well as department heads who will review the roles and responsibilites of their areas. The Mayor also will share the council's top priorities for the year.

A number of handouts such as district maps, contact information for council and staff, and schedules of regular meetings will be available.

We hope you will share this information with your friends and neighbors, and we look forward to seeing you tomorrow evening.

Future town hall meeting dates and topics include:

April 23 Public Safety
June 25 Community Development/comprehensive land use plan
Aug. 27 Community Services (transportation/parks & recreation/public works)
Oct. 22 Fiscal Year 2008 Budget Presentation (tentative)
Dec. 3 Year in Review

The City of Milton is a community of some 20,000 residents in northwest Fulton County. With its numerous horse farms, family-friendly neighborhoods and limited commercial development spread out over 23,000 acres, Milton offers a rural, small-town atmosphere that still affords easy access to the big-city amenities of nearby Atlanta.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Push to split Atlanta's Fulton County draws cries of racism

Fox21.com / ATLANTA

A dispute over a proposal to break Fulton County in two is producing claims of racism in the so-called "city too busy to hate."Legislation introducted by members of the Georgia Legislature's Republican majority would split off Atlanta's predominantly white, affluent suburbs to the north from some of the metropolitan area's poorest, black neighborhoods.

The legislation calls for amending the Georgia Constitution to allow the return of Milton County, which succumbed to financial troubles during the Depression and was folded into Fulton County in 1932.

Supporters say it is a quest for more responsive government in a county with more than 900-thousand people. Opponents say the measure is racially motivated and will pit white against black, rich against poor.

Senator Vincent Fort, an Atlanta Democrat and member of the Legislative Black Caucus, bitterly opposes the plan. He says as much as some would like to think it is not racial, it is difficult to draw any other conclusion.

The former Milton County is now mostly white and Republican and one of the most affluent areas in the nation. Atlanta and its southern suburbs are mostly black, are controlled by Democrats and have neighborhoods with some of the highest poverty rates in America.
The plan's chief sponsor, Representative Jan Jones of Alpharetta, says Fulton County is too large and dysfunctional to be considered truly a local government.

Jones, a former marketing executive, cites the county's troubled library and public transit systems and a jail that was taken over by a federal judge because it was filthy and unsafe. He denied the move is racially motivated.

Milton County would have a population of about 300-thousand -- instantly making it Georgia's fifth-largest county. Those resident represent 29 percent of the county's population of 915-thousand but pay 42 percent of its property taxes, according to a local taxpayers group. A split would lead to the loss of 193 (m) million dollars in property taxes alone for Fulton County.
Opponents of the split say that loss would be devastating. They also warn that a breakup of Fulton could harm Atlanta's international reputation as a progressive city and hurt its appeal as a business, entertainment and convention destination.

Milton County Sponsor Wants Public Hearing

By PAUL KAPLAN The Atlanta Journal-ConstitutionPublished on: 01/24/07

The author of a bill that would split Fulton County and recreate Milton County on the Northside now plans to ask for a public hearing on the controversial measure during this legislative session.
Originally, Rep. Jan Jones (R-Alpharetta) did not expect to have public hearings until 2008, when the General Assembly is expected to vote on the measure, but she now says it would be helpful to "lay more of the issues out on the table" this session, before a feasibility study is done on the potential impact of a split.

House Speaker Pro Tem Mark Burkhalter (R-Alpharetta) is seeking legislative funding for the feasibility study.

Jones' enabling legislation — House Resolution 12 — has been assigned to the House Governmental Affairs Committee, chaired by Rep. Austin Scott (R-Tifton). Jones said she, Burkhalter and Scott are "discussing the possibility" of a public hearing, probably in a governmental affairs subcommittee.

Asked whether it's due to heavy controversy over the Milton County bill, Jones said no.
"I'm not finding it that controversial down here [at the Capitol]," Jones said. Jones knows how much support there is for the measure in north Fulton, and she said it would be helpful to hear perspectives from south Fulton and Atlanta, "to see if they have constructive suggestions."

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

*Traffic Alert!*

Paving work is planned for the intersection of Bethany Bend and Cogburn Road from Feb. 28 through March 2, weather permitting. Expect delays in the area between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Milton City Council Builds Bridges with Cherokee Commission

By Doug Nurse Tuesday, February 20, 2007, 04:42 PM
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The Milton City Council is traipsing up to Canton today to call on the Cherokee County Commission at its regular meeting ideally to build bridges for future discussions.

“It’s just a friendly introduction,” said Council member Julie Zahner Bailey. “We’re interested in developing a positive, collaborative relationship.”

Some council members are concerned about possible spillover effect of projects in Cherokee County into the city of Milton, such as Ruby Forest, a large multi-use development in Cherokee County that could end up sending hundreds of vehicles into Milton each day.

The need for cross-border comraderie was made plain in November when Zahner Bailey approached the Forsyth County Commission about postponing a decision on a Development of Regional Impact on the border with Milton. The commissioners said they were sympathetic to the city’s concerns, but approved the project anyway.

There isn’t any particular agenda for today’s meeting between the two governing bodies, Bailey said. City leaders met with Fulton County Board of Education officials last week, and city staff is working on setting up meetings with elected officials with Forsyth County and Johns Creek.
“We’re all in this together,” said Council member Tina D’Aversa Williams. “We should all try to listen to each othter. We can learn a lot.”

***ACCESSMILTON.COM ALERT***

Accessmilton.com:

Please forward to your friends and neighbors in the area and stay safe!

Steve Beechum / Hometown Mortgage

Missing Teenager from Alpharetta

17 year old JereLyn Faber was last seen on January 17, 2007 at her residence in Alpharetta. JereLyn is a student at Chattahoochee High School and is believed to still be in the local area. We ask that if anyone has seen JereLyn or knows any information pertaining to JereLyns location to please contact Alpharetta Police Department Detective Chris Free at 678-297-6324 or email cfree@alpharetta.ga.us.

Here is the information on JereLyn:

DOB: Oct 30, 1989
Missing: Jan 17, 2007
Age Now: 17
Sex: Female
Race: White
Hair: Blonde
Eyes: Hazel
Height: 50" (152 cm)
Weight: 135 lbs (61 kg)

Friday, February 16, 2007

Council Makes Board; Commission Appointments

Feb. 16, 2007
Contact: Bill Doughty, APR;

678.242.2492 (office) or 678.577.8152 (cell)


Mayor Joe Lockwood and Milton City Council members made their appointments to a variety of boards and commissions at the Feb. 15 council meeting.

Planning Commission

The Planning Commission is an advisory board which reports its findings and recommendations to the Mayor and City Council. The commission is charged with upholding the policies of the City of Milton Comprehensive Plan when reviewing rezonings, use permits, concurrent variances, and any changes to the City of Milton Zoning Ordinance, associated zoning map and comprehensive plan. The mayor’s nominee can reside anywhere within the city and each council member appointee must reside within his or her council district. Member’s terms run concurrently with the mayor and each council member. Appointees are:

Mayor Joe Lockwood Paul Moore
Karen Thurman, District 1 Paul Hackman
Julie Zahner Bailey, District 2 Curtis Mills
Bill Lusk, District 3 George Ragsdale
Neal O’Brien, District 4 Fred Edwards
Tina D’Aversa Williams, District 5 Cary Schlenke
Rick Mohrig, District 6 Bob Maheb

Northwest Fulton Overlay District Design Review Board

The NWFDRB reviews all non-residential plans for development within the Northwest Fulton Overlay Zoning District and all plans for development including single-family residential properties within the Crabapple and Birmingham Crossroads Overlay Districts for compliance with the standards within the Zoning Ordinance. The board makes recommendations to the Community Development Department prior to the approval of a land disturbance permit, building permit or primary variance within all of the above overlay districts. Each council member’s designee must be residents, own land, be a business owner, professional architect and /or land planner, who either maintains primary residence and/or business within his or her respective council district; the Mayor’s designee must reside or own a business anywhere within the city. Member’s terms run concurrently with the mayor and each council member. Appointees are:

Mayor Joe Lockwood Eddie Moore
Karen Thurman, District 1 Appointment pending
Julie Zahner Bailey, District 2 Kathi Cook
Bill Lusk, District 3 Alex Paulson
Neal O’Brien, District 4 Buck Bell
Tina D’Aversa Williams, District 5 Michael Stevens
Rick Mohrig, District 6 Thorton Kirkland

Board of Zoning Appeals

The Board of Zoning Appeals hears and decides on requests for relief from the provisions of the City of Milton Zoning Ordinance. The BZA also considers appeals of any decision or interpretation made by the Community Development director. The mayor’s nominee can reside anywhere within the city and each council member’s appointee must reside within his or her council district. Member’s terms run concurrently with the mayor and each council member. Appointees are:

Mayor Joe Lockwood Gary Willis
Karen Thurman, District 1 Marcia Parsons
Julie Zahner Bailey, District 2 Scott Kilgore
Bill Lusk, District 3 Walter S. Rekue Jr.
Neal O’Brien, District 4 Linda Kelly
Tina D’Aversa Williams, District 5 Sandy Jones
Rick Mohrig, District 6 Heidi Souder

Construction Board of Adjustments and Appeals

The Construction Board of Adjustment and Appeals is charged to grant variances to the adopted building codes/construction materials and techniques. Appointees are:

Mayor Joe Lockwood Don Lee
Karen Thurman, District 1 Robert Coates
Julie Zahner Bailey, District 2 Appointment pending
Bill Lusk, District 3 Steve Creek
Neal O’Brien, District 4 Appointment pending
Tina D’Aversa Williams, District 5 Paul Norfleet
Rick Mohrig, District 6 Appointment pending

Board of Ethics

The Board of Ethics develops and adopts written procedures, is authorized to administer oaths, conduct hearings to review specific cases in which a violation of the Ethics Ordinance is alleged, and submits an annual report to the Mayor and City Council. The board also establishes process for evaluating all significant aspects of the administration and implementation of the Ethics Ordinance. Members must have been a resident of the city for at least one year preceding the date of taking office and remain a resident during their term. Members shall not be elected officials, persons appointed to elective office, full-time appointed officials (whether exempt or non-exempt) or city employees and shall hold no elected public office nor any other city office or emplacement. No person may serve more than two consecutive terms. Appointees are:

Mayor Joe Lockwood Carol M. Lane
Karen Thurman, District 1 Susan Campbell
Julie Zahner Bailey, District 2 Joe Whitley
Bill Lusk, District 3 Clint Johnson
Neal O’Brien, District 4 John McMillan
Tina D’Aversa Williams, District 5 Todd Ashley
Rick Mohrig, District 6 Jackson (Skip) Gray

The City of Milton, incorporated on Dec. 1, 2006, is a community of some 20,000 residents in northwest Fulton County. With its numerous horse farms, family-friendly neighborhoods and limited commercial development spread out over 23,000 acres, Milton offers a rural, small-town atmosphere that still affords easy access to the big-city amenities of nearby Atlanta.

Council Appoints First Judges to Municipal Court

Feb. 16, 2007
Contact: Bill Doughty, APR;
678.242.2492 (office) or 678.577.8152 (cell)

Chief Judge, associate judges named; court begins mid-March

Milton City Council has appointed Barry Zimmerman as the city’s first Chief Judge of the Municipal Court, and Brian Hansford and Daniel Phelan as associate municipal court judges.

Council members approved the appointments at their Feb. 15 meeting and Mayor Joe Lockwood swore the three men in.

Zimmerman has been practicing law in the metro Atlanta area for 31 years and currently heads Zimmerman & Associates, a general law practice with a focus on criminal law, domestic relations, personal injury and corporate law. For the past 27 years he has served as both a part-time municipal court judge and magistrate court judge. During that time he has sat on the City of Atlanta Municipal Court, City of Atlanta Traffic Court, City of Alpharetta Municipal Court, City of Roswell Municipal Court, and the Fulton County Magistrate Court. Zimmerman earned his undergraduate degree at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and his law degree from the University of Georgia.

Hansford has been a partner in Patterson & Hansford in Cumming since 2001, where he performs all areas of litigation primarily in the areas of criminal and domestic law. Prior to that, he spent a year as an assistant solicitor general in Forsyth County and two years as an associate attorney in the office of Jennifer D. Patterson. Since 2004, he has served as assistant prosecutor for the City of Alpharetta Municipal Court. Hansford earned his B.S. in criminal justice from North Georgia College and State University and his J.D. from John Marshall School of Law.

Phelan is currently chief executive officer of MR Default Services, a newly formed business processing company supporting the mortgage banking industry, as well as partner with Atlanta-based McCalla, Raymer, where he is head of operations for the firm’s foreclosure, bankruptcy, eviction, litigation and REO departments. Prior to joining McCalla, Raymer in 1988, he spent 10 years as attorney and partner with Kurzman, Phelan and Liblang in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. Phelan earned his undergraduate degree in economics from Michigan State University and law degree from the University of Detroit.

City officials expect to begin Municipal Court operations in mid-March.

The City of Milton, incorporated on Dec. 1, 2006, is a community of some 20,000 residents in northwest Fulton County. With its numerous horse farms, family-friendly neighborhoods and limited commercial development spread out over 23,000 acres, Milton offers a rural, small-town atmosphere that still affords easy access to the big-city amenities of nearby Atlanta.

Citizens Investigate Graffitti Vandalism

The intersection of Bethany and Providence Road in Milton, Georgia is normally known for being surrounded by quiet horse farms and picturesque views. However, that all changed in late January when vandalism in the form of graffitti was found on street signs and pavement.

Local citizens were not amused. "Milton is known throughout the metro area for it's beauty,"commented Eddie Moore. " These type of acts have no place within our unique city." Friend and neighbor Tim Enloe agrees, " Why any one would want to do this in any area is beyond me. People just need to treat people the way they want to be treated. When folks go against this, you have to look for ways to rectify the situation. "

Both men plan to meet with the city council and public safety director to look at ways to insure that such acts do not occur in the future. To date, the graffiti has not been removed.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Milton 101: Town Hall Series Offers Insight Into New City

Feb . 15, 2007
Contact: Bill Doughty, APR;
678.242.2492 (office) or 678.577.8152 (cell)


Bi-monthly sessions kick off Feb. 26 with overview of council, departments
Since officially entering cityhood on Dec. 1, 2006, Milton residents have posed plenty of questions to their elected officials and city staff. To help answer some of those questions and expand communication with citizens on topics of significant interest as the city moves forward in its development, Mayor Joe Lockwood and Milton City Council members are hosting a series of town hall meetings that kick off Feb. 26 with an overview of city operations.

The town hall meetings will be held every other month throughout 2007. Each session runs from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at City Hall.

“We realize that people have lots of questions about what they need to do now that we are an independent city, who they need to contact to get things done, and generally where we’re going in the future,” said Mayor Joe Lockwood. “The town hall series is just another way to reach out to and communicate with our residents.”

In the initial Feb. 26 meeting, the Mayor will introduce his council colleagues, who will each speak briefly about their respective districts. City Manager Aaron Bovos will introduce department heads who will talk about the roles and responsibilities of their functional areas. The Mayor also will share the council’s top priorities for the coming year.

“This is the opportunity for citizens to meet the people who serve them and learn what they do,” Lockwood said. “Our philosophy is to be as open and transparent as possible.” The mayor added that there will be a number of handouts such as district maps, contact information for council and staff, and schedules of regular meetings.

Future town hall meeting dates and topics include:

April 23 Public Safety

June 25 Community Development/comprehensive land use plan

Aug. 27 Community Services (transportation/parks & recreation/public works)

Oct. 22 Fiscal Year 2008 Budget Presentation (tentative)

Dec. 3 Year in Review

The City of Milton is a community of some 20,000 residents in northwest Fulton County. With its numerous horse farms, family-friendly neighborhoods and limited commercial development spread out over 23,000 acres, Milton offers a rural, small-town atmosphere that still affords easy access to the big-city amenities of nearby Atlanta.

***ACCESSMILTON.COM ALERT***

30004usa.com brings the following to our attention from a neighbor. Please call 911 if this transpires in your neighborhood:

"Dear 30004usa.com:

My 12 1/2 year old child came home on her bus yesterday from school as she typically does. I was not home at the time, I was picking my other child up at his school. She is a student at Northwestern Middle School. We live on a street and not in a subdivision and the bus stop is at the end of our driveway. When she got off of the bus yesterday she noticed an old white truck parked on the other side of our street. When she started coming up the driveway the men in the truck started yelling for her to come over to them. She was naturally scared and quickly came up our driveway and typed in our gate code for our gate to open. The men in the truck followed her into our gated area and proceeded up to where our house is continually calling for her. She was extremely panicked and started to run to get away from these men. Thank God she jumped over our fence into our backyard to safety. She called 911 but unfortunately they did not ask enough questions nor did they ask how old she was. She then saw my neighbors car come into their driveway and she told the operator that she was ok. She then called me extremely upset and crying. I was back home within about 3 minutes or so. I immediately called the police back to come to my home to get more details from my child about this occurrence. This truck was white and had writing on the side. The men she thought were Hispanic. Please just keep your eyes open and be very aware of your surroundings. You do not want this to happen to your child. Please lets all work together to keep all of our children safe.

Thank you"

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Governor's Proposed State Budget

Friends and Neighbors-

I analyzed the Governor's proposed 369-page state budget for next year to gain broader perspective. I'd like to share it with you.

The House will continue to review and revise the budget before taking a preliminary vote and sending it over to the Senate. The two houses must agree on changes before forwarding the budget on for the Governor's signature.
How does Georgia tax its citizens?

Eighty percent of revenues are raised through the 6 percent state income tax and 4 percent state sales tax. Another 10 percent is raised from lottery ticket sales and the motor fuel tax on gasoline. The remainder comes from tobacco settlement proceeds; tobacco, alcohol and insurance taxes; fees for drivers services and so on.
How does Georgia spend its tax dollars?

- 39 percent - K-12 education
- 15 percent - Low income medical care (Medicaid, PeachCare, etc.)
- 12 percent - Colleges and technical schools
- 10 percent - Corrections, courts, safety, juvenile justice, state patrol
- 5 percent - Bond payments for construction of public schools, college/technical schools, prisons, some roads
- 4 percent - Transportation
- 3 percent - HOPE scholarship
- 2 percent - Pre-K for 55% of 4-year-olds
- 10 percent - Everything else, including economic development, environmental protection department, state parks, driver services, agriculture

How much will state revenues increase from the previous year?

Total state revenues for next year are projected to be $20.2 billion. The increase from the previous year would be $1.4 billion, excluding motor fuel and lottery revenues.
When evaluating the state budget, I exclude motor fuel and lottery revenues from the analysis because they are dedicated for specific uses by state constitution. Motor fuel taxes can be spent only on road and bridge improvements by the Department of Transportation.

Lottery proceeds can be spent only on higher education HOPE scholarships and 4 year old Pre-K classes. (Actually, lottery proceeds could be used for educational technology, but funds have not been allocated for this purpose for five years. HOPE and Pre-K consume all current lottery revenues. More higher education students are choosing to remain in-state and Pre-K enrollment is increasing above the population rate. HOPE or Pre-K will likely need to be further rationed in the future.

How will the $1.4 billion increase in general tax revenues be spent?

1. K-12 education - $650 million
- 2.65% higher student enrollment, 3% pay raises for teachers and other education employees, higher health insurance premiums.
- The state will increase its share of health insurance premiums for all state employees. Still, employees will pay 10 percent higher premiums. Without the increase in the state's proportion, though, employees would have to pay 35 percent higher premiums.
2. University system and technical schools - $165 million
- Higher enrollment and facility construction to serve an increasing student population
3. Medicaid and other low income healthcare benefits - $123 million
- Higher consumption and increased enrollment (not higher benefit levels
4. Pre-fund future state employee retiree health benefits - $100 million
- New federal accounting rules require states to pre-fund future state employee retiree health benefits (when a state offers the benefits)
5. 3% salary increase for non-teacher state employees- $80 million
- 70 percent of state salaries are K-12 education. This amount pays for the remaining 30 percent.
6. Increase state's portion for (non-teacher) state employee health care benefits - $71 million
- See note under #1. This covers the other 30 percent of state employees.

These six categories would account for 86 percent of the projected increase in state revenues for next year.

Think about it: 86 percent of the increase would be spent only on increased student enrollment, state employee raises and benefits and increased low-income healthcare consumption.
The remaining 14 percent would pay for increased prison space, additional DFACS caseworkers, immunizations for uninsured, services for disabled Georgians and dozens of other programs. Every proposed program increase is subject to scrutiny and reduction during the budget process.

Next update: I'll go into more detail about the budget for K-12 education and higher education.
As I work on the budget and legislation this session, I want to thank you for the opportunity to serve in the Georgia General Assembly. Each day I walk into the Capitol, I strive to make decisions in the best interests of my district and Georgia as a whole.

The issues can be complicated. Differing interests compete for attention, funding and legislation. Unintended consequences loom. But a better Georgia lies in the balance if we make wise decisions. Pray for me to make wise decisions.

Best-
Jan JonesState Representative - District 46(Serving northwest Fulton, including Milton, Roswell, Alpharetta and Mountain Park)

Friday, February 09, 2007

Sawnee EMC Performing Right Of Way Maintenance




Feb. 9, 2007 Contact: Bill Doughty, APR;

678.242.2492 (office) or 678.577.8152 (cell)


Trimming, pruning, clearing work expected to be complete by April

Sawnee Electric Membership Corporation has informed the City of Milton that crews have begun performing right-of-way maintenance activities to its overhead electrical facilities within easements inside the city limits.

“Sawnee EMC must regularly maintain its overhead right-of-way in order to provide safe, reliable electric service to its members,” said Chet Blackstock, vice president of operations. “Trees, undergrowth and other objects near overhead power lines must be managed in such a way as to prevent contacting the power lines and creating a power outage.”

Sawnee EMC has retained the services of a licensed right-of-way contractor, W.A. Kendal, to trim, prune and clear the right-of-ways within the City of Milton and other areas. Sawnee anticipates that the work will be completed by April.

Specifically, Kendall will be performing these activities in the following areas:
Redd Road
Brittle Road
Bethany Road
Freemanville Road
Henderson Road

Sawnee officials say they have made a conscious effort to contact all of the affected members in these areas via postcard notice. Additional questions or concerns about this activity should be directed to Eddy Yarbrough, Sawnee EMC’s right-of-way specialist, at 770.887.2363, ext. 7-149 or via e-mail at eddy.yarbrough@sawnee.com.

The City of Milton, incorporated on Dec. 1, 2006, is a community of some 20,000 residents in northwest Fulton County. With its numerous horse farms, family-friendly neighborhoods and limited commercial development spread out over 23,000 acres, Milton offers a rural, small-town atmosphere that still affords easy access to the big-city amenities of nearby Atlanta.

Cox Rezoning Deferred

Feb. 9, 2007

Contact: Bill Doughty, APR;
678.242.2492 (office) or 678.577.8152 (cell)

Rezoning petition deferred for 60 days

The rezoning petition affecting Cox, Arnold Mill and Ebenezer roads originally scheduled to be heard by the Milton Planning Commission on Feb. 22 has been deferred for 60 days by request of the applicant.

The petition seeks to rezone 19.3 acres on Arnold Mill Road from AG-1 (agricultural) to C-1 (commercial). The proposed project would include 138,000 SF of office space within 15 buildings and 7,200 SF of retail commercial space.

The revised schedule for this petition is as follows:
Community Zoning Information Meeting – Thursday, March 22, 7 p.m.
Planning Commission – Thursday, April 19, 5:30 p.m.
City Council – Thursday, May 17, 7 p.m.

All meetings are held at Milton City Hall, 13000 Deerfield Parkway, Building 100, Suite 107. For more information, contact Planner Robyn MacDonald at 678.242.2540 or e-mail her at robyn.macdonald@cityofmiltonga.us.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Neighbors Cry Foul Over School Noise

"Good Neighbors are quiet."


Milton, Georgia


By DOUG NURSE The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Anderson Lee of Magnolia Media, LLC contributed to this article.

Milton High School has been a source of noise complaints from neighbors. On Monday, its principal met with the Milton City Council to hammer out a noise ordinance.

Principal Ron Tesch requested the meeting to discuss the ordinance and how it might affect the school, a city official said.

"I wanted to show them the schedule and the operation so they could make an informed decision," Tesch said. "This isn't an effort to proselytize them. I want to ensure that our students are able to have a high school experience. We want to do the right thing and be good neighbors."

The city is considering an ordinance that would give the city great flexibility in trying to regulate noise. Unlike in some other cities, it would not set measurable limits on noise, but would leave it to police to decide what's too loud. The ordinance also could set limits on times of day certain noise-producing activities were allowed.

Many within close proximity of the school question the principal's efforts, "Being a good neighbor means being quiet. It also means not kicking folks out of their homes because you refused to plan ahead," commented thirty year resident Tim Enloe. "That, in effect, is what Principal Tesch and his Board of Education did. Funny that he claims to be worried about his students, but could care less about those families (who lost their homes) and how the ill-placement of that school would affect longtime residents. He simply didn't care. They didn't maintain the original facility so they twisted the system and spat in the face of Public Trust. One has to wonder if he'd be ok with a government entity kicking him out of his home...and how about noise so defening that you leave your residence on the weekends to get away from it?"
Councilman Rick Mohrig has said the ordinance is not directed specifically at the school and will have some exceptions for school gatherings. A draft ordinance produced by the city staff basically says it would be unlawful to make noise that would bother a reasonable person with normal hearing in his or her home.

"There should be no grey area to the law," continued Mr. Enloe. "It should apply evenly to all; citizen, business, and school alike. They should have thought about the noise factor before slamming that school in there. Everyone should have someone to answer to... even the Fulton County Board of Education."

Milton County Update

Friends and Neighbors-
Please note I changed the provider that distributes my legislative updates to allow you to send comments back by clicking on Reply to Sender. If you replied to a legislative update in the past five months, I may not have received it from the previous provider. My other email addresses have not changed and remain janjones38@bellsouth.net and jan.jones@house.ga.gov. As always, I welcome your input on legislative issues.

MILTON COUNTY

If you want to read the legislation I introduced last month that would amend the Georgia constitution to allow a historically merged county to be re-created (like Milton County), go to www.legis.state.ga.us and click on Legislation. Enter HR 12. At the website, you may also read other legislation under consideration this session by the Georgia General Assembly.An AJC article several weeks ago implied the Georgia House "applied brakes" to the above legislation with new committee rules. Many have asked what changed, including a north Fulton legislator. The answer is: absolutely nothing.

As always planned, I introduced the legislation last month. Again, as always planned (and previously reported in the AJC) and consistent with new House committee rules, no legislative action on a new government will take place for one full year to allow for thoughtful study and planning. If passed by a 2/3 vote in the House and Senate next winter, the legislation will require a statewide ballot vote in a general election to amend the Georgia Constitution. The next general election is November 2008.The upcoming months are important in this quest for real change - and much must be accomplished. Representative Mark Burkhalter and I intend to commission a study with the University of Georgia. Currently, we expect the study to evaluate primarily a proposed Milton County, but also a possible consolidation of Fulton County and Atlanta, the potential re-creation of Campbell County (south Fulton) and other related issues. In 2008, we intend to move forward with the constitutional amendment, HR 12. If successful, we would introduce Milton County charter legislation in January 2009. Viva La Freedom!

NEXT UPDATE - State Budget
What's up next? Making sense of the Governor's proposed state budget.
How much of next year's revenue increase must be allocated to pay for increased enrollment in public schools (2.65 percent more students statewide) and public colleges/technical schools? What amount would go towards paying for proposed 3 percent pay increases for teachers and other state employees? What portion would pay for the expected increase in Medicaid consumption (not an increase in Medicaid benefits, which is not proposed)? How fast is Medicaid consumption rising and can Georgia continue to pay out so much for so many? What new federal accounting rules will lead Georgia to earmark $100 million for future retiree health insurance premiums? The information may surprise you.

As Chair of Appropriations-Education, most of my time will be devoted the next several weeks to working on the Pre-K and K-12 public education portion of the state budget. I will chair two special meetings this week to provide background to fellow House members on how, and how much, the state funds Pre-K and K-12 students. Next week, we'll delve into the Department of Education's central office budget, capital construction monies for new school construction and other issues. I'll try to synthesize some of this information into legislative updates for you as well. Separately, last week I was named Chair to the House Income Tax Subcommittee. I look forward to a spirited debate and exchange of ideas on state tax issues - and participating in future tax reform.

All the best-

Jan Jones
State Representative - District 46(Serving northwest Fulton, including Milton, Roswell, Alpharetta and Mountain Park)