The November meeting of the Swainsboro Mayor and City Council convened Monday, November 6, at 6 p.m. at Swainsboro City Hall. Bishop Bertha Jones provided an invocation, and the mayor led the pledge of allegiance. The council approved minutes of a special called “workshop” meeting on October 10, 2023.
In old business, council approved total projected expenditures for City operations of $11,228,664.00 for the fiscal year 2024 budget and a new millage rate based on anticipated revenues collected of 12 %. In other action, council considered contracting with BAK of Statesboro for construction management of a multi-purpose community center building on Gumlog Road. The motion passed 5-1. Next, council heard from Mrs. Jacqueline Brantley concerning derelict property. The mayor advised that efforts were being made to have the building’s owner comply with ordinances. Under new business, council heard from Diana Wedincamp regarding possible changes occurring at Harmon Park, the Arts Center and other city properties. She requested that a “citizens focus group” be impaneled to advise on these changes before they are acted on. No action was taken. Council moved on to consider renting an excavator for street work on North Racetrack Street. The motion was approved 6-0. Following this, a proposal from the Police Department dealt with the installation of traffic cameras in school zones on Tiger Trail to combat speeding and unsafe vehicle operations. A motion to approve the proposal failed to pass with Sconyers, Stafford and Davis in favor and Parker and Quarterman opposed. Councilmember Collins abstained. This brought discussion from fellow councilmembers who cautioned against members not fulfilling their representative duty to their constituents. The next issue considered by council concerned an update adding 3% penalty to State and local fines for traffic violations. No action was taken. Council also considered an update of policy dealing with worker’s compensation insurance. A motion was unanimously passed. Increases for city fees and rental charges for various city venues was next on the agenda. Council agreed to increase usage permit charges at area parks from forty-five to fifty dollars per event. Council also agreed to increase business licenses 10% across the board. In final action under new business, council agreed in the hiring of new part-time and full-time staff at the Fire Department and Police Department. Micheline Scott will be a part-time employee at City Hall, Amber Scarboro will be a full-time employee at City Hall and Daniel Moxley will be a part-time employee with the police department.
On the Consent Agenda, two applications for alcoholic beverage license were received by council for advertisement on behalf of Edward Hill Daniels/The Liquor Vault, and Keith Douglas Wilcox/Swainsboro Moose Lodge. In final consideration, council granted a request for fee waiver for the Police and Fire Departments for their use of the Vann Community House for their respective annual employee appreciation events.