Elberton Council considering new downtown parking restrictions

By Linton Johnson linton@wsgcradio.com

The Elberton City Council met Monday and heard first reading of a new parking ordinance for Elberton’s Central Business District. The proposal would replace the city’s current parking code for the downtown area defined as the Public Square, Oliver Street between Church Street and Elbert Street/College Avenue and McIntosh Street between Church Street and Elbert Street.
If approved, the new ordinance would limit parking in those areas to two hours Mondays through Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and remove several 30-minute parking spaces which have not been enforced in recent years. Business owners and on-duty employees would also be prohibited from parking in the area during the enforcement hours. Additionally, the habitual parking offender provision would be changed to five violations in three months.
The new parking ordinance will be considered for approval by the council at its next regular monthly meeting.
In other business, City Manager Lanier Dunn provided the financial report for the end of fiscal year 2018, reporting year-end profits of nearly $1.4 million in the public utility fund, $532,000 in the ElbertonNET technology services fund and $54,000 in the general fund and a loss of $77,000 in the solid waste fund.
Council members also voted to approve a new ordinance on building sign permits, which reduces the portion of a store window that can be taken up by a sign to 25 percent, and approved an alcoholic beverage license for the Petro Food Mart on Elbert Street.
Athens Technical College President Andrea Daniel addressed the council on recent progress at the college’s Elbert County Campus, including completion of a $300,000 roof project on the Charles Yeargin Academic Building and an $800,000 mega science lab, as well as a $200,000 carpet replacement for the Yeargin Building.
“And then, many of you may have seen or know we have a $600,000 renovation of the commercial truck driving range out on Middleton Road,” Daniel said. “That will allow us to re-asphalt that facility. It will allow us to take care of drainage issues and potholes. It will allow us to have the premier commercial truck driving range that our students deserve.”
Daniel said the local campus of Athens Tech is preparing to break ground on its new $8.2 million agricultural science building approved by Gov. Nathan Deal and the General Assembly earlier this year.
“Tom McCall supported that project, along with the industry numbers that showed the jobs are here in this region,” she said. “This is a huge agriculture science region. We are also excited that program is fully articulated with the University of Georgia. You can gain jobs with associate degrees. Our students can graduate and gain jobs. But for the ones who want to go on and have a four-year degree, it’s fully articulated with UGA.”

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