Though 2011 Liberty County property tax bills are just now hitting mailboxes, Tax Commissioner Virgil Jones is spreading the message that property owners don't have to wait for their invoices to make payments.
In the third of a four-part retrospective, the Courier recalls the top headlines from July through September of 2011.
At a recent meeting, Midway adopted a $1.6 million budget for 2012 that includes funds for two new police cars and part-time assistance for the city clerk and finance officer.
From left: Commissioner Gary Gilliard, Walthourville Mayor Pro Tem Larry Baker, Ritchie Anderson, Felecia Holmes, Angie Perkins and Gary Gilliard II prepare to donate 85 hams and 40 turkeys to senior citizens throughout Liberty County. The Christmas giveaway was supported by Seven Ministries, Attorney Kelly Davis, MACE Commander James Reid, Sheriff Steve Sikes, Clay Sikes, C.L. Barrett and Kenny Fussell. (Photo provided)
During the Thursday meeting, the Ludowici City Council also heard updates from auditor Christopher Lightle, who was brought on after city clerk Tara Manning was suspended earlier this month. At the Dec. 13 meeting, Lightle, an accountant with Karp, Ronning and Tindal Certified Public Accounting, presented a preliminary report that noted concerns about lack of budgetary controls, adopted financial controls not being enforced, duplicate payments for some services, cash accounts not being recorded accurately and financial statements not being reported monthly.
The Ludowici City Council suspended Police Chief Richard Robertson with a 2-1 vote during Thursday's called meeting.
The words "thank you" were not adequate to express the gratitude of the nearly 2,000 people who waited in long lines Thursday through three separate shifts at the National Guard Armory for a hot meal and bags of fresh produce, breads, meats and canned goods, plus shoes, clothes, furniture and toys during the first-ever Hinesville Feed the Hungry event.
In the second of a four-part retrospective, the Courier recalls the top headlines from April through June of 2011.
Reporting on his participation with the Southeast Georgia Friends of Fort Stewart and Hunter, Hinesville Mayor Jim Thomas summarized their recent trip to Washington, D.C., as successful, even though the general officers his group spoke with at the Pentagon gave no assurances that Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield will be excluded from any decision to cut U.S. forces.
The Hinesville City Council held a called meeting Wednesday to appoint five members to its Grievance and Appeals Committee.
As 2011 draws to a close and we look forward to the year to come, the Courier is taking a look back at this year's most attention-grabbing stories. In this four-part series, we'll revisit the stories that affected the community during the 2011 calendar year. Perhaps they were fodder for dinner parties or hot topics in government meetings; perhaps they dragged on in Sound off for weeks to follow, or maybe they reminded you about the value of humanity. The dates listed reflect when the story appeared in the Courier, not necessarily the date the story occurred.
The Ludowici City Council was told at its Dec. 13 monthly meeting that the city has been making some business operations errors.
Since September 2010, Hinesville has been awarded $27,374,045 in grant funding to benefit residents in a variety of areas, including city and county law enforcement and fire departments, school security, homeless prevention and housing, housing rehabilitation, Fair Housing education, veterans support, transportation enhancement, cultural venue construction, energy efficiency and conservation, water reclamation and quality enhancement, according to Hinesville spokeswoman Krystal Britton.
A proposal to annex residential and undeveloped areas near Highway 196 and Airport Road was among four information items considered by the Hinesville City Council during its meeting Friday.
After much discussion and a called executive session Tuesday, the Ludowici City Council voted to keep city clerk Tara Manning on suspension but to rescind its previous decision not to pay her during the suspension. During a Dec. 5 called meeting, the council voted to suspend Manning without pay for her role in signing checks - along with Ludowici Mayor Myrtice Warren - to pay Vanessa Cunningham for contracted work that since has been questioned by some council members.
Kinder Morgan has appealed the Georgia Department of Transportation's denial of a certificate of public convenience and necessity for the proposed Palmetto Pipeline, which would go through coastal Georgia.
In the end, experience mattered.
A vacant home in North Bryan Village on Fort Stewart caught fire early Wednesday morning, post spokesman Kevin Larson said.
The state of the county was the focus of Thursday's Progress Through People Luncheon.
In a high-profile environmental case that has important repercussions for coastal Georgia, the state Supreme Court ruled Monday that the 25-foot buffer required by state law between development projects and the banks of waterways generally does not apply to marshes and wetlands.
Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black is alerting Georgians to the recall of certain packaged smoked salmon products that are sold in Georgia for potential health risk to consumers.
Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black alerted Georgians to the recall of certain Ainsworth pet food products that are sold in Georgia for potential health risk to cats.
Ameris Bancorp, the parent company of Ameris Bank, announced Monday that the acquisition of 18 Bank of America banking centers throughout southern Georgia and northern Florida - including the Hinesville location - has been completed.
By Tuesday evening, voters in Liberty County's District 6 should know who will represent them on the Board of Education.