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Drainage occupies Midway Council
Midway welcome sign
Drainage and similar problems dominated a called meeting of the Midway City Council, but some progress was reported.
A longstanding drainage problem at 177 Medway Dr. has apparently been solved, at least for a while. Abe Nadji, an engineer with the Liberty Consolidated Planning Commission, told the council that the contractor had reworked a drainage swale and that water now flowed through the area. He will continue to monitor the project.
Councilwoman Melice Gerace said, “It will be up to us to maintain this now,” so the problem will not recur.
Nadji said keeping the grass cut would be necessary. Maintenance chief Terrell Chipp said wet weather made it impossible for the grass cutting crew to access many areas, especially low, wet places. Flooding caused by beaver dams is also causing trouble, he said.
Mayor Levern Clancy Jr. introduced another drainage topic saying, “It’s very costly, but it has to be done.”
He was referring to rental of a “spider,” equipment with an articulated arm that can cut grass and brush in difficult to reach areas.
Clancy said an estimated cost of renting a spider to mow areas in Midway was more than $36,000. Councilwoman Dr. Clemontine Washington said in the past, Midway had been able to rent a spider from the Hinesville public works contractor, but that rental was no longer available. She said the spider’s owner had stopped renting it out because of liability issues.
Goat rental, an option used by Savannah, was also mentioned, but Washington said, “What we need is more than the goats can do.”
Officials were concerned about the cost of the grass cutting and clearing needed; no money in the current budget is specified for that. Brenda Norton, an employee of Norton Consulting with which Midway has a contract for financial administration, said the funds could be found.
Besides the money in Midway’s discretionary fund, Norton said the city’s water fund owes the general fund money that could be used for spider rental.
Midway decided to hold onto its annual allocation of the Department of Transportation Local Maintenance and Improvement Grant and use it next year when another LMIG tranche will be available. Midway plans to use the state dollars on Edgewater Drive.
Edgewater gets heavy traffic with buses and other vehicles because it runs between Highway 84 and Midway Middle and Liberty Elementary schools, as well as residential areas. It is heavily used and needs extensive patching or resurfacing.
“We can patch it up for another year,” Washington said.
Officials said the city had purchased a “cold patch” product used for minor pavement repair.
Midway is still looking for a city attorney and plans to fill a vacant slot for a police officer and a new position, executive assistant.
The council agreed with a suggestion from Clancy to reopen the issue of participating in the county fire protection plan and decided to seek a meeting with County Administrator Joey Brown to discuss the plan. Washington asked, “Is that meeting going to be any time soon?”
After a closed-door session the council voted to suspend a member of the city public works crew for 10 days without pay. Insubordination and violation were cited as the reasons for the suspension.
The next meeting of the council will be Monday at 6 p.m. in the police department building.

Parker can be contacted by email at

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