The Liberty County Development Authority Monday discussed the value of Fort Stewart in the local community and actions that might be taken to retain and improve the civilian-military relationship. And “BRAC is always looming,” said LCDA member Rep. Al Williams, referring to the Defense Department’s Base Realignment And Closure process.
Williams said Georgia is the only state without a high level committee on the military that meets regularly with the governor. Williams said many officials had no knowledge of the military’s local impact and no appreciation of it. ”But the folks in Walmart and Kroger and Publix know it’s the military,” that has a large role in the community,” Williams said.
Hinesville Mayor Allen Brown, LCDA chairman, suggested that local officials could seek to partner with South Carolina to protect area bases. Beaufort, S.C., is home to a Marine Corps Air Station.
The Townsend Bombing Range in Long and McIntosh counties is a primary weapons range for Marine Aircraft Group 31 at Beaufort and is used by all services.
In other business the authority granted a drainage easement to allow the county commission to correct a drainage problem at Airport Road and Briarwood Circle.
Another easement was granted for Coastal Electric Cooperative to access authority property in Tradeport East. The EMC is expanding its service in the area. After the two easement approvals the authority adopted a suggestion from its attorney, Kelly Davis, to authorize the chairman to sign routine easements without separate board action on each one.
Authority members approved a contract with Global Business Development Strategist LLC for handling a wide range of services related to personnel. The LCDA has five employees. The firm, operated by Delisa Clfton, already has a contract to help the authority with representation of minorities and women in LCDA activities.
The contract provides for consulting services including employment rules and laws, new hire orientation, job rules, disciplinary action, performance evaluations and enforcement of the employee handbook.
After an initial payment of $350 to include four hours, services will be billed at $75 per hour.
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