Suspended Ludowici Police Chief James Rogers has been granted a hearing at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 25, at Ludowici City Hall. The city council unanimously approved and scheduled the hearing during Tuesday’s meeting.
Rogers was put on administrative leave without pay Jan. 10 after allegations surfaced of sexual misconduct, reported use of racial slurs and of a possible Equal Employment Opportunity Commission investigation stemming from events that may have occurred at the Ludowici Police Department.
Also at Tuesday’s meeting, the council re-hired all city employees for the coming year with the exception of one city-hall worker. Mayor James Fuller said the employee was laid off due to budgetary restrictions that necessitate the position’s elimination. Fuller said that if a city-hall job opens up, priority will be given to the former employee.
In addition, two new police officers, Anthony Desonto and Travis Thomas, were hired.
The council also unanimously signed the revised city charter, officially putting the new governing document into effect. The enactment of the revised charter ends more than a year of discussion on what should and should not be in the document. Some major changes include revisions to the manner in which the city’s municipal-court recorder judge takes office, a clarification on how elected or appointed officials can be removed from office and the inclusion of what, specifically, constitutes unethical actions for elected and appointed officials.
The council approved placing right-turn signs on North and South Macon Street at the intersection of Highway 84. Traffic still will be allowed to turn onto the side roads that run between The Heritage Bank and Parker’s convenience store, and Subway and Flash Foods, but outgoing traffic will be allowed to make only right turns onto Highway 84. Interim Police Chief James Steiner said the move was made for safety reasons. With increased traffic volume in the city, the intersection was the site of several accidents during the past year.
Fuller said the city received an $18,000 franchise-tax check from Comcast. The mayor also reported that the general-fund bank balance is $101,217; the water-and-sewage bank balance is $106,973; and the general-fund savings is $202,353. The total bills paid out by the general fund and the water-and-sewage department came to $11,499.