The Ludowici City Council received good news at its February meeting — the city will receive more than $50,000 in grants for infrastructure and safety needs.
Mayor James Fuller reported that the city had been awarded $45,000 from the Georgia Department of Transportation and $5,570 from the Georgia Municipal Association for a safety grant. He said that the GDOT funds would be spent on repairing a section of sewer line between 3rd and 4th streets, and also on repairing a 100-foot section of sidewalk that runs along Highway 84 near the Huddle House.
Fuller said that the city would have to pay approximately $6,500 in matching funds for the infrastructure improvements, but a portion of the matching funds would be applied to the city’s labor costs for the project.
Fuller also reported that the city would spend the safety grant funds on self-contained breathing apparatuses for the fire department, a safety harness for working on the water tower and bullet-proof vests for the police department.
The council also approved the purchase of an additional golf cart for the city. Fuller said that with the increased cost of gasoline, the city plans to park two trucks that currently are being used for water-meter checking rounds. Instead, the city will use its existing golf cart and the new one for checking meters. During the discussion of fuel costs, Councilman Mark Chesser said that some police officers, who do not live in the city, had been driving their vehicles home at night, which costs the city additional fuel. He said that the officers need to drive their own vehicles to work and leave the cruisers at the station. Fuller agreed and said the matter had been addressed. Local resident Price Chapman proposed the city have its fuel bid out to local merchants in an effort to get a discounted rate. Fuller liked the idea and said he’d look into it.
The council also heard a presentation by Coastal Courier General Manager Kathryn Fox. She told the council that the Courier is happy to provide news, features and sports coverage for Ludowici and Long County, and added that the paper appreciates the partnership it has with the entities.
She also told the group that the Courier soon will launch a new feature that recognizes a student from the high school each week in the paper.
In other business, the city council:
• approved unanimously an intergovernmental agreement with the Long County Board of Education that would allow the school system to begin purchasing and building modifications to the water and sewage system for the new high school.
• approved unanimously Kindle Enterprise to conduct the sample testing for the water and sewage in the city.
• approved unanimously the redistricting lines of the new voter districts in the city. Fuller reported that each resident in the city would be notified of the district that they reside in, and said a map is located at city hall if any resident wants to look at it.
• heard a request by The Long County Press owner and operator Mittie Vaughan to consider her paper for Ludowici’s legal organ.
• approved unanimously keeping the Coastal Courier as Ludowici’s legal organ.
• discussed reviewing the city’s current dental and medical insurance carriers.