Midway is planning its new city hall and complex at the intersection of Islands Highway and Charlie Butler Road, near the Cay Creek Wetlands Interpretive Center.
Midway city council members discussed proposed plans at a regular meeting Monday.
A new city hall has been a top priority for Midway since 2011.
Preliminary city hall drawings showed a double-winged building with the two major city functions, city council and municipal court, “front and center.” A large room intended for council meetings and municipal court is just off the entrance lobby, as are accessible offices for the mayor and council members.
Space for municipal court operations and staff are on the right, and administrative offices for the finance director and water department are on the left.
The police department and a sallyport are at the end of the court office wing and the water department’s bill-paying area is at the end of the administrative wing.
A preliminary price estimate for the new city hall complex was about $1 million, an amount that would take almost all the money that Midway hopes to receive from the current Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax.
In April 2017 Midway officials said they hoped the city hall complex could be completed during that year.
At present, Midway rents office space in Midway Mall and holds official meetings in the courtroom of the police department at 10490 East Oglethorpe Highway.
The city council learned Monday that the public defender of city court, James Smith, had resigned.
Also Monday, new city attorney Reginald Martin attended his first council meeting.
Martin had been contracted for one year with optional renewals, but after a closed door session the council decided to follow the city charter and make Martin’s term four years.
The council decided to advertise as soon as possible for a new public defender.
In other city business, Liberty Consolidated Planning Commission Engineer Abe Nadji said there had been some confusion over required submittals to the National Resources Conservation Service for Midway’s new city hall complex, but progress was being made.
Plans for landscaping and avoiding encroachment on Islands Highway need to be completed. The Notice of Intent for construction has been filed.
The council voted to buy a generator to supply electricity to the city’s well during power failures. A Cummins generator was chosen at a cost of about $44,000.
The council gave routine approval to changes in the Soil Erosion, Sedimentation and Pollution Control Ordinance.
The flow meter that measures wastewater that the Liberty County Development Authority sends to Midway for processing under an intergovernmental agreement has been an almost constant cause of discord between the two agencies. Readings from the meter are inaccurate.
Midway is responsible for the meter and is examining the possibility of repairing or replacing the flow meter. An independent engineering firm is now surveying the meter and other parts of the system in hopes of finding a solution. Major replacement, if needed, could cost around $300,000.
During the August meeting there was no mention of Midway’s stance on countywide fire protection, a topic County Administrator Joey Brown had spoken about at a previous meeting. Midway Mayor Levern Clancy had said the city would hold a town hall meeting for citizens to discuss fire protection.
Clancy told the Courier a date had not yet been set for the town hall meeting. Asked when the meeting could be scheduled, Clancy said the matter would be discussed at the council’s upcoming workshop. The normal schedule calls for a Midway council workshop at 9 a.m. on the fourth Monday of each month, the next being Aug. 27.
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