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DOT slowing business
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Editor, My name is Joe Raymer. My wife and I have been visiting my son, who lives in Ludowici with his family. Every time we come to visit, we like this town more and more.
One day we saw a beautiful piece of property for sale and I thought it was a perfect place to build homes and a shopping center. I called my partners in RMR Development and they flew down to look over the town and instinctively loved this area.
We then decided to build. We have been in construction for many years and of all the places I’ve worked, Ludowici stands out over all those others. My reasons are simple: It’s the overwhelming feeling I get from the people. Every where I went, someone waved or said hello. I always was met with a smile.
To me, this is rare these days with so many people out of work and the economy very bad. This didn’t stop the people of Ludowici from making me feel at home. I thank you all for that.
About 10 months ago, RMR Developers had a meeting with members from the building department and Mr. Bill Smith from DOT. The meeting was about the gas station we were planning to build on the 50 acres RMR purchased. Mr. Bill Smith stated that all we needed was 150-foot deceleration lane off Highway 57 or a temporary entrance from Baggs Cemetery Road until the deceleration lane was done.
We decided to put the decel lane in and not worry about the temporary lane. We complied with his recommendation. The project is near completion and RMR is now being told we have to put in a 330-foot decel lane, widen the highway 12 feet on each side, and then put in a 150-foot eyebrow for left turns.
This was never mentioned at any meetings I’ve attended about this project. It appears that Mr. Bill Smith and DOT changed the rules. RMR Developers think this is unjustified and not ethical business practice. Are different guidelines imposed for different people? We have noted discrepancies on many projects and the rules are sometimes changed.
We are not accusing DOT or Mr. Bill Smith of doing anything illegal, but we just need answers to our questions. Unfortunately, because of this change in DOT decision about the entrance to our gas station, we have no other choice but to obtain legal assistance and ask for a full investigation.
It’s been over a year and we still don’t have our gas station open because of the unfair work we have to do per DOT. We have invested well over $1 million to bring business and jobs to Long County.
Do you think interim DOT Commissioner Gerald Ross realizes how he is hurting our economy? We need your help in getting our gas station and convenience store open. Please write the governor, lawmakers, etc. and ask them to investigate this matter, not just for my company but for the county.

RMR Developers
Joe Raymer
Dan Riely
Keith Mulligan
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