Dodge County Recreation Board Chairman Dr. Chip Stringer went before the board to address the “no alcohol” at the recreation department item that has been on the commissioner’s agenda for that past two meeting.
Dr. Stringer explained that there is a no alcohol policy for the day-to-day business operations at the department. He explained to the commissioners that for private events held at the Alcoa building and other facilities, the board did have a lease agreement in place. He stated that because of the incident that happened in February 2014 the board had readdressed their policy and now groups that wanted to have alcohol during their function had to go before the board requesting permission and that additional restrictions were in place for those events.
Dr. Stringer told commissioners that in 2015, the revenue from the rental of the facilities at the recreation department exceeded $12,000.00 and in 2016, the revenue from rental of the facilities is under $6,000.00. He stated that the revenue was funneled back into the program for the children for equipment, uniforms and other necessary needs.
Dr. Stringer stated that they (the board) did a survey of six other recreation departments with their annual budget and got eligible child populations numbers from the Georgia Parks and Recreation Department and that Dodge County is relatively underfunded.
The comparison went as follows: Dodge, $166,500.00 with 5078 eligible children; Jeff Davis, $365,000,00 with 4159 eligible children; Screven, $470,000.00 with 3692 eligible children; Dooly, $250,000.00 with 3163 eligible children; Evans, $213,000.00 with 2838 eligible children; Bleckley, $141,900.00 with 2952 eligible children and Pulaski, $155,000.00 with 2582 eligible children.
Dr. Stringer concluded that as a board, they are appointed to manage and run the recreation department and ask that they be allowed to do that in the best ways they see fit.
The commissioners took no action on the issue. Dodge County Farmer’s Market Chairperson Sharon Cobb-Flanagan went before the Dodge County Commissioners with an update on the farmer’s market. She stated that 11 vendors and 96 visitors at the farmer’s market on Saturday, December 3 and that the Santa stroll and run brought in additional people. Walk of Georgia sponsored the Santa stroll and run.
Flanagan stated that a cooking demonstration and live music were on the calendar for this Saturday, December 10 if weather permitted. She added that some vendors stated that they would be staying later than the scheduled market hours because of the annual Christmas parade ending at the courthouse.
Flanagan presented the commissioners with the 2016 annual report and financial statement to commissioners with the understanding that commitments and expenses had been accounted for.
She ended by telling commissioners that she wanted to do a “lessons learned” on what we learned over the last months at the farmer’s market and that vendors would be adding their input.
Flanagan ended by presenting T.I. Papel with a plaque for going above and beyond in all his volunteering efforts, being highly respected in the community, dedicated to the purpose of the farmer’s market, keeping an eye on the vendors and his input being more than its weight in gold. She added that she appreciated all he has done for the farmer’s market in Dodge County including the vendors.
Oconee Judicial Circuit Public Defender Steve Harrison went before the commissioners requesting $8,200.00 to be added to his budget to assist him in hiring a competent qualified attorney to replace attorney Stephanie Burton. Burton was selected as the new full time juvenile court judge for the Oconee circuit in September of this year.
Harrison told commissioners that six counties within the circuit fund his office and it has two budgets (an operating budget and an employee budget). He explained to commissioners since the office opened in 2005 he had not approached the board about additional funds and that he actually had returned unused funds from each year from his operating budget to the six counties that his office serves.
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