The Charlton County Board of Commissioners met Thursday, March 4.
During the meeting, commissioners heard from Rob Brown with Goodwyn Mills Cawood who gave an update on the Spanish Creek Watershed Management Plan. He stated the research is complete. Students and teachers from Charlton County High School were trained on how to do the research by members of the St. Marys Riverkeeper to help with the testing. Higher concentrations of E-Coli bacteria were found, mostly related to hogs (which are likely feral). He stated five to six sites were tested. The plan is to continue the Adopt-a-Stream Monitoring with the high school and St. Marys Riverkeeper to explore Clay Branch in more detail as it is most developed. Additional grant funds will be sought and Public Education BPMs can be perused to cover required local matching funds, specifically septic system maintenance and proper waste disposal.
Also during the meeting, Teresa Guinn was reappointed to the Board of Elections and Registration (Commissioner Jesse Crews obstained) while Linda Pina was reappointed to the Library Board.
The board voted to extend the Charlton County Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL), which is a continuation of the 80 emergency sick leave hours granted under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. The continuation will allow county employees who have used their sick time 80 hours should they need to quarantine. Employees who have already used their 80 hours will not receive extra hours. The motion was made and passed unanimously.
Commissioner Alphya Benefield updated those in attendance about the COVID-19 vaccine for Charlton residents. She stated citizens are able to schedule appointments in Woodbine, St. Marys and Waycross. She stated her concerns are for those who cannot travel or have access to internet to schedule appointments. She said she will continue to look into everything COVID-19 related. EMA/EMS Director Bruce Young alerted her on a mass vaccine site opening in Waycross. She stated she has spoken to Commissioner Drew Jones who said some retail pharmacies do have the vaccine and that he may call around. Commissioner Benefield said she will update citizens on when or if they become available locally. She said the state knows she is loud and talking.
Road Department Superintendent Ronnie Pollock updated the board on road works and local projects, which are moving along.
Commissioner Benefield thanked everyone in attendance and asked them to take care of themselves and their loved ones.
The board will meet again Thursday, March 18 at 6:00 p.m. in the St. George Community Room.