The Charlton County Board of Commissioners held its regularly scheduled meeting Thursday, November 5.  Assistant Chairwoman Alphya Benefield was absent.

During the meeting, the board heard from Earl Lawson who presented the commissioners 2019 audit. Lawson stated Charlton is in strong financial standing. The report has been filed. Commissioner Luke Gowen asked how the county was doing compared to surrounding areas. Lawson assured him that Charlton is in excellent condition, one of which larger and smaller counties would be envious.

Also during the meeting, Phillip Saussy addressed the board about insurance renewals. He shared the plan is to offer employees two coverage plans, which will require higher contributions for employees. The county coverage has not changed in five years. In 2015, Charlton was paying 88 percent of the healthcare plan; due to changes in healthcare, the county is now paying 92 percent. The options now are competitive with surrounding areas. The board approved the changes unanimously.

A variance request was received by the county from Don Harris for the placement of a mobile home on his property. All requirements were met and Inspector Donald Glover recommended the request be granted. The motion was made and approved unanimously.

County attorney John Adams has been working on a temporary collection petition, which will allow the use of prior millage rate in order to collect taxes. Tax bills will not be sent out; this will however allow Tax Commissioner Debra Mizell to continue collecting taxes for car tags and timber tax. The county has had to do the same in the past, signing a petition in 2004. The board unanimously agreed.

The new residential burning ordinance was passed unanimously. The ordinance will be adopted, being put into a new chapter.

The board has solicited qualifications for engineering services to complete the Community Development Block Grant Mitigation (CDBG-MIT) Application. The highest scoring respondent was Hofstadter and Associates. The motion was made and approved unanimously.

Plans are in motion to have a 12u baseball field added at Deuce Lloyd Park. A project grant application was been submitted in the amount of $186,963.80. If the application is approved, the county will be responsible for 50 percent of the amount. Funds from the recreation SPLOST line will be used for the project. County Administrator Hampton Raulerson stated it would be the beginning of next year before the county will know if the grant will be approved. The board unanimously approved using recreation SPLOST funds.

Local citizen Antwon Nixon thanked the commissioners for placing the stop signs that were requested and shared there are still drivers running the signs. He stated he believed this is because the sign is not easily seen. Raulerson shared there are projects coming up, during which he will speak with an engineer to see if a stop bar can be added. He also suggested waiting to move the sign until after the speed bumps are installed as well. Nixon stated he’s just trying to get things done before an accident occurs and thanked the board for all its efforts.

Commissioner Jesse Crews shared he has heard comments being made about “flimsy” lids on the new trashcans. Commissioner Gowen asked if trash placed outside of the cans would also be picked up. Commissioner Crews suggested contacting the company.

Members of the board extended their heart-felt condolences to the families of Folkston City Council-elect Raymond Roberts and Alice Elaine Nazworth. 

The next meeting is schedules for Thursday, November 19.