The Folkston City Council met Monday, August 17 for its regularly scheduled meeting. Councilman Marion “Pardner” Davis was absent.
During the meeting, Mayor Lee Gowen recognized Jim Gowen and Raymond Roberts who are both running for the at-large council seat formerly held by the late Stanley Golazeweski.
Also during the meeting, Mayor Gowen shared the city did receive its portion of SPLOST funds in the amount of $108,000.00.
Folkston Police Chief Wesley Green then gave his monthly report. He stated the department investigated 36 incidents, nine accidents, and received 1,540 calls. The department received $15,076 in fines with the city receiving $13,828.06.
Chief Green also shared he has placed officers at Charlton County High School, Bethune Middle School and Folkston Elementary school. Officer Mike Mattox is at the high school and Officer Kurtis Ford switches between the BMS and FES. These officers will be there all day. Chief Green has hopes the officers will form a good relationship with the students and staff in order to work better together in the case of an emergency. Chief Green stated it has put a strain on the department, but it is a necessity for the safety of all within the schools.
The board heard from City Manager Pender Lloyd, who stated the Homeland Park Bridge project is coming to a close. He also shared the city has received two bids on the Tower Road project.
Dana O’Quinn, the new director of the Okefenokee Chamber of Commerce introduced herself and shared she would like to join the city meetings in order for the board to stay informed and keep up with updates at the chamber. She thanked the council for their support and expressed her hope in increasing the promotion of the city and tourism. She is very open to any calls and would like to help in any way she can. O’Quinn also stated she is holding a job fair next week to recruit 100 correctional officers for an out-of-town department. She shared if anyone has any questions, she would be glad to help.
The city approved the emergency purchase of a new service truck. The current one being used is a 1999 model and could go at anytime. The new truck has a crane and lift station pump. They welder on the old truck was recently replaced, but can taken off to be put on the new truck. Lloyd explained they have three separate accounts from which funds could be pulled; the fixed asset fund, the water and sewer fund, and the SPLOST fund. At the end of the year, the city will make a budget adjustment and put money back in funds monthly. The council accepted the bid.
The next scheduled meeting is September 21.