County Commission Meeting Full of Information


A lot of information shared during the Dade County Commission work session and meeting for December. 

Commissioner Hartline said that Dade County pays $26,612 a year to the Northwest Georgia Joint Development Authority (NWGJDA) and asked what that was getting Dade County. County Executive Ted Rumley said industry within Dade County receives $2500 per employee tax credits and called NWGJDA Board member Evan Stone up to talk to Hartline about NWGJDA and what the county would lose if they pulled out of the JDA.

“The biggest thing is you would be hurting directly industrial growth in the county as far as our businesses,” Stone said.

Stone was also joined by Economic Development Executive Director William Back and they explained that companies that expanded or were newly established and met certain criteria set out by the state received an additional $500 per employee tax credit for five years. Without being a part of the JDA, the businesses in the county would not receive those tax credits. Additionally, the NWGJDA helped the county keep three industries adding up to around 800 employees. One of those companies, Rumley said, was Gill.

Hartline asked what the JDA could do that the county or state could not do and was told that there are several JDA’s in Georgia because the state takes a regional approach. Stone said the NWGJDA was one of the most active ones with the public funded NWGJDA and a privately funded Top of the Mountain group that includes not just Georgia contributors, but businesses and individuals from Chattanooga as well working to bring industry into the area and help business and industry already in place. Additionally, the JDA gives a point of contact and referral for companies who do not want to search county by county looking to see if they have land available and if the area meets their needs and criteria. By contacting the state or directly the regional JDA, they can quickly determine if anything in that region will work for them.

Hartline also brought up the condition of Hales Gap and shared numbers for just the repaving of Wells Road, down Hales Gap and to the Interstate. Hartline said striping and repairs would also be needed and the more than $400,000 estimate did not include that or the cost of labor, so the county was looking at $1 million. Hartline said fixing Hales Gap was a need and Rumley agreed and said they could put it on the project list and invited Hartline to go down to the state capitol and meet with people in transportation. Suggestions were made to get any accident numbers for the road and other information so that all of it could be laid out at state and the county might be able to get assistance or discretionary funds.

The contract for EMS services with CHI Memorial is still under negotiations, but Rumley said he felt better about where they are now than he did a couple of weeks ago. Rumley said Case has been working hard to get questions answered and issues resolved. Rumley said they hope to meet in a couple of weeks to finalize the contract as the county is down to less than 60 days before their contract with Puckett ends.

Dade E-911 handled 3,980 calls for service in November.

The Recreation Department was able to host fall soccer, a benefit, and football. Baseball saw 131 games at the four fields complex. Hartline said they are already receiving calls to schedule tournaments for next year. One group, Wood Bats, is a group of 18 and older players, some of who were minor league players who for injury or other reasons did not get to play in the minors anymore so they formed their own league.

SPLOST collections were up to $218,165 for November and Goff reminded everyone they run two months behind.

The county landfill handled 712 tons of garbage in November.

Rumley reported that as of Thursday evening, the county had 29 positive COVID cases in one day with 75 positive cases reported in the past two week period. The county has seen 7 deaths.

E-911 Director/EMA Director Alex Case said Georgia EMA sends daily reports of positive cases and addresses which are logged into the computers for 14 days putting an alert on that address. This is done in order to protect First Responders and county volunteers so they know when more personal protective equipment (PPE) is needed.

County Commissioners approved a proclamation declaring the week of December 6 – 12 National Influenza Week; re-appointed John Gothard to the ABC Board, Tim Easter to the Board of Assessor’s, Larry Case and Evan Stone to the IDA, Buford Stephens to the Limestone Valley RC and D, and Peter Cervelli to the NWG Regional Commission; approved the 2020 – 2021 agreement with the Public Defenders Office; 2020-2021 agreement for USDA grant; approved the FY 2021 grant for public transportation; and the transit alliance grant for public transportation.

The full videos of the work session and meeting can be viewed below.