JASPER, Ga. – After May’s primary election night, Kirk Raffield pulled out a close victory of 272 votes to his opponents 262. With the 50.94 percent results, Raffield attended the city of Jasper’s June council meeting to be officially sworn in as a part of the council.
With it being his first meeting, Raffield swore his oath preceding the official call to order in their council meeting and officially took his seat after this. With many in attendance to watch the ceremony, one citizen, Regina Mosley Camp, took a moment to comment on the event saying she knew Raffield as a younger child. “I am truly excited for him because I know the quality of man he is,” said Camp.
Camp volunteered in Raffield’s campaign for the council, noting that she was fervent in her support because of what she has seen him do throughout her time with him.
The special election came after former council member Jim Looney stepped down to take the interim city manager position for Jasper. The seat has been empty up to this month.
With such a close race, Raffield moves forward on the council with a question on him constantly asking what he will bring to the council meetings and what he will accomplish for the city. Sitting in his first meeting, Raffield was not shy about his new seat, speaking fervently on an annexation issue specifically. Check out more by reading City Council discusses Sharktop Ridge annexation.
Doctor Sonny Proctor announced he will be running to be re-elected for the Jasper City Council by sending a statement,
First of all, I want to thank all the citizens of Jasper for giving me the opportunity to serve you on your City Council. It has been a real honor, unlike any other ever bestowed on me. I also want to thank the Mayor and Council for working with me and being patient with me in my growth and experience.
At first the responsibilities seemed overwhelming but as I have learned more and more, and started to build relationships the rewards have been many as well. In just 8 months we have made much progress, and even more exciting times in Jasper are just around the corner.
There is still much, much work to do, but the council, with your help, has identified those areas where more focus is needed, and I am confident we will continue to help our city.
For that reason I have decided to run again to represent you the citizens on your council, this time for a full four year term. I am sure I will be opposed, and ready for it, and I will need all of your support to prevail. I truly think my experiences past and present can benefit our city, and my heart is in the right place. This is to preserve what is good about our city, and improve the rest! Again, thank you!
Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com
Although a few members short, Mayor Weaver brought attention to the council a matter that had been declined last month, the purchase of a new skid steer for $60,611.
Donnie Fowler spoke to the council and insisted that a new skid steer would help with much larger projects and would provide safety to those operating it. The current equipment can handle many jobs, but runs the risk of being a liability with it not having a cab enclosure.
Council Member Jim Looney and Mayor Weaver went head to head on this topic. Mayor Weaver agreed with Fowler in the fact that a new skid steer could handle bush hogging and the larger logs through the city.
Jim Looney and other members of the council had a harder time seeing the need for the new equipment. Throughout the back and forth conversation Looney stated he wouldn’t agree return to the other one they had as the cage cab could prevent someone from being injured while bush hogging.
Although the skid steer was approved this time around, John Foust voted against the skid steer. FYN asked Foust after the meeting about his decision,
It’s not that I disagree with a new Skid Steer, I just think there is more to look into and think about on it.
Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at www.fetchyournews.com
Meeting on April 2, the Jasper City Council revisited its Vehicle/Equipment Purchases as well as two additional purchases.
As the Jasper City Council continues discussing their purchases for Vehicles and Equipment, David Buchanan brought another vehicle before the Board with the request. The City of Jasper recently lost one of its trucks in an accident. Receiving just under $17,000 from the other parties insurance, the City was not at fault in the accident, Buchanan requested the City add replacement for the truck as a part of the vehicle purchases.
However, the City was planning to buy a new truck, fully equipped, for $46,200 with the insurance payment and a left over balanced between the current request as it stands and what the City budgeted for the purchases originally. As discussion continued, Mayor John Weaver came to realize that the insurance and remaining budgeted funds combined would only reach approximately $37,000, short of the needed $46,200.
With that knowledge the county moved forward approving the purchases totaling $521,322. As said, this comes in below the budgeted $540,000.
The Council also approved $4,450 to purchase an Automatic Switch. Although the purchase was higher than expected, the need of a 200-amp plug for the switch at the station and a few extra parts drove the costs up.
Another purchase the City approved came for the Police Department whose speed detection lasers are in need of replacement. Chief Greg Lovell informed the council that the older devices are becoming to0 expensive to continue sending off for repair. Instead, Chief Lovell requested the Council’s approval for $3,099.99 each for two Pro Laser 3s. Lovell informed the council that purchasing two at once would incur a discount as each laser alone originally costs $3,599.99. Additionally, Chief Lovell said the purchase would come out of its Tech Fees and would not require digging into the budget.
For more information, check out the recorded meeting below.
Dear City of Jasper Voters:
First and foremost I would like to say “Thank you!” for the outpouring of support I have received since qualifying to run for Jasper City Council. It is very humbling to know how many trusting friends I have developed here since moving to Jasper in 1995 that know I will do the right thing.
What a great place Jasper has been to live, work and raise my family. It is my hope to use my past experiences to improve our already wonderful quality of life. I have heard from city workers, business owners, retirees, educators, and many, many former patients whom know what I stand for. Thanks!
We are already fortunate to live in an area where the quality of life is unsurpassable, and we need to keep it that way. But at the same time we have challenges facing us that will make the difference in our future, and in our children’s ability to someday thrive here. While appreciating all of our achievements, like world class healthcare and business corridor growth, it is time for us to closely assess our current situation as it pertains to our resources and infrastructure, and plan accordingly. It is also time to decide what kind of community we want to be, identify the type and amount of future growth we want and our resources can support, and plan and act to achieve those goals. The business world calls that a strategic plan, which should be an involved process requiring input from a lot of stakeholders, including the citizens! Call it a look forward if you wish!
While doing this, we also need to preserve our history, both downtown and in the county, as there is far little of it left. Having so much available land makes one wonder when historic buildings are displaced by large and small retail alike; like when our last one room school house is replaced with a one room storage building. This goes far beyond the most recent plan to destroy a historic Cherokee structure for what I believe is our fifth Dollar General Store. Our little historic crossroads town can be a bustling area if we make the right choices and commitments!
My plan in office is to assess the current state of our dear city, help to develop a plan for the future and through hard work, moral values, integrity, honesty and transparency, help get us there. I need your vote! In exchange, I pledge access and a voice to make things the way we want and need them here in Jasper and Pickens County. The future is bright!
If you have any questions for me, believe it or not, I am on Facebook, Facebook ~ Sonny Proctor, M.D. and I’ll do my best to get back to you!
Sonny Proctor, M.D.
Chaos in Blue Ridge?
On Tuesday night, November 3, citizens of Pickens county went to the polls for two votes, one electing a City Council Member while the other was to determine the continuation of the ESPLOST in the county.
The Council Election produced Tony Fountain retaining his seat as City Council Member with 165 votes while Kirk Raffield collected 83 votes.
The ESPLOST Vote did pass with 792 Yes and 468 No.