Jasper approves bids and JMA Events

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JASPER, Ga. – The City Council approved three major events for the Jasper Merchants Association (JMA) accompanying closing of Main Street in Downtown Jasper.

Usually spread across the entirity of the Fall Season as the JMA requests the road closure for these events, this year, with the help of City Manager Brandon Douglas, they made one request including all three events. Citizens should be aware of this road closure for the following days:

Thursday, October 31, 2019, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. for the Halloween Event.

Saturday, December 7, 2019, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. for the Christmas Parade, with the parade to start at 6 p.m.

Tuesday, December 31, 2019, from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. for the New Year’s Eve Celebration.

Not associated with the JMA, Main Street will also be closed for the Prevent Child Abuse Pickens Long Table event on September 21, 2019, from Noon until midnight.

The city has received four bids for their paving contract for road paving. The apparent low bidder came to be Northwest Georgia Paving, Inc. with a bid of $1,217,062.50. Approved by the council, the paving contract has been awarded.

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Jasper and JYSA unsure of parks future

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JASPER, Ga. – Concerns arose within the city council meetings regarding an item on the agenda to sublet property.

As the city considers leases on the parks and its continuing relationship with JYSA, more confusion is mounting around what the city can and cannot do with the property. One idea is to sublease the property in favor of having an entity control and manage it for the city. 

City Attorney Bill Pickett said, “My gut reaction is no. I don’t know if we have the authority to do that. Cities of population of more than 300,000 people have specific statutory authority in order to lease parks… These are the taxpayers of the City of Jasper that own this. This would alienate the property and take us out of the loop and not have control of our own destination. It will violate the insurance and it could waive sovereign immunity.”

Much of the issue seems to revolve around scheduling events and public use with citizens wishing to use the fields with the options now pointing to continuing with JYSA or having the city take over for planning and scheduling of these events. This was noted as Jasper City Mayor John Weaver summarized the issue saying that years ago, the parks were an effort to provide inexpensive recreation for local citizens. This included a league of local counties. Now, however, the league is not around anymore, but no effort has been made to create travel teams. However, other travel teams around the area are wanting to use the park facilities.

Weaver went on to say, “At this point, JYSA may have run its course with the City of Jasper. And it needs to be brought back under the umbrella of the city council and our staff to decide who gets to use the facilities instead of having people that we don’t know schedule our fields. We have the potential to do that.”

Weaver said he thought the travel teams would come under JYSA, but now the coaches and teams are not controlled by that organization. As independent teams, Weaver suggested the city needs to control those teams scheduled uses of the fields.

Councilmember Sonny Proctor questioned if the city could charge teams to use the fields as part of the city hosting tournaments.

Weaver said they probably could but may need some more insurance or similar needs.

The need to control scheduling comes so that citizens who may wish to use the fields as they meet up with friends could access the field when no events were scheduled. A governing body to control that schedule would provide that singular schedule to be abided and to have the fields vacated for those events.

The City Council ultimately decided to table the issue this month as they continue looking deeper into JYSA, the parks, and the city’s next steps.

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Cove Road Reopens to single lane traffic

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JASPER, Ga. – The City of Jasper has officially reopened Cove Road after rock slides have had it closed for nearly a month.

However, with yesterday’s reopening of the road, there is a catch. Today will see only one lane of traffic available to citizens as clearing, repairs,  and stabilization of the area begins in earnest. Today, Georgia Power  will be replacing power lines on Cove road in the S curves, so please watch for these workers.

In the coming months, citizens will continue seeing the road open and close to lanes of traffic as the city continues with the plans it set into motion in last weeks monthly meeting. The city is calling for caution today as you travel the road, not just for the single lane of traffic, but for the workers and linemen who are continually moving along the road today.

 

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Agenda for Monday Night’s Regular Council Meeting

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