BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – The Fannin County Board of Elections is currently seeking poll workers to work the voting polls during the 2020 elections (and potentially beyond!)
In order to apply, reach out to the Board of Elections for an application! They are located on the third floor of the Fannin County Court House (Suite 301), 8 AM – 5 PM, Monday – Friday. The address is 400 West Main Street Blue Ridge, GA 30513. Phone: 706-632-7740
Regarding the new voting machines, the public may still test these machines out during court house hours prior to the elections by visiting the Board of Elections Office.
All electrical lines have been inspected and labeled at all precincts throughout the county in preparation of the upcoming election year.
The old voting machines were picked up on December 4, 2019 for storage, and all new equipment has arrived as of Tuesday, January 7, 2020.
All new equipment is currently being stored securely within the Court House, as well as the Fannin County Senior Center until voting begins, as they could not be securely stored within each individual precinct.
At this time, the only things the county currently needs to conduct their 2020 elections are Ballot Catcher Bags for the new voting system and tables for the equipment to sit upon throughout the precincts.
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Blue Ridge, Ga. – Christie Arp, Executive Director of the Fannin County Development Authority, announced that TVA (Tennessee Valley Authority) has pledged $50,000 to renovate the grounds surrounding the area of the historic homes located near Blue Ridge Dam.
“This is owned by TVA,” Arp clarified the legalities of the area, “and leased to the county.”
“TVA has committed $50,000 to provide ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) accessible walkways and some other minor improvements,” Arp said explaining the purpose of the monies devoted to this area.
Among the minor improvements, pads will be poured for picnic tables, and if funds allow, decking could be installed to look out over Lake Blue Ridge.
The county would be responsible for providing the picnic tables, making minor improvements to parking areas, and continuing with maintenance such as mowing.
Arp described this new project as “a really great contribution to the county” that “will help improve an already public area”.
TVA has suggested a start date of the improvements for late July or early August of this year.
Arp did stress, “The houses are considered historic. Nothing is going to happen to the houses right now.”
An update was also given on the county’s SPEC (Speculative) Building located off Highway 5 on Kyle Road.
It was announced earlier this year that the building would be leased by Ed’s Supply Company, Inc. This announcement came just a little over a year after the building’s completion.
Ed’s Supply was founded in Nashville, Tn. in 1957. The primary focus of the company is to provide wholesale distribution of air conditioning, refrigeration, as well as heating parts and supplies across Tennessee, Georgia and Arkansas.
“Construction was funded by primarily grants,” Arp spoke of the progress of the SPEC building, “at a total of around $670,000. The majority of that is grants that will not have to be paid back.”
Of the amount that will have to be paid back, the Development Authority was able to secure a One Georgia Equity Loan in the amount of approximately $230,000. This is an interest free loan with quarterly payments due over a 20 year period.
“Ed’s Supply was able to give me an estimate of roughly $3 million in sales that will be brought to and kept in the county,” Arp spoke of the new tenants. According to Arp this would equate to approximately $90,000 in tax revenue.
Beyond these sales estimates, Ed’s Supply plans to hire employees in the county starting out with six positions with intentions to grow.
“They are investing, with their equipment, with their inventory, along with all the build out of the interior, roughly $1 million,” Arp said explaining Ed’s Supply immediate commitment in signing a 10 year lease with the county.
Fannin County Chairman Stan Helton praised the Development Authority for their hard work in completing all aspects of the SPEC Building project: “I know some of the fellow commissioners in other counties tell me the typical timeframe to fill a SPEC building with a valid company is closer to five years, and you and your board made this happen in a little over a year.”
Post 1 Commissioner Earl Johnson, who has been with the BOC since approval was given on the building project, thanked the Development Authority for working so diligently: “Hopefully some of the people who didn’t believe in it back then, will now look and say that it was a good investment.”
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Georgia hits 4.5 million job mark in October
ATLANTA – State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said today that Georgia broke the 4.5- million jobs barrier in October, bouncing back from a job loss due to Hurricane Irma in September.
The state posted 4,510,100 jobs for the month. That preliminary number is higher than Georgia’s previous revised record of 4,497,700 set in August. In September, Georgia had a temporary setback with a job loss of 3,400.
Georgia also set records in October for labor force and the number of employed residents.
“After the effects of the storm, this month’s numbers are much closer to what we are used to seeing,” Butler said. “All the indicators – job growth, unemployment claims, labor force and employed residents – are trending in the right direction. October was a great month for a dynamic, growing state like Georgia.”
Monthly numbers can fluctuate due to short-term impacts like Irma and are subject to revisions. The story built over the year, Butler said, gives a clearer picture of the state’s economy and jobs picture because it smooths out short-term shifts seen in monthly reports.
Over the past 12 months, Georgia has added 87,800 jobs, a 2 percent growth rate. The state is outpacing the national job growth rate of 1.4 percent.
In October Georgia posted 15,800 new jobs. Growth came mostly in the private sector including, construction, 5,500 and professional and business services, 5,200. Georgia’s over-the-year job growth came mostly in the private sector. Jobs were added in professional and business services, 24,900; education and health services, 15,300; leisure and hospitality, 14,500; and trade, transportation and warehousing, 11,700.
“It’s important that Georgia is adding jobs,” Butler noted, “but it’s more important that people continue to get them. And, we continue to see both happening.”
In October, the total number of employed residents rose by 20,634 to 4,865,859. There are 173,402 more Georgians employed now than in October 2016.
At the same time, the state’s labor force, which includes the total number of Georgians with jobs and those unemployed but looking for work, rose to 5,085,519, up by 15,123 in October. The labor force is up by 123,441 since October 2016.
Butler added that the unemployment rate also continues to fall.
The unemployment rate in October was 4.3 percent, down from September’s revised number of 4.4 percent. That compares favorably to last October when the rate was 5.4 percent. The lowest jobless rate ever recorded for the state was 3.4 percent in November 2000.
Monthly unemployment claims were up by 9.6 percent to 27,040. Most of the increase came due to temporary claims filed in manufacturing. However, from October a year ago, unemployment claims were down by 7.9 percent from 29,355.
Employ Georgia, the GDOL’s online job listing service at employgeorgia.com, showed 59,231 new job postings statewide for October.
Visit dol.georgia.gov to learn more about career opportunities, Employ Georgia and other GDOL services for job seekers and employers and to connect with us on social media.
DATA FOR THE METRO AREAS ARE ATTACHED, TABLES AND GRAPHS REFLECTING LABOR MARKET DATA ARE AVAILABLE AT http://dol.georgia.gov/current
NEWS MEDIA NEEDING ADDITIONAL INFORMATION MAY CALL (404) 232-3685
Washington, D.C. Office:
210 Washington St. NW, Suite 202
Gainesville, GA 30501
Phone: (770) 297-3388
John and Hunter are currently in our intern program here at FetchYourNews and FYNTV. John is an Associate Producer for FYNTV and Hunter is an Associate Reporter. They both have great video skills and are great assets to our team! Today Brian introduces them to our viewers, asks them a few questions about themselves, and also tells you about our intern program. If you are interested in getting involved or being an intern here at FYN or FYNTV please contact us at Chief@fetchyournews.com or 706-889-9700! We are always growing and would love to have you become part of our team.
This past Friday we continued our discussion about rural Georgia with 51st district (R) State Senator and Lumpkin County’s economic development director, Steve Gooch. Our three areas of focus: rural Georgia economy, broadband access, and health care. Although the district doesn’t want to see something in the line of the KIA plant they most certainly would be open to small companies offering high paying, high tech jobs. In order to attract these types of companies; the area must provide good schools, fast internet, and quality health care. We discussed Piedmont Mountainside new stand alone emergency health care center in Gilmer County; a model for quality health care in rural areas. When our discussion turned to high speed internet for the area, Gooch was unable to say they “moved the ball” concerning Senate Bill 232, Facilitating Internet Broadband Rural Expansion (FIBRE) Act.
A bomb is exactly what citizens are calling this information that they say came out of nowhere. With continuing questions of what this means to Gilmer County, FYN sat down with Executive Director of the Greater Gilmer JDA (Joint Development Authority), Chuck Scragg in an interview Wednesday.
As Director Scragg said, the impact of that information and the potential loss to Gilmer County could be quite substantial as losing a $31,000,000 business, which the hospital as a whole contributes to the county, would be a large impediment on the economy, stating, “in 2006 there were 9,035 jobs in Gilmer County, right now, today, there are 7,200 jobs.” Losing a business is losing jobs.
In a county that is still not recovering from the recession, it will be much harder to entice companies to join and move into Gilmer county with no inpatient care services. Director Scragg said when people visit for business scouting, after seeing potential sites, there are always three things they ask to see in the county; Schools, Downtown Area, and Healthcare Facilities.
While FYN has learned of a non-disclosure agreement covering the leasing or closing of the Medical Center, FYN has continued requesting comments from Piedmont Mountainside about the Transition and Services they would provide for Gilmer County considering there is a deadline of January 27 to contest the issue and the filing of a Request for Determination.
Citizens and employees of the Medical Center both are commenting and responding to this information saying “there are employees there that depend on their job to support their family” and many saying this is the first they have heard of the possible closing. With this being the first information they have received, many are still questioning why they were not informed earlier with the deadline only a week away?
House Speaker David Ralston’s office also released the following statement concerning the hospital via Kaleb McMichen, Spokesman.
Under President Obama’s administration, actions at the federal level have driven up the costs of healthcare including deductibles and premiums of commercial health insurance policies as well as the state’s portion of Medicaid spending. Unfortunately, many hospitals and doctors across Georgia, particularly those in rural areas, are struggling to cope with these changing financial realities.
As recently as last week, Speaker Ralston has said time and again that maintaining access to high-quality healthcare for Georgia’s citizens is a priority. He remains engaged with stakeholders and is working with them to find the best of available solutions to preserve access to hospital care in Gilmer County.
According to Director Scragg, the Greater Gilmer JDA will be having a Special Called Meeting on Monday morning at 9:00am at the Gilmer Chamber. We at FYN have also received the Agenda for this meeting, one of the major items on the agenda being ‘Review & Action on Hospital DET.’ This is an open meeting for citizens to sit in to listen and participate in a Citizens Wishing to Speak Section.
Listen to the full interview with Executive Director Chuck Scragg below:
Fetchyournews.com announces a new “Help Wanted” section. To run a help wanted ad the charge is $6.00 for 10 words or less and 10 cents per word thereafter per week. For an additional 3.00 per week we will supply a live URL (click here to send resume). Fetchyournews.com will highlight your job of the week on social media for $10.00 weekly. To run a help wanted ad please contact Debra or call (706)276-6397 for payment information.
Below is a list of current job openings. (more…)