News Line for Gainesville

Chief planner urges cities to consider top road needs
The head of Hall County’s main transportation planning group told area government leaders Wednesday they should consider “critical needs” in terms of projects as the county moves forward on updating its long-range transportation plan.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville eases pawnshop restrictions
Gainesville City Council has given its nod to easing restrictions on where pawnshops can be located after a second reading and final vote Tuesday.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville Council writes off taxes on tax deadline day
Tuesday, April 15th, is the deadline for Americans to pay their income tax, but it also marked Gainesville City Council's approval of a resolution to write off just over 195,000 in delinquent personal property tax.
Source: Access North Georgia

The Local Agenda: Gainesville City Council may ease pawnshop rules
A second reading and final vote on easing restrictions on where pawnshops can be located will be heard when Gainesville City Council meets tonight.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville parks department proposes increased budget
As it looks to expand recreational opportunities, renovate park facilities and increase staff, the Gainesville Parks and Recreation Department has proposed a $5.261 million budget for the 2015 fiscal year.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville PD wants HEAT on aggressive city drivers
Gainesville Police Chief Brian Kelly told the Gainesville City Council at their work session Thursday morning that he wants to bring HEAT to the drivers in Gainesville.
Source: Access North Georgia

'Lofts at Midtown' draws Planning & Appeals approval
A 90 unit affordable housing complex planned to locate across the street from Gainesville's Public Safety Complex got a narrow 3-2 re-zoning approval from Planning and Appeals members Tuesday evening.
Source: Access North Georgia

The Local Agenda: Gainesville City Council to hear last of budget presentations
Gainesville City Council will meet Thursday morning to hear the last of the departmental budget presentations for the coming 2015 fiscal year.
Source: Gainesville Times

City planning staff recommending approval of 90-unit apartment complex
The city of Gainesville's planning staff is recommending approval of plans to construct a 90-unit apartment complex near Banks Street and Gordon Avenue.
Source: Access North Georgia

“Rain tax:” Gainesville looking at creating stormwater utility
The city of Gainesville is considering how to pay for upgrades and replacements to aging stormwater infrastructure, which has resulted in flooding and sinkholes.
Source: Gainesville Times

Council OKs easing limits on pawnshop locations
Gainesville City Council voted 4-2 Tuesday to ease restrictions on where pawnshops can be located in the city.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville council relaxes pawn shop ordinance
In a split decision, Gainesville City Council voted Tuesday night to relax distance restrictions on pawn shops in the city limits.
Source: Access North Georgia

The Local Agenda: City Council to hear amendments to pawnshop, alcohol ordinances today
Gainesville City Council will meet today to hear two proposed ordinance amendments that will loosen restrictions on businesses hoping to open in the city.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville HR splitting off in coming fiscal year
The Gainesville Human Resources and Risk Management Department will go it alone in the coming fiscal year, but its mission and funding priorities won’t change much.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville Community Development to continue focus on code enforcement
Ramped-up code enforcement efforts are not expected to be hampered despite the fact Gainesville Community Development Department officials don’t expect their budget to change much in the 2015 fiscal year.
Source: Gainesville Times

Changes to pawnshop ordinance considered
Rather than face litigation, Gainesville City Council is expected to amend a pawnshop ordinance that has prohibited a new TitleMax from opening.
Source: Gainesville Times

GCC considers reducing number, replacing billboards
The Gainesville City Council is looking at a possible measure that could cut in half the number of billboards in the city, and the request to make that reduction is not being made by an environmental group or community beautification club, but by the primary billboard advertiser in the city.
Source: Access North Georgia

Meeting to set stage for new SPLOST
Hall County and area municipal officials will gather today to begin laying the groundwork for a new special purpose local option sales tax.
Source: Gainesville Times

'Growlers' gets a warm 1st reading welcome
It’s not official yet, but judging from Gainesville City Council’s first reading vote Tuesday evening,the city’s first ‘Growler’ is welcome.
Source: Access North Georgia

A Gainesville council member opposes the Fractional SPLOST
Gainesville City Council members got a reminder Tuesday afternoon to contact State Senator Butch Miller before the General Assembly adjourns Thursday about a measure that would alter the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax.
Source: Access North Georgia

Field trade between Gainesville, school board still in progress
A land transfer between Gainesville City Schools and Gainesville Parks & Recreation isn’t final — yet.
Source: Gainesville Times

Bill on island annexations dies in General Assembly
A bill that would have established a mediation process for dealing with Gainesville’s next round of “island” annexations appears to be dead in the Georgia General Assembly.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville wants DOT to buy right of way at busy corner
“For sale” signs at a property overlooking one of Gainesville’s busiest intersections have more than caught the city’s attention.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville senior services is planning for Baby Boomers
America's post World War Two population spike is approaching retirement age, and this week Gainesville's Community Service Center Director said it's time to make room for them at the Senior Life Services Center.
Source: Access North Georgia

City kicking off community health initiative
Dust off your walking shoes. The City of Gainesville will kick off a community health initiative called Gainesville Walks on Monday, March 31 at 6:00 p.m. at Fair Street School.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville Council wants 'flat' FY 2015 budgets
Gainesville City Council Thursday morning heard from department and agency directors in the first phase of how to divide an estimated $29-million city operating budget for FY 2015.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville wants to help residents own homes
Gainesville officials explained to residents Saturday at an advisory meeting how low-income individuals can go about getting government assistance for a cornerstone achievement — owning a home.
Source: Gainesville Times

Draft beer to go may be coming to downtown square
Gainesville officials are looking to amend the city’s alcoholic beverage ordinance in hopes it will entice a South Hall business that serves draft beer to open on the downtown square.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville City Council makes committee appointments
The Gainesville City Council met Tuesday to appoint members to several advisory committees, boards and commissions.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville owes residents more than $25,000 in water account refunds
The Gainesville Public Utilities Department reports hundreds of residents are owed refunds on their water accounts.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville looking for water customers owed refunds
The Gainesville Public Utilities Department said it owes some water customers refunds from their accounts, and they are trying to track down those customers.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville tree-planting effort delayed till fall
A Gainesville effort to plant 180 trees at three Army Corps of Engineers parks has been postponed because of a lack of interest by contractors.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville to add pond and park along Midtown Greenway
Another scenic stopping point along the Midtown Greenway is about to take shape.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville retiring bus system's Red Rabbit brand
Gainesville is retiring the Red Rabbit name for its transit line and rolling out new buses with a rebranded design that officials say gives the public transportation service a more modern look.
Source: Gainesville Times

Water quality improvements could mean big bucks
There’s environmental green and dollar green, and both got heavy chatter at Thursday’s Lake Lanier Stakeholders meeting.
Source: Gainesville Times

Aging Red Rabbit gets a facelift
The Gainesville City Council joined Community Service Center Director Phillippa Lewis Moss and staff members in the City Hall parking lot this morning for the unveiling of “Gainesville Connection”, the rebranded identity of the Hall Area Transit Bus Service.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville drug testing policy draws scrutiny
Gainesville will implement a zero-tolerance drug-testing policy beginning Saturday for public safety workers, with termination of employment the penalty for a single failed test.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville PD uses social media to arrest four
The Gainesville Police Department is crediting social media for helping close three minor theft cases.
Source: Access North Georgia

Bill proposes mediation prior to island annexations
Ongoing concerns about the costs associated with providing services in Gainesville and unincorporated parts of Hall County have led state lawmakers to push for a bill that would put a mediation process in place for dealing with the city’s next round of “island” annexations.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville officials look to change name of tourism bureau
Calling it a mere formality, Gainesville officials are hoping that changing the name of the existing tourism bureau to the Gainesville Convention and Visitors Bureau Authority will be a boon to its economic development portfolio.
Source: Gainesville Times

City of Gainesville proceeds with formation of CVB Authority
If everything goes as planned, Gainesville will have a Convention and Visitors Bureau Authority once this year's legislative session is over.
Source: Access North Georgia

Thanks: An open letter from Gainesville Police Chief Brian Kelly
The members of the Gainesville Police Department and I would like to sincerely thank everyone for their patience, preparations, and understanding during the inclement winter weather.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville City Council considers ways to improve quality of life
Quality of life issues received the most time and attention Friday at the Gainesville City Council’s annual goal-setting retreat, with several proposals made to improve services and amenities for residents while also bolstering tourism.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville Council moves closer to change in animal ordinance
The city of Gainesville's animal control ordinance is one step closer to lining up with elements in the Hall County animal control ordinance.
Source: Access North Georgia

Lawsuit may stem from pawnshop ordinance
The city of Gainesville is bracing for potential litigation after a new TitleMax was refused a certificate of occupancy and barred from opening for business.
Source: Gainesville Times

City Council discusses Red Rabbit fares, updating aggressive animal ordinance
With the new year, the City of Gainesville is about to begin a fare and route assessment study and make needed changes in the city's Red Rabbit transit program.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville City Council backs Legacy Link grant application
Gainesville City Council approved a resolution Tuesday acknowledging its support for the Gainesville-Hall Community Service Center’s Legacy Link grant application.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville PD will go paperless
Now that Gainesville City Council has given its approval, the Gainesville Police Department will get a new electronic records management system, moving one step closer to a paperless environment.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville council okays Lanier Ave. rezoning
Gainesville City Council members switched direction Tuesday night and approved a rezoning request that they had denied months ago.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville City Council approves Lanier Avenue rezoning
An acre of property on Lanier Avenue in Gainesville is now residential-office, as opposed to strictly residential.
Source: Gainesville Times

Drug testing for Gainesville employees to expand
At their first work session of the year the Mayor and City Council heard of plans to expand random drug testing among Gainesville City employees to enhance their drug-free workplace program.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville's first elected Mayor takes the oath
Gainesville’s first elected mayor was sworn in Friday, promising to work for unity, fairness and economic growth.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville insurance broker joins City Council
Newly elected Gainesville City Councilman Sam Couvillon will be sworn in after today’s meeting alongside Danny Dunagan, the city’s first directly elected mayor.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville City Council reviews charter reflecting new mayor post
Gainesville City Council combed through its city charter, updated to reflect the new elected mayor position, with The Carl Vinson Institute of Government at the University of Georgia during a Thursday retreat.
Source: Gainesville Times

'Shop with Gainesville Cop' extra special this year
Gainesville Police Officers took needy children and their families on the 11th annual 'Shop with a Gainesville Cop' at Wal-Mart on Shallow ford Road Wednesday.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville City Council, mayoral salaries set
Salaries are in place for Gainesville City Council and the newly elected mayor Danny Dunagan.
Source: Gainesville Times

City hears from public on BOE's decision on guns
The Gainesville City Council was told Tuesday evening that there had been reaction to the previous night’s decision by Gainesville City Schools to provide School Resource Officers with three Colt 6920 M4 semi-automatic carbine rifles for their schools.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville parks department to consider trading fields with school board
Gainesville Parks & Recreation wants to swap properties with the Gainesville School Board.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville makes master plan to move traffic
Big plans, no dollars may be one way to describe the new City of Gainesville Transportation Master Plan, recently completed after a yearlong study.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville on hook for paying off jail purchase
Gainesville must continue paying for a bond used to buy the old Hall County jail on Main Street, but the income it expected to receive from the tenant of the facility will dry up in 2015
Source: Gainesville Times

Bike, pedestrian plans may help ease Gainesville traffic
Area officials believe pedestrian and bicycle travel might provide another answer to Gainesville’s growing traffic congestion problems, as the newly released City of Gainesville Transportation Master Plan recommends foot- and pedal-powered improvements through 2040.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville mayor, city council swearing-in planned Dec. 27
Gainesville's newly elected Mayor will be sworn in Friday, Dec. 27.
Source: Access North Georgia

Glades Reservoir agreement approved
The city of Gainesville and Hall County have come to an understanding about Glades Reservoir.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville council discusses naming policy
The Gainesville City Council has placed on the consent agenda a policy for the naming of city-owned property, including parks.
Source: Gainesville Times

Olympic venue agreement closer to reality
Gainesville City Council will discuss at its work session Thursday a business resolution to adopt the Gainesville-Hall ’96 Lake Lanier Olympic Venue service and lease agreements.
Source: Gainesville Times

Companies resolve wastewater citations
Gainesville Public Utilities Department Director Kelly Randall said fewer companies were cited this year than previously for noncompliance with federal wastewater regulations.
Source: Gainesville Times

Guidelines updated for historic buildings in Gainesville
A revised set of design guidelines for Gainesville’s historic districts separates residential-style buildings used as homes from those occupied by businesses.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville to plant trees to offset utility project
Gainesville is looking to plant 180 trees at three U.S. Army Corps of Engineers parks as part of an “environmental stewardship” effort tied to the Clarks Bridge replacement project.
Source: Gainesville Times

Six local governments apply for state transportation funds
The State Road and Tollway Authority Tuesday announced that 46 local Georgia governments, including six in our area, have applied for state money to help with transportation projects.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville Council expresses reservations then approves 'guns-in-parks'
Every member of the Gainesville City Council raised their hand Tuesday evening, unanimously approving an amendment to an existing city ordinance banning firearms in city parks; not every Council member, however, had their “hearts” in the vote.
Source: Access North Georgia

Mayors’ Motorcade to aid consumers of mental health services
The city of Gainesville and the Georgia Municipal Association are teaming up for the 55th annual Mayors’ Motorcade.
Source: Gainesville Times

Guns in parks: Residents’ views on mixed topic
Guns are now allowed in Gainesville parks despite some residents’ concerns that firearms don’t belong there.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville bottles water to attract economic benefits
Like Gainesville? Try the water. The city is hoping to attract economic development by handing out bottles of Gainesville H2O to out-of-town visitors. It’s an idea that had been discu
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville bottles water to attract economic benefits
Like Gainesville? Try the water.
Source: Gainesville Times

Eyes on the Road: Gainesville roads plan now available online
Area residents now can view the final version of Gainesville’s Transportation Master Plan, completed after a yearlong study.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville agreement on Glades won't raise water fees
Gainesville residents may not pay water rate increases to help fund the planned Glades Reservoir in Hall County, but they could still wind up on the hook down the road.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville Council finally endorses Hall plan for reservoir
The time had come for the Gainesville City Council to vote on a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the city and Hall County regarding the proposed Glades Reservoir.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville considers joint agreement with Hall on Glades
Gainesville is considering supporting Hall County’s planned Glades Reservoir if it won’t raise water rates for the city’s water customers.
Source: Gainesville Times

Hall, Gainesville team up on Citizen's Alert System
The city of Gainesville and Hall County have set up a one-stop shop for residents to report road hazards, fire hazards, storm damage and other concerns.
Source: Gainesville Times

Tax changes bring Gainesville short-term gain
Gainesville will have extra money in its fiscal year 2014 budget, but revenues and expenses are likely to be a wash in 2015.
Source: Gainesville Times

Tax changes hit Gainesville 2014 budget
Over the past several weeks recent tax changes, both legislated (House Bill 386) and negotiated (Local Option Sales Tax distribution agreement), have collided with the 2014 approved city budget necessitating adjustments to be made to that budget.
Source: Access North Georgia

Mobile app allows Gainesville, Hall Co. residents to report issues
The city of Gainesville and Hall County Government have teamed up to utilize one civic engagement tool for both the city and the county.
Source: Access North Georgia

Governments seek money for road projects
Three area governments are seeking state grants to help pay for $2.8 million in road projects — one in Gainesville and two in South Hall County.
Source: Gainesville Times

City aims to inventory traffic signs
Gainesville traffic officials are taking a closer look at signs in the city, making sure they're clearly visible to drivers and pedestrians.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville Council disappointed in low voter turnout
The Gainesville City Council met in regular session Tuesday night just as the polls for the General Election were closing, and two commissioners expressed their dismay in what turned out to be an extremely low turnout for a municipal election.
Source: Access North Georgia

Dunagan wins Gainesville's mayor race without runoff
Danny Dunagan won the position of mayor in a historic race that saw little interest from most Gainesville residents.
Source: Gainesville Times

Dunagan, Miller win mayoral elections
Danny Dunagan was elected mayor of Gainesville, while incumbent Mike Miller was re-elected to the mayor's post in Flowery Branch in Tuesday's General Election.
Source: Access North Georgia

Dunagan leads mayoral candidates in campaign contributions
Former Gainesville city councilman Danny Dunagan leads the other four candidates in the Gaineville mayoral race when it comes campaign contributions.
Source: Access North Georgia

Early voting in Gainesville mayoral race totaled 511
As early voting for next Tuesday's Gaineville mayoral race ended Friday, election officials reported that just over 500 people took advantage of the chance to vote early.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville puts Midtown Greenway on fast track
Gainesville City Council wants to move faster on construction of Phase II of the Midtown Greenway.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville looks at carrying of weapons in city parks
Carrying a firearm in Gainesville city parks has been illegal according to city ordinances, but those regulations do not conform to Georgia statutes. As a result, an amendment was presented to the City Council at Thursday’s work session aimed at rectifying that disparity.
Source: Access North Georgia

Gainesville mayoral forum focuses on Latino population
Gainesville’s Latino population and its concerns were the focus of a mayoral forum Wednesday night at the Gainesville Civic Center.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville City Council considering petition to rename park for ex-fire chief
When Dick Taylor died in February at age 65, longtime friends and colleagues noted his extensive history serving the public, from his years as fire chief for both Gainesville and Hall County to earlier Navy days.
Source: Gainesville Times

Gainesville rolls out downtown welcome
As more visitors are drawn to the downtown square than any other site in Gainesville, businesses there are seeing an influx of customers.
Source: Gainesville Times

Hall and cities reach consensus on LOST deal
After nearly two years of fighting, mediation and mandated court “baseball” arbitration, it took Hall County and its cities just about four hours Thursday to agree on a new local option sales tax agreement.
Source: Gainesville Times

Hall and its cities hold emergency session to re-do LOST
Hall County and its cities met in emergency called session Thursday afternoon and agreed to revise the Local Option Sales Tax distribution certificate originally approved on Tuesday and sent to the State Revenue Department.
Source: Access North Georgia