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Vision 2040 Draft Plan Available for Review

Crystal ball view of downtown Social CircleThank you to all who came to meetings, sent emails, and completed surveys!  There were over 250 survey responses, and 270 attendees and participants at the 15 meetings and Social Circle High School advisory classes focused on this effort. We appreciate your input.

A link to the Draft Vision, Needs and Opportunities, Work Plan, and Future Land Use  Plan is available on the City’s web site and is available for review at City Hall. The draft will be under review during the Month of April. Final approval will be considered by the Mayor and  City Council in June.

Thank you for contributing your perspective, opinions, and suggestions to guide the future of Social Circle.

Leaf and Brush Pickup Delayed

Cherry BlossomsIt’s spring and we are sprucing up our yards. This creates piles of brush and debris for City Crews to pick up. The crews are still continuing their pickup schedule from fall, but are currently delayed as they wait on the delivery of a new leaf truck. There is only one crew working at this time and they are doing the best they can to keep up.

To make things easier for our crew, please do the following:

  • rake leaves to the curb or road
  • make piles no higher than three feet and six feet in diameter
  • place piles horizontally along the curb for timelier and easier pickup by city crews.
  • no trash, metals, brush etc. mixed in to prevent damage to the machinery.
  • limbs should be cut to no more than 7 feet in length
  • Bagged leaves will be picked up and transported to the cities leaf drop off area.

A load is approximately 8 feet by 8 feet by 4 feet.

Important Message from the City about Natural Gas Safety

Natural gas, America’s most popular home heating fuel, is increasingly popular for use by homeowners, schools, businesses, factories and electric power-generation plants because it is efficient, clean, reliable and a relative bargain compared to alternative energy sources. In our community, the City of Social Circle provides natural gas to more than 1100 customers through a network of underground distribution lines.

Main gas lines, typically 2-inch in diameter, branch into household service lines which are typically half-inch to three-quarter-inch in diameter and buried 12- to 18-inches below the surface. To protect you and others in the community; federal and state government, along with your utility provider have made your safety a high priority. Any time you dig or move earth in any way, you are required to “Call Before You Dig” 48 hours before beginning any digging. When you call 811, they will contact utility owners who will locate all buried utility lines on your property, so you can safely dig and prevent a potentially hazardous condition. Failure to use the 811 system is a known cause of pipeline accidents. Calling before you dig can prevent a costly or even deadly mistake. For more information, see www.Georgia811.com, socialcirclega.gov or call City Hall at 770-464-2380.

Natural gas is a colorless, odorless gas. A chemical that smells like rotten eggs is added to help detect a possible leak. Some of the signs of a gas leak include seeing bubbling water, hearing a hissing or blowing sound from a pipeline or appliance, dead or discolored vegetation in an otherwise green area, dirt or dust blowing from the ground, or the smell of rotten eggs. If you smell gas, or just think you might be smelling gas, leave the area immediately and call your local gas provider at 770-464-2380 or 911 from a neighboring home or business. Never turn on or off switches or use a flashlight or phone in the presence of the gas smell, because an electric spark could ignite the gas, causing an explosion.

Do your part to familiarize yourself and your family with these natural gas safety tips and continue to enjoy the value, comfort and benefits of America’s cleanest, most efficient energy source!

This message is brought to you by City of Social Circle as a public service. To learn more about our natural gas service and the benefits of natural gas, call 770-464-2380.

Drought Level Dropped from 2 to 1 for Walton County

The Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) has announced it will ease outdoor water use requirements in 86 counties. Improving drought conditions have resulted in 31 counties being upgraded from a Level 2 Drought Response to a Level 1 Drought Response, including Walton County.

“Winter rains have brought needed relief to much of the state, but Lake Lanier, the Chattahoochee River and smaller streams in the region have been slow to recover,” said EPD Director Richard Dunn.  “As a result, the Level 2 Drought Response will remain in place in the upper Chattahoochee River Basin, including most metropolitan Atlanta counties.”

The following activities are allowed under Level 1 Drought Responses:

  • Irrigation of new and replanted plant, seed, or turf may be done at any time of day for 30 days after installation.
  • Irrigation of personal food gardens may be done at any time of day.
  • Drip irrigation or irrigation using soaker hoses may be done at any time of day and hand-watering with a hose with automatic cutoff or handheld container may be done at any time of day.
  • General landscape watering may be done after 4:00 p.m. and before 10:00 a.m. on the designated days.

More water conservation information is available at http://epd.georgia.gov/water-conservation.

Help Create a Downtown Square in Social Circle!

Downtown Square Concept ImagesWe have heard from the community how much they value the downtown and would love a downtown square for gatherings, farmers markets, and  more  festivals and events in our city center.  The Social Circle Downtown Development Authority has made this project their top priority to support the community  vision.  A concept plan has been developed, and a $100,000 USDA Rural Development grant identified to begin the creation of this downtown square.

Here is how you can help bring this vision to reality….

The USDA selection criteria will include an evaluation of broad community support for the project.  Support can be in the form of letters of support, donations and work in kind.

The DDA is currently seeking letters of support from the community, civic groups and businesses. If you can write a letter of support to the Social Circle DDA it would be greatly appreciated and will help support our efforts to secure the funding grant.

Letter of Support Guidelines

The deadline for the grant request is March 17th. Letters will be accepted through March 16th.

Please address the letters to the Social Circle Downtown Development Authority and drop off,  mail or email to City Hall.

Thank you for supporting this opportunity for our downtown. If you have questions please contact Adele Schirmer, Social Circle City Manager at 770-464-2380.

Code Compliance to Start April 1

With Spring coming, we appreciate how everyone is sprucing up their yards and homes. Starting April 1, the City Compliance Officer will be taking inventory of the City Code of Ordinance issues in town. Initially, the Code Compliance Officer will visit with citizens to let them know about ordinances they may not be aware of and to work with them to see what needs to be done to bring the issues up to code.

Contact Barbara Schlageter at (770) 464-6905 or BSchlageter@ socialcirclega.com for more information.

Please Don’t Flush “Flushable” Wipes

“Flushable” wipes are the new headache for wastewater treatment operations. Flushable wipes are made from high strength fibers that do not lose their strength and do not biodegrade fast enough to keep from clogging the pipes. The wipes get stuck on imperfections in the pipes and then other items get stuck which leads to clogs in sewer lines and malfunctions in sewer lift stations resulting in sewer spills.

This is not a problem to only Social Circle. Clogs from flusable wipes have been responsible for millions of dollars of damage to sewer systems in New York and London.

Please do not flush any kinds of wipes to help keep our sewer system running smoothly.

Chickens in Residential Districts

The City Council will discuss the keeping of chickens at their work session on March 21, 2017 at 5:30 pm.  This will be an opportunity for the Mayor and Council to discuss the input received to date and provide direction to the staff on whether to prepare an Ordinance for consideration. This topic has been considered by the Planning Commission, who recommended at their February meeting against allowing the keeping of chickens in residential districts, and also by the Historic Preservation Commission who recommended allowing the keeping of no more than two chickens in residential districts on lots at least ½ acre in size.

If the Council pursues an ordinance change to allow the keeping of chickens in a residential district, that ordinance would require a public hearing process  prior to a vote for adoption.