“The market dictates everything,” says Dobbs
By Mark Millican
Known as the “Gateway to the Mountains,” Pickens County offers tourists and other visitors their first glimpse of scenic north Georgia coming up Highway 515, also known as the Zell Miller Parkway. It's certainly not a news flash, but people shopping for vacation cabins and second homes are also looking around at the forested peaks, valleys and streams.
The continuing influx of buyers looking for stick-built homes and cabins, plus old houses being refurbished and put back into the market, have led to “very vibrant changes” in the assessment of properties, said Chief Appraiser Roy Dobbs.
Gov. Brian Kemp signs the landmark Hate Crimes Bill passed in the session.
By Beau Evans
Capitol Beat News Service
Georgia lawmakers just wrapped up this year’s wrangling of bills at the state Capitol, managing to push through several pieces of legislation in a hectic two-week period marked by fears over coronavirus.
Hundreds of bills fell by the wayside as the COVID-19 pandemic rushed into Georgia starting in mid-March. Lawmakers in the General Assembly took a three-month hiatus, then returned earlier this month to pass landmark legislation on hate crimes, a tax on vaping, cuts to standardized tests – and much, much more.
Below is a roundup of key bills the General Assembly passed before the close of the 2020 legislative session last Friday night:
Chamber press release
The 2020 Marble Festival planned for the first weekend in October has been cancelled, Pickens Chamber President Amberle Godfrey announced late Tuesday.
A Chamber of Commerce press release, stated: “Protecting the safety of our community, our citizens, and our families is paramount in the minds of the Pickens County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. While our community safety measures have kept Covid-19 numbers lower than those of our neighboring communities, we do not feel it would be responsible to invite citizens from other communities into Pickens County for such a large event where social distancing would be difficult.
A big turnout, with hats off and hands on heart during the National Anthem, thanked law enforcement at a rally Sunday at the courthouse on Main Street. More photos at our e-edition
By Max Caylor
Social media posts helped draw over 200 flag waving and sign carrying citizens to Sunday afternoon’s “Back the Blue” event at the Courthouse.
Organizer Klayton Harris said,“after seeing what has happened in Atlanta I wanted the community to come together and support our police.”
At their June meeting, the board of commissioners cancelled all county credit cards that were issued to a handful of departments and offices. The cancellation was “effective immediately.”
Those cards have been at the center of heated controversy since January. Problems began when meal charges made by the county commission chair were posted online, and later with former Pickens Magistrate Judge Allen Wigington who faces criminal charges due to purchases he made on the card issued to him.
The cards cancelled were: two issued to the commissioner’s office; one that was kept by the former magistrate judge who could use it for the entire courthouse; and five that were issued to the sheriff’s office.
See full story in this week's print or online editions.