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The Local Agenda: Olympic venue agreement closer to reality

POSTED: December 9, 2013 11:42 p.m.

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. 

In November, the Gainesville/Hall ’96 Foundation approved the agreements with both the city and Hall County for the venue at 3105 Clarks Bridge Road in Gainesville. The Hall County Board of Commissioners is set to approve the agreement at its Thursday meeting.

Gainesville and Hall recently agreed to invest more in the venue, each giving $150,000 to the foundation to manage and upgrade the facility, according to the service contract. 

The city, county and foundation would form an equal partnership to market the venue, promoting economic development and tourism in the area. The foundation would employ a manager to oversee operations at the venue. 

The venue was host to rowing and paddling events in the 1996 Summer Games and now houses the Lake Lanier Rowing Club and Lanier Canoe and Kayak Club. The foundation is a nonprofit that helped bring the Olympic events to the area and works to maintain the site’s legacy. 

The Gainesville work session will be at 9:30 a.m. instead of the usual 9 a.m. and will be held in the Bill Williams Conference Room, Suite 301, of the Administration Building at 300 Henry Ward Way. 

The item is on the consent agenda for Hall’s meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday at the Hall County Government Center, 2875 Browns Bridge Road, Gainesville.

Gainesville council to hear financial report, discuss policies

Also at the City Council’s work session, members will hear a fiscal year 2013 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report from local accounting firm Rushton & Co.

The council will discuss a couple of policies, too. One would formally identify how the city should name public facilities, spurred by a suggestion a few months ago to rename a city park, City Manager Kip Padgett said.

The city is also designating a new open records official and seeking to solidify its rules in relation to open records law. 

The law allows the public access to a variety of documents such as police incident reports and lease agreements for government property.

Annual Eggs & Issues Breakfast is Thursday

The annual Eggs & Issues Breakfast with the Hall County legislative delegation is set for 7:30-9 a.m. Thursday at the Gainesville Civic Center.

The sold-out event features Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle along with legislators including:

  • Sen. Butch Miller, 49th District 
  • Sen. John Wilkinson, 50th District 
  • Rep. Lee Hawkins, 27th District 
  • Rep. Carl Rogers, 29th District 
  • Rep. Emory Dunahoo Jr., 30th District 
  • Rep. Timothy Barr, 103rd District

Issues to be discussed include transportation, water, taxes, jobs, reapportionment and education, according to a news release from the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce.

“The issues that have already been identified prior to the legislative session have a direct impact on our community,” said Kit Dunlap, chamber president and CEO. “And we need to better understand the issues as well as have an understanding of the legislators’ positions on these important issues.”

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