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Archive By Author - Joshua Silavent


To outsource or not? Hall officials debate how to pay for property reassessments

In the last year, few things have been as contentious in Hall County as reassessments in value on lakefront homes and commercial businesses, sending tax bills for some property owners through the roof.

May 27, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Hall County moves to scrap Civil Service Board without state’s help

Hall County officials are now moving unilaterally on a proposal to scrap the Civil Service Board after the proposal stalled in the state legislature. The board hears and decides disciplinary appeals brought by terminated or demoted employees.

May 26, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Proposed Glades Reservoir getting more expensive

The cost of the proposed Glades Reservoir in North Hall has already exceeded $15 million, and taxpayers will likely soon pump more money into the project on consulting fees and additional environmental studies.

May 25, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Search narrows for Lanier Tech relocation site

The search for land to relocate Lanier Technical College has been narrowed to just a handful of Hall County properties, and a decision is likely to be made within the next few weeks.

May 23, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Medical cannabis commission, patient registry taking shape

The Georgia Commission on Medical Cannabis is taking shape with Gov. Nathan Deal's appointment this week of Gainesville resident and pharmacist Sara "Mandy" Wilson Reece, and the state's patient registry will soon come online.

May 21, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Hall County welcomes businesses to discuss bid process

It's been a struggle for Hall County to drum up competition for its goods, services and capital improvement needs over the last year, and the result could be costly for taxpayers.

May 20, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Local business owner announces candidacy for Gainesville City Council

Gainesville resident Zack Thompson announced Wednesday that he will run against incumbent Bob Hamrick for the Ward 2 seat on the Gainesville City Council this fall.

May 20, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Chicopee golf director let go amid financial woes

Deteriorating conditions and dwindling revenues have prompted officials at the Chicopee Woods Golf Course to lay off the director of golf, take ownership of the pro shop and consider a shakeup of members on an oversight committee in an effort to get the ball back on the green.

May 19, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Gainesville Council formally adopts 2016 budget

Gainesville City Council formally adopted a $30.7 million general fund spending plan for the 2016 fiscal year Tuesday night.

May 19, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Gainesville city manager announces resignation

Gainesville City Council members said they have big shoes to fill after City Manager Kip Padgett announced his resignation Tuesday night.

May 19, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


County library director retiring, search committee seeking replacement

Hall County Library System Director Adrian Mixson is retiring at the end of May, and a search committee is currently accepting applications to fill his role and hopes to make a recommendation to the library Board of Trustees by mid-June.

May 18, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Library system seeks additional $200K from county as state continues to slash budget

In some ways, the Hall County Library System is a microcosm of how budget cuts impacted public services during the economic recession.

May 18, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Working-class families benefit from face-lift on Gainesville apartments

Three apartment complexes off Park Hill Drive in Gainesville that primarily house working-class minorities and immigrants are getting a major face-lift and new security thanks to a more than $2 million investment from Greenleaf Management.

May 17, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Income mobility for poor children ranks average in Hall

When it comes to the ability of a child raised in a poor family to move up the income ladder as he or she enters the working world, Hall County is a better place to live than 42 percent of all U.S. counties.

May 16, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


America’s newest citizens swear allegiance in Gainesville

America's legacy as an immigrant nation waved proudly from the federal courthouse in downtown Gainesville on Friday morning as 54 individuals from more than 30 countries became naturalized U.S. citizens, swearing their allegiance to Old Glory.

May 15, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


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Articles By Author - Joshua Silavent


Confederate flag stirs reactions with area residents

Riding his bicycle down a sidewalk along Jesse Jewell Parkway in Gainesville last week, the Confederate battle flag flying from the handlebars and flapping with the momentum of his speed, John Phillip Chandler, a young white man, neared two African-American men waiting for a bus to arrive.

July 05, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Property tax: Will you pay more or less?

Few things are as continually contentious in Hall County as reassessments on property values. The issue flared up again last month as the Board of Commissioners debated a budget for the 2016 fiscal year and a possible tax increase.

July 04, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


DNR receives grant to monitor bat disease

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources has been awarded nearly $25,000 from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to expand research and monitoring of a deadly disease affecting bat populations that may have habitat in Hall County.

July 02, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Drivers worry how new gas tax will be used

Motorists in Gainesville on Wednesday expressed mixed reactions to the new 26-cent-per-gallon state excise tax on gasoline, with some surprised to learn they'll now be paying more at the pump.

July 01, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Public agencies brace for fuel tax, but helped by lower gas prices

Local governments, schools and public agencies are bracing for the impact of a 26-cent-per-gallon state excise tax on gasoline, which will contribute to $850 million or more in revenue for road and bridge projects across Georgia, that takes effect Wednesday.

June 30, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Library board selects new director, approves new budget

Lisa MacKinney will oversee a better than $2.62 million budget that eliminates worker furloughs as the new director of the Hall County Library System.

June 30, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Chicopee Woods Golf Course completes shake-up of oversight committee

The shake-up of an oversight committee for the Chicopee Woods Golf Course was completed Tuesday, the latest move prompted by poor conditions and slipping revenues at the 600-acre course in Gainesville.

June 30, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


SPLOST VII begins Wednesday, E-SPLOST scheduled for fall

Wednesday marks the start of a new round of special purpose local option sales tax, or SPLOST VII.

June 30, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


County finance director resigns, search to begin soon

Hall County Finance Director Vickie Neikirk resigned on Monday.

June 30, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Minorities unite to change Gainesville’s electoral system

The exterior of a house on residential Desota Street in Gainesville gives little away about the history it holds inside, save for a sign marking it as the office of the local Newtown Florist Club.

June 29, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


New hotel fee brings big hurt to low- and fixed-income guests

The tired eyes of Justin Biggerstaff grew more weary when he learned that he'll soon be paying an extra $5 per night for his family, which includes three young kids, to stay at the Gainesville Inn and Suites on Jesse Jewell Parkway over the next month or so while he seeks permanent housing.

June 28, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Departing Gainesville city manager leaves big shoes to fill

When Gainesville City Manager Kip Padgett announced his resignation in May, he expressed nothing but gratitude for the opportunity to serve the city in many roles over the last 13 years.

June 27, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Budget breakdown: Details of Hall County's new funding in spending plan

The Hall County Board of Commissioners approved a $93.6 million general fund budget for the 2016 fiscal year with no tax increase on Thursday night.

June 26, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Hall approves mixed-use development, disbands Civil Service Board

The Hall County Board of Commissioners on Thursday approved a mixed-use development in South Hall near the new Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Braselton, as well as disbanding the Civil Service Board and changing business licensing fees.

June 25, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


Hall County OKs $93.6 million budget

The Hall County Board of Commissioners voted 3-2 on Thursday night to approve a $93.6 million general fund budget for the 2016 fiscal year with no tax increase.

June 25, 2015 | Joshua Silavent | Local


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