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County commission pushes North Hall park forward
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The Hall County Board of Commissioners voted to fast-track a park slated for North Hall at its board meeting Thursday.

The park, which will be located on Nopone Road near its intersection with U.S. 129, is a priority project from the current Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax.

Public Works Director Ken Rearden presented a timeline for the project estimating the park to be complete in 2011, but was interrupted by Commissioner Steve Gailey, who said it needs to move faster.

"The way this is drawn out now, I don’t think it will be breaking ground a year from now and that is totally disgusting to me," Gailey said. "We’re not going to reinvent the wheel ... that park has been in the master plan for five years."

Gailey made a motion to prioritize the park and delay any work past grading the land on the Cool Springs park until the full $12 million in SPLOST has been collected for the North Hall park.

The Cool Springs park, located in Commissioner Billy Powell’s district, is slated to be built on land donated by developers and will be funded from the past SPLOST.

The motion was approved 4-1. Commissioner Billy Powell voted against it.

Powell said after the board meeting he voted against the motion because he didn’t think it was necessary.

"My disappointment is that we’ve already advertised the (Cool Springs) park; we’ve showed the master plan in commission meetings; and now progress is going to stop because they’re worried about the North Hall park being fully funded," Powell said.

Rearden said the county has been on expediting both parks since construction costs are down because of the economy.

"We were allocating the funds for both parks," Rearden said. "We were trying to do it in the most cost-effective manner possible."

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