1013MYGAUDJason R. Spencer, public works supervisor for Oakwood, talks about the challenges in his job.
OAKWOOD — An ever-growing city is keeping Jason Spencer on his toes.
Oakwood’s public works supervisor since 2005, he has seen his duties overseeing streets, trash pickup and parks and recreation steadily increase.
That’s not likely to stall any time soon, particularly with annexations down Winder Highway and construction about to start soon on extending Thurmon Tanner Parkway from Plainview Road to Mundy Mull Road.
"We’ve got a lot of growth and a lot of maintenance that’s going to come," Spencer said.
The city began a new solid-waste program in January 2007 that involves city residents putting out their trash in a roll cart and recyclables in a bin.
"With the city’s growth and annexations, we’ve gone from three-quarters of a day collecting for the whole city to two days," Spencer said.
His department could get some help in its street upkeep duties.
"We’re hoping to get one of our guys certified as a corrections officer," Spencer said, "so we can have a full-time (inmates) crew and basically double our work force."
That’ll be a big help, with "all the new sidewalks and medians coming in," he said.
Spencer, 36, is a native of Canada who has lived in Hall County since 1990.
A high school sweetheart is what brought him to the area, "but that didn’t exactly work out," he said, laughing. "I ended up broke, busted and disgusted, so here I stayed. It worked out to my good."
His fortunes turned for the better. Before his Oakwood hiring, Spencer worked for a local trucking company, managing 77 employees.
And he has been married for about 14 years. He and his wife, Katrina, have two children, 8-year-old Jordan and 5-year-old Lexus. He proudly displays their pictures in his office.
When asked about his top goal for the city, he replied, "Preparing for future growth."
Spencer said he enjoys the challenges of his work, which also include preparing three budgets.
"Small city, lots of hats to wear," he said.