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The Local Agenda: Swearing-in ceremonies set for new Hall leaders
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A couple of new politicians are getting sworn in as they prepare to take their roles on the Hall County Board of Commissioners come January.

Chairman-elect Dick Mecum and District 4 Commissioner-elect Jeff Stowe have a swearing-in ceremony tentatively set for 10 a.m. Jan. 7 at the Hall County Government Center’s commissioners meeting room.

Judge Richard Story will perform the swearing in, which is open to the public. The commissioners’ first work session of the year will follow, tentatively set for 11 a.m. instead of the regular 3 p.m. time.

Both men are officially sworn in before that ceremony, though. Mecum was sworn in Dec. 17 and Stowe is set to be sworn in Wednesday. Katie Crumley, Hall County’s public information officer, said they are sworn in before the first of the year so that if any county business must be addressed before that meeting on Jan. 7, they will be able to handle it.

The same goes for Hall Sheriff-elect Gerald Couch, who will be quietly sworn in on Wednesday and take over duties starting Jan. 1.

Couch’s public ceremony will be 3 p.m. Jan. 4 at the First Baptist Church on Green Street.


Take proper care of trash and trees

Compactor sites are closed today for the holiday but will reopen Wednesday, and county officials ask residents to wait until then to drop off their trash.

One of the biggest Christmas items to discard is usually the Christmas tree, but Hall County each year provides the Bring One for the Chipper service in which live trees can be dropped off and turned into mulch.

To discard trees, residents should drop them off at the appropriate site with all decorations removed.

County residents: Drop them at any compactor site or the Hall County Recycling Center at 1008 Chestnut St.

Gainesville: Leave trees at curbside

Oakwood: Drop them off on the vacant lot next to the mulch pile at the corner of Allen and Railroad streets.

Flowery Branch: Drop them at the collection site roped off by the Caboose on Railroad Avenue, below Main Street.

Trees will be collected Wednesday through Jan. 2 at most locations. Mulch from the trees will be available for free 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. beginning the week of Jan. 7 at the Hall County Recycling Center.

County officials also wanted to remind residents they can recycle wrapping paper, gift boxes, holiday cards and more.

For more information, call 770-535-8284.

Sarah Mueller covers government issues for The Times. Share your thoughts, news tips and questions with her: