New­ton County Q&A

The Covington News - - LOCAL - So­cial Cir­cle Mayor Hal Dally

This is part of an on­go­ing se­ries of Q&A ses­sions with var­i­ous top elected of­fi­cials in New­ton County. To sug­gest ques­tions for spe­cific city or county is­sues, email re­porter Rob Dewig at rdewig@cov­news.com.

1. How are So­cial Cir­cle’s var­i­ous road projects com­ing along?

“We have the south­ern leg of the truck routes un­der con­struc­tion by the DOT, and that should be com­pleted in Novem­ber 2015. They’re mov­ing along with that. They’ve got the gravel down, now they’re mov­ing on to putting bridges over sev­eral creeks that pass from the New­ton County line to con­nect with the north­ern leg of the routes at East Hightower Trail. We have another project that will be com­pleted next month from the DOT, which is the repaving of Hwy. 11 and Chero­kee Road through the mid­dle of town from the New­ton-Walton line at the south­ern city lim­its to the north­ern city lim­its. We’re gonna have to de­velop some sig­nage to make sure traf­fic can still work through it all.”

2. Some big news around school is the new ath­letic com­plex. How’s that look­ing?

“The school just com­pleted and opened the new ath­letic com­plex. The foot­ball sta­dium has ar­ti­fi­cial turf, and on the home side you walk into it just like a reg­u­lar sta­dium. They have base­ball, soft­ball, field houses, in­door bat­ting cages, a prac­tice field, five ten­nis courts, a track, and it’s un­der con­struc­tion now for a wrestling team. All that’s been done inside of one year. And the school sys­tem owes no money.”

3. What else should So­cial Cir­cle res­i­dents know about?

“Just north­east of us, there’s a 135-acre so­lar farm that’s just gone into op­er­a­tion, and it’s the largest in Ge­or­gia – sup­pos­edly the largest west of the Mis­sis­sippi. A lit­tle far­ther north, Walton County is putting in a reser­voir, which is 1,370 acres. They’ve com­pleted one of two bridges on Fair­play Road, 120 feet above the creek bed. Wa­ter at the dam will be 82 feet deep. It will be a wa­ter sup­ply for all of the county and re­gion. We’re in dis­cus­sions now with the county to be able to process the wa­ter. As soon as they have the reser­voir full, we will be avail­able to sell all over this area. That reser­voir will have a re­gional im­pact. The yield is sup­posed to be 40 mil­lion gal­lons a day. There’s the gas line out to Stan­ton Springs now as a part­ner­ship with the City of Cov­ing­ton and Madi­son. Cov­ing­ton’s al­ready run their line, and we’ll be ready to pro­vide gas to Baxter and any other in­dus­try that chooses to lo­cate in Stan­ton Springs. That part­ner­ship has worked out pretty well.”

4. What about down­town?

“The city pur­chased the old mo­tel in down­town So­cial Cir­cle. We’ve taken down the build­ing, and it’s now be­ing used as a park­ing lot. Even­tu­ally, it’s part of the master plan for down­town. Even­tu­ally it will be part of the new li­brary. So we’ve been busy.”

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