Service Delivery Strategies Agreement approved by LaGrange City Council, under review in Hogansville, West Point

LaGrange Bureau
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LAGRANGE, Ga. (WRBL) – LaGrange’s City Council voted yes to extending the Service Delivery Strategies Agreement in LaGrange at a Feb. 23, 2021 council session.

The agreement is reviewed every 10 years for renewal, and three Troup County cities- LaGrange, Hogansville and West Point- review and revise any details that need to be confirmed or changed. The last agreement was adopted by the three cities in 2011.

The contract proposes that the three cities can work together to provide services in the case of an emergency, should any of them need it.

“All three cities of the county have been working very hard to reach an equitable and fair solution for all citizens of Troup County,” said Troup County Manager Eric Mosely.

There were 61 services in the agreement discussed at the council session, including sanitation, animal control and law enforcement, according to LaGrange city manager Meg Kelsey.

“This process has taken many months.  It has involved detailed discussions and negotiations.  As with any negotiation, there has been give and take.  I often say that the sign of a great deal is when nobody likes it but everyone can live with it,” said Mayor Thornton.

After several months and negotiations, the agreement was approved on the Feb. 23 session after LaGrange city council members voted on “adopt” four resolutions from the SDS.

The four resolutions voted on for the SDS agreement covered multiple items.

In order, the resolutions approved the SDS Agreement, authorized the city manager to request an extension to the deadline for other cities to approve the agreement by an additional three months, authorizing the City of LaGrange to have an agreement solely with the Troup County government, and a final resolution which calls for funding needed to maintain Kia Boulevard and Kia Parkway to be gathered through a SPLOST referendum as a county-wide project.

The previous deadline for approval by all three cities and Troup County was Feb. 28.

In the agreement, the city of LaGrange agreed to take over the maintenance of all parks within city limits from the county, as well as the C&D landfill near LaGrange, according to Kelsey.

“As you know, we have placed an emphasis on parks in the past few years and are trying to improve our park system.  Under the proposed SDS, we will take over responsibility for the parks inside the city and the county will make a cash transfer to us to support that work.  In addition, you know that the C&D landfill has been an area of concern for a couple of years, and the county has agreed to be solely responsible for the operation and management of that landfill,” said Kelsey in a statement.

The maintenance of Kia Boulevard and Kia Parkway near Kia Motors Manufacturing in West Point has also been deemed a “county-wide project” by Thornton. The resolution approved by Council calls for the other two cities in the SDS agreement to approve the significance.

“Finally, I am recommending a resolution finding that Kia Boulevard and Kia Parkway are roads of county-wide significance.  This appears to be one of the big sticking points for West Point.  Given the number of jobs located on the Kia pad, those roads that provide access to it are important to all of us.  My goal here is for us to confirm for the benefit of West Point that we acknowledge the important of those roads,” Thornton said in a statement.

The resolution providing an extension for the SDS agreement’s continued “discussions” was proposed by Kelsey, but Thornton endorsed it too due to concerns about state sanctions, beginning March 1, should the agreement not be approved by Hogansville and West Point. Should the agreement not be approved, the resolutions endorsed by the City Council vote will allow LaGrange to enter a similar agreement with Troup County, without Hogansville or West Point participation.

Read the four resolutions’ full text below, provided by the City of LaGrange:

RESOLUTION

WHEREAS, in order to comply with the Service Delivery Strategy Act, O.C.G.A. § 36-70-20 et seq., the local governments within Troup County are required to meet, confer and submit to the Georgia Department of Community Affairs (DCA) a summary of service delivery arrangements agreed upon by Troup County, City of LaGrange and one or both of the cities of Hogansville and West Point;

WHEREAS, after extensive negotiation, LaGrange has reached an agreement with Troup County as to those portions of the Service Delivery Strategy which affect LaGrange and Troup County;

WHEREAS, it is the desire of the Mayor and Council to approve the Service Delivery Strategy for Troup County and to submit same to DCA prior to the deadline of February 28, 2021;

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by the Mayor and Council of the City of LaGrange, Georgia, and it is so ordained by the authority thereof, that the Service Delivery Strategy for Troup County is hereby approved, and the Mayor, City Manager and City Clerk are hereby authorized to execute such documents and agreements as are necessary to memorialize and transmit to DCA the terms of such strategy.  Moreover, the Mayor, City Manager and City Clerk are authorized to approve and accept such changes to the strategy which may be made subsequent to this Resolution but are non-material to the interests of LaGrange.

SO ORDAINED this 23rd day of February, 2021.

RESOLUTION

 WHEREAS, in order to comply with the Service Delivery Strategy Act, O.C.G.A. § 36-70-20 et seq., the local governments within Troup County are required to meet, confer and submit to the Georgia Department of Community Affairs (DCA) a summary of service delivery arrangements agreed upon by Troup County, City of LaGrange and one or both of the cities of Hogansville and West Point;

WHEREAS, after extensive negotiation, the proposed Service Delivery Strategy has not been approved by the required number of local jurisdictions, and the current deadline for such submission is February 28, 2021;

WHEREAS, the governing authority of the City of LaGrange desires to authorize the Mayor to execute such documents required for an extension of the Service Delivery Strategy Act deadline if, in his discretion, such is warranted;

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by the Mayor and Council of the City of LaGrange, Georgia, and it is so ordained by the authority thereof, that Mayor Thornton is hereby authorized, on behalf of the governing authority, to execute documents as are necessary to seek a three (3) month extension of the current Service Delivery Strategy Act deadline of February 28, 2021, if, in his discretion, such extension is warranted.

SO ORDAINED this 23rd day of February, 2021.

RESOLUTION

WHEREAS, in order to comply with the Service Delivery Strategy Act, O.C.G.A. § 36-70-20 et seq., the local governments within Troup County are required to meet, confer and submit to the Georgia Department of Community Affairs (DCA) a summary of service delivery arrangements agreed upon by Troup County, City of LaGrange and one or both of the cities of Hogansville and West Point;

WHEREAS, after extensive negotiation, the proposed Service Delivery Strategy has not been approved by the required number of local jurisdictions, and the current deadline for such submission is February 28, 2021;

WHEREAS, in the event the Service Delivery Strategy for Troup County is not reached and submitted to DCA by February 28, 2021, the governing authority desires to enter into an agreement with Troup County which contains the bilateral elements of the Service Delivery Strategy which are unique to LaGrange and Troup County with said agreement to expire upon approval of the required Service Delivery Strategy by DCA, whenever such event occurs.

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by the Mayor and Council of the City of LaGrange, Georgia, and it is so ordained by the authority thereof, that the Mayor and City Clerk are hereby authorized, on behalf of the governing authority, to execute such documents as are necessary to enter into an agreement with Troup County for those bilateral elements of the Service Delivery Strategy which are unique to Troup County and LaGrange.

SO ORDAINED this 23rd day of February, 2021.

RESOLUTION

WHEREAS, in order to comply with the Service Delivery Strategy Act, O.C.G.A. § 36-70-20 et seq., the local governments within Troup County are required to meet, confer and submit to the Georgia Department of Community Affairs (DCA) a summary of service delivery arrangements agreed upon by Troup County, City of LaGrange and one or both of the cities of Hogansville and West Point;

WHEREAS, as a component of the Troup County Service Delivery Strategy, the local governments of Troup County have discussed issues relating to the maintenance of Kia Boulevard and Kia Parkway, two significant roadways constructed by the State of Georgia in conjunction with the location of Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc. in the City of West Point;

WHEREAS, it is the opinion of the Mayor and Council of the City of LaGrange that required maintenance of Kia Boulevard and Kia Parkway constitutes a “county-wide project” as defined in O.C.G.A. § 48-8-110, et seq.

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by the Mayor and Council of the City of LaGrange, Georgia, and it is so ordained by the authority thereof, that the Mayor and Council of the City of LaGrange, Georgia, hereby endorse and call for the inclusion of funds for required maintenance of Kia Boulevard and Kia Parkway in the next Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax referendum as a county-wide project.

SO ORDAINED this 23rd day of February, 2021.

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