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Leesburg Council OKs holiday schedule

LEESBURG -- The Leesburg City Council tied up loose ends and got its monthly progress report on the special-purpose local-option sales tax-funded wastewater treatment plant in a short year-ending meeting Tuesday night.

Ronny Dudley, vice president with the Stevenson & Palmer Engineering

firm, reminded the council it must approve a watershed protection plan before the treatment plant goes online.

Councilman Sidney Johnson asked City Attorney Bert Gregory to determine when funding for monitoring the environmental impact of the plant would have to be worked into the city's budget, and fellow council member Richard Bush asked for a construction update on the project.

"It's rolling along, if not ahead of schedule then on schedule," Dudley said. "They're making great progress out there. Their contract requires them to take aerial photos of the site once a month, and when they take the next ones I'll bring a copy in for the council."

City Clerk Casey Moore asked council members if they had interest in moving forward with a Federal Emergency Management Agency flood study that had been previously proposed when new FEMA flood mapping placed a number of properties in the city that had never flooded in the region's flood plane.

"I thought the county was supposed to get us a cost on that," Mayor Jim Quinn said.

"I guess my question is if there is any interest still in that study," Moore said.

"We need to do that for the people," Quinn replied.

Moore also asked the council to consider increasing reconnection and insufficient-funds check fees for water and sewer, after which Johnson requested that the matter be sent back to the city's Water/Sewer Committee.

"I took a look at the current charges and fees, and it's not something we're making money on," Moore said. "In fact, we're losing money on the time it takes to process those."

Before going into a brief closed session to discuss personnel matters, the council approved holiday hours for city employees, OK'd the planned acquisition of a stormwater drainage ditch for the Kinchafoonee Housing Authority and gave approval for the closing of Starksville Avenue for Saturday's Spirit of Christmas Parade and Festival.

Johnson offered an apology on behalf of the city for traffic delays resulting from work being done on railroad tracks in the city.

"We ask citizens to bear with us and help as much as they can by using detour routes while the work is going on," he said.

Before the meeting, Leesburg Police Chief Charles Moore reminded those planning to attend the festival's movie-under-the-stars presentation Saturday to bring a new, unwrapped toy for less

fortunate children as "admission" to the movie.