City of Brunswick, Glynn County, Jekyll Island Authority and utility officials updated the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax 2016 Oversight Committee Wednesday on their time-sensitive projects.
Voters approved the $71 million penny tax during the 2016 general election. SPLOST collection will end either on Sept. 30, 2020, or when the total target amount is collected.
Prior to approval, Glynn County Commissioners asked all agencies involved to have their SPLOST-funded projects complete by the time collection ends to avoid a repeat of SPLOSTs 4 and 5, money from which is still sitting unused.
Glynn County Public Works Director Dave Austin updated committee members on a number of the county’s project. A contractor wrapped up repaving Demere Road on St. Simons Island, a $305,000 project, Friday, and a sidewalk extension on U.S. Highway 341, a $270,000 project, finished up earlier this year.
He said he’s hit some roadblocks with a $250,000 project to install a new sidewalk on South Harrington Road, but the project is progressing.
Old Jesup Road between Floraville Road and North Lake Drive will be closed for the next three months while a contractor works on widening a box culvert over Pepper Creek enough to install safety rails. Roughly $350,000 was set aside in SPLOST for the project.
Another segment of Old Jesup Road near Everett will be closed while the county replaces it, an $850,000 project.
Austin told the committee a $4 million project to widen Canal Road the rest of the way from the Ga. 25 Spur to Glynco Parkway is holding while the county works out right of way and permit issues, as is a project to extend Dungeoness Drive to Southport Parkway.
Brunswick City Manager Jim Drumm updated the committee on its $86,500 SPLOST project to make changes to Wright Square, located on either side of George Street between Egmont and Carpenter streets.
Nothing’s final yet, but he said plans will likely include removing the section of George Street between Egmont and Carpenter and making the road around the park one-way, like the road around Hanover Square.
The updates park may include a fountain in the middle of the park where the road currently runs, he said.
Committee member Lance Sabbee said he’d heard some concerns from people who live near the park about the potential one-way street and asked if the city plans to give the public a chance to air those concerns.
Drumm said the city will likely hold a town hall or public input session when it gets the design for the park back from Signature Squares of Brunswick, the organizations drawing up the plans.
Drumm also updated the committee on an $821,750 project to build a splash pad and playground in Mary Ross Waterfront Park. The city already issued a request for proposal, he said, and he expects to have something for the city commission to vote on soon.
He gave the committee information on $183,000 spent on the Howard Coffin Park pool and further plans for the park’s playground, new fire trucks the city has paid for and is waiting to acquire, new police cars, completion of the sidewalk between Liberty Ship Park and Howard Coffin, and the purchase of a total of 11 new police cars, among other things.
In addition, he said the city is seeking a grant to fund construction of an amphitheater in Liberty Ship Park.
Jekyll Island’s project revolved around repaving roads and parking lots. Jones Hooks, Jekyll Island Authority executive director, said around 1.6 miles has been paved and 6.7 miles are left.
The Corsair Beach public parking area has also been repaved, he said. Around $529,000 of the authority’s allotted $2.3 million has been spent, he said.
Brunswick-Glynn County Joint Water and Sewer Commission Executive Director Jimmy Junkin said the utility’s $11.7 million project to reroute the north mainland sewer system in on track. He expects the final parts of the project to be underway before SPLOST collection ends, but it likely won’t be finished until after the deadline.
The committee’s next meeting is scheduled for Dec. 12.