Rivers to Ridge Trail Master Plan approved by City of Calhoun

Renderings of two of the segments along the trail before, top and bottom left, and after, top and bottom right.

The Calhoun City Council met on Monday, July 24 and approved a motion for the Rivers to Ridge Trail Master Plan and implementation strategy.

The moves comes less than a week after being approved by the Gordon County Board of Commissioners.

The joint venture between the City of Calhoun and Gordon County will bring a proposed 8.7 miles of greenway trails to Gordon County. The plan was paid for by a grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission, which covered 70 percent of the cost with the remaining balance being split between the City of Calhoun and Gordon County.

After a public meeting was held in March of this year concerning the Greenway Master Plan, minor tweaks were made and now, the Rivers to Ridge Master Plan is divided into seven segments: South Connector, Calhoun Pedestrian Trail to City Park, Spur to Tech College and Career Academy, Downtown to Red Bud Road, Red Bud Road Sidepath, Red Bud Road to Gordon Central High School and Gordon Central High School to the New Echota Historic Site.

The complete distance and route of the individual trail segments can be found on our website, calhountimes.com, but the basic route from beginning to end would take the public from an approximate area around Wal-Mart in Calhoun, down to the Calhoun Recreation Department, through downtown Calhoun to Red Bud Road, east on Red Bud Road to Gordon Hospital, from the area of the new Gordon Hospital Trail to Gordon Central High School and from the High School to New Echota.

A Blueway System was also proposed, utilizing local river waterways, so the public can canoe, kayak or paddleboard.

Also at the meeting, Mayor Jimmy Palmer reminded those in attendance about the upcoming municipal general election and what positions are up for election this year in the City of Calhoun:

Qualifying for the municipal general election will be held at City Hall, located at 226 South Wall Street beginning at 8:30 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 21, 2017 and ending at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 25, 2017. The general election will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017. The positions that are up for election are:

Calhoun City Council Post #3- Matt Barton, incumbent-Qualifying Fee $252.00

Calhoun City Council Post #4- David Hammond, incumbent-Qualifying Fee $252.00

Calhoun City School Board Post #1-Alvin Long, incumbent-Qualifying Fee $1.00

Calhoun City School Board Post #2-Rhoda Washington, incumbent-Qualifying Fee $1.00

Calhoun City School Board Post #3-David Scoggins, incumbent-Qualifying Fee $1.00

There will also be a non-binding vote concerning term limits as well as a non-binding vote to extend the City Council from four member to six members.

The Council passed an ordinance to amend, strike or change certain articles, divisions and sections of Chapter 14, Animals.

“It’s something we’ve been working on for a while,” said City Attorney George Govignon.

Govignon explained that the ordinance will allow the ability to enforce more situations pertaining to animal cruelty; will allow the enforcement of leash laws pertaining to all animals including those from adjacent areas in Gordon County, who doesn’t currently have a leash law and will provide a better enforcement system that includes fines and procedures for those that are not in compliance with the ordinance.

The Council appointed July Jones to the Recreation Commission for a term of six years, expiring June 30, 2022.

The Council approved a School Resource Officer Agreement between the City of Calhoun and Calhoun City Schools. The agreement is based on services already being provided by the Calhoun Police Department.

The Council also approved Gordon Central’s Homecoming Parade route for Thursday, Sept. 7 beginning at 7 p.m., subject to GDOT approval.

An Intergovernmental Agreement for Water Distribution between the City of Calhoun and Pickens County, changing the minimum gallons of water per day from 0.5 MGD to 0.4 MGD, and increasing the cost per thousand gallons from $1.60 to $1.72 was passed by the Council.

The Calhoun Utility Rate Resolution which will reduce the large industrial rate class of energy charges over 500 Hours use demand was approved by the Council and will become effective Aug. 1, 2017.

The next meeting of the Calhoun City Council will be held at 7 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 14 at the Depot Conference Room in downtown Calhoun.