MAYOR

Malcolm Hunnicutt
706-778-8497
cell 706-201-6978

COUNCILMEN

John Popham
706-754-9725
cell 706-778-2700

Lee Moore
706-776-2814

Florence Wikle
706-839-7122

Bruce Harkness
706-778-9090

Welcome to DemorestGA.US

DemorestGA.US supports Habersham County businesses. Buy from local businesses and support
your local economy. Consult the "Local Business Directory" on the left menu for local services.






  A Demorest Neighborhood Watch Group is organizing to send a strong message to anyone
coming to Demorest to manufacture, buy, use, or sell drugs:  A united group of concerned citizens
are watching and will call the Law.
  Don't think you are safe bringing drugs here, Demorest ordinance 200807  38-8 states:
"The City Manager or her designee shall exercise such powers as may be necessary...
(3) To enter upon premises for the purpose of making examinations..
So don't think you are safe in your home, the city manager could walk in on anyone at any time,
no probable cause or warrant needed.

Downtown Buildings Being Rebuilt

Only the outer brick work is left and some of that is being modified. The lower building on the right had the complete roof  removed and replaced. The buildings are being braced up on the interior to support  reconstruction.


Local Business
Directory


Ordinance 200807

Ordinance 200808

2006 Annual Report

2007 Annual Report

Water rate hike

Statistics

Careers

Recycling Survey

Fourth of July 2009

What others say

Drive around town

The Police








Wacked Again



Well, it looks like the needless and unnecessary stop sign (that we were originally told by John Popham and the Mayor himself) that was put up on the order of the Mayor as a favor to an individual, has been whacked again. Not that this is a surprise, since it was erected in the actual roadway. The Mayor later backed off on the reason he put up the sign and changed it to, he is teaching people to stop. Then later amended it to be a matter of public safety, even though there never was a history of a public safety issue there. If anything, the confusion over who has the right of way creates a public safety issue. We hope that the persons vehicle didn't sustain a lot of damage and won't result in the city having to pay damages for putting up a public nuisance in the right of way. Speaking of which...
The arrow shows where someone had their oil pan or gas tank punctured by another nuisance the city erected. If this was a pot hole instead of a speed bump it would have the same effect, and would get complaints that the city wasn't maintaining the roads. However, this isn't a case of lack of maintenance, this hazard was erected on purpose! There are three of them on this road less than 1/2 mile apart that are really high and nasty. This is the third one in a row, so when the person hit this one, it wasn't that they were going fast or didn't know it was there.  

Water Dept. has new building

Demorest has a new Public Utility building.  The fact that it isn't actually in Demorest isn't much of a problem in that Demorest Public Utilities service extends far beyond the city limits.  It was noted that by not building in Demorest, it was much cheaper than building in Demorest itself. The only down side for the Demorest administration was that they were somewhat incredulous when they were forced to comply with the county building codes and regulations. This lead to strained relations between the city and the county building inspector.

MAJOR RAW SEWAGE SPILL TYPICAL OF THE MAINTENANCE PROBLEMS FOR DEMOREST PUBLIC WORKS DEPT.


 
  The spill in an isolated area along Cascade Creek, caused by a clog in the line coming from Stonebridge Subdivision, could have been running for weeks and was seeping across neighboring private property to the creek. This was a messy business that would be a nightmare to a city resident if it happened on their property.

 This manhole in the rear of lot #12 of  Habersham Meadows development is down a steep embankment making operations difficult. Access to the 10 foot wide sewer right of way from the front of the development was erased when the land was regraded for the development leaving no way for equipment to reach the site using the right of way.
  Permission was obtained to use an access road, on the property of an adjoining land owner, to reach the site. There was still a steep grade involved that caused problems for the large equipment needed.

Even before the rain that fell in the evening, these tank trucks couldn't make it up the grade and had to pump sewage from one truck to the other. The next morning one of the trucks was still stuck at the bottom of the grade and had to be wenched out even though empty.

 Gages at the sewer dept. had not detected the stoppage so raw sewage could have been running across adjoining property for weeks. Fortunately the property developer had put up silt fencing right by the manhole and it trapped most of the solid waste.


 As of 9:00am. on the 5th the clog had been located but not eliminated.
 Noon update Aug 5th. Georgia EPD case # 58773 is still overflowing.

  Still overflowing but closing in on the clog. Unable to unclog using pressure, they have to dig for it using their new 310SJ John Deere backhoe. It is a real nice piece of equipment and must have cost a bundle, but as Charlie McGugan said, you need good equipment to do this kind of work. It has just about all the extras except an air conditioned cab.

  2:00 pm. the stoppage has been found. Tree roots entered through a crack in the old Terracotta pipe and made a root ball that completely clogged the pipe. That means that this problem was a long time in the making as it slowly constricted the flow. There is no way to determine how long this condition existed. It does make one wonder if this same problem is in the making in other parts of this sewer main. Infrastructure repairs to water and sewer lines and upgrades at the sewer plant have a potential to drive Demorest further into debt., or would if Demorest had anything left to borrow against.
 
  What will the problems be when the, 100 or so, proposed houses in the controversial Handcock Meadows development are built and connected to this same sewer line? Fortunately for now, the few houses built here are unoccupied. What happens when these houses are all built and the traffic it creates tries to get to Rt. 441. The access road will have to be widened by taking other peoples front yards away. There will have to be another traffic light as well. Who will pay for that? The lots are tiny with adjoining houses about fifteen feet apart. With that density, if one catches on fire, the ones on either side go as well.

CITY OF DEMOREST ANNUAL REPORT


  The annual reports for 2006 & 2007 were obtained on the internet and are on the left menu. Most of that debt carries over into later years. The latest report can be viewed at city hall.

HIGH DENSITY DEVELOPMENT SEEN AS SOLUTION TO MISMANAGEMENT

  It appears that the importance of revenue from the water and sewer dept. influenced decisions regarding development and growth that  has negative implications for the future and has created current legal issues. High density developments create customers for the city water and sewer departments without the city having to install the infrastructure. All they have to do is vote to approve developments with tiny lots having side and rear setbacks that aren't allowed anywhere else, and to allow developers to tap into sewer and water mains.
  On a superficial level this seems like a way out of the mismanagement of the millions of dollars the city has spent. There are several problems with this. This type of development is out of character with what people expect Demorest to be. It will create more traffic and expense for the city in other areas such as highways and schools. There are virtually no building requirements or inspections of construction in Demorest. Some of this construction was done as cheap as possible and is already showing sagging roof lines, a preview of the slums these developments will be someday. The sewer plant is already operating at capacity and needs expansion to handle the additional flow. Additional demand for water puts more of a strain on this vital resource.
  Their questionable decisions have required the city to hire an Atlanta law firm to get them out of the legal problems their bad judgment has created.

OVER $20,000.00 SPENT FOR LEGAL FEES IN FIRST SIX MONTHS OF 2009

   The notable thing learned throughout this process was that the City Government doesn't seem to want voters and residents to know what they are doing. They would be better served by making information easily available. Not doing so creates the impression that they have something to hide, and is not what Americans want from their local government.

FROM "THE NORTHEAST GEORGIAN"


Throwing light on stealth government
Conducting public’s business in open may avoid problems
Demorest officials display ‘arrogance of power’ in conduct
 Demorest buys property in closed meeting
 

Homeland security a thriving business in Demorest


Harrison and Gano run 600 to 800 criminal background checks a day for U.S. businesses looking to root out the bad element among job seekers. The service is a thriving side business for the Demorest, Ga., Police Department.
  Except for the occasional break-in and domestic squabble, Demorest is as far from trouble as you can get. Its bucolic charm has attracted an influx of newcomers looking for time-shares, fresh mountain air and escape from big-city life."It's a pretty laid-back town'" said Greg Ellingson, Demorest's police chief for the past 17 years. Read complete article
   Since this was written, and especially lately, with few companies hiring this business has dropped off. We are told that, " Demorest used to run 800-1000 names a month and that has been cut in half or less since over the last year and a half". One wonders how it is that Demorest can use the state police data base, to sell personal information. Isn't that a violation of privacy? Why can't every police department in the country do this?

RUN-IN WITH STOP SIGN


   The stop sign on Holly Street seems to be as twisted as the logic for it's existence. It is unclear if it was run over on purpose or if it was taken out by a truck making the turn. It is mounted in the roadway, unlike every other stop sign we've seen, instead of on the edge of the sidewalk. There must be some regulation prohibiting erecting signs in the road itself in order to keep it from being hit by a truck or trailer making the turn. It was put on a new pole and erected again in the same place. Call the City Council Members and tell them to remove this unneeded sign. When you drive down that street and have to stop, ask yourself ... Why? Wait until you stop there and someone is at one of the other signs, and you find yourself sitting there, and finally reduced to making hand signals to the other driver because the other driver doesn't know what to do. That isn't an improvement!



    Drive around town in the days before this unnecessary sign. Use internet explorer, it may lock up some other browsers.

TWO NEW ORDINANCES - ARE YOU THE TARGET?


  Read the two new 2008 ordinances posted on the left menu. Think about the power they have given themselves. Who are they going after? The city claims that Juanita@hemc.net will email you a copy of the ordinances from the town hall. We emailed twice and even asked at the town hall for it to be emailed. It was finally emailed to us after sending a certified letter to the Mayor.  Click on the links for Ordinance 200807 and  Ordinance 200808 

Preventing government scandal

excerpt from Piedmont newspaper
"The Navigator", October 26 2009
By DUSTIN INGRAM
  Through research and a bit of experience, I've discovered that local, and especially rural, governmental systems throughout this nation are in desperate need of change.
  These systems are outdated, inefficient and costly. Also there is little accountability, allowing local politicians to become corrupt and work more for self-interest than the community they should be serving.
  Politicians on all levels can become corrupt, but it's harder to catch on a local level... because local governments can be more discrete with their actions, and as long as your average Joe is pulling his bi-weekly paycheck, you won't hear much of a fuss.
  People don't get as passionate about local politics as they do about federal. Corruption on a local level is more common than you would think, but there are ways to prevent scandals from occurring.
  It begins with term limits. Many local governments have politicians filling in for years and years. The longer a politician is in office, the more likely he or she will get caught up in something fishy.... Secondly, local governments should adapt by using the internet. Financial information should be posted online, including budgets, audits, and deficit/surplus records. Also, city property and leasing information should be posted online...

Visitor Counter Free Counters
Free Counters