Council approves $3.45 million FY15 budget

Considers annexation request

LOVEJOY — Council members plan to operate their city on a fiscal year 2015 budget at roughly $3.45 million.

The governing body approved the budget during its regular meeting Monday.

The budget includes $200,000 to cover the start-up of a new development authority. It also comprises $793,346 for public safety salaries and expenses, $99,981 for court and probation costs and $282,985 for expenditures related to the community center and events.

About $128,000 is planned to fund the city’s parks and community garden, according to the approved budget. The city’s “street department” is being allotted $150,514 for equipment, repairs, fuel, utilities, dump fees and staffing.

Council has devoted $45,000 to maintaining its information technology infrastructure and about $1.75 million for salaries, fees and utilities associated with city hall operations.

Mayor Bobby Cartwright and the city council used the Monday’s meeting as a public hearing to review the possible annexation application of 25-plus acres of land just east of the city. Council plans to consider an ordinance to those ends at its June 16 meeting.

The annex application was made by Brothers Investments LLC in Lovejoy. The company owns more than 50 acres of land near the county line, within the city and in unincorporated Clayton County.

Mark Griswell, who manages the property, said the company is seeking to make the contiguous property consistent in its incorporation into the city and in its zoning.

Brothers Investments also sought to re-establish a construction and debris permit in order to store non-hazardous construction materials on the property along SLP Boulevard near the Clayton County Landfill.

Council approved rezoning for the construction and debris inert landfill and held a public hearing to revert those 50 acres to its original zoning from 2005.

City spokeswoman Kaycia Rhone announced the next cookout in the 2014 Summer Block Party Series will be hosted by Councilwoman Rebekah Holland Wright on June 14.

The free community event will be from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m., at Mayor’s Park, 11622 Hastings Bridge Road, and will include music, games and food.

Rhone said the city will also sponsor a family movie night May 30 at 6:30 p.m. The feature film will be “Frozen” at the Community Center next to Mayor’s Park.

Police Chief Mark Harris asked for the council’s OK in his department’s plans to conduct a Youth Summer Enrichment Program this summer.

Harris said the program would target about 15 youth, ages 12-16, and offer lessons on civic service and the judicial system.

“It’s designed to teach kids life skills,” he said. “And teach them to be responsible, law-abiding citizens.”

The free program would be provided in three-day increments, June 16-18, June 23-25, July 14-16, and July 21-23. Children would be asked to attend between 7:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

Registration would be available at www.cityoflovejoy.com.