Adairsville council struggles with downtown railroad crossing closures
by Neil B. McGahee
Feb 21, 2014 | 518 views | 0 0 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
After a lengthy debate Thursday, the Adairsville City Council tabled the issue of closing the Park St. railroad crossing and making improvements to the King St. crossing.

At Tuesday’s work session, the discussion became lengthy. At the work session, representatives of the Georgia Department of Transportation and CSX Railroad, told the council that the downtown area had too many unnecessary and redundant crossings, and they recommended closing the Park Street crossing completely and upgrading the nearby King Street crossing.

But council member Lee Castro questioned the wisdom of closing the crossing completely, during the regular meeting, and asked if there could be a pedestrian crossing instead.

“Once this thing is closed,” he said, “it’s not ever coming back, so we need to think twice before we make any decisions.”

He was told that he could indeed have a pedestrian crossing but that the funding might not be available.

Another topic that aroused interest was the request of Chief Robert Jones to add a new patrol officer. He told council that he needed at least three officers to round out his force. Two officers are out on extended leave due to medical problems while another abruptly resigned about two weeks ago.

“Yesterday, I went back and looked at the 2012-13 budget and I found that I had $41,000 left in my budget.” Jones said. “An Adairsville officer typically makes about $53,000 a year so we’re talking about a $12,000 difference to work with.”

Jones said something had to be done because he has police officers working 7 days a week.

“It’s just not good for their health,” he said.

In other business, council:

• approved a temporary construction easement on Hall Station Road and State Route 140.

• approved a resolution seeking funding for a Gateway Grant to enhance the entry ways into the city

• authorized Public Works Director Jamey Cochran to look into the process of making Lawrence, Bruce and Casey streets and McKenzie Circle into one-way streets

• authorized the sale of six vehicles seized in drug raids including a 1997 Toyota Avalon, a 2006 Saturn Ion, a 1996 Toyota and a 1994 Harley Davidson Sportster motorcycle.