County approves bypass lighting, supports roundabout

The highlight of last week’s Board of Commissioners meeting was the unanimous approval of a lighting agreement with the Georgia Department of Transportation. 

The June 6 board meeting was called to order by Chairman Chris Weidner. The lighting agreements were listed under the old business portion of the agenda, and Weidner began the discussion by relaying a recent conversation with a GDOT official. 

The chairman said he found out the annual maintenance for the lighting was estimated at $4,000, not the $4,000 a month he had understood from the agency’s previous presentation.

He also said he asked Clerk of the Board Margie Tyson to find out the amount of the electric bills for the traffic lights the county already pays, and she reported the cost is between $12 and $15 a month for each light. 

That amount is consistent with the cost for the total of 22 streetlights that the GDOT plans to install in the four intersections on the North Gray Bypass. 

Weidner said, in his opinion, the cost of $4,000 a year is reasonable to provide lighting for the intersections. 

Commissioner Jonathan Pitts stated that the sheriff said a roundabout was the best option for the intersection of Eatonton Highway and the bypass. 

“I think a person’s life is worth more,” he said.

The presentation by the GDOT for the roundabout appeared to require the county’s agreement to provide the energy and maintenance for the lights for the roundabout to be constructed. 

Commissioner Sam Kitchens said he still had a lot of heartburn about the agreement.

“We didn’t cause the problem. It was because of a poor design, but, in the end, it doesn’t matter. Whose fault would it be now if we had another loss of life?” he asked.

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The Jones County News

P.O. Box 1538
Gray, GA 31032
(478) 986-3929

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