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Members of Athens City Council during council's meeting on Jan. 16. (FILE)

City Council: Council members discussed changes to Title 35, fire station grant and Athens Farmers Market development

Council Members discussed a diesel exhaust system grant for Athens Fire Headquarters, proposed innovations to Title 35 and also discussed The Athens Farmers Market. 

Council Member Kent Butler discussed a $51,000 grant to provide a diesel exhaust system for the Athen Fire Headquarters. The system will remove exhaust fumes from the bay and building when firefighters start fire trucks. The city share is 10 percent of this grant. 

Leslie Schaller, with ACEnet, discussed the three primary goals of the USDA Farmer Market Program, which includes plans to work with local government and the Arts, Park and Recreation Department to develop a public market place, secure support from nation consultants to determine the feasibility of site development and strengthen the leadership capacity by providing support to the Athens Farmers Market Association.

Schaller also said she would like to make the market more pedestrian-friendly by having access to the bike path.

“We see a lot of people already biking to the market. There is a lot of interest in having the market on the other side of East State Street,” Schaller said. 

Council also reviewed Title 35-Rights of way. Initially the city was going to repeal and replace Title 35, but has decided to rename Title 35 to “Title X."

Lindsay Miller, with Ice Miller Legal Council, said Athens is already underway with these provisions. Anyone who is a provider now has to follow the ordinance. 

The rights of way is the legal right to pass along a specific route through grounds or property belonging to another. Title X will allow the City of Athens to exercise their full rights of way.

Devil’s Kettle Brewery requested a revocable 10 year license. The brewery patio and parking lot impedes the city rights of way, but does not affect traffic flow.

Nicholas Bittner, with BTD Architects and Designers, requested signage at 26 E. Park Dr. The sign will be roughly 4 feet wide by 9 feet tall, and will be a multi-use sign for surrounding businesses. The purpose of the sign is to direct visitors to the building and Athens City Pool. 

In addition Athens City Auditor, Kathy Hecht, gave an update on the city wide credit card policy. She is hoping the new policy will be in place by the end of 2018.

Hecht also discussed a grant for solar lightings at bus shelters, and the debt for the parking garage. 


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