Bids and appointments prepare commissioners for 2018

News

ELLIJAY, Ga. – The Gilmer County Board of Commissioners entered the year’s end awarding last-minute bids for 2018 and appointing board members and positions for the county.

Awarding the 2018 Tax Anticipatory Note (TAN) produced four bids. The two lowest bids came from Southstate Bank with a variable rate currently at 1.696 percent and Regions Bank with a fixed rate at 1.93 percent. Though Southstate is currently lower, the commissioners noted the variable rate has already jumped from 1.53 percent in the first week of November.

Since the commissioners are not expecting to utilize the TAN until August or September of 2018, and noting upward pressure on rates, the motion came to approve Regions Bank’s fixed rate of 1.93 percent.

Along the same item, the banking services for 2018 was bid as well. Five banks offered bids with two bids being offered contingent on winning the TAN bid as well. The three left included United Community Bank with $50 monthly service charges and a 0.65 percent interest rate, Parks Sterling Bank with no monthly charges and a 0.15 percent interest rate, and Chase with its interest rate made to offset the service charges.

Currently, the county is using United Community Bank. As discussion went through their work session, the board began considering the costs of transferring accounts, including ordering new checks. Making the motion for approval, Gilmer County Commission Chairman Charlie Paris stated, “Given the offer and also considering the expense of making a change, it would be my opinion that we should just continue with United Community Bank.” The motion was unanimously approved.

Another bid approved during December was the emulsion bids. Originally bid with other materials previously, Gilmer County Public Works Director Jim Smith stated the county only had one bid at the time and another vendor claimed it did not receive the notification for bid. Rebidding now, Ergon Asphault Emulsions, $2.30 per gallon for CRS2L and $1.85 per gallon for CRS2H, and Hudson Materials, $2.06 per gallon for CRS2L and $1.72 per gallon for CRS2H, made offerings.

As low bidder, Hudson Materials was approved for emulsion material beginning Jan. 1, 2018.

The county is moving forward with a lease agreement with the Gilmer Chamber to occupy the Watkins House located downtown. The agreement will allow for the Chamber to create a downtown welcome center and display space. Although other entities are interested in the space, such as Gilmer ARTS and the historical society, both looking to display items in the building, the county is set to main lease to the Chamber while allowing them to decide on sub-leasings for space and display.

The agreement is still in its early stages, but indications suggest the county will be maintaining the space while the Chamber pays for utilities. Rent would be negligible, one suggestion indicated a dollar per year. With the agreement beginning, Chairman Paris suggested the Chamber interest could see utilization of the space as early as spring.

As the agreement moves forward, citizens can expect to revisit the item in coming months for approvals by the board.

The other items for the meeting included several board and position appointments to new and open terms through the county:

Lex Rainey and Don Callihan were appointed to the Gilmer/Pickens Joint Development Authority;

Jim DuPont and Alan Davenport were reappointed to the Planning Commission Board;

Tony Pritchett was appointed as County Legislative Coordinator; and

Cathy Green was appointed to the Northwest Georgia Region 1 Emergency Medical Services Council.

Check out more on the commissioners’ December meeting with “December meetings continue commissioners’ budget conversation.”

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United Community Bank says thank you with annual Customer Appreciation Tomato Day

Community

Everyone was welcomed with delicious hot dogs and free tomato plans at United Community Bank’s annual customer appreciation “Tomato Day!”

The weather was damp but the smiling faces brightened the day as the staff at United Community Bank served its customers hot dogs, cold drinks, popcorn and of course the free tomato plants.  Customers could sign up for a drawing to win wonderful prizes and enjoy the picnic style meal and have a nice tomato plant to take home.

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United Community Bank told us why they plan this special day:   In appreciation of you, our loyal customers, we host our annual Customer Appreciation Day events! From free food and treats to the iconic tomato plant giveaway, it’s just our little way of saying ‘thank you’ for allowing us to serve you!

You can tell from the large attendance this event is truly enjoyed.  United Community Bank employees enjoyed getting to know the customers and it was a fun way for the bank to show its appreciation!  The bank gave away thousands of tomato plants today!

Park Sterling Merging With South State Corporation

News

According to a recent release by South State Bank, a definitive agreement has been signed with Park Sterling Corporation, holding company for Park Sterling Bank.

The release also states, “Combining the two companies will create a $14.5 billion in assets franchise operating throughout the Carolinas, Virginia and Georgia.”

While both boards have reportedly approved the merger unanimously, the merger will actually begin transitioning in the fourth quarter of 2017 and continue with systems conversions into the first quarter of 2018 after approvals by regulatory boards and shareholders. At that time, Park Sterling Corporation will be merged into South State Corporation, and Park Sterling’s bank subsidiary, Park Sterling Bank, will be merged into South State’s bank subsidiary, South State Bank.

James C. Cherry, CEO of Park Sterling Corporation, commented on the merger stating, “Our team is proud to be partnering with South State to create what we believe will come to be recognized as the preeminent regional community banking franchise in the Southeast. This combination will substantially fulfill our vision of truly becoming big enough to have the talent and services necessary to help customers achieve their financial aspirations while still remaining small enough and passionate enough to care that they do.”

After the companies merge, Cherry will be appointed to the combined company’s board of directors in addition to another individual to be mutually agreed upon and named at a later date.

As of now, Park Sterling Bank has over 50 branches across North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and Georgia. According to South State’s release, “under the terms of the agreement, shareholders of Park Sterling Corporation will receive 0.14 shares of South State common stock for each share of Park Sterling common stock. The aggregate consideration is valued at approximately $690.8 million in the aggregate, based on 53,112,726 shares of Park Sterling common stock outstanding as of March 31, 2017 and on South State’s April 26, 2017 closing stock price of $91.90.”

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Reward Offered in the Rabun County Bank Robbery

Featured, Featured Stories, News

Dillard, Georgia – In an effort to encourage public assistance in identifying the person responsible for the Rabun County Bank Robbery, a reward is being offered.  The reward amount is $5000 and it is being offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for the bank robbery.

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On Monday, February 8, 2016 at approximately 12:50 PM, a bank robber entered the Rabun County Bank located at 7408 Highway 441 North, Dillard, Georgia and demanded money.  An undisclosed amount of money was taken.  The suspect left the scene in a late 1990s model black Ford Explorer.  The suspect is described as a black male, with a light complexion, heavy build and standing approximately 6’2-6’4 inches in height.  The suspect is believed to be in his late 20’s or early 30’s and had at least one visible tattoo and a facial piercing.  The Dillard Police Department and the Rabun County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene and are investigating the robbery with the assistance of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

The GBI, the Rabun County Sheriff’s Office and the Dillard Police Department are asking for the public’s assistance in identifying the robbery suspect pictured in the attached photographs.  Also included is a photograph of the Ford Explorer.  Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the Rabun County Sheriff’s Office at 706-782-6226 or the GBI tip line, 800-597-8477.

 

United Community Bank announces Customer Appreciation Day

Community

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United Community Bank in Ellijay and Jasper will be hosting their Annual Customer Appreciation Day on Friday, May 6th from 10:00am – 2:00pm. Stop by and enjoy some great giveaways, delicious food and lots of family fun!

Former Officer of Closed Ellijay Bank Sentenced

Business, Featured Stories, News

Former bank vice president Adam Teague was sentenced today, April 5, 2013. (more…)

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