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Posted: January 28, 2012 10:52 p.m.

Dally outlines vision for Social Circle

Now that he's Social Circle mayor, lifelong resident Hal Dally wants to continue to move the city forward by recruiting industry and improving the downtown, while preserving the town's character.

"I love the city and want to see it move forward. I've been very fortunate to have a lot of good mayors and council members who have done good strategic planning in the past. The land use plan has been great. They've changed the city but also kept it the same," said Dally, when asked why he ran for mayor.

"Downtown Social Circle looks the same as it did 50 years, particularly the 1880 block, and has been kept historic with the zoning in place. Forty-three percent of our digest is commercial and industrial. On the east side of town, we have more than 1,800 day-time jobs in a city with a population of 4,500," he said. "I want to make sure that plans continue and that we have the balance of quality lifestyle, housing and jobs."

Less than a month into office, Dally along with the city council and staff has embarked on creating a strategic plan. The group was scheduled to work on its strategic plan with the Northeast Georgia Regional Commission, at no cost, over the weekend.

"Most everything we want to do starts with strategic planning. Everybody wants sidewalks and street lights and no one wants taxes to go up. Those are the constraints we have to work within, and it's the city's' responsibility to provide those services at the lowest cost possible and provide the most value to the taxpayers," Dally said.

Though it's not budgeted this year, Dally hopes to put the city's budget and financial reporting documents online so that everyone in the city will know how much it costs to run each department. Social Circle's 2012 budget is $3 million.

He also hopes to build off previously created plans, including building a sidewalk from the Blue Willow Inn to downtown Social Circle, moving Ga. Highway 11 to the city's bypass road to reroute truck traffic from downtown and fixing up the mill village area.

Dally, 59, has previously served on the city's planning and zoning board, downtown development authority and was on the Social Circle Board of Education for 16 years.

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