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Posted: September 16, 2009 12:30 a.m.

Porterdale looks into no cut-through ordinance

At Monday night’s Porterdale City Council meeting, Councilman Robert Foxworth introduced the idea of adopting a city ordinance outlawing cutting through private property located at intersections.

Porterdale Police Chief Wayne Digby said officers are currently not allowed to cite drivers who speed through the parking lots of the two gas stations located at the intersection of Ga. Highway 81, Crowell Road and the Salem Connector because the city does not list this as a violation in its official code.

"People just fly through there," said Foxworth. "It’s dangerous."

Foxworth presented the council with an ordinance adopted by the city of Columbus. The ordinance states:

"It shall be unlawful to park, rank, driver or leave an automobile or other vehicle upon the private property in the city without invitation or permission from the person or corporation in possession, or entitled to possession, of the premises.

"It shall be unlawful for the driver of any vehicle to drive the same upon or through private property in the city for the purpose of cutting through or taking a short cut without the permission of the person in possession, or entitled to possession of the premises."

The Georgia Law Enforcement Handbook outlines fines that can be levied on violators of the law and states that an ordinance may be adopted by reference to the provisions outlined in handbook’s subsection, which includes notice of the code section.

Councilwoman Arline Chapman said signs needed to be posted in clearly visible places so that motorists have fair warning of the prohibited violations.

In other news from Porterdale’s regular September city council meeting:

• Porterdale adopted a rollback millage rate of 9.156. Although this appears to be a higher rate, it will not result in higher tax bills because of depressed property values.

City Manager Tom Fox said the city will now move forward with securing a tax anticipation loan — a low interest, short term loan to combat the project $108,476 budget shortfall for FY10. The revenue anticipated is an expected $226,076.67 in sewer tap fees collected in 2012 when units in the Porterdale Mill Lofts become available for purchase.

Fox said the city would likely borrow 45 percent of the expected revenue in July 2010 to avoid excessive interest payments as the loan must be paid within the fiscal year it is borrowed.

• The council approved a resolution dedicating a designated tract of land as "Yellow River Park." The designation of this park significantly increases the amount of space dedicated to recreation in the city. The 31.5 acre tract lies between Hemlock Street and the Yellow River. The dedication ceremony will be held at 11 a.m. Oct. 3.

• The council will hold the final reading of a new inspections ordinance at their Oct. 5 meeting. The ordinance would have publics works charge $35 for utility reconnection and safety inspections previously conducted free of charge.

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