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Community Spirit

Macon-Bibb leaders outline the State of our Community

At the 2016 Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce State of the Community Luncheon, a theme resonated with multiple people: Macon-Bibb County has great momentum when it comes to moving the community forward. 

The event on February 4 at the Macon Centreplex brought together hundreds of people who all want to see Macon-Bibb succeed. From business leaders to elected officials to representatives from Robins Air Force Base…all in attendance want to see our community grow and thrive. 

Mayor Robert Reichert spoke about the County’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. He says while our strengths are great – our people, natural resources, cultural and educational opportunities – we must not forget to take our weaknesses and threats seriously because they are very real. He mentioned things like poverty, blight, and crime. 

Practice Shelter in Place for a chance to sound the Macon-Bibb emergency siren

The Macon-Bibb County Emergency Management Agency is conducting a Shelter in Place drill on March 30, 2016, at 10:00 a.m. Shelter in Place means to take immediate shelter where you are – whether that’s at home, work, or school, or traveling – during an emergency.

To encourage people to participate and help spread the word of how important this drill is, EMA is hosting a social media contest. During the drill, take a photo of you and everyone else in your shelter in place location and post it to Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and use #SiPMaconBibb. From the posted photos, EMA will select someone to sound the emergency sirens in during the monthly test in April or May.

Improvements to City Auditorium coming thanks to the SPLOST

The Commission approved using $150,000 in SPLOST funds for improvements and repairs at the Macon City Auditorium. While there is much more that is needed to bring the Auditorium back to where it needs to be, this will provide for some first steps, including cleaning, table repair, dusting, new carpet, and other smaller projects to keep it in shape for performances and events.  

The Auditorium is one of our major cultural centers and represents a milestone in our community’s history having been built for the city’s 100th Anniversary. It is estimated to need more than $15 million in repairs and upgrades, and needs to be kept in better condition over time. Without that, it becomes more and more difficult to attract larger performances and to provide our community and arts organizations the high-quality space in which to perform that they deserve.

Macon-Bibb celebrating the #WomenofMaconBibb

March 2016 was officially proclaimed as Women’s History Month at the Commission Meeting on March 1. Mayor Robert Reichert and Commissioners invited all the women in attendance forward to be recognized for their contributions to the community with the reading of the official proclamation.

Each day in March, the Office of Public Affairs is recognizing the women of our consolidated government, celebrating their stories of community service, and showcasing the highlights of their career. Follow Macon-Bibb County on Instagram (@MaconBibbCounty) and help us thank them for their service and dedication using the hashtags #WomenofMaconBibb. 

Aspiring Eagle Scout uncovers, memorializes Negro League History in Macon-Bibb

A Macon-Bibb Boy Scout is going for his Eagle Scout rank, and in doing so, uncovered history that is now permanently marked at historic Luther Williams Field. Gordon Smith is with Troop 170, and while on a trip to the National Negro League Museum in Kansas City, he got curious. 

Gordon found out that four players from the National Negro League were born right here and helped pave the way for boys like Gordon to play ball, regardless of the color of their skin. Lemuel Hawkins, Marion ‘Sugar’ Cain, Robert Scott, and Ernest Fann each have their own plaques celebrating their groundbreaking careers hanging at Luther Williams Field.

Both Scott and Fann were at the plaque unveiling ceremony at Central City Park, and Fann spoke about the pride he feels when seeing Gordon’s project. 

Macon-Bibb remains top in country for resolving issues

In January, Macon-Bibb was again ranked as one of the top in the country using SeeClickFix to resolve issues reported by the public. The rankings are now divided by population with cities having about 150,000 residents and fewer in one group and cities with about 150,000 people and more in another. Macon-Bibb earned the TOP spot in the first category with 2,009 issues resolved.

“These numbers speak very highly of our departments and their responsiveness to the needs of our community,” says Chris Floore, Assistant to the County Manager for Public Affairs. “It’s more than just the total number of issues resolved, though; it’s about how much we’re doing for people. We resolved 1.6 issues per person, while Washington, DC in the top spot resolved 0.5 issues per resident.”

Street light fee for Macon-Bibb residents going away July 1

The Commission continued following through with the promise of consolidation by making changes so that people pay the same rates for the same services. At its meeting on March 1, they approved removing the fee some people in the former unincorporated portions of the county paid for their street lights.

In the former governments, street lights in the city limits were installed and the energy paid for through the general fund, while areas of the unincorporated county had to specially request lighting and pay for the installation and energy costs. This change – which begins July 1, 2016 – means no residents will pay an additional fee for street lights.