Sometimes you just have to back up and rethink the pros and cons of any idea based upon new conditions. So why don’t we just evaluate the pros and cons of Building a 16 million dollar Courthouse on the Hills Crossing Property:
Habersham County Voters did see a need to build another courthouse and voted to fund it with an additional sales tax percent. Now with the City of Clarkesville refusing to annex the Hills Crossing Site, Superior Court cannot be held at that location without the Judge issuing a change of venue. The problem with this is that we are now opening up every guilty verdict to a possible appeal due to a change of venue that has no merits. Consolidation of services cannot be obtained due to this reason; the old courthouse will have to be maintained so any savings in maintenance costs are gone. Construction costs are low now but it just like the old adage if it’s a sale and you really don’t need the merchandise is it really a sale?
The Hills Crossing Site does not currently have access to Sewage since Clarkesville has refused to Annex. This issue should have been fully vetted before the purchase was made; and needless to say it was not. Talk to any Architect or Commercial builder and they say the use of septic tanks is only an absolute last resort. Talk to any commercial real estate developer and they will say the first question a potential client asks is about the availability of Water and Sewer.
About this site, now we are finding out that the site has potential rock problems. Another disgrace on the County’s part in vetting this property before purchase. This could drive up the cost of construction immensely.
We have 3 commissioner’s in a recall over this. We have Charlie Miller who is President of the bank that had the loan on the property and who saw no need to recuse himself from voting on the sale.
How many more black eye’s does this property need before the commissioners see this needs rethinking? If it was their names on the dotted line would they risk the personal loss?