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Policy or politics at City meeting?

When the Blountstown City Council opened bids at their regular meeting last Tuesday night, it was anything but business as usual. A debate ensued over a project and the issue of whether or not paving subdivisions is appropriate. Five years ago, Steve Bailey developed a subdivision on South Pear Street that resulted in the creation of two new roads – Peach and Plum Streets. At the time, he was serving as a Blountstown City Councilman. During a meeting, he stepped down from his seat and addressed the board as a citizen, asking the City to handle paving of those new streets. The Council unanimously agreed to pave them. Fast forward to 2010 and the streets are still not paved. However, bids were recently advertised and three companies submitted proposals. C.W. Roberts Contracting was the low bidder at $91,378 when the bids were unsealed last Tuesday night. Before a motion could be made to accept the low bid, Councilman David Blair, who was not on the Council when the decision was made five years ago, posed a question: “How did we get into paving private subdivisions? A man builds a subdivision and all of a sudden the City is paving his streets? Why are we doing this?” For the complete story, including Bailey’s response, check out this week’s print edition.

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