Baxter to break ground
Construction to be ‘24–7’ on Stanton plant
By Michael Prochaska
Baxter International will hold a groundbreaking August 1, according to Morgan County Chamber of Commerce President Bob Hughes, who presented the Madison City Council with an economic report Monday night.
“The plan is for Baxter to start doing clearing and grubbing on site almost immediately after that groundbreaking ceremony,” he said. “We’re going to see up to 1,000 people working construction that are going to be on that site working 24/7.”
On the new Caterpillar Plant that will straddle Athens-Clarke and Oconee counties, Hughes said Conyers Welding and Machine and Bulldog Steel submitted applications to be considered as potential suppliers. Right now, Hughes said, Caterpillar is only looking for sheet metal fabricators but may also seek rubber and plastic producers in the future. Morgan County’s Flambeau Corporation could provide that service, he said. If Caterpillar shows interest in Morgan County’s potential suppliers, the company will send them a request for information at an undetermined date, said Hughes, who noted that Morgan County lacks spec buildings and warehouse space compared to surrounding counties.
In other city council news, Jan Manos was unanimously appointed to a seat on the Cemetery Commission. “It seems a sacred duty to me to maintain the resting place of thousands who have given so much to this community,” she wrote in her application. Flynn Clyburn was appointed to a seat on the Historic Preservation Commission (HPC) by a 4-1 vote. A prior motion was made to appoint Jane Royal to the board but did not carry.
System of Care (SOC) administrator Velde Hardy gave a presentation on SOC, an organization dedicated to improving the academic performance of young black males of Morgan County. Several positions in SOC, such as the Community Awareness Coordinator, are currently vacant, causing a suggested reduction of $5,180 for that position in SOC’s budget. “I do want to refill those positions,” Hardy said, adding that most jobs at SOC will be contract positions. Hardy said SOC is currently serving 13 boys and is only a few hundred dollars short of a cash match grant for the year. Additionally, Hardy submitted an application this week for a Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Program grant. The $33,000 grant would help decrease the number of children that are abused or neglected in Morgan County through parenting classes, individual therapy and home visits. Hardy said the funds would be used to continue work that SOC is already doing with families in Morgan County.
Printed in the July 12, 2012 edition