Politics & Government

Byron works on transition of tenants in old school house

BYRON -- The City Council is looking ahead to try to smooth out a future transition between tenants of the city’s old schoolhouse.

During a called meeting Tuesday, council members discussed what it might provide for the facility’s current paying tenant, Central Georgia Technical College, when its future tenant, Byron Peach Charter School, moves in.

Officials said Central Georgia Tech currently uses part of the building for day and night extension classes on certain days of the week.

The city has agreed to let the not-yet-opened Byron Peach Charter School use the facility when it starts sessions. Council members said there is no definite start date for the charter school’s need of the facility.

Mayor Larry Collins and Councilman Michael Chidester both said the city should look ahead and be able to offer Central Georgia Tech alternative facilities for its program in Byron.

The council agreed the Central Georgia Tech program is valuable to residents and that the city should help with a new location as needed.

Council members brought up possibilities such as the use of an unused building behind the now-used old school building or possible use of the city’s old City Hall building.

In another city building matter, council members discussed arrangements concerning the historic, old railroad depot, which it owns along with a caboose adjacent to it just off Main Street in downtown Byron.

City Clerk Telina Allred said the city received a letter from the railroad concerning the depot, which City Attorney Joan Harris said contained incorrect information.

Allred said the letter referred to a lease payment for the depot, indicating it owned both the depot and property.

In reality, Harris and council members agreed the depot was owned by Byron and the land on which it sits by railroad tracks is owned by the railroad.

The council agreed to clarify information with the railroad that it does pay $120 annually to lease the land the depot sits on but that it owns the depot building.

In other business, council heard the first reading of an ordinance allowing the appointment of a judge pro tem for municipal court and authorized an audit engagement letter with Clifton, Lipford, Hardison and Parker.

Contact Michael W. Pannell at mwpannell@gmail.com.