CLARKESVILLE — The award-winning Habersham County 4-H Club soon will have a safer means of transportation to take its members and leaders to and from conferences and community events.
In her last motion, made near the end of Monday night’s meeting, outgoing Habersham County Commissioner Andrea Harper urged commissioners to use some of the proceeds from the recent sale of property to purchase the new vehicle for the 4-H Club.
Harper’s motion was that the county spend up to $60,000 for a suitable van/bus to replace a more than quarter-century-old van that currently is used but has safety and comfort issues. Harper’s motion was seconded by Commissioner Ed Nichols, with all voting in favor.
Harper told commissioners during the meeting the condition of the van currently in use is a safety issue, a liability for the county. She urged commissioners to allot money for the purchase of the new vehicle.
Commission Chairman Victor Anderson pointed out the new vehicle will be a mini-bus to accommodate safe transport of students.
“I did feel strongly about it,” Harper said after the meeting. “We have a van that we are transporting our children in that is 26 years old. The door was being held together with a rope, and it had no air conditioning.
“We ought to be ashamed that we even allowed that to happen, so I am so proud that my fellow commissioners agreed with me tonight to put on some funds so that they can buy a decent van,” Harper said. “They go around the state representing us, winning all sorts of awards and we need to show them how proud we are, but we also need to keep them safe.”
Those attending Monday afternoon’s dedication ceremony for the new Habersham County Administration Building, which will be completed in February, heard 4-H Club members sing the national anthem and enjoyed refreshments prepared by the club.
“Today, our award-winning 4-H not only prepared the food for our dedication ceremony, they sang,” Harper said. “Then tonight, they also sang here at our meeting. They are a very talented group of young people.”
A portion of the undesignated proceeds from the sale of the former Miller Logistics building in the Habersham County Industrial Park near Baldwin will be utilized for the purchase.
“The Development Authority actually sold a piece of property and those funds will revert back to the county,” Harper said. “That piece of property was paid for in full, so that was sort of a profit. I wanted to be able to take some of that money and put it where it gives the most good, and that was that 4-H van.”