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Bryan Freeman is Hart Springs Park Manager

The Gilchrist County Commission hired Bryan Freeman as Hart Springs Park Manager in the March 1, 2021 Commission meeting. Gilchrist County Administrator Bobby Crosby recommended Mr. Freeman be hired as the Park Manager. “Bryan Freemen truly loves Hart Springs and can continue to do a great job at the park,” explained Mr. Crosby.
Commissioner Darrell Smith thanked Bryan Freeman for working hard and doing such a good job as interim park manager at Hart Springs.
Commissioner Bill Martin made a motion to hire Bryan Freeman as Park Manager at Hart Springs. Commissioner Kenrick Thomas gave a second to the motion before Commission chairperson Sharon Langford called for a vote, and the board approved the hiring by a unanimous decision.
Bryan Freeman told the Commission, “I feel the team we have at the park can do a lot of good at Hart Springs.”
Commissioner Darrell Smith made a motion to approve a Hart Springs Park credit card for the new park manager. Commissioner Bill Martin gave a second to the motion before the board approved the request by a 5-0 decision.
Brian Freeman passed out flyers that advertise an upcoming barbeque competition that will be held at Hart Springs, October 15 and 16, 2021. Brian Freeman and Donna Creamer have been working on this BBQ Festival to bring more attention and attract people to the beautiful park on the Suwannee River. More information will be released about the barbecue festival in the near future as plans are finalized.
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Gilchrist County approved a tower agreement with Duke Energy involving an existing tower at 1509 southwest CR 307A, Trenton, FL. Mr. Crosby explained to the Commission that this Co-Location license agreement between former Progress Energy, will be updated to Duke Energy Florida LLC. The county will upgrade a 16kw generator and one 250 gallon propane tank, and it will be located in an 8’x8’ shelter on the property.
A motion was made by Commissioner Bill Martin to approve the tower agreement with Duke Energy and to place the new equipment at the site of the tower location. Commissioner Darrell Smith gave a second to the motion before the Commission approved the action by a unanimous vote.
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Gilchrist County Attorney David M. Lang, Jr. discussed a contract that Gilchrist County had agreed upon to involve the lease of a John Deere road grader for a period of five years at 0% interest. This new lease with a John Deere financing company offers Gilchrist County 0% interest over the life of the program, but the contract identifies Des Monies, Iowa as the location if there were any issues that arose from this lease, Gilchrist County would have to go to Des Moines, Iowa where the issue would be heard in a court in that state. Mr. Lang explained that in the past, if this type of issue arose, Gilchrist County would strike that information in the contract and add Gilchrist County, State of Florida as the location of the lease.
The Commission discussed that the John Deere Corporation has been in business a long time and is a very reputable company. In the past Gilchrist County has had no issues involving leases or contracts of sale on many pieces of equipment that Gilchrist County has purchased and leased for many years.
Gilchrist County Clerk Todd Newton asked the attorney if the finance company offering the 0% interest is using this as precedence, and if Gilchrist County approves the contract with the Iowa location, then contracts in the future would all have the Iowa location documented on each contract. Mr. Newton recommended the Commission strike through the Iowa information and replace it with Gilchrist County, State of Florida and resubmit the contract to the John Deere corporate office.
Commissioner Darrell Smith made a motion to strike through the Iowa address on the contract and replace it with Gilchrist County, State of Florida and send it back to John Deere Corporation for their approval and acceptance. Commissioner Kenrick Thomas gave a second to the motion and the Commission approved the action by a 5-0 vote.
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The Gilchrist County Commission approved the authorization and purchase of a Model 600, real-time payment and processing and centralized system management machine, that will be located at the entrance of the Santa Fe Park for the charging of $5 a vehicle for patrons entering the park on Friday, Saturday and Sundays. A motion by Commissioner Bill Martin to approve the purchase of the VenTek International Model 600 machine that accepts payment of guests at the park gate off SR 47 in Gilchrist County. The cost of the equipment was reported to be $8800.00. Commissioner Kenrick Thomas gave a second to the motion before the Commission approved the motion by a 5-0 vote.
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Commissioner’s Report
Commissioner Bill Martin explained that he has received many calls involving county roads that are under water from the rising Suwannee and Santa Fe Rivers. The County Administrator explained that the Gilchrist County Road Department is working throughout the county on the roadways. The roads along the rivers and floodways can only be worked on after the water recedes and dries out from the roads.
Commissioner Darrell Smith reported that he attended a meeting on Monday involving the Gilchrist County Jail committee. He explained that information is being provided and will be presented to the Commission possibly in the next Commission meeting.