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Walker County Newsletter  Issue 22
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In this issue:
  • Walker County Tax Commissioner offices to close for Georgia DRIVES upgrade
  • Elections office prepares for transition to a Board of Commissioners
  • Walker Rocks Outdoor Series launches with Family Camp Out on May 25
  • Ironman Returns this weekend
  • Quick Hits: Battle of the Badges, Free museum admission, Hep A vaccines available & Rabies clinic reminder
Walker County Tax Commissioner offices to close for Georgia DRIVES system upgrade
 


Rock Spring, GA – The Walker County Tax Commissioner offices in Rock Spring and Rossville will close to the public at Noon on Thursday, May 23rd and not reopen until 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, May 28th.  The closure is necessary to install Georgia DRIVES, a new state-mandated vehicle registration and titling system.

Every resident with a birthday in late May and early June should process their vehicle transactions on or before May 20th to avoid any issues, as some vehicle services will be reduced after that date in preparation for the system upgrade.

“Every employee in our office has been working diligently to learn this new system,” said Carolyn Walker, Tax Commissioner.  “We won’t be as fast as we have been with the old system for a while, until we have everything committed to memory. We appreciate your support and patience during this transition.”

This system upgrade will impact all local tag offices in Georgia, not just Walker County. Statewide, all county tag offices will be unable to process vehicle transactions during the upgrade.

Georgia DRIVES will modernize the data input system for tags and titles, provide agencies with interconnectivity and improve the customer experience by expanding the ability for mobile, Internet and kiosk transactions.

Additional information about Georgia DRIVES can be found online at georgiadrives.com.

  Click here to watch an informative video on the closure and upgrade

Elections Office Prepares for Transition to
Board of Commissioners


The first Board of Commissioners election doesn’t take place until 2020, but the staff at the Walker County Elections Office is already hard at work making sure every voter is placed in the correct district.

Danielle Montgomery, Director of Elections, says “We are working with the GIS for Walker County (mapping system) and trying to get each street in each district so we have every street in every district so we can put that into our system and that way if someone looks up on their My Voter Page they can see what district they are in.  It is a long and tedious process.”

It could take several months for Montgomery and her team to complete this task.  Meanwhile, voters with questions about which district they are in can contact the Elections office for verification.  “We have some maps and we’d be glad to answer any questions or emails about what district they are in, because we can see it, but we haven’t gotten it into the system where they can see it.”

As for those wanting to run for office, Montgomery says there are some important steps to consider before moving forward.  “You need to fill out a Declaration of Intent, it’s also known as a DOI, before you can accept money.  So, no business cards no signs or anything until you’ve completed this Declaration of Intent.”

Forms can be obtained from the Elections Office on the bottom floor of the courthouse in LaFayette.  For additional information, call (706) 638-4349 or email the Elections Office at elections@walkerga.us.

Four district commissioners and an at-large chairperson will be on the ballot.  Party qualifying takes place in 2020 from March 2nd through the 6th with the Primary scheduled for May 19th. Those wanting to run as an Independent should contact the Elections Office to learn more about that process.  “It’s a little bit more in depth than running under a party system,” says Montgomery. 

The General Election is set for November 3, 2020.  The inaugural group of District Commissioner’s and Board Chair takes office January 1, 2021.

  Click here to watch an informative video on the process
Walker Rocks Outdoor Series Launches
with Family Camp Out on May 25
 


Imagine a summer filled with camping, hiking, fishing and watersports with some music, movies and good eats mixed in.  The newly launched Walker Rocks Outdoor Series blends these experiences to make some of Walker County’s leading outdoor attractions more accessible to the general public.

The series kicks off with the Family Campout at Mountain Cove Farms (994 Dougherty Gap Road, Chickamauga) on Saturday, May 25th.  Load up your vehicle and head to the Cove for an afternoon of campground music and field day style games, like three-legged races, sack races and kickball.  Campers can also relax by the campfire while making s’mores and catch a special showing of the 80’s adventure movie The Goonies.

“This is a family friendly event that offers a unique opportunity for parents with young children to try out camping and see what it’s like to sleep outdoors,” said Lacey Wilson, Chamber President.  “We also see this as a staycation of sorts for folks looking for something unique to do with their family over the holiday weekend.”

Set up for tent camping begins at 2:00 p.m.  A vehicle parking pass gets you inside for all activities.  The cost is just $5 per vehicle in advance online at walkerrocks.com or $10 cash the day of the event.  Food, drinks and popcorn will also be available on site to purchase.

The Walker Rocks Outdoor Series continues later this summer with the following events:
 
Family Camp Out at Mountain Cove Farms on May 25
Kayak & Canoe Day at Lee & Gordon’s Mill on June 22
Trivia Scavenger Hunt at Lula Lake on July 13
Dive-in Movie and Such at Queen City Lake on August 17
Fright Night Camp Out at Magnolia Pines on September 13
Duck Pond Rodeo at the Rossville Duck Pond – TBA
Ironman Returns This Weekend
 


Walker County welcomes over 3,800 athletes to the area for this Sunday’s IRONMAN 70.3 event.

A majority of the 56-mile bicycle portion of the triathlon will once again trek through Walker County. Cyclists will enter Walker County on Highway 193, where a new “Walker County Welcomes You” sign will greet them.

Athletes will soak in some incredible views as they travel about 18 miles south before cutting across Andrews Lane to get to Hog Jowl Road.  They will then pedal another 12 miles up Cove Road/Highway 341 until reaching downtown Chickamauga, where family, friends and other spectators will line the streets and sidewalks to greet them.

After leaving Chickamauga by way of Chickamauga Road, IRONMAN competitors will reconnect with Highway 193 and navigate back into Chattanooga.

The race begins with the swimming portion at 6:50 a.m. The first athlete is expected to reach the finish line by 10:30 a.m.  Spectators wanting to watch the bicycle portion from downtown Chickamauga should be in place prior to 10:00 a.m. to see the first group ride through.

Last month, the IRONMAN Foundation announced a $160,000 grant to help install 40 new fire hydrants in needed locations.  The community investment will provide additional coverage for Walker County first responders to handle emergency situations.
 
Quick Hits

Help us win the "Battle of the Badges" for the fourth year in a row by giving blood at the Walker County Sheriff's Office, 105 S. Duke Street in LaFayette, on Friday, June 7th between 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.!

In addition to saving lives and receiving an awesome t-shirt, donors will be eligible for Blood Assurance's "DONOR IN PARADISE" promotion that runs through September 30th. Prizes include: 

  • $1,000 gift card to Carnival Cruise Lines
  • $500 at Margaritaville Pensacola
  • $250 at Marriott Hotels
  • $150 at Bass Pro Shop
  • $100 at Bonefish Grill

Northwest Georgia Health Departments in Bartow, Catoosa, Chattooga, Dade, Floyd, Gordon and Walker Counties will provide free hepatitis A vaccine to individuals at risk of the highly contagious, highly preventable liver disease every remaining Friday in May.

Clinics will be held at each health department on May 24 and 31 from 8 am to 2 pm.

Did you know you can access the 6th Cavalry Museum in Fort Oglethorpe for free? The museum has partnered with the Pines Library system to offer free admission when you show your Pines card. Call the museum at 706-861-2860 for additional details and to learn about their upcoming special events.

The Walker County UGA Extension Office and your local veterinarian have teamed up to provide low cost rabies clinics again this year.  Protect your family from a deadly disease by bringing your dog and/or cat to one of the locations listed below to be vaccinated.  The cost is just $15, cash only.  Vets will provide a certificate and tag.  Please note, although Walker County now allows pets to be vaccinated using the 3 year shot, this clinic will only be providing the 1 year vaccine.
 

Saturday, May 25:

Time Location
1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. Gilbert Elementary
3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Walker County Animal Shelter
5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Chattanooga Valley Elementary






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Walker County Commissioner's Office · 101 S Duke Street · LaFayette, GA 30728 · USA