Published Wednesday, November 21, 2012
By ALEX MCRAE
The Senoia mayor and City Council voted Monday to upgrade the city’s information technology system and provide more services for less money.
This will be accomplished by contracting with Sophicity, which currently provides IT services for several cities served by the Georgia Municipal Association.
The Sophicity product for which Senoia will contract is called IT in a Box. The program handles all the city’s website services, provides data backup and offsite data storage.
It includes cloud storage so email and documents may be accessed remotely by authorized personnel, enables teleworking if needed and includes server and desktop management services.
The product costs $1,626.50 per month, which is less than the city is currently paying for IT services, according to City Administrator Richard Ferry.
The package allows 10 full users city wide – City Hall (5), Public Works (1), Public Safety (4); and 17 premium email users, including city officials, public safety officials and mayor and council members.
It is hoped the change to IT in a Box can be made by year-end.
In other business:
• A request for a zoning variance to allow construction of a detached garage at the southeast corner of Johnson and Pylant streets was approved. The proposed structure had already received a Certificate of Appropriateness from the city’s Historic Preservation Commission.
• The mayor and council agreed to submit the city’s road paving project list to the Georgia Department of Transportation for LMIG - Local Maintenance and Improvement Grant funding. LMIG replaced LARP (Local Assistance Road Program) to allow the local governments more flexibility in the projects selected and a quicker delivery time.
Senoia’s portion of LMIG is $33,584. This is determined by factoring the city’s population and lane mileage with the total statewide LMIG allocation for 2013.
Because of the rejection by voters in the Three Rivers region of the referendum for the Transportation Improvement Act, the city must have a 30 percent match.
The formula requires that the project cost at least $43,659.20. Staff has determined that the project will exceed $45,000, therefore meets and exceeds the required local match. The project selected by staff is the widening of Turin Street from Homestead Drive to Pylant Street and the resurfacing and leveling of Turin/Johnson Street from Homestead Drive to Main Street.
• Approved on second reading was a change to the Historic Preservation Commission ordinance.
Under the changed ordinance: “Certain applications for Certificate of Appropriateness shall be eligible for the Administrative Bypass Procedure. To use the Administrative Bypass procedure, the property owner submits an application to the City Administrator or his designee. The application is approved if found to be consistent with approved Design Guidelines that indicate the Administrative Bypass Procedure can be used.
“If it is determined by the City Administrator or his designee that all elements of the approved guidelines have been met, the Certificate of Appropriateness shall be approved without consideration by the Historic Preservation Commission. Any requests that do not meet the requirements of the approved guidelines shall be submitted to the Historic Preservation Commission for consideration. The following applications shall be considered for Administrative Bypass: Fences, Roofs, Rear Decks, and Accessory Structure.”
• It was announced that the annual “Light Up Senoia” celebration and parade will be held Dec. 1 - a Saturday, and the Candlelight Tour of Homes will take place Dec. 9 - a Sunday.