Euharlee City Manager looks back at first half of 2016

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Looking back on the first half of 2016, Euharlee City Manager James Stephens says there’s a lot to be proud of.

Euharlee passed a local historic preservation ordinance in 1990, which provided for a three-person citizen board to serve as its historic preservation commission.

The festival celebrates one of the last intact covered bridges in Georgia, built in 1886 over Euharlee Creek.

“The festival provides a weekend for the community to enjoy our beautiful historic downtown area and Frankie Harris Park,” Stephens said. “It exemplifies our city’s mission.”

In June, the Covered Bridge 'Que Festival, Bartow County's only professional barbecue cooking competition, comes to town. Sanctioned by the Kansas City Barbecue Society, the world's largest competition cooking organization, the ‘Que event is also a qualifier for the Georgia BBQ championship and the Jack Daniels World Championship Invitational. Teams from all across the state come to Frankie Harris Park to battle for points, bragging rights and a share of the $8,000 purse.

But not everything in Euharlee is historic.

“Euharlee is interested in planned growth,” Stephens said. “We believe that residents in close proximity to our current city limits will realize the benefits of a small responsive city government. The additional governmental services provided by Euharlee are more valuable than the incremental cost of annexing into the city.

Our city is attractive to growth, both business and residential. Our very effective zoning and land use ordinances protects the value of property and enhances our natural environmental beauty and resources.”

Stephens said that despite the low tax base, Euharlee citizens get their money's worth.

Additionally, Stephens said, he and the City Council were evaluating an intergovernmental agreement with the county to bring sewer into the downtown area.

“This project would provide for commercial development in downtown and provide potential for more dense residential development,” he said. “Especially commercial development along Euharlee Road.”