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City of Covington Weekly Report Week Ending September 6, 2020

Thanks Latham Sanitation for Caring about Covington!

Latham Home Sanitation, who is responsible for sanitation services in the City of Covington, recently received a phone call from a grateful customer who thanked them for adding him to the curb exempt list. The customer happened to be a Vietnam veteran so driver Bobby Mathis (pictured below with co-worker James Brown) left the customer a note on his trash can that said, "You should not be thanking us for doing our job. We should all be thanking you!” We appreciate the great customer service Bobby!
(L-R) Latham Home Sanitation employees Bobby Mathis and James Brown

PATROL

  1. On September 1, an unknown black male driving a white Chevrolet Malibu struck a vehicle in the rear on Monticello Street at Pennington Street and left the scene. The vehicle was located by CPD Joe Mobley in the Mill Village. The vehicle was unoccupied and a black male wearing a black mask and gloves was attempting to fix the car to no avail. He then took a pink backpack from the vehicle and ran towards the Housing Authority; he could not be located by law enforcement. The car had been reported stolen earlier in the morning to the Sheriff’s department. Evidence Technician Herrion Ervin was called to the scene to process the vehicle after which it was removed by K2 towing.
  2. On September 3, Sgt. Martin met with a female on Usher Street at Hendricks where she stated that she had been on Old Atlanta Hwy in her dump truck headed into town. She stated that she accidentally cut a vehicle off and when she was stopped on Emory Street at Hwy, 278, the vehicle pulled up to her passenger side. At that time, the driver of the 2006 Honda Accord yelled to Jackson stating next time he would kill her while pointing a black pistol at her. She described the driver as a Hispanic male wearing sunglasses with a mustache and slender build in his early 50’s. This case was turned over to CID.
  3. On September 4, Officer Hutchison responded to an argument/fight at Brown Bridge Road and Turner Lake Road. None of the parties involved wanted to press any charges. However, the male driver was driving his vehicle with an open container; he was cited for having an open container in his vehicle.
  4. On September 6, Officer Holbrook conducted a traffic stop on Monticello Street/Hwy. 36. A search of the vehicle revealed a trafficking amount of methamphetamine and mushrooms. The male subject was arrested and taken to the NCSO jail. Warrants for trafficking were taken on the subject. He was also suspected of being a major seller of narcotics in the city.
  5. On September 6, CPD officers responded to an accident with injuries on I-20 eastbound at the 91-mile marker. Three vehicles were involved in the wreck resulting in one subject being life flighted to Atlanta Medical Center and a seven-year-old child was taken to Egleston Hospital with minor injuries. I-20 eastbound was shut down approximately two hours and the accident was investigated by Georgia State Patrol.

CID

CID Sgt. Allan Seebaran examined Person Crimes and Property Crimes CID detectives worked for August 31, 2020 to September 6, 2020 and compared them with the previous two years. He found the following results:

  • PERSON CRIMES: From August 31 – September 6, 2018, there were three reported person crimes; from August 31 – September 6, 2019, there were 13 reported person crimes; and from August 31 – September 6, 2020, there were 10 reported person crimes. There was a 333% increase (from three to 13) in reported person crimes from August 31 – September 6, 2018 to August 31 – September 6, 2019. There was a 23% decrease (from 13 to 10) in reported person crimes from the same date range from 2019 to 2020. There was a 233% increase (from three to 10) in reported person crimes from August 31 – September 6, 2018 to August 31 – September 6, 2020.
  • PROPERTY CRIMES: From August 31 – September 6, 2018, there were 33 reported property crimes; from August 31 – September 6, 2019, there were 18 reported property crimes; and from August 31 – September 6, 2020, there were 21 reported property crimes. There was a 45% decrease (from 33 to 18) in reported property crimes from August 31 – September 6, 2018 to August 31 – September 6, 2019. There was a 16% increase (from 18 to 21) in reported property crimes from the same date range from 2019 to 2020. There was a 36% decrease (from 33 to 20) in reported property crimes from August 31 – September 6, 2018 to August 31 – September 6, 2020.
C-Shift worked a vehicle fire on I-20.

Incident Breakdowns

FIRE MARSHAL

  • FMO Canady back from four weeks at GPSTC.
  • FMO Fuqua working on suppression.
  • FMO Canady working on completing ten investigations to be accepted into Arson 2.
  • Completed four plan reviews.
  • Completed one final inspection.
  • Completed three compliance inspections.

Accreditation

  • Monthly recognition memo: September birthdays/years of service
  • Compiled and submitted weekly report for CFD
  • Ordered office/station supplies
  • Uploaded July incidents to FEMA bulk import site
  • Approved invoices and purchase orders in BSA

personnel training

The Covington Fire Department hosted two classes taught by Todd Edwards: No Fear Leadership and Breaking Barriers (an autism awareness course). All attendees followed social distancing guidelines.
Luau Themed Question and Answer Session for A & B Teams
911 Director Trudy Henry and 911 Operations Manager Anessa Westmoreland conducted a luau themed Question and Answer Session for A and B Team rotation. Special thanks to City of Covington Human Resources, Covington Fire Department, Covington Police Department, Covington Police Officer Matt Cooper and Newton County Sheriff’s Office for donating door prizes for this event. Also, thank you to Motorola Solutions for donating a Chick-fil-A box meal for all employees on-duty.
Top: Hillary Wilder shows off her massage from Life Dance Wellness Center and Tyler Head received a Covington Police Department travel cup and a gift card. 2nd row L-R: Sarah Herbert shows off her door prize, a Covington Fire Department mug and a gift card. Andrew Kilpatrick scored a City of Covington bag chair and a Newton County Sheriff’s Office notepad and card holder. Krista Hipps shows off her Covington Fire Department t-shirt and a gift card. Tiffany Cook received a signed shirt from our hometown hero, Officer Matt Cooper, and a gift card. 3rd row L-R: Caroline Almond shows off her door prize, a Newton County Sheriff’s Office portfolio and a gift card. Crystal Stevens snagged a Covington Fire mug and a gift card. The luau included Hawaiian themed treats and leis as modeled by Krista Hipps, Dara Penland and Teresa Cleary.

Total CAD Calls Received: 1,690

Total Agency Calls Generated: 1,936

Law Calls Generated: 1,493 (77.11%)

  • Covington Police Department: 449 (23.19%)
  • Covington Marshal's Office: 0 (0.00%)
  • Newton County Animal Control: 10 (0.51%)
  • Newton County Sheriff's Office: 963 (49.74%)
  • Oxford Police Department: 27 (1.39%)
  • Porterdale Police Department: 44 (2.72%)

Fire Calls Generated: 178 (9.19%)

  • Covington Fire Department: 56 (2.89%)
  • Newton County Fire: 122 (6.30%)

Newton EMS Calls: 265 (13.68%)

ACCOUNTING

  • Staff entered 211 invoices for payment to vendors
  • The city issued 104 checks for 188 invoices
  • Accounting department entered 103 journal entries to record transactions of the city
  • Staff sent 56 invoices to customers for miscellaneous transactions
  • The City issued 233 payroll checks to retirees and elected officials
  • Two staff members received 1-hour CPE for CARES Act training

CUSTOMER SERVICE

Total Transactions Completed By Customer Service Representatives: 2,561

UTILITY BILLING / METER READERS

  • 3,816 bills processed
  • 223 work orders completed
  • Six meter/ert changes
  • 271 non-pay disconnects
  • 245 reconnects
  • Read cycles 9, 91, 3, 4

PURCHASING

  • Total purchase orders issued – current month - 139
  • Total purchase orders issued – current budget year - 783

Current/Upcoming RFP's and Bids

  • Puckett Street Water Main Replacement – Out for bid

COVINGTON MUNICIPAL COURT

  1. There were no court sessions during this week.
  2. 56 new citations were processed and filed in the court.
  3. A total of $16,269.50 in fines and fees were collected from mail and web payments, counter and probation payments.
  4. Three warrant dismissals were verified that warrant removal was completed accurately.
  5. There were three open record requests, seven certified disposition requests and one DDS suspension withdrawal processed.
  6. A total of 151 separate documents for the week were scanned into Courtware Software.
  7. A total of 50 cases were disposed of.
  8. The office has received 240 emails/responded to 96 emails from internal and external customers.
  9. There were 166 calls from telephone customers.
  10. Mailed out 70+ packets with solicitor’s recommendation for entering a plea.
  • Prepared September 9 Council meeting agenda, packet and notes
  • Fielded 35 phone calls

LAST WEEK'S TASKS AND EVENTS

  • GLGPA Board Retreat – August 19-21
  • Facilitating the new Shared Leave Bank policy
  • Audited pay data submitted for pension.
  • Reviewed benefit bills and invoices
  • Mediated personnel issues
  • Brainstorming ideas on training – what that looks like during the pandemic

ONGOING EVENTS

  • Providing quality customer care to our employees and retirees
  • Reviewing applications for vacant positions
  • Scanning of HR files by our temporary employee
  • Monitoring the coronavirus pandemic and listening to professionals about proper return to work protocols
  • Scheduling interviews for vacant position and compiling appropriate documents
  • Personnel matters
  • Auditing our biannual defensive driver training due August 31

Current Job Postings

  • Police Officer
  • Assistant City Manager
Cardale Williams, Mike Jones and Ritchie Cook headed to Louisiana on September 2nd to relieve some of the original Electric Department crew members who had been working in Welsh, Louisiana since August 26th. They all returned safely home after completing their work on the evening of Saturday, September 5th.
  • Completed 25 lighting service orders
  • Installed two LED lights
  • Completed three low line service orders
  • Disconnected and removed a service- demolition
  • Disconnected/reconnected two services for maintenance
  • Reconnected a service
  • Completed two temporary and three permanent power service orders

Pictured: Cardale Williams working in Welsh, Louisiana

  • Completed a limb on the line service order
  • Replaced an underground transformer due to a car accident
  • Completed six outage/trouble calls
  • Continued the Covington Legends project - installation of conduit
  • Continued the Covington Town Center -termination of wire
  • Pulled/installed wire to the sound stages at Three Ring Studios
  • Four line personnel and two ROW personnel continued working in Welsh, LA (Hurricane Laura) until Saturday evening, September 5

Pictured: Cameron Rusk working to restore power in Welsh, Louisiana

Jeremy Kitchens (left) and Cardale Williams working in Welsh, Louisiana to restore power after Hurricane Laura

TELECOMMUNICATIONS

  • 14 CCTV advertisements
  • Scheduled local programming
  • Updated the local access channels with COVID-19 information
  • Answered/returned customer calls
  • Attended a meeting with Charter Communications
  • Pole replacement on West Street
  • Replaced a cat-5 cable run at City Hall
  • Completed two inspections and unlock requests.
  • Completed thirty-three cathodic protection readings and eleven rectifier inspections.
  • Completed one service call.
  • Assisted with installation of a new card reader at the CNG facility.
  • Thirty-three meters were painted.
  • Seasonal maintenance was completed on two district regulator stations.
  • Two new services were installed.
  • Three measure for service requests completed.
  • Retired one service for demolition.
  • Jeremy Roden continued inspections on emergency valves.

Pictured: A remote pressure recorder installed by Jeremy Roden.

Ground Operations Technicians Nicholas Key and Zachary Spencer clean up the landscape around the airport and fuel planes during the week of August 31.
The Kirk Street Pipe Lining Project kicked off in mid-June and should be complete soon. The lining contractors, IPR Southeast LLC, began installing the first few sections of CIPP (Cured in Place Pipe) this week and will continue work during the following week.
In the top photo, Mike Murphy and Zach McKibben install at new water tap at Legion Field. Mark Mealor and Scott Watkins replace a broken water service in the bottom picture.

Special Projects

  • Zoom meeting with representative of the Covington Housing Authority concerning potential easements for trails.
  • Meeting at Legion Field with Eagle Scout to finalize locations for benches to be installed in September.
  • Gathered final pricing for materials to be used in projects at Covington Central Park.
  • Assessed grant opportunities for Central Park.
  • Scheduled a meeting to explore the construction of a soccer complex at Covington Central Park.
  • Reviewed Cricket Frog Trail Master Plan with the PATH Foundation.
  • Resumed work on the paving of the Cricket Frog Trail.

Tourism, Downtown and Marketing

  • Community Development team meeting
  • Meeting with Rhyme and Reason Design
  • Locations tour with Legacies’ location scouts
  • Attended the Georgia Tourism Summit virtually
  • Processed filming application for Southern Gospel
  • Compiled weekly report
  • Updated social media and website

Welcome Center

Historical Society display cases are almost complete.
  • Continue to work on/finalize Covington brochure updates.
  • Finalized first round of local brochures
  • Installation of hand sanitizers throughout Welcome Center
  • Working on placement of outdoor planters for Welcome Center entrance.
  • Historical Society displays in final stages (pictured above).
  • Organizing placement of display cabinets for film/television.
  • Determine and organize placement of historic photos.
  • Finalized and submitted August visitor numbers to State (graph pictured below).

Economic Development

In the last weekly report we featured "Where's William?" Did you guess where he was visiting? If you said the Seven Gables Restaurant in Conyers, you were correct! Economic Development Manager William Smith would like to see similar developments throughout Covington inspired by this location to create a unique experience.

As we continue to trend in the right direction with COVID-19 cases, we strongly encourage people to observe the guidelines recommended by the health departments and state including wearing a mask in public; practice social distancing which means staying at least six feet apart; and don't forget to wash your hands!

On the most recent call with Gwinnett Newton Rockdale Health Departments and Piedmont Newton, we received the following COVID-19 statistics:

Georgia Statistics

  • Cases: 290,794
  • Deaths: 6,248
  • Median age of those with COVID-19: 39
  • Death Rate: 2.5 percent

Newton County Statistics

  • Cases: 2,418
  • Deaths: 74
  • Hospital Rate: 10 percent
  • Median Death Age: 81
Please follow the recommendations on the Governor's "Four Things for Fall" list:

◊ Practice Social Distancing

◊ Wear A Mask

◊ Wash Your Hands

◊ Follow Georgia Department of Health and State Guidelines

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