Norcross named a 'green community'

NORCROSS — City Manager Rudolph Smith presented a $24,019,612 budget to council members for approval during Monday night’s meeting. According to Smith, all the city’s department heads worked hard to whittle the numbers and formulate a budget that “looks good on paper, and we can live with.”

Smith pointed out during his presentation that by not replacing employees who retire or leave their positions for other reasons, the city has avoided furloughs during a very difficult economic climate.

“In this economy, it’s really difficult to pull a budget together,” Smith said.

Demolition may be future of 3 city properties

Norcross owns three properties that may be slated for demolition, following action taken by council members Monday. Properties at 54 Jones St., 183 Bostic St. and 155 North Cemetery St. may be razed for several reasons.

The 54 Jones St. location had been used by the city’s public works department for years but now stands empty. City leaders plan to use that property for parking, and the land and structure were purchased to be demolished for that reason.

The other two parcels were bought for streetscape and parks use. Neither structure on those two parcels is livable or safe.

Some residents expressed concern over the city’s plans to demolish the structures and possible let the land sit raw and unused, potentially for years.

Councilman David McLeroy said, “(Approving this) tonight just opens a six-month window.” Demolition is not certain; it is simply a possibility along with selling or leasing the properties.

Chuck Cimarik, Norcross resident and DDA member, told Johnson and council members that he would like to see the DDA get the chance to turn 54 Jones St. into a “revenue stream.”

McLeroy reminded those in attendance Monday that vacant structures, no matter what their condition, are potential liabilities to the city.