Special Photo: Locust Grove Interim City Manager and Director of Community Development, Tim Young, is performing a couple of roles at Locust Grove City Hall.
The City of Locust Grove has an interim city manager, Tim Young, who is also the city’s director of community development.
He was appointed, recently, by Mayor Robert Price and the City Council to take over the duties of city manager, as well.
Young said he is learning the ropes of his new responsibilities, which include administering the day-to-day operations of government, and ensuring that city ordinances and regulations are followed. Other duties are: keeping the mayor and council advised of the financial and administrative functions of the city, and working with department heads to make sure all operations run smoothly.
Young has held the position of director of community development since January 2005. He was named interim city manager Jan. 3, replacing former City Manager Don McKenzie, after the City Council declined to renew McKenzie’s contract.
“It’s been different,” said Young. “Before, my role was only one section of the city, in planning and zoning ...,” he said. “I had to broaden my knowledge of the other operations of the city, quickly.”
He added that the best thing about the new job is working for a “great mayor and city council. Another is, that I have lived in the area, off and on, since 1997, so I am quite familiar with the city, which is one of the reasons why I came back to work for the city in 2005.”
Young had worked previously as a senior planner in Columbia County, Ga., and for the City of McDonough, as community development director.
“Prior to that, I worked for the Henry County Planning Zoning Department, from 1996, until the end of 1999,” said Young.
One of the challenges of the new position is getting a handle on the entire operations of the city, such as public safety, public works, and balancing the city’s more-than $3 million budget, he explained.
He credits his co-workers with helping him operate the city. “[It] could not be done without the assistance, and the excellent work of all of our city employees, including our police chief [Jesse Patton], city clerk [Theresa Breedlove], and our public works staff.”
According to Young, there was no increase in his salary when he took on the interim position. He said the council is not currently searching for a new city manager. “I just serve at the will of the council on a month-to-month basis,” he said, adding that he would be willing to remain in the position, if asked by the mayor and council.
He said one of City Hall’s objectives is to make Locust Grove a “very livable city.
That is, professional and well-run, and that people are proud to call home, and a place that will attract visitors and business investments,” he said. “We want to make sure that the government runs efficiently, and provides adequate infrastructure for existing and new development.”
Transportation is a big focus for the city this year, he said. “Hopefully, depending on the upcoming transportation vote in July, we will begin work on the interchange, and we will have local money for our SPLOST [Special Local Option Sales Tax] projects,” he said. “We already have authorization to get design services to upgrade Tanger Boulevard, between Tanger Drive, at the entrance of Tanger Outlet Center, to Shoal Creek Road.”
He said the upgrades also include intersection improvements at Tanger Boulevard and Indian Creek Road.
While such projects are important, Young said he believes Locust Grove’s major asset is it’s people. “Whether you are a long-time resident, or a new move-in, everyone here has chosen Locust Grove because of it’s small-town feel and friendly charm.”