The religious organization has applied for grants up to $250,000 to cover the cost of the facility. If the grants are approved, the facility will be built on church property. Heiskell’s signature was necessary for the ministry to submit its application to the Department of Community Affairs.
Church officials were in a hurry to wrap up the application, which must be postmarked by Sunday.
Heiskell wants to ensure the public is informed about this possible development, and asked Center Mark Ministries president Lila Clay that public hearings be held. Clay agreed public hearings were necessary.
Church officials hope to use the grant money to establish a faith-based homeless shelter that “helps the members of our county who are destitute, homeless, and suffering by providing shelter, food, clothing, and other spe-cialized needs.”
Heiskell received letters supporting the new program from North Georgia Homeless Coalition and Harvest Outreach, both located in Dalton.
“After we make our application, we’ll be seeking approval,” Clay said. “Once we get approval, then it would just be soliciting contractors in the area to build the building."
It could take anywhere from six months to a year to finish the project.
The goal of the shelter is to take in the homeless and make them produc-tive members of society again, Clay said.
Center Mark Ministries is based at Catlett Community Church. Church of-ficials want input from the community about this new ministry opportunity. Comments should be sent to Catlett Community Church, 122 Round Pond Road, LaFayette, Ga., 30728.
In other business at the regular Wednesday commissioner’s meeting:
* Heiskell signed an contract with Family Connections. The commissioner’s office acts as the fiscal agent for Family Connections. Executive Director Marlo Watson said anyone who wants to see the annual operating plan should contact (706) 375-3898 to get a copy.
* Heiskell signed a $32,654.28 lease agreement with the Georgia Department of Human Resources leasing the Department of Family and Children’s Services building from July 1 to June 30, 2003. This is the same amount paid last year.
* Heiskell signed a $255,968.15 Byrne Formula grant with funds going to the Lookout Mountain Judicial Circuit Drug Task Force. The county must match this grant with $85,322.71 for a total of $341,290.86.
* Heiskell signed a $3,400 COOP agreement, a cooperative agreement between the Walker County Sheriff’s Department and the Forest Service.
* Heiskell appointed Chickamauga utilities manager John Culpepper to the Walker County Historical Preservation Commission where his knowledge of Civil War history will be helpful.
* Heiskell appointed Lloyd Cochran to the Armuchee Valley Water District Committee. Cochran will fill the unexpired term of T.R. Tucker.
* Heiskell signed a right-of-way agreement with the Georgia Department of Transportation to assist with adding passing lanes to Ga. 136 near Taylor’s Ridge.
* Robert and Carlene Pruett asked their property on Kay Conley Road be rezoned from residential to commercial. Heiskell followed the recommendation of the Walker County Planning Commission and approved the change.
* Michael Anderson requested his property at 270 Gordon Pond Road be rezoned from agricultural to residential. Heiskell followed the recommenda-tion of the Walker County Planning Commission and approved the change.
There will not be a commissioner’s meeting next week. The next scheduled commissioner’s meeting is Wednesday, April 10, at 10 a.m. at 101 S. Duke St., LaFayette