Eric Johnson



What’s (Not) in a Name… at Least in Columbia County

What’s (Not) in a Name… at Least in Columbia County

Columbia County commissioners received an unusual request and a gentle admonishment at Tuesday’s Management and Financial Services Committee meeting when they heard a presentation regarding the naming ordinance the county is revising. The presentation, made by Carol Swift, first cousin to the late Pat Hardaway, Columbia County’s long-serving probate judge, pointed out that the county […]

Waiting Game

Waiting Game

It’s a complicated and intriguing series of events that could put Columbia County Commissioner Trey Allen into the state senate; so complicated, in fact, that no one is really sure what’s going to happen, or even when it might happen. “I’ve not heard a thing,” Allen says. “People that I would normally ask are asking […]

Building Success One Vacuum at a Time

Building Success One Vacuum at a Time

When the Metro Spirit last talked to Mark Branum, president of Augusta-based America’s Remanufacturing Company, his business, which remanufactures vacuums, was in the midst of an incredible growth spurt. They were going from handling 20 percent of the North American remanufacturing work for TTI Floor Care, the company that owns Dirt Devil and Hoover, to […]

Five Things Columbia County Learned from the 2014 Primary

Five Things Columbia County Learned from the 2014 Primary

District 4 isn’t like the rest of Columbia County In many ways, the Republican primary for commission chairman was a battle between the old and new. Challenger Jim Bartley, a long-time critic of incumbent Chairman Ron Cross, never backed down from the fact that he doesn’t like the way the county is growing, and nowhere […]

Looking Out for Area Boaters

Looking Out for Area Boaters

There’s a good reason why National Safe Boating Week occurs just before Memorial Day. Memorial Day is the kickoff holiday for the summer boating season, which means that a good number of boaters on the area’s lakes and rivers won’t have a clue what they’re doing, not to mention how to do it safely. “They […]

Pit Stop by the Pump House

Pit Stop by the Pump House

Area cyclists in need of field repairs now have a self-service station where they can perform many of the most common repairs themselves — for free. Andy Jordan’s Bicycle Warehouse, along with volunteers from the Southern Off-Road Bicycle Association of the CSRA (SORBA-CSRA) and assistance from the Canal Authority, Augusta Utilities and the Recreation and […]

New Age Bike Rental Hits Evans Towne Center Park

New Age Bike Rental Hits Evans Towne Center Park

Columbia County is upping the ante on its status as a progressive community by installing a web-based, self-service bike rental unit at Evans Towne Center Park. The unit contains seven three-speed Trek bikes that are GPS enabled, allowing riders to monitor the distance of their trips for fitness purposes and county officials to know exactly […]

Two Battle to Replace Thigpen

Two Battle to Replace Thigpen

As in immigrant, Pakistani-born Hafeez Chaudhry believes being on the Columbia County Board of Commissioners would make a powerful statement to the throngs of new residents expected to move to the county. “I would say Columbia County has done a terrific job of assimilating newcomers, and I’m a perfect example of that,” he says. “I […]

Grudge Match

Grudge Match

When it comes to the race for chairman of the Columbia County Board of Commissioners, neither candidate has any qualms about making his motivations crystal clear. “I would have been glad not to run,” says incumbent Ron Cross, who has held the position for the last 12 years. “I’d have been happy not to run […]

The Arts Make a Case For SPLOST

The Arts Make a Case For SPLOST

With four of the five mayoral candidates going on record as opposing the $194 million Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) that will be voted on May 20, much of the conversation has focused on the negatives, particularly the fact that agencies outside of Richmond County government would be receiving $21.75 million from it. […]