During its monthly meeting on Monday, Feb. 7, the Buford City Commission recognized two city employees for their 20 years of service to the Buford community.

Dexter Pace and Faron McElhannon have both served the city of Buford for two decades, and commission chairman Phillip Beard acknowledged their commitment to their community with a plaque and a gift from the commission.

“A family we’ve known I guess all their lives … the Pace family, Dexter and his family … and they’ve been friends of our community for years, and he’s been a loyal worker for us,” Beard said. “And we’ve got another gentleman, Faron McElhannon, he’s got his 20 years as well.”

The commission then moved to public hearings, the first of which was for a special use permit to open up a vape shop at 1643 Buford Highway.

“There’s been a lot of discussion over the years about what goes on, what it does to people, some of the stuff,” Beard said.

In lieu of anyone speaking in opposition, Beard mentioned a letter from a number of businesses near the site that opposed the permit being granted.

“These things are just popping up everywhere,” vice chairman Chris Burge said before making a motion to deny. The motion passed unanimously without the applicant speaking in favor of the request.

Two other requests for special use permits then followed, one for a semi-permanent makeup establishment at 3616 South Bogan Road and the other for a church at 1050 Sugar Hill Road. Both permits were granted unanimously by the commission without the applicants needing to speak on their behalf.

The commission went on to approve a minor zoning modification for a private residence as well as numerous land allocation and budgetary measures.

Commission members also approved HLH-Architects for design and construction of additions which will be made to Buford Middle School and Buford Senior Academy.

Additionally, the commission approved a services agreement with Mark Cunningham to assist with property acquisitions for the new Buford High School stadium.

City manager Bryan Kerlin gave his report, which focused on COVID updates, the city awaiting a state grant for general COVID relief and updates on various projects throughout the city.

Before the meeting adjourned, Mary Alice Beard took a moment to praise the city’s rapid response following the winter storm in January.

“Power was back up in three hours,” she said. “I’d like to thank the electricians and the people who cut trees. They did a great job, thank you.”

FEATURED PHOTO: The Buford City Commission recognized two city employees for 20 years of service during its  monthly meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2022. Faron McElhannon, standing left, and Dexter Pace, standing right, were honored by commission members. Photo by Chris Bellows. 

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