Where's Grovetown Mayor Dennis Trudeau when you need him?
He's in Grovetown, of course - which is sometimes the rest of Columbia County's loss.
In one of those good news, bad news scenarios, Columbia County officials have managed to find the money to build a badly needed sidewalk on Mullikin Road to connect the new River Ridge Elementary School to several nearby subdivisions.
A few children already are walking in ditches and on the dangerous shoulders of the road to get to the new school; the sidewalk, championed by County Commission Chairman Ron Cross, will be a tremendous asset. It likely will help ease some of the area's notorious traffic jams.
"I think probably we'll have fewer parents picking children up if we have sidewalks for them to walk home on," says River Ridge Principal Sandy Black.
Construction could begin next month, at a cost of about $70,000.
So what's the bad news? And what does Mayor Trudeau have to do with it?
When Grovetown Middle School was built two years ago, Principal Carolyn Fries warned parents about the dangers of their children walking along Harlem-Grovetown Road.
Trudeau took the lead, twisted arms at the county and state level, and with substantial funding from the city of Grovetown managed to get the sidewalk built.
Oh, if only there was a Trudeau now to rescue children of another middle school: Riverside Middle, just a few hundred feet from River Ridge Elementary.
The new sidewalk won't reach Riverside. Those older children will continue to ride the bus rather than walk or bike the short but dangerous distance home.
County officials are expected to approve the project Tuesday. It sure would be nice - and safe - if they could find a few thousand more dollars to finish the job.
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