Bad governing has local addresses

Cal Beverly's picture

Since there are plenty of words about gun control this week available nearby, I will postpone Part 2 of my attempt at logic, “Guns and governing philosophy” for another week. (Is that cheering I hear?)

This week, I need to do some catching up on local issues.

First off, despite a painful exchange at a City Council meeting this month, Peachtree City has settled into an uneasy peace, pending mayoral candidate jousts sure to be forthcoming.

I want to bring back to your attention a matter of some constitutional import, since that notion seems much in the news these days.

I’m referring to the blatant and still unadmitted legal and constitutional violations committed by four members of the Peachtree City Council last summer.

That was when members Eric Imker, Vanessa Fleisch, George Dienhart and Kim Learnard enacted a constitutionally prohibited bill of attainder in which the council majority docked the pay of Mayor Don Haddix to repay a legal expense incurred by Haddix in his mayoral function.

Haddix threatened to sue, attorney negotiations ensued, the council majority backed off, and the council voted to restore Haddix’s back pay. The majority’s excuse for running up the white flag was that legal defense of their actions was prohibitively expensive.

Ironic, to say the least.

However good it may have felt to the council majority and some vocal anti-Haddix partisans, the council action cutting the mayor’s pay was nakedly illegal.

Not one of them has acknowledged to this day that illegality. In fact they have displayed no indication that any one of them has since read either the U.S. or Georgia constitutions regarding bills of attainder or the city charter, which specifically prohibits the very action they undertook.

That’s either a very prideful or a very ignorant stance, or both, to disregard core principles that govern our nation, our state and our city.

The continuing problem is that their prideful ignorance may lead them to further such lawless and stupid adventures in the future.

This should not be read as an endorsement of the reelection of Mayor Haddix. Indeed, Haddix has demonstrated levels of poor judgment equal to his adversaries and continues to indulge a pathological need to justify himself publicly ad nauseam.

At this point, faced with a ballot choice for any one of the five, I would write in the AFLAC duck.

Are there any low-ego, low-maintenance, no-tax-increase, no-political-ambitions fiscal conservatives inside the city limits who would sacrifice themselves for a four-year term to bring adult behavior back to the council?

I yearn for some adult who will cast votes based not on personalities and peevishness but on reining in local government excesses — and there are multitudes of excesses, and many fat, sacred cows overdue for the butcher block.

I catch glimpses of actual leadership now evident on the Fayette County Board of Education and in the excellent choice of the interim superintendent.

At the county commission, some guys are finding governing to be more complicated than protesting. Example: handling the ethics violation charges against lightning rod Chairman Steve Brown.

The new bunch has continued some practices they reviled in their predecessors. Don’t like the outcome of an ethics hearing? Call a meeting and change the rules.

And last-minute items added to the agenda — with no supporting documentation or explanation — seems to have continued in the new regime, just like in the old.

Plus ça change, etc.

I draw your attention to a story in this edition about the levels of debt being incurred in Peachtree City, debt that used to be decided by a voter referendum. Now, both state and local governments have set up a variety of legal ways to get around that messy referendum requirement for capital expenditures and to borrow money to fund a variety of pet projects that might not pass strict voter scrutiny.

Do you know how much money you, the taxpayer, are on the hook for — not nationally, but locally — in projects you probably don’t even know about?

Read, and remember that many of these debts are being repaid out of taxes levied on your property. And what happens when you add a thousand or two to your trusty personal credit card? Your monthly payment goes up.

Be careful your local tax rates don’t do the same.

[Cal Beverly is editor and publisher of The Citizen.]

Terriers88
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King: Consolidation

Let me add one thing to In The Know's points. Fayette County EMS also runs short of ambulances available for 911 calls because one of their ambulances is dedicated to running inter-facility transfers between Piedmont Fayette Hospital and Piedmont Downtown. In my mind, that is not the purpose of a 911 system. Since you are so concerned about waste, I would suggest to you that City Residents tax dollars would also go toward funding this service.

Spyglass
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Haddix should have resigned

I am convinced things would be much better with Council/Mayor if he had. NEW Mayor that is....

His continued rantings would seem to prove my point. He is up to it below.

dar thompson
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Yes Cal,

I'm sure there are a few but the only problem is an individual running for election on a business model is unelectable.

People don't want to here the truth...and it seems as though everyone has an agenda. The city has a negative cash-flow problem with the aquatic center (which is not the correct description, it's a pool with a bubble) of over $600,000 per year and we continue to ignore this problem year-in and year-out. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Recreation sports do not want to cover in-kind pro-rata share of expenses. Furthermore, when one comes up with reasonable solutions to the problems with recreation...well it's like trying to explain algebra to a 2nd grader.

Instead of creating new ideas with a vision for the future we take 6 months and two surveys to decide if we will allow gas golf-carts to operate in our fair city. Really? Unless we choose to elect people who have proven they have a clue about anything, we are bound to repeat ourselves.

Larry.Sussberg
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All Eyes On Peachtree City!

With the FCBOE and County Commission elections over, all eyes on Peachtree City.

Thank you Mr. Beverly and Mr. Mumford for focusing attention on these issues. Suspect more reporting to follow.

Glad to see you mention "the sacred cows", plural as in something other than the recreation department!

As for the new bonds, WOW! Let the mayoral finger pointing, distancing and blaming begin.

And, as you dig further...will someone please re-shoot the dead DAPC just one more time with its $400,000 proposed budget and ability to issue even more bonds! A high capacity semi-automatic weapon preferred.

Don Haddix
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Haddix: Truth vs Sussberg

Yet, again, Larry Sussberg has no problem with making false statements. There never was a $400K proposal for DAPC, in example.

Larry.Sussberg
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Don Haddix & DAPC Operating Budget and Bonds

Don

I apologize. A council member reminded me that the original amount requested by the then DAPC chairman was $400,000 but when that didn't fly it was adjusted to $150,000, up from $35,000 not including the $15,000 reserve, a 3-fold increase. So I don't make any more inaccurate (not false) statements, in light of Mr. Beverly's editorial and Mr. Munford's article, can you clarify....

You want to resurrect DAPC that can issue development bonds (if FCDA refuses)? Would their bond proposals be subject to voter referendum or could they just issue since they are an independent authority? And are the citizens on the hook for these bonds?

How about the upcoming WASA bonds? do the citizens get to vote on those? and are we on the hook?

Thanks for explaining.

Don Haddix
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Haddix: DAPC

Thank you, Larry.

We need to examine a few items for the future. So, as I have said, the next Council will need to have some discussions on the issues.

FCDA has had a policy of not doing retail. In example, DAPC, the center owner and I worked on getting Fresh Market here. FCDA played no role. Without DAPC it would not have happened.

I had brought in DAPC to work on getting an Aldi store here. They got the ball rolling and Aldi interested. When dissolved I tried to bring in the FCDA, but they didn't get involved and Aldi began looking at Fischer Crossing. So I worked on it until recently, getting Aldi looking again at PTC. When I contacted the FCDA again, they said they would now get involved and would begin looking at retail on a certain level. A move in the right direction.

On the redevelopment of Braelinn and Glenloch, the FCDA played no role. Aagin, DAPC, the owners and I worked together. DAPC played a critical role.

We need a redevelopment group with the powers and ability to accomplish something. My office and the City do not have the tools an authority as. The FCDA does not work in this arena.

And yes, there are bond and similar issues that benefit PTC only. They are not County issues.

So, we need to look at our current status, restoring DAPC and even changing to a County/City Joint authority like they use very successfully in Loundes/Valdosta. We have to do this, we have a very gaping void right now in economic development.

As for who backs the bonds, the normal procedure is the authority uses its power to get lower interest bonds and bonds that are not available to the City or developers. Then, they sell the bonds either to the developer or on the bond market.

What you may not know is authorities collect a fee they keep for issuing such bonds. Some authorities are self financing via bonds, properties, etc they own, which a City is not allowed to do.

Before someone says it, on the old authority debt and liability, that Council chose to assume it. They had no legal obligation to do so.

As well, the FCDA has limited personnel working the field, meaning Matt Forshee. He can only do so much. So under no circumstance am I attacking the FCDA, just being realistic on their limitations.

As for the WASA bond, that was approved today. No, the citizens do not and never have had a vote on such bonds. It is backing, not directly holding the bonds and paying the debt. WASA holds the debt.

Mike King
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Hold On There, Mayor!

Your entire blog deals with your belief that DAPC is the answer to Peachtree city's ills. Let me remind you that it's dead. Further, all your talking points above deal with retail which in itself will not sustain the city. Anyone with a modicum of civics can realize this, but again I am reminded of your track record.

Regarding development or redevelopment, would you mind commenting on the imminent closure of Gardener Denver and your plans for a potential back fill?

Your record is simply to raise taxes again and again reducing the opportunities for young families to choose PTC as a residence. All one needs to do is to compare the average age of residents over the five years of your public service and the corresponding millage rates.

You give yourself far too much credit with both the Braelinn and Glenloch centers.

Don Haddix
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Haddix: Mike King Statements

Read my website. His statements bear no resemblance to the facts. Those not directly addressed are addressed as follows.

Check the aging of Fayette and PTC prior to my coming on Council. It was already a reality.

Ask the Shopping Center owners and/or the members of DAPC at the time about my involvement with the renovations.

While the priority is good paying jobs that fill homes that fill retail, adding stores like Fresh Market and Aldi boost our revenues. They are also stores wanted by residents.

The issue here is economics, not civics.

Mike King
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Wrong Again Mayor!

You state that what I've said bear no resemblance to the facts, well let's see:
DAPC was disbanded by your Council, don't be delusional.
Aging has exacerbated in the five years you've held elected office, you can not deny it.
In speaking to decision makers and others concerning the shopping center upgrades, most agree that you were in the way when you bothered to show up.
I'm pleased to know that you agree that the issue is economics, but please understand that the civics issues created by you have very much to do with the economic lifeblood of our town.

Spyglass
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Aldi?

Tell me that is not so, Racetrac is going to be ugly enough.

Husband and Fat...
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Aldi is not bad

Aldi is not bad. It has a very close relationship with Trader Joe's. Would love to have TJ's here in PTC instead of making side trips to shop there when in ATL.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trader_Joe's

Spyglass
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TJ is worth the drive

Occasionally for sure, just for the wine.

I would not cross the street to shop at Aldi unless I had no alternative.

And I know about the ownership relationship of the two stores.

AtHomeGym
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Spyglass & ALDI

So what exactly is it that you don't like about ALDI?

Spyglass
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It's just not my style...

I went in one once in Stockbridge, that was enough.

Add to the fact that is no where near where I shop for groceries, and there you go.

That and I'm spoiled by the steaks at the Fresh Market....

AtHomeGym
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Spyglass, ALDI & Style

Understand; I like Fresh Mkt's Premium Choice meat but yesterday, bought a small piece of Beef Tenderloin from Publix to cook in a cast iron pan on the stove and it was quite good, especially with some Brussel Sprouts frm Fresh Mkt and fresh Fla Sweet Corn from Publix (40cents per ear). Perhaps you know, but Germans normally shop every day, usually going to the same Baker, Butcher, & Green Grocer---and then on Fri to a Florist for weekend fresh flowers. And most towns have a central farmer's mkt on Saturday and some on Wednesdays too. I loved the hot Leberkase on a fresh roll! Leberkase is not the literal translation of "Livercheese" rather what Whole Foods calls "Veal Loaf"! Having lived in Germany for 15 yrs, I admit to being pretty 'native'

Spyglass
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Sounds good

All of it.

Husband and Fat...
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Aldi

I rarely shop at the Aldi in Fayetteville because I prefer to stay away from the shopping complex in that part of the county and it just is not convenient. If one doesn't mind the quarter shopping cart rental and the pack your own items at the end, it can help with costs.

A friend of mine is a vendor to both stores and he told me that SOME of the sale items are the exact same items sold at TJ's with different packaging, sizes, and labels.

Don Haddix
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Haddix: Trader Joes

We pursued three different companies hoping to get one. Trader Joe's was one, but they would not take a shot coming here. Maybe with the success of Fresh Market they may reconsider.

Aldi is a very popular store in Fayette County. A lot of people from PTC shop in the Fayetteville store. There are those in the County and even Fayetteville who have said they would shop here.

Also, they have changed their store design. It has grown from 14,000 to 17,000 sq'.

AtHomeGym
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ALbrecht DIscount

Next time you're in McDonough, stop in the ALDI store there--you may be surprised! Oh, you DO get your quarter back after shopping you know!

Larry.Sussberg
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Duplicate

Duplicate

Larry.Sussberg
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Haddix: DAPC

Mike King is 100% correct about taking too much credit for Braelinn and Glenloch.
In fact the owners of Braelinn initiated the redevelopment plan through their management company and Planning Commission approved those plans after some back and forth. DAPC was never mentioned in the process.

DAPC is dead, gone, finished!

It's quite hypocritical that you are calling Vanessa Fleisch a Tax & Spend candidate while you support independent bonding authorities....that's called Borrow & Spend. At least Ms Fleisch wants to use cash, you want to use the taxpayers' credit line!

Don Haddix
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Haddix: Wrong Larry

You saw the results of the work done before you were ever brought in. Go ask former DAPC members.

Vanessa Fleisch voted for the millage rate increases in 2010 and 2012. I voted against. She voted for the H/M increase in 2010 and 2012. I voted against, killing the increase. There are two more tax increases of .2 each proposed for 2014 and 2015. She would vote for them if Mayor. There is a GO bond increase proposed for 2014 of .402, which would be a referendum that would be defeated, I believe, by the voters.

A development authority bond is no burden on taxpayers. They sell them and collect a fee in return. They make money.

Try to spin it any way you wish, but Vanessa Fleisch's record is clear. She is a tax and spender, I am not.

I understand you are also a tax and spender, but that does not give you the right to misrepresent voting records or positions.

Unless something new is said that requires a response, I am not going to bog down in a pointless argument when the facts have been said her or on my website.

Larry.Sussberg
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More Debt Don Haddix

I have read the propaganda on your blog.

You can call me a Tax & Spend person, not that I am and not that it's relevant to anything except your feeble attempt to somehow change the conversation.

However, you are the mayor and leader of Peachtree City and it appears you've been a busy little beaver authorizing over $18 million in bonds and leases without voter referendums. Now, you want to add the potential for even more debt by reviving DAPC, an independent bonding authority run by part time volunteers that can issue bonds without citizen approval.
Seriously, in the hands of part time volunteers? No controls? And independent of the city?

Just more potential financial liability for PTC citizens! That's unnecessary and totally nuts which is why council disbanded it.

Twist it, turn it anyway you want, we all know you are the great master of spin!
Once again, you have 0 credibility.

Borrow & Spend.

I agree, you should not be bogged down with responding , it's safer for you. Stick with writing on your blog because it will all flush out through out the campaigns and debates.

Thanks

Robert W. Morgan
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Hang on there, Mike. In fact you better sit down before reading

I know this makes no sense, but in Haddix World DAPC is just resting (not dead) and his references to having support and allies and a majority on the future council comes from the reelection strategy of calling out the other council members for their vendetta against him when all he wants to do is bring jobs to the city using DAPC since FCDA is limited in both manpower and focus. His assumption is that this makes sense to other candidates running against the ladies and they will be swept into office as he will be reelected as well. Team Haddix.

Never mind that the focus is on retail jobs which don't really attract people with growing families looking for a $250,000 home so they can pay about $4,000 in taxes.

NUK_1
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I agree with Haddix here

I also agree with him about WASA. The city needs to stay the hell out of that. Maybe it must be stated by someone else besides the Mayor, but what he said about governmental authorities a week or so ago in regards to WASA is exactly right. He did his homework on that one and has the experience of being in office to know what he's talking about here and he's right.

DAPC could be a better asset to PTC than solely relying on FCDA and I'll also state that it took some actual reasoning, research and THINKING from Haddix to come to the conclusion that it's better to have a DAPC than not, even though the most politically expedient decision would be to carry over from the Steve Brown days of demonizing the hell out of DAPC and trying to consolidate a whole bunch of functions under a "Tourism Authority."

Haddix usually really pisses me off with his non-stop grandstanding, slamming publicly those he was elected to work with, his ego, the 12K, etc. etc., but I support him 100% on DAPC and also what he spearheaded in regards to Cannongate/Tennis Center/Tourism Authority that has saved the city a lot of money and was a helluva lot better than what existed before.

I highly doubt anything Don could do between now and November would change my mind about voting for anyone but him, but he's done a few decent things for the City. He undid some Steve Brown disasters while caretaker Logsdon did all of what? At least he tried, as misguided as I think he has been.

Larry.Sussberg
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Mudcat & Nuk1

Then the city should hire a professional economic development manager to work in conjunction with FCDA on large companies but highly focused on filling up retail and office space. Development exc should report to City Manager. Bring the job in-house to city hall, keep it away from stupid politicans. We do not need another independent authority run by poltical appointees, all of whom are part time volunteers who have the ability to raise more debt with bonds with limited control by the city. Its a full time job with people who can meet with potential companies during 9 to 5. We need a professional who can work with the city manager to move the process through city hall to get a retailer or small service company located here. If they need a financial incentive, ask!

That was the orginal plan with Grisham until the Fresh Market aka OK Corral ambush! He never had a chance and did not spent enough time here to accomplish anything. The minute Grisham arrived, Haddix was plotting his departure because that jackass will not allow anything to be done unless it's done his way and he receives the credit for it, hence the problem we are facing.

Want to get the job done, hire a smart professional same way FCDA has Matt but we don't need an "all volunteer" bonding authority for retail and office space.

GeorgeDienhart
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FCDA

Hi Larry. There is supposed to be someone on the FCDA dedicated to Peachtree City. Unfortunately, he has moved on to a new position in private enterprise. As of 2 months ago, I had spoken to Dr. Pennington, and he has assured me that there will be a focus on retail in the future. Keeping this job at the FCDA assures that we keep it away from the "stupid politicians"

Larry.Sussberg
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George-FCDA

If the person left, then hire a more seasoned professional and pay more so they stay.
Politicians are stupid, but an elected leader is highly valuable!

GeorgeDienhart
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Larry

Matt Forshee is all over this. We'll get a good fit and Matt is still keeping watch over the PTC issues.

NUK_1
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Larry: How is that free from politics?

Grisham was an in-house economic development mgr and it seems like politics certainly got in the way there too. What happened to him was totally classless and appalling, but I also totally disagreed with his approach also and question why he was hired in the first place. Everyone would like see retail space filled 100% also, but there are a TON of vacant buildings and land in the PTC industrial park that should be priority #1. Those opportunities not only grow the tax base but create jobs and are sitting there vacant as Coweta keeps filling up their industrial opportunities. I know PTC is severely hampered by interstate access that Coweta has, but that's why you need a real selling job to get companies here instead.

While Mrs. Haddix showed zero class and an absolute lack of grace in her face-to-face with Grisham and subsequent BS letter to The Citizen, he wasn't the right guy for the job and anyone working within City Hall is going to face the political crap no matter what their job title is.

DAPC as an authority can at least be somewhat isolated away from internal politics and was once a very effective authority until they started thinking that not having a budget was OK, fighting with goofball Steve Brown, and racking up debt(legal or illegal)was "just the way it's always been and all good!"

I'd be interested in hearing from Scott Bradshaw on this issue because he was on DAPC Version 1.0 and resigned when he totally disagreed with what they were doing, and also not having a real budget at all. Just because DAPC at the end was a failure doesn't mean it will always be and the people who served on DAPC Version 2.0 were pretty damn good and starting to make progress for PTC.

Don Haddix
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Haddix: NUK

DAPC2, as you call it, was a good group.

It is laughable to say the FCDA is politics free. It is a County Authority whose board members are political appointees with elected setting the parameters of operation. It is not and cannot be free of politics entirely. It is County, not PTC focused.

Part of the reason DAPC was dissolved was because some on Council demanded that every penny they spent and every project be reviewed and approved by Council. That is in total defiance of the State Law.

As for what Larry Sussberg and Councilman Dienhart said, that requires addressing.

There was a new hire the beginning of December, Emily Poole. Her background was as management for Allen Vigil Ford, President of YP Fayette and sits on the Boards of the Fayette County Chamber of Commerce and Fayette Senior Services.

The City manager and I have met with her and Matt Forshee twice, once concerning the pursuit of Aldi's and other significant retail, which does not mean all empty retail spaces. I restate, not all retail, so still a void there. You can add office space to that void.

I also spoke with a Commissioner. They removed some of the constraints placed on the FCDA by prior Commissions. The FCDA can now deal with more of the areas I have called voids in our economic development. A very good change, but still there are voids.

As for Councilman Dienhart saying Matt said elected play no role, ask Matt Forshee. He does not agree with that statement. I am, in example, very involved with Aldi's and responsible for their getting involved. I asked them to get involved.

Fayetteville has their own Downtown Development Authority to deal with non County economic development. The FCDA is a County authority, working for what benefits the County. That is why they have Mainstreet and we had DAPC.

Another EDC is not the answer, as you said. That would be a city employees, not a development authority. No power to do anything but point out empty retail and office space to anyone who asks. Also a waste of money when such as DAPC can hire an actually Development Authority Director. That gives State Certified volunteers working with a professional manager. It cover more ground with more professional people at the same cost.

The only alternative is to do a combined County/City Authority where both entities are equal partners performing equal service to both.

Mike King
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Just an Idea

Let's say that Peachtree City has the opportunity to hire someone that is both experienced and gifted in the arena of business development, would that individual accept a position where they realize going in that the mayor constantly admonishes those who have the audacity to disagree with him? I think not.
Most true professionals realize the potential for their success requires an atmosphere of mutual understanding that meets the goals expected of that professional and the city that employs him/her. That atmosphere does not exist in Peachtree City today, nor will it until a new Mayor is sworn in.
DAPC can and will succeed, but only as an individual uniquely qualified to fill the position and subordinate to the City Council.
Realizing the affront the Mayor's wife provided Mr Grisham, does anyone believe this caliber of an individual would consider Peachtree City with Don Haddix as mayor?

Don Haddix
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Haddix: Idea

Economic Development is an Authority position, not an EDC, which means a DAPC employee, not a PTC employee. Two completely different jobs and roles. Love the idea of hiring a pro or creating a Joint Authority with Matt Forshee as the pro.

You also fail when you say subordinate to City Council. You obviously have not read O.C.G.A 36-62-1 thru 14.

Since you do not understand the realities here you cannot begin to comment on the issue with any relevance or meaning.

Mike King
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Don, Relevance?

The mess you've allowed to take place on the five plus years of your watch speaks for itself. OCGA 36-62-1thru 14 has obviously confused you, where might I ask does it say that a city cannot hire a development coordinator who is ultimately answerable to Council?

It seems to me that you only chime in when you can find some half assed regulatory stipulation that tends to lend credence to why something can not be done. You, sir, are but a bureaucrat doing whatever you can to smother anything resembling an effort at progress.

It is you who doesn't understand that you are so far over your head that you have embarrassed the city repeatedly. Do you deny your familial effort to have Joey Grisham's tenure in Peachtree City short lived because you didn't get your way?

PTC Observer
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Mr. Haddix - Understanding

reality is not your forte either Mr. Haddix.

You are about to be thrown out of office on your ear.

Larry.Sussberg
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NUK1

NUK1

Let's get rid of Haddix, then deal with economic development.

mudcat
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Yes NUK, even the wrong person can be right

He is certainly correct that there needs to be someone professional and not political handling economic development, but he's not the answer. He is also correct that FCDA is not 100% focused upon PTC and not the best solution, but the mayor is not the best solution either. And you are correct about Tourism and CVB being a big win, but that is all Nancy and the mayor can be credited for not getting in the way.

Leadership isn't making a list of good ideas and taking credit for them. Leadership is working together with other council members and the city manager to solve problems and implement programs and to pass a budget without being concerned who gets the credit or the blame. After 4 years of Brown and what seems like 4 years of this mayor, I'd vote for anyone who pledges to be civil and not grandstand. I'll probably have 5 or 6 choices and that's a good thing.

It was just wonderful to read in Cal's piece that we are still paying every year for Brown's bridge to nowhere land over by Wynnmeade. What is the matter with all these so-called leaders?

Don Haddix
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Haddix: mudcat

Reagan set the model. You try to persuade others to do the right thing, but if they won't do it, take it to the citizens. It works.

Like me or not, I got the job done when others failed. Like it or not, when you run for office you have to take positions and you are judged by what you accomplished for the constituents.

If my positions are correct and you know I will keep working to achieve them, why roll the dice with someone new?

mudcat
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Mudcat: haddix Rolling the dice?

No mr. mayor, I won't be rolling the dice for a better mayor, instead I will be looking for someone who does not blog endlessly, someone who has the ability to put some nouns and verbs together in the right order, someone who can control their wife's big mouth when she goes to market (and that's coming from an enlightened female) and someone who thinks the city - this wonderful, wonderful city - is more important that some little twerp's self promotion. We survived Steve Brown and we shall survive you, but I wish abortion was on the table back whenever you were hatched.

As far as I am concerned, "persuading others to do the right thing" is not an option for you. Even though you sometimes certainly and sensibly do in fact know the right things, no one listens to you because of your bomb throwing tendencies and incredible immaturity. Let your grownup successor get the populace to do the right thing.

Just go away. Please.

Larry.Sussberg
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Haddix & Walmart

Apply for your next job and start practicing

"Welcome to Walmart"

mudcat
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I would vote with my feet

Speaking for myself, if I saw that man as a greeter at WalMart, I would turn around and leave - never to return.

Mike King
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Don, Really?

I guess that was the reason you were censored, and prior to that thrown off the ARC. Or was it the reverse of those events?
How many reasons do we need to roll the dice?

Larry.Sussberg
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Haddix and doing the right thing!

Return our $12,000.
It's the PTC taxpayers' money.

As for accomplishments, very few.
The voters will decide and I bet they will agree to roll the dice on electing someone with leadership skills.
You just don't get it!

PTC Observer
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Mr. Beverly - Ambitions

"Are there any low-ego, low-maintenance, no-tax-increase, no-political-ambitions fiscal conservatives inside the city limits who would sacrifice themselves for a four-year term to bring adult behavior back to the council?"

Yes, but he's not running.

Davids mom
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Mr. Beverly

Thanks for the education that I receive about the difficulty that the Republicans are having in a Republican county. My hat goes off to the National Speaker of the House. He is dealing with a reality within the national party; he has not succumbed to the frustration in his own party - which tried to unseat him - and he is moving on as cited in this article.

http://www.ajc.com/ap/ap/political/boehner-steadies-gop-team-reframes-de...

Will anyone listen to his attempt to 'reframe'?

Mike King
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Mr Beverly

Well, at least I'm not alone in acknowledging the ever increasing debt load this Council continues to pile on their aging population.

There are ways to turn this around, but it must begin with significant cuts in both police and fire, and bringing both departments under one umbrella is a start. One also could scrutinize the purchases made by department directors with an eye toward realizing what is actually needed versus what is requested.

One might even consider freezing the millage rate while having departments reduce their budgets by seven percent this year, then six the following year, then five percent, and so on. Somewhere between now and four years hence those on Council would realize that this city can be exceptional at a lower cost, especially if the savings go to paths, debt, and infrastructure for example.

Those that say this can't be done have their head in the sand, or simply refuse to acknowledge that being free of debt is a worthwhile goal. It would seem we have five on Council that are content to pass the cost of their spending to a younger generation.

Peter Pfeifer
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Mike King: Consolidation

When I was still on the County Commission, I made several proposals to Peachtree City to examine consolidation of the County and City Fire & EMS services. I thought we could look at what might happen to costs and to services if that were done. Cost and services could go up or down or stay the same but the only way to find out was to study it. This step was recommended by an outside consultant that Peachtree City had hired ($$$) to look into cost savings in Fire/EMS services.
No Peachtree City Council people or Mayors have been interested in looking at it. I don't expect that this one will either. Perhaps a new one will consider looking at something so obvious. But, the creation of the seperate Fire District that Peachtree City demanded, complicates things somewhat. I don't know if it's still possible but I also don't know that it's not.
Peter

intheknow
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Peter – Not again

I thought several years ago when you had last started on your “consolidation” kick on these blogs, enough “factual” information had been passed along to you to enlighten your less than factual posts. Obviously that’s not the case, as you’ve resurrected your ignorance on the topic once again.
The “separate” fire and EMS districts which you mention came from the bleeding of PTC taxpayers, whom for many years were double taxed for Fire & EMS services. I’m not going to go into all the details in my post, as that would be way too long and my posts tend to be long anyway. I will mention the real kick in the head to PTC taxpayers was sneaking some 30 positions into the EMS budget, which came out of the Counties General Fund – A budget in part paid for by PTC taxpayers (Double Dipping for the same services). This budget would have been plausible had it only funded maybe one or two positions, but since the county administration had deceitfully funneled millions into this budget line item to fund Firefighter / Paramedic positions, eventually being caught at it by Peachtree City, the separate tax districts were needed, to ensure PTC residents weren’t further pilfered. I seem to remember some talk of going after the county for all the double taxation moneys’ that were taken, but that would have probably bankrupt the county budget.
For many years Jack Krakeel, the long time FCFD Chief and eventually County Administrator always seemed to push for a consolidation or at minimum “auto-matic aid” coverage area’s, always at the increased expense to PTC residents, never anything that actually benefited PTC or was reciprocal in nature. I remember at one point some ridiculous numbers being thrown out by FCFD as to who had to assist whom more, in regards to mutual aid ambulance responses. As I recall the only plausible data we at PTC could come up with was that the county counted the number of times we just put them on EMS standby (PCFD having all Ambulances on calls) and not actually responding, and that they (FCFD) counted those notifications as “mutual aid requests” to bolster their numbers. As I recall PCFD at that time actually responded more times to the county to assist them, then they did to assist PCFD. It’s not much different than counting public relations details, station tours and other similar functions as “calls/runs”; bolstering the numbers to the “total alarms” and at the same time reducing overall “response times”, as those responses enter in as “zero minutes”, skewing the overall response time averages – both things Fayette County Emergency Services has done for years.
For many of the same reasons, many metro Atlanta communities have broken off from “County Fire Departments” in the last decade, just to name a few; Fairburn, Palmetto, Chattahoochee Hills, Milton and Johns Creek have all formed their own FD’s. Peachtree City residents would come out on the loosing end with a merger in so many ways. Probably the most prevalent reason NOT to consolidate is the probable tax increase that would occur to Peachtree City residents. Contrary to what ever the uninformed Mike King continually posts on these blogs, the PCFD does actually deliver the most cost effective and responsive Fire & EMS services to its residents. Our staffing levels for years have been below almost every other similar sized city (Class B Cities) in Georgia, and that’s even with PCFD being the ONLY Fire Department of all the Class B cities which also provides EMS Transport (Ambulances). We’ve continually found ways to improve our service delivery most cost effectively. One such way is through the continuance of the Volunteer (POC) program which often helps increase our staffing averages by as much as two, three or four personnel daily – which also helped us in obtaining our superior Insurance Office Services (I.S.O.) Class 3 Rating. Just that rating alone, saves the average PTC homeowner as much as $100 or more in annual insurance premiums on their homeowners policies (That would undoubtedly go away with any merger for several reasons and increase PTC homeowner insurance policies with Fayette Counties inferior Class 4/8B rating).
As for your mention of that “Outside Consultants’ Study”, that was the biggest waste of $17,000, and ultimately just a “cookie cutter” document full of un-factual data (Mike King could have even written it) – I have one of the original copies, Yes, the one that references “Cadillac” (Michigan) a couple times, as they forgot to change the name in some passages to “Peachtree City”. When Cadillac Michigan Fire Department was contacted by us, they were just as dissatisfied with the report they received as we were, as it was un-factual and full of errors. I was disappointed when that document was completed, having known the lead project manager hired to do it from 30 some years ago, earlier in my career, and with his background I expected better. Back then, Mr. Best was one of them “up and comers” in the Fire & EMS world, moving around a lot from position to position, agency to agency and knowing a lot of people (kind of like the new County Administrator, for your benefit), I had dinner and drinks with him a few times, meeting him through an associate of mine.
Ultimately the Consultants Report was garbage! With the authors many connections, primarily in this case having spent many years on the same International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) “EMS Section Committee” with Jack Krakeel. He just sat down with Jack and had Jack put his wants and desires in it – They were buddies, in fact, the last time I was on that Consulting Companies website, soon after they were here, Jack Krakeel was listed as one of their contractors. Some of the recommendations in that report tore down the PCFD, aligned much of the services with FCFD and ultimately would have cost much more to deliver actually less services to the citizens of Peachtree City. One example they recommended would be to staff two Fayette County FD Ambulances in two (2) of the Peachtree City FD stations, reducing the present number from the four (4) staffed PCFD Ambulances. Some residents would be experiencing long extended responses for an ambulance to arrive at their homes, when it’s not at all uncommon for the five (5) FCFD Ambulances they presently operate to already be on calls and un-available. I regularly hear their Shift Commanders “shopping” as I like to say, for the “next available ambulance” (doing everything they can to avoid calling PCFD to assist) to respond out of Piedmont Fayette Hospital - they run out of Ambulances frequently!
Many of the Consultants Report recommendations (as much as half of them), were things PCFD already did/does, making all of us shake our heads wondering “did the consultants actually look at everything or write things down, or were they really ever even here?” Ultimately after that whole experience, it became quite obvious that “consultants” for Public Safety in general, are only a benefit in places where they’re behind the curve or have had their heads in the sand far too long. Charleston, SC comes to mind and the Super Sofa Store fire, with 9 Firefighters killed a few years ago, part of the problem there was the Fire Chief being the Mayors buddy and promoting 1960’s/70’s style firefighting and the good old boy network.
Progressive or modern government entities typically hire educated or experienced administrators to direct their Public Safety Departments. By utilizing good people for senior and director positions, having all the knowledge and skill sets to manage, plan and lead, it negates having to bring in outside people to decide how to do things. These modern agencies’s send their personnel to outside schools and conferences, promote education, set standards and always look for the latest, best or most cost effective measures to deliver their services to their citizens in the most efficient and safe way. Peachtree City has been doing this for many years under the last couple administrations, prior to that; there was some “head in the sand” management philosophy, with even the most basic calls frequently overtaxing the department at the time.
In closing, the Project Manager whom led that consultant’s report you mentioned, just previous to coming here as the “consultant”, had been the Fire Chief of the Reedy Creek Improvement District in Florida, (one of the MANY jobs he’s held). For those NOT in the know, that’s the FD that protects all of Disney World, it was just sad that our taxpayers wasted money on an outside consultant, to ultimately produce a Mickey Mouse flawed report, at that time.

pumpkin
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N The Know- I Remember

Thank you for this......so personal for me......

Some truths for those who dont remember.

Facts, for a man who is serious trouble and a virus to our city.

Mike King
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Peter

In light of the obvious failure of the Council to provide "professional" leadership for some time within the PTCFD, it would be my opinion that the city and county could combine fire/EMS services. At the very least, the combining of local police and fire is a no brainer.

Additionally, I'm sure that Sheriff Babb could highlight areas that neither our police chief or his assistant would dare make public.

Thanks for your input.