PTC is great, but don’t cover up its shortcomings
Peachtree City, our wonderful little town. “Come here to stay.” I have lived here for about 30 years. I love it. It is a great city and a great county. Is it perfect? No way. But still a great place to raise kids, a great place to live and a great place to retire. Objectively. That’s what all the national reviews say.
But, Peachtree City is far from perfect. With all the staff infections, you would think it’s a MERSA outbreak.
For fear of reprisals in my retired life I choose anonymity. I have lived here 30 years. I am in a social club and a regular golf foursome. I am regularly at the 19th hole and I have seen a lot. I do not want to be made an outsider. Sorry, Terry Garlock. But EVERYTHING about the city in this blog [online at www.TheCitizen.com] is true, backed by news stories and the truth.
Going way back to [Mayor] Fred Brown, Peachtree City has always been image first. City Hall cared more about how we looked than anything. For years, the police department would report burglaries as thefts. It looked better. Finally that whole charade was stopped. Perfect town? Several FBI and GBI investigations says “no,” not quite perfect.
Terry Garlock, nominated to serve on the city Water and Sewer Authority, stridently defends the city. Taking the lead and repeating the council mantra, he says (1) we should not “rush to judgment” and (2) let’s not talk about it because it’s a legal matter.
Terry, I believe that City Hall has already closed the book on this. They said that the Fire Chief was guilty. Paying a half million dollars is a fairly resolute way of expressing that sentiment that it is a done deal. But they will do absolutely nothing more than quietly sweep it under the rug.
This string of unacceptable staff behavior has been around for a very long time. Let’s be objective.
Consider the DUI on city property, at a city event by a city official in 2006, City Manager Bernie McMullen. (See http://archive.thecitizen.com/node/7413).
City Councils past and present have kept up the party line, “Keep it quiet; keep up the image.” If the current City Council were any different, they would investigate the matter fully. One person suggested a grand jury. Good idea. But this City Council and all their lawyers will not.
What else has happened in Peachtree City? This post would be way too long. Let’s just look at the fire department.
First we had the firefighter showing up for his shift drunk, for which he rightfully got a DUI (http://thecitizen.com/articles/01-19-2011/ptc-firefighter-charged-dui). Oh, he was the city manager’s son. That’s the same city manager who also got a DUI.
Then we have a female firefighter assistant chief who was formally recommended for disciplinary punishment and quit, for sexually groping another female firefighter (http://www.thecitizen.com/articles/03-14-2012/ptc-assistant-fire-chief-r...).
Now, convinced of his guilt, City Council is paying $350,000 to a victim of the fire chief who she thought “was going to rape me.”
Go back to the city manager DUI. A quality corporation would have investigated, educated and [told] all staff [that] anyone who falls outside the line of reasonable behavior would be terminated.
But that’s not how Peachtree City handled it. Still, our City Council and sycophants like Sewer Board nominee Terry Garlock insist that we should not “rush to judgment.”
Folks, again, this is a good town, but it ain’t perfect and this is how it is. This council is no different than any previous or future council and this staff misbehavior will continue.
Name withheld by request