Sunday, Dec. 11, 2016    Login | Register        

Haddix: Why brag on balancing budget with taxes, debt?

Having chaired the workshop reported on in the Imker budget trimming article it is important that comments, not reported, be shared with the citizens. Especially so when being the only voice that said this same old approach has not worked in the past and will not work in the future.

The city manager’s model is based on council guidance given at the retreat. That guidance was no service cuts. Staff did their best, under that stipulation, to tell us what would have to happen, not only next year, but in the new five year model.

Here, I remind all that council members Kim Learnard, Vanessa Fleisch and Eric Imker had their model every year, 2010 on.

They were emphatic, ridiculing any who disagreed, that their 2010 and 2011 budgets were ”genius,” solving all problems by 2016.

This year shows those who disagreed were right, they were wrong. Their budgets have failed.

As warned, in what was called the “Smoke and Mirrors” letter to the editor last year, those line item cuts to make the budget look good in an election year would have to be put back. Put back they were.

We don’t need a “Smoke and Mirrors 2” budget passed this year.

The model has a 0.3 mill tax increase for 2013 and a 0.2 mill increase for the following three years. So, there is a total of a 0.9 mill tax increase, doubling non-Facilities Authority debt, and draining the reserves to 20 percent plus $500,000.

It also has an almost 6 percent increase in the tax digest, meaning increased home values. We are supposed to be balanced by 2017.

Is balancing a budget with taxes and debt something to brag about?

Folks, from 2008 on there has been an increase in the tax digest shown every year in the new models. The reality has been a decrease in the tax digest, every year.

When I asked staff about that, the answer was there needs to be some optimism. I prefer reality.

Why? Because if we see a flat or negative tax digest in those years, the model is out the window and we will be going into the red.

That means being forced to do a major tax increase, on top of what is already proposed, or more drastic service cuts than if we do due diligence now.

As stated in the workshop, it is yet another year of proposed Band-Aids and postponements of needed expenditures. Another year of wanting to cut safety, our most wanted and valued service to Peachtree City.

Also, I repeated the urgency for a needs assessment, which the city manager agreed does not currently exist.

That means we actually gather in-depth information and input from the citizens. We look at what we are spending on a service, how many citizens are actually using it and is it warranted.

What services are we doing that are done better by the private sector? Should we go public/private, re-purpose such facilities or sell them to a private company? Create realistic priorities.

In example, why have we spent money, deliberately, to provide services to people outside of Peachtree City?

A lot of questions for which the opinions of council is insufficient. We need to know.

Staying the course is not working. Some would try to say the course is different, which is only partially true.

But it is absolutely the same course as regards to the majority wanting to use their personal preferences on where we stand and what we need.

It is absolutely necessary to make the right decision by first getting all the facts, not assumptions or wants.

Don Haddix, mayor

Peachtree City, Ga.



Mike King's picture

The disparity between our Mayor's assessment of the city's upcoming budget proposal and that of Councilman Imker is at best disturbing. There is little doubt that I personally distrust the mayor, but setting that aside even the mere fact that saying no to the city manager's proposed .3 mil tax hike only means that the city has to cut their overall budget by approximately 2%. In this economy that appears reasonable considering we have just been subjected to a millage increase.

Having made Peachtree City my home for the past twenty-five years, I can't remember ever having the city reduce my tax rate, but perhaps someone can tell me when it happened. There is no doubt that Don Haddix is all for an all too restrictive and cumbersome city government as evidenced by his blogging on which ordinance restricts security signs just a couple days ago. On the other hand, I see Mr Imker reigning in a seemingly out of control city staff despite the spin and innuendo by the mayor.

While I do not agree with Councilman Imker from time to time, I must say that his budgetary expertise far exceeds that of the mayor. In this arena he has proven himself far more capable.

So, I guess it boils down to deciding exactly who on Council that is worthy of being trusted: A censured mayor who went well out of his way to disguise the fact that he had the city pay for his $10K in personal legal fees or an individual who was successful in two careers prior to being elected to serve this city and who has demonstrated over the last four plus years that his priority is to the citizens of this city.

Inquiring minds want to know.

NUK_1's picture

Just shut up and serve out the rest of your sorry term so we can all hopefully one day forget the huge mistake the citizens made in electing you.

I'm sure "pumpkin" is now ecstatic that our figurehead Mayor wrote a Letter to the Editor! What COURAGE! Wow, and he has a tough job too! He has one vote on a City council and has to attend ribbon cuttings and committees that the rest of the county promptly voted him off of! Censured? Disgraced? A public nuisance and an embarrassment? Yes, Yes, and yes.

Where's the 10K and not notifying Council at all about it? need to talk about that. Move along.

first, and then maybe any concern you purport to have regarding the city and our money may have some legitimacy. Until then, I have a hard time trusting the fox's account of the state of affairs at the hen house.

Don Haddix's picture

Purely an informational post.

Due to more information becoming available, the City Manager proposed Budget Model has changed as follows:
The 2013 Millage Rate has increased .3 to .375. The .2 increases for 2014, 2015 and 2016 remain the same.

The Reserve Surplus falls to $1,604 in 2017.

The new Tax Digest numbers for 2013 thru 2017 have fallen to -5.13, 0.00, 0.75, 1.5 and 2.50% respectively.

As a reminder, the Bond Millage rate goes from .399 in 2012 to .711 in 2017.

<cite><strong>Don Haddix
Peachtree City Mayor</strong></cite>

The city reserves will be $6,136,829 for FY2017. We will run a 1604 surplus in 2017, adding to the millions we have in the bank at the end of fy15. You know this as well as I do. This was another intentional misdirection. You (I was not yet serving) were part of the discussions on this drawdown. It is planned. We will never fall below 22% for our reserve funds.

Don Haddix's picture

I said Surplus.

It is only planned due to the majority on Council.

Never fall below 22%? Really? How do you know that?

You know there will not be an emergency? You know that is what the Reserve will actually be?

I suggest you pull the Budgets passed in 2010 and 2011. Compare them, including the 2012 proposed Budget. None match.

All those "Plans" fell flat on their faces.

Remember, last year we were told there would be no more tax increases, a balanced Budget in 2016 and an tax reduction.

<cite><strong>Don Haddix
Peachtree City Mayor</strong></cite>

could you two STOP? Between this and the Steve Brown show, I think our elected officials spend WAY too much time berating each other and anyone else on this medium. You have a pulpit already; let the citizens whine here.

A lack of professionalism reigns supreme - no wonder we're in the mess we're in when we've got you folks having your fights here.

A total lack of class shown here.

I submitted two balanced budgets- we don't have to have a tax increase.

You said "The Reserve Surplus falls to $1,604 in 2017". You are trying to scare people into believing the surplus will be 1604 in 2017. This is dirty politics and unconscionable. This is the first year after the spend down, so it is not falling. You know what you were trying to do.

Please stop running for reelection long enough for us to avoid a tax increase.

Don Haddix's picture

Your kicking the can down the road and all over the place.

This isn't Chicago politics. Your political training from Illinois is showing.

I would remind you Imker made the same pledges of no tax increase followed by a 1.25.

Your on the same path.

Time and the citizens will judge these things.

This has nothing to do with next year. My positions are not new.

Enough said.

<cite><strong>Don Haddix
Peachtree City Mayor</strong></cite>

Last comment- Chicago Politics is what I fought against in Illinois. It consists of going on the attack, without providing solutions. That seems to be your M.O. You are from NW Indiana- part of Chicagoland- and deeply connected to the Daley/Obama southside Ward bosses. Glass houses, my friend.

rolling stone's picture

perhaps you should consider the rope-a-dope instead. I'm just sayin'

Last week, I moved to postpone the millage increase- with good reason.

Right now the staff has proposed a millage increase of .372 mills. This would make up for projected shortages in SPLOST monies received, as well as lower receipts taken in for property taxes. I believe it would be rash to raise taxes, without looking at additional options.

I have been told that the millage rate increase will only amount to a few dollars a month. This is true, but it comes at the worst possible time. People have had to take jobs that pay less money, if they can find work at all. We are all facing a humongous tax increase for Obamacare. Gas prices have gone up substantially the last few years. Our investments have returned little to nothing over the last 5 years. I would argue that we don’t need to pay another cent more. We need tax relief, not another roll up.

I have three plans, all of which are based on the staff's numbers as provided in our (City Council’s) budget books. All of them have some things in common. The city currently spends and inordinate amount of money on training and education. Most of this is done off site, and are actually conferences. For example, The Mayor and Council is budgeted at $12,600.00 in training. Almost all of this is budgeted for offsite Georgia Municipal Association (GMA) conferences. I believe we must be much more selective in our training and conference attendance. This could save the city as much as $60,555.00.

Public Service will need to bear some cuts, but it is important to realize that there will be no cuts in personnel in my proposed budgets. We will have the same number of Policeman and Fireman as we do today. Worn out personal and safety equipment will be replaced as per the staff submitted budget. My budgets truly maintain the status quo. We will continue to have safe homes.

We are budgeting to buy the Fire Department a new boat- after having disbanded the dive team. This needs to be tabled until tax revenues are up. This would save us $7758.00 this year. Dropping a new Ford Explorer for the Fire Department saves another $9629.00 this year.

The Police Department also will have to bear some cuts. By not hiring part time bailiffs and an evidence custodian, the city would save $69,440.00. We can also do without 5000.00 in Police Department promotional items. We can also save over $30,000.00 by not purchasing a second motorcycle, delaying the purchase of a command vehicle and postponing one squad car. This is a big hit. I am asking the police department to make do with current vehicles in some cases; however, my budgets do provide the department 7 new squad cars.

Buildings and grounds requested 6 new part time employees. I propose that we hire 2 a year for three years. That will save us $62,185.00 this year. We can also save on the city budget by cutting down on printing. We need to be better about using electronic copies whenever possible. With some other minor cuts, we would still be $290k short. We could accept this much smaller millage increase (.17) or we could effectively balance the budget. If we do not include the employee cost of living raise, we would come within 80k of a balanced budget. This would be an increase of 0.047 mills. Option 3, my favorite, would get us even closer to a balanced budget. We would show a $5334.00 (.004 mills) deficit if we do not purchase the police record keeping software. Option 3 would still allow for a 1.5% cost of living raise.

I reiterate, while public service would find a reduction in their budgets, they would have the same head count as today, and would be replacing all personal safety equipment as requested. In fact, there would be no reduction in the city’s head count. We can balance the budget WITHOUT staff reductions.

I have started to compare notes with Councilman Imker- we have some synergy in where we want to cut. There are some major difference's, but we are negotiating with each other to provide a unified plan. We will then provide this to council and staff.

I firmly believe that we can balance the budget, if we are ready to make some hard decisions. I also believe that the budgets I propose will have NO functional impact on public safety. All infrastructure projects are maintained a staff recommended spending levels in all 3 of my proposals. Peachtree City deserves a government that is fiscally responsible with your funds.

To Recruit new businesses? New Business equals jobs and increased revenue. Who is doing the recruiting?

check out the city council agenda for this Thursday. Matt Forshee of the FC Development Authority is going to update council. Plan to go to the meeting. If you can't go, you can watch the live video feed from the city website.

Thank you, I will try to attend.

Don Haddix's picture

As I informed him in an email upon seeing his proposals, there are proposals here that repeat errors of the past and do not take advantage of lessons learned from other cities.

Here, I want to take time to thank him for sharing up front. That really helps speed things up in the Budget process.

The problem is this is more of the band-aide approach I have repeatedly warned about. It does nothing to cure the long term problems.

Also true, there would be an effective head count reduction of police on the beat. Someone has to function as bailiff and someone has to handle evidence.

I have urged Councilman Dienhart to sit down with the Chief and City Manager to learn why the replacement cycle on vehicles is what it is. He has not.

As well, not acquiring the Police Records Management system results in a continued heavier man-hour requirement. The claimed saving isn't there. The costs are hidden elsewhere.

There is a lot of valuable information brought back to the city from training, Elected and Staff. Changing from Tourism to the CVB, changing the Census Tract Designation from Tier 1 to Tier 3 for development incentives and more all came back from training.

You cannot get everything from Staff. Up to date information, gaining experience and knowledge from other cities and simple seeing perspectives from others on issues requires attendance.

Training reduces the amount of time spent asking Staff questions as well. That saves money.

If anyone thinks we go to trainig to sit in a room and listening to tax law, finance, or other issues for fun, please think again.

As for the implication conferences are apart from training. That is not true.

At Mayor's Day there are some conferences, along with training. Same with the Annual Conference. The key being training as the central priority, not the conferences.

Add the fact, as well, when I am invited to meetings and conferences, not training, as Mayor, there is no charge.

The District 3(ARC) meetings are valuable. In example, at the last one, the leadership promoted the TSPLOST, trying to get the Mayors there to go back home and promote it. One other and I spoke against it, afterwards receiving a lot of agreement on what I said.

Simple reality is by the non attendance of training by Councilmen Imker and Dienhart reduces the Council cost by 40%. Then non full use by the rest of use reduces it more.

It also brings up the reality that one who does not attend classes, beyond the required by law Newly Elected, an maybe one more, is really in no position the evaluate their value.

That results in those monies being carried over for funding in the next year. The implication all the money is being spent is inaccurate. But it needs to be there to ensure coverage for all training attended.

Simple put, the implied savings are not there. Deferred costs are not long term savings.

This is a return to kicking the can down the road for essentials.

Either we get our priorities straight and adjust our services accordingly, or we are facing continued tax increases.

It is going to be an interesting set of meetings since there are a number of different views and goals on Council.

<cite><strong>Don Haddix
Peachtree City Mayor</strong></cite>

Mike King's picture

Calling a fellow council member's suggestion a band aide approach coming from one who has ignored the growth of department spending can only be done by someone whose head is in the sand or downright delusional. Take for example the police department's purchase of SUVs, pickup trucks, and the like (rumor has it that we have a police cargo van) and one can surmise they have an unlimited equipment purchasing authority.

The mayor himself charges $10K in personal legal fees to the general fund as if he is owed by the taxpayers for his stupidity. He makes the statement that his attendance at meetings/conferences are at "no charge", but I wonder if he would entertain a public accounting of his expense reports for each of these meetings? Little things like daily per diem, travel, and lodging costs that are borne by the taxpayer.

The fire department's proposal for a boat is another example of unabated spending by department heads who have yet to be told NO to anything. Less than two years ago they were directed by Council to get rid of their boat and now they want to buy another.

Finally, he continues to bring up those ARC meetings(those from which he was dismissed) that he continues to credit himself for being right. I guess he didn't catch on when Mr Garlock mentioned that a broken clock could be correct twice a day.

Try a novel approach and reduce each department by fifteen percent, and when a department head says it can't be done, you're well on your way to making it happen because the loss of his salary would be a great start.

I respect your service to our country sir, however, you keep calling for people to get fired or give up salaries or what ever. People who work hard for this city and county to keep us safe or make decisions that you would be very poor at making because you fire off at the mouth before thinking or fact checking. I feel sick to say this to a veteran and a hero, but I don't want to pay for your retirement on my federal taxes anymore. please give up 15% of it.

Robert W. Morgan's picture

See below for comments regarding Matt Forshee's appearance at city council meeting. He's going to present something on economic development. No doubt a big announcement like hundreds of jobs or maybe all the activity he has had showing things in the industrial park or possibly that someone wants to buy Photocircuits and clean it up to make the city proud. All good news.

Live free or die!

I sat down with the chief and talked about the replacement schedule months ago- before I was even sworn in. Please do not comment on what I have and have not done, as you clearly don't know. I also talked with him about the software. I made a promise to all of you- will call you on any intentional misdirection. I am calling you out here for this intentional misdirection.

The truth is, we were not elected to make us feel good about ourselves,or attend conferences on the taxpayers dime. Politicians can brag about how many GMA credits they have, but that doesn't mean that they are effectively leading. We were not hired by the taxpayers to attend conferences- we were hired to make hard decisions. My budgets don not trim personnel, take cops off the street or have any other negative impact to the city. All of our bills get paid, and we don't stick it to the taxpayer.

The training fees need NOT be carried over. If we cancel some training and conference attendance, that's it. It is cancelled. When times get better we can bump it up as we see fit. I can guarantee it would not be rolled up and applied in one year in some kind of catch up maneuver.

You are dead wrong about the "effective reduction". The police are performing the bailiff functions now in our court. We would actually have more hours on the book in my budget, as we have 2 new hires in the last month that will be with us all year.

And our last meeting you were asked for ideas- and you brought up the needs assessment. This should have been brought up last August if you wanted it for FY13. The fact is, the needs assessment is a hail Mary play designed to save your re-election campaign. Councilperson Learnard asked you what you needed to act on this, and you started to back pedal- trying to make it understood that this could not occur until after your election. II only hope you take her advice and provide true leadership. The kind that Mr. Garlock explained to you a few months ago.

Truthfully, the needs assessment process is a continual process. The results are plugged into the budget model. I await your proposal- please be prepared to explain how much this boondoggle will cost in staff time.

Lastly, there are two types of public servants. Those like me, try to enforce that the government should live within our means. Often, we will do the work to provide an actual balanced budget (as I have). Then there are the tax and spend types. It is easier to sit back, place blame, offer phantom solutions, and then ultimately raise taxes.

I know that 4 council members are willing to look and negotiate on the budget. We are offering positive solutions. We wont all agree 100%, but the city will be better off for our extra effort. 1 member of council answered in email with a bunch of excuses, and has yet to provide any alternative to raising taxes.

I look forward to hearing your ideas at the workshop. I hope you bring a list of what should be cut, not another list of excuses.

Don Haddix's picture

Actually, I had done an inquiry at City Hall when this issue first arose and was told no. Nor is this the first time I made the suggestion to you, which you never responded to.

As well, you were surprised to find we had a take home policy. That you said you did not know in front of me.

Additionally you initially supported the software. Again, I heard you.

We are elected to attend various conferences and events. Attending conferences and such is a duty of at least the Mayor. I have done so at the State Capital, in example, upon request. It is city business. Votes are often taken. Policies that affect the city are created.

Obviously you don't know what happens at various conferences or you would not begin to make that kind of statement.

You are right that attending classes, etc. does not make an effective leader. Nor does just getting elected, especially when one had no opponent.

Yes, we are hired to make decisions. Decisions made without knowledge are dangerous.

The rest is all political pontificating, so no response.

<cite><strong>Don Haddix
Peachtree City Mayor</strong></cite>

2 of the three budgets I submitted still contain the records software. I support buying it- when we can afford it.

With whom did you inquire? I will set them straight.

I am leading- by action and example. Can you honestly say the city is better off under your leadership?

Policies are not made at GMA training. You are welcome to attend as many conferences as you like- on your dime.

Don Haddix's picture

Just posting to stop you from bumping the post.

You said you were done. So be done.

<cite><strong>Don Haddix
Peachtree City Mayor</strong></cite>

Try and find some.

Yeah, neither of them, but they're sure gonna try to find out, aren't they?

Get the rulers out, boys.

rolling stone's picture

Let Don and George joust here on the Citizen. It ain't like they make PTC look any worse than the usual banter.

NUK_1's picture

This Friday night......

Two go in.....only one comes out!

Haddix vs. Deinhart! No holds barred. A steel cage over the ring!

Don't miss it....BE THERE!

We surely appreciate you examining this issue and analyzing additional cuts. Thank you for providing solutions and not criticizing others.

You may have to add a line item in the budget. You can title this "Fees from Stupid Mayoral Quotes". At the end of the fiscal year if not spent, the mayor can offer this to the police or fire dept. Oh wait, the mayor will hide the costs and present them 6 months later.

I think the City should look at a $100k+ expense every year that could be taken out and replaced with a far more efficient expense - get rid of the City Manager. It doesn't look like the Council wants to let that position manage the City anyway, and the current person in the position seems to not want to follow proper government procedures anyway (hire your friends for director positions who don't have specific experience in the subject matter of their position, try to bring in your contractor friends without a bid, claim to check with other cities on decisions like the IT bid and then get proven WAY wrong). You could hire someone else at half the salary and probably get better performance than you are getting from this particular career government bureaucrat.

Go talk to staff, members of Council. Find out what's really going on at City Hall with the employees who have stuck it out through all of this crap. I think you'll find your "manager" isn't really managing a thing - nothing's getting done other than a whole lot of imaginary cost cutting and shifting of resources from internal staff to outside groups. Somebody tried to fix something that wasn't broken.

Change the council-manager form of government; you already second guess staff as it is, and the folks you hire to run your City don't seem to be getting the job done. You could save so much money by just doing it yourself!

Suck it up and raise taxes, folks. The citizens speak when they say nothing, too. This ain't Mayberry, stop running it like it is.

but as I told you prior to the election when you thought you could bring peaceful accord between Haddix and Council, you can't argue with an extremely insecure and psychotic egomaniac. You will have better luck with him if you realize, in his own mind, Don is:

a) never wrong
b) God's gift to Peachtree City
c) is so brilliant, other's only oppose him because they can't think at his extremely high intellectual level

Don has to think this way, because reality is just too painful for him to accept. You and I can sit and look in the sky and agree that it is blue. But if it serves Don's purpose, he will say it is red and actually believe it himself. And he goes home shaking his head wondering why we are so against him to claim that the sky is blue when in he knows in his mind it is as red as an apple. That's what makes him so dangerous. I don't think Don tries to be deceitful or even considers himself so. He comes up with the way something must be for self-preservation and then convinces himself that it really is true, no matter how outlandish. He will go to the ends of the earth to prove he is right and you are wrong. It is the "Emperor's New Clothes" syndrome like you have never seen before.
So now you know what we all have known for a long time. Don Haddix doesn't have the mental capacity or the social skills to successfully run a lemonade stand. He is outmatched intellectually by folks like Kim Learnard (Masters Degree), Imker (Graduate degree) and you with your extensive military experience. No one knows what Haddix's educational level is and I would be surprised if it is anything more than a high school education if he even has that. My bet is he doesn't.
On the PTC website it lists his "career" as a steel plant supervisor and a business owner in Peachtree City for 20 years. Does anyone know what business Haddix owns or owned?
This would all be elementary if he was a leader and actually served the constituents well... but instead he diverts $10K in our taxpayer money to cover for his big fat mouth and tells the citizens "we just don't understand it all."
As. I believe the former Mayor of Fayetteville said in an editorial recently, and I paraphrase here: Haddix doesn't think outside the box, he doesn't even know where the box is." That pretty much sums it up.

PTC Observer's picture

you're on to something here. I have just completed an extensive search of Mr. Haddix's background as stated on the PTC website:

"Haddix has lived in Peachtree City since 1987. He has worked in U.S. Naval intelligence, as a supervisor for Bethlehem Steel, and has been a business owner in Georgia for 20 years."

I can find no record of Mr. Haddix having a license to do business in the State of Georgia. What sort of business was he in, do we know? Also, Bethlehem Steel does not have a unit in Georgia, however they do have contracting firms that represent them. What sort of supervisor was Mr. Haddix? How many people reported to him? Finally, U.S. Naval intelligence is pretty broad. Where was he employed by Naval intelligence, a civilian contractor or simply his MOS when he was an enlisted man?

I think Mr. Haddix should give us more details on his background. What does Mr. Haddix think? My guess is he will dodge and weave and not give us anything useful. He clearly retired from somewhere, it would be great to talk to some of his former co-workers and employees, don't you think? After all we would do a reference check on any new employee. I don't think he has been fully vetted.

NUK_1's picture

This was discussed about a year ago here and you might can search The Citizen archives and find it. I'm out of the country right now and have kind of spotty internet tonight due to a massive storm, or I'd look it up for you. It's in here somewhere and Haddix commented on it also. Mike King can also point u to it probably.

Haddix has been vetted and found lacking. For me, it has nothing to do with whatever he did before PTC and instead what he has done since arriving. My vetting is what he's done as a councilmember and now Mayor. Whatever happened with his business or anything else isn't an issue for me when I can point straight to his actions and asinine attitude since being elected in PTC both times.

Are you able to project your absences in any reasonable fashion? Just asking, so maybe a bloggers meeting can be scheduled when you can attend.

NUK_1's picture

I sort of missed that there was even a get-together scheduled this past weekend, but I do know where I am going to be and when and hopefully can make the next one.

It was indeed "Clayton Tool Grinding," owned by Donnie O. himself. The Corporation was "involuntarily dissolved and certificate of authority revoked" by the state for failure to file its annual registration. That was in May of 2008.
I am surprised the business didn't succeed. I was having a conversation with some friends the other night about how difficult it is to find a good tool grinder these days.

PTC Observer's picture

Thanks everyone for the information, seems a bit sketchy to me, but Nuk you sum it up very well.

Perhaps when Mr. Haddix finally is thrown out of office on his ear, we will end up with a better representative. I can't believe we could do worse, God forbid.

Safe travels Nuk.

Mudcat you are exactly correct about former employees of the NSA. Hopefully for all of our sakes the NSA is not hiring tool sharpeners to oversee our intelligence. ;-)

Though not a PTC resident, I will share some info with you that I remember exchanging with the Mayor before he was elected. I believe he was a member of the naval Security Group (no idea whether commissioned or enlisted) and he spent time at Ft Meade with the National Security Agency (NSG does that). I had some exchange with him because I was in the Army equivalent of NSG and also spent considerable time at Ft Meade, though always TDY or TAD, whatever you want to call it. I knew a number of Navy Chiefs in the NSG and have, more than once, made the comment that he sure didn't pay much attention to what they told him (or tried to tell him). I also remember seeing somewhere that he had a tool-sharpening business in Forest Park or College Park. Unfortunately, I have no way to verify any of that info. You will also note that I have never made any comment, pro or con, on the Mayor's tenure--and as a non-resident, never would.

mudcat's picture

I have also been told that of the thousands who have worked for NSA, hardly anyone breaks national security requirements and actually talks about it.

There is nothing classified about the "fact of" working for NSA. Unless you were "on the nside" you would have no way of knowing what is classified and what isn't.

There is nothing classified about the "fact of" working for NSA. Unless you were "on the nside" you would have no way of knowing what is classified and what isn't. As a Navy member, he would not have "worked for" NSA--each service has elements that interact directly with NSA, either at Ft Meade or from their own locations via electronic means.

I don't think he retired from anywhere. If he has been "owning businesses in Georgia for the last twenty years" that makes him a pretty young retiree and nothing indicates he was anywhere long enough to get retirement. I doubt he was in the military or if he was, he didn't stay long.
All speculation at this point of course... but you are right, Don could clear this up easily. But if the truth is worse than even our worst speculation, he will dodge, bob, and weave and won't give anyone a straight answer.


Congratulations...Its great that your fellow council members are gicing you the opportunity to study the Peachtree City budget and make proposals to reduce costs.

Always better to work as a team, then write a Letter to Editor pointing fingers.

From the article it says you are going to form a committee, and that you are going to spearhead a "needs assessment" and comeback to council on how to balance the budget without "SMOKE AND MIRRORS", or raising taxes and debt.

-When will you be announcing this committee?
-What the "needs assessment criteria be? are using some standard identified by other comparable cities?
-When will you be issuing the report with recommendations?
-Will you be providing updates at each council meeting, it should be at the top of the agenda at each meeting?

Let me know if I can help you in any away.

This is a great opportunity for you to lay out a clear budget plan for Peachtree City.

Thank you for taking on this responsiblity.

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