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PTC coup? Council to vote on booting Haddix

Several of Peachtree City Mayor Don Haddix’s fellow city council members may be pushing to have him removed as one of Fayette County’s two representatives on the Regional Transportation Roundtable.

Doing so will require a majority vote of the five mayors of municipalities in Fayette County, which includes Peachtree City, Fayetteville, Tyrone, Brooks and Woolsey.

The matter will be discussed at Thursday night’s City Council meeting, as a notice was published Tuesday afternoon adding the item to the agenda.

The RTR is a group of 21 elected officials from metro Atlanta that will determine the various transportation projects to be on a list for voters to consider for implementation along with a 10-year 1 percent sales tax that would raise roughly $700 million a year.

Haddix was elected by his fellow mayors in Fayette County to be the mayoral representative on the roundtable. He made waves recently in a failed effort to have Fayette County ditch metro Atlanta for a neighboring regional commission in hopes of perhaps avoiding the tax altogether.

Haddix contended that the tax will in essence siphon money from Fayette County to be spent on transportation problems in other areas of metro Atlanta, including transit operations. However, the roundtable has not yet begun to select projects for the proposed tax as the group is still into developing the criteria for which the projects will be judged.

The project proposal timeframe is expected to wrap up by the end of the first quarter of next year, and the roundtable will make its final decisions by the end of the year, according to a published timeline released last week.

Fayette County’s other representative on the roundtable is county commission Chairman Jack Smith, though that will change as he leaves his elected seat at the end of this year and a new chairman is elected by the county commission.



Robert W. Morgan's picture

If it takes a majority vote of the 5 mayors, what does city council have to do with it? Are they going to censure Haddix because of his attitude towards ARC? They could and should, but does that have anything to do with his seat on the RTR? Maybe they (meaning another famous 3-2 vote) are going to ask him to resign as mayor or at least as the RTR rep, opening the door for someone else. Or did John just get a couple of facts turned around?

If someone other than an actual mayor can serve, Kim would be the logical choice. If it has to be a mayor - Ken Steele. Replacing Jack Smith on RTR should be interesting as well. If Brown fufills his dream of being elected Chairperson he will be a perfect person to represent us at a state level. He's especially tight with DOT and of course is always the smartest person in the room, so we will be guaranteed to get our fair share of transportation funding solely on the basis of his charming personality and superior intellect. If that doesn't work out, we could send Horgan after he gets his driver's license back.

Live free or die!

This proposition is exactly like the one about the West By Pass in Fayette.

It is mandated by the State (Perdue) and must be done!

I know it gets votes to be against anything touching Atlanta but you and the others ought to be ashamed when you know very well what is going to happen!

I don't think many hard-headed conservatives in Fayette understand why a regional commission can agree to a state law to force a decision that obligates the rest of the members to obey a majority vote of the region!

Let me explain it another way and why such things are done in the first place:

Most of the political savvy already know but pretend not. They have to if they want re-elected.

Now, think for a minute how the Federal Interstate Highways were built so that they all met at the state lines in an exact location. It was because all states agreed to cooperate. Otherwise it would have been an impossible task and they never would have been built. Of course the feds picked up 90% of the construction bill. (in order to claim the Interstates as federal highways in case of war--same with airport grants).

It is the same principle as our State Department negotiating for all states instead of 50 states trying to deal with other countries--an impossibility.

Again, I must state that many if not most know all this, but couldn't get elected if they voted for it or talked in favor of it!

Ever hear of a hypocrite? That is why we need term limits (one).

Even Perdue knew that!

mudcat's picture

Read your e-mail from Pam regarding the agenda.

Here's what it says - in big red letters
"Discuss and Consider RTR Mayoral Representative
Various Council Members would like to request the Mayors of Fayette County to reconvene and select a new RTR Mayoral Representative"

It is a long way from there to the Boot Haddix headline. Looks like John or his headline writer/editor got caught up in the exctement of managing the news.

yellowjax1212's picture

Steve Brown; best candidate for RTR rep.
That's funny right there.

NUK_1's picture

Does Haddix as one of the 5 Mayors get to vote on this? A smart person would recuse himself, but.........

Not much doubt that Tyrone votes for him staying and Fayetteville votes for removal, leaving Brooks and Woolsey as the deciders.

PTC residents, staff, authorities and commissions should be very concerned about the motives of these three. Every move they make as a block, is a combined effort to circumvent the outcome of the election that brought Haddix in as mayor. Whether you voted for him or not, or agree with him or not, these 3 have a very distinct agenda that will become clear as time goes on. It will not be in the best interest of this city by any means. Do not lose sight of the fact that Haddix was voted in by the residents here, not appointed by these three. This is a very dangerous game they are playing. And the residents here will be the ones to suffer.

ginga1414's picture

In an October 12, 2010, article published in this newspaper, Fayetteville Mayor Ken Steele, referring to the Regional Transportation Roundtable said, "Tentative appointments have been made for these positions, but any can be replaced if they prove to be unwilling, unable or incapable of fulfilling their responsibilities." That statement was a threat aimed at PTC mayor, Don Haddix. Basically Steele was saying that if Haddix didn't conduct business as usual with respect to the RTR he could be ousted.

The political machine in Fayette County is running amok. Jack Smith and Ken Steele think they own Fayette County. I've got news for them. No one died and left them as the supreme rulers of Fayette County Government and her citizens. It is very clear that Jack Smith intends to run our county even though we the people voted him out of office. Ken Steele was voted out of his position on the Regional Transportation Roundtable by the people's representatives. However, they continue to influentially worm their way into every aspect of County Government and consequentially every citizen's life.

I've read this article three times.

Mayor Haddix was elected by his fellow mayors to serve but his own city council has the authority to vote him out?

This makes no sense.


It appears that Fayette County mayors want to boot Haddix as their rep.
Why not, he made a FOOL out of himself at the ARC the same way he is making a FOOL of himself as the Mayor of PTC.

This guy's ego is too big to be a mayor or a representative of anything.
You with do it Don's way or no way.

We have a real mess on our hands....luckily Leonard, Imker and Fleisch see it which is why Don and Doug are back in the minority on city council.

Where's the leadership!

I don't get it!

Haddix is Against the regional transportation tax!

You apparently are for it.

Do you want him to show "leadership" by being FOR the ARC tax?
If not, then what is your beef?

Or do you simply desise him? You can, you know?

Work from don't show up at a meeting and decide its time for everyone to pull out of the ARC because of the tax...fight against the tax, or find meaningful projects to make sure the Fayette gets it fair share in funding and its put to projects that work for Fayette, not necessarily buses and rail.

Also, the mayor needs to stop using The Citizen as his voice...If you want to leave the ARC then work with the group that brought you there, try to get Fayette County to leave and introduce yourself to 3 River Chairman..The mayor did none of that...he complained in The Citizen...Read Trey's article in the Fayette Daily News...when a PTC councilmember contacted 3 Rivers, the chairman said he never received a phone call from the mayor and that he needs to follow proper protocal..which he did not.

No grandstanding needed! That's all this is from Mr. Mayor...words and no actions to bring about the change.

I hope that explains it alittle better - NO I am not in favor of the tax. So the mayor should do something about it other than complain in the paper without any action.

Well, I think then that Mayor Haddix should stop saying I'm against the ARC, and say I am for the ARC, but then go beg the 3 rivers group to take us in even if he is against the 3 rivers group!

What I think is this: the Mayor wants in both groups but doesn't want to pay the 1% tax for ten years for both groups---that would be 2% sales tax, I think.

Also, a guarantee is required from either group as to just how much of the sales tax money collected we will get over the 10 years, and could we get all ten years in advance next year so as to be able to hire more cops, firemen, and teachers, and staff?

Can we re-roof the bubbled swimming pool, build a new cop station, 2 more fire stations, and hire 40 more cops and firemen, and an assistant, or vice, Mayor to manage all that?

Also a new ladder truck and a new SUV for the assistant, and 2 more admin aids would be needed.
We would like to pay for all of their health plan also--everybody's!

I really think we can support up to 12% sales tax in Fayette County!

The federal government isn't going to improve for at least 5 years.

Too much Ego all over the place. Mayors, Council, Commisioners Elect.

It is bizarre. Ego and intrigue all out of proportion with the actual situation. Where is the reality check?

All ego and too little ability to communicate effectively.

Come on already.

It is like the high school quaterback who reads his name in the paper saying he's great - and he beleives it. A little humility please.


Aren't Egos those egg substitutes at Kroger freezers? Didn't see any all over the place though. If you get egos acrossed the board (across the board, maybe, or acrost) it will fit the dishwasher?

The intrigue of eggos being out of proportion is three egos and 1 proportion of mixer.
If communicating effectively with no ego is what is need, then come on already!

I don't know what a quaterback is, but apparently it can read the paper.
He does have a LITTLE humility, I think---but not much little!

A politician without egos intrigue, being bizzare, and thinking he is great has had no reality check by DWSs and heavy Palin. Is she pregnant again?

Signed: Condition 804

It is really Doug then Don. This dog don't hunt and we know who the real Mayor is and who is pulling the strings. Really , don't you know that?

who's pulling the strings?

If it's not Mayor Haddix then we should be looking for another savior.

P.S. It's NOT Mayor Haddix.

So who should we be looking too?

P.P.S. my spell checker recommends 'Maalox' instead of 'Haddix'. Go figure.

ginga1414's picture

Where did you get this information? Which Fayette Mayors want to oust Mayor Haddix?

Personally speaking, I am grateful that Mayor Haddix has the courage to fight the status quo. When it comes to the ARC and Fayette County's position therein, it is their way or the highway. it would probably be more correct to say, it is their way, the highway, MARTA and our money.

Being the smallest county within the ARC, we don't have a snow ball's chance.

Fayette County has been a member of ARC for over a decade...why now is this an issue? the tax? fear of Marta?, fear of something else? what is it?

Why didn't Fayette join 3 Rivers years ago.

Tell me, outside of complaining in The Citizen, what steps has the mayor taken to stop anything....

Stop being fooled by this guy...complaining in The Citizen and actually doing something are 2 different things...Read Trey's article in the Fayette Daily News.

I know you love this guy..but actions speak louder than words...its all words on ARC..not actions.

Ginga-please read below - direct from Trey Alverson's reporting in the Fayette Daily News...If Haddix wanted us out of the ARC why did he not do anything about it? See what Mr Boatwright, the executive director says below...speaking out and doing something are 2 different things.

"While Haddix said Fayette would have “no voice” on ARC projects, Councilwomen Vanessa Fleisch and Kim Learnard argued the opposite.

“Because we have one of the smallest populations in the ARC and we still have two representatives at the roundtable like everyone else, we actually have a more weighted vote,” Fleisch noted.

“Tonight, I expected to see a sales pitch to join Three Rivers. What can Three Rivers do for us? After all, we’ve been in the ARC since 1991. What can Three Rivers do for us better than ARC?”

Fleisch said she reached out to Lanier Boatwright, the Executive Director of the Three Rivers Commission, via email. She asked Boatwright a series of questions, which she read aloud Thursday.

Fleisch asked Boatwright for information about Three Rivers’ demographics, commission staffing, senior citizen funding, grants, committees, training and other topics.

“We have not been contacted by Fayette County about any interest of theirs,” said Fleisch, reading Boatwright’s words. “The laws of the state of Georgia define the boundaries of the 12 regional commissions. I think that any discussion of this issue would first come after contact with Three Rivers Council as a courtesy to us, the Atlanta Regional Commission and the state of Georgia.”

Councilwoman Kim Learnard expressed disappointment with Haddix's lengthy presentation and his efforts to rally support for the move to Three Rivers.

"I wish we were spending this time working on developing a project list that you [Haddix] could take to the roundtable and use to work with our neighbors to get good projects for Fayette. Instead, we're dealing with this agenda item," she said.

Learnard called Haddix, "the perfect person to give us a strong voice at the ARC roundtable," noting that "choosing to leave ARC silences our voice in the region."

"This is a vastly important and complex issue, one that has ramifications far beyond transportation," Learnard stated.

"One thing to remember is that according the U.S. Census figures from 2008, 73-percent of all employed Fayette County residents leave the county for work. Of those, 77-percent work in a fellow ARC county. We're going north to work. We're not commuting to Coweta or Butts."

Learnard pointed to hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants the county receives each year from ARC for Fayette Senior Services and a local workforce board. “The bottom line is, we have to ask ourselves, what is in the best longterm interest of Fayette County?”

Councilwoman Vanessa Fleisch said she spent the past week researching regional transportation issues. In addition to the exchange with Boatwright, she also read from an email from Todd Long, the project list coordinator at GDOT.

According to Long, the roundtable will ultimately select the projects for the regional sales tax funds, contradicting what Haddix stated earlier. Haddix called some of Long's written responses "untrue."

The back and forth grew tense as Haddix raised his voice to counter Fleisch and Learnard’s points. The dialogue nearly broke down completely when an audience member began shouting out of turn,

“When was the last time you went to a Hawks game in Coweta? When was the last time you went to the Fox Theater in Coweta?!”

After order was restored, Fleisch motioned against sending an official request to the Fayette County Board of Commissioners to withdraw from ARC. Councilman Eric Imker -- who did not comment during the presentation nor the discussion -- joined Fleisch and Learnard to kill Haddix’s proposal. Sturbaum voted with Haddix in opposition.

The Atlanta Regional Commission is currently made up of Fayette, Rockdale, Cherokee, Douglas, Clayton, Dekalb, Fulton, Cobb, Gwinnett and Henry Counties. Three Rivers is comprised of Coweta, Carroll, Heard, Troup, Meriwether, Spalding, Pike, Lamar, Upson and Butts counties.


mudcat's picture

Trey got a lot more than you did. Why? Did Cal edit for his purposes? Too little time to check facts? Couldn't interview the people involved - like Boatwright? You lazy? Have an agenda?

Boy, when there is hatred for someone like some have for Brown and Haddix, they will even pound on them for "the way" they try to do what these haters want done!

Another stupid argument anyway just like the WBP and everything the TEAS and Libertarians and fair tax idiots stir up.

People around here used to get so worked up with such triviality that they usually actually beat and hung someone that night--claiming they looked at a white woman or something.

The majority rules until they are no longer the majority!

Even a majority sometimes can find one thing a minority wants that is good enough for which to vote.

Not here.

It's embarrassing what they are doing. Looks like they are saying it's their ball and they are taking it and going home. Totally childish!

I am continually amazed at the level of intrigue that flows through PTC politics. Where is the reasoned dialogue? the open and honest exchange of ideas? the give and the take? The ebb and the flow?

I think that the national political discourse, driven by sophisticated consultancy and hidden special interests poisons the way folks think. But it is all atrificial, orchistrated and contrived nonsense.

Shouldn't the mayor and the council all fulfill their roles and work for the people and represent the interests of the people that they serve? With humility and grace? After all we are some small coummunity located in the shadow of Altanta.

Too often in Fayette County and PTC, these things go immediately to the extreme. Like the fate of the free world hung in the balance. Please.

We all enjoy the power that comes with our role in the community. How about the responsiblity? I think that real leadership understands the role and the responsiblity and acts in accordance and in harmony with the great wjoel for the greater good. What is so hard about that?

Please - don;t try to make it perfect, just make it a little better tomorrow than it was yesterday and give us options for future growth and prosperity and please do it in a gracious way that speaks of maturity and view for the long term.

Please take the time to consider how to advocate for the collective good for all of FC and PTC.


..."the ebb and the flow," "cant we all just get along," didn't Rodney King try that line?

He still is, but they don't whop up on him any more!

"Be gracious" and move forward just a little at a time if everybody agrees what foward is.

Corn ball!

This whole thing is crazy. Our city council is trying to influence and/or persuade other city mayors to vote our own city mayor out of a position which he was elected to by those same city mayors. and we thought our last council was dysfunctional.

Can we the citizens vote to re-vote on the last city election?

Let me tell you all something....when money is short as it is now due to a great recession, ain't nobody got no friends!
Jobs is jobs!

It all started with the grass cuttin lay-offs! Then the refusal to layoff any more when things got worse due to the ruckus over the first one!

It will get worse next year then there won't be a dry eye in the place!

Small towns probably work better when the elected dudes eat rubber chicken suppers and talk real positive and let the high-priced hired help get all of the static!

Using Mayor positions to use to run for the next opening in politics only works in New York City!

If I were Mayor, you couldn't even find me most days.

ginga1414's picture

Mayor Haddix had the courage to present HB 277, the Atlanta Regional Commission's transportation plans, and the 2012 Regional SPLOST in a clear light and now the machine is trying to replace him with Ken Steele who just so happens to be Jack Smith's choice.

We need a representative who has the courage to provide the citizens of Fayette County accurate and current information regarding Region 10.

At the present time, we "the citizens of Fayette County" have funded MARTA, Clayton, Cobb, and Gwinnett Transit through our Federal Tax dollars.

As for the 77% of Fayette Citizens who commute to work everyday, they too have already paid taxes in the form of gas, food, parking, etc., along with their employers who pay property tax, business license fees, and etc.

This is just one more example of the Smith/Steele Political Machine at work. You know how it is with Jack and his "quiet" government. If he can't beat them fairly and squarely, he will worm his way in by influentially manipulating the municipalities' City Councils.

<em>“We need a representative who has the courage to provide the citizens of Fayette County accurate and current information regarding Region 10.”</em>

That’s not Mayor Haddix.

Mayor Haddix has revealed himself to be nothing more than a little turd that bitched. The ARC will treat him as such.

<em>“At the present time, we "the citizens of Fayette County" have funded MARTA, Clayton, Cobb, and Gwinnett Transit through our Federal Tax dollars.”</em>

Ginga1414, so have the citizens of Boston, Yonkers, San Francisco along with those folks in Albuquerque. I only hear you bitching.

<em>“As for the 77% of Fayette Citizens who commute to work every day, they too have already paid taxes in the form of gas, food, parking, etc., along with their employers who pay property tax, business license fees, and etc.”</em>

We, the commuters, too have already paid taxes in the form of property tax for Fayette County.

If there was a presidential election that had a 77% majority you would still find a way to bitch and call it unfair.

Face it, you ‘local-yokels’ are done, history, toast, not worth the time it takes to tell you to shut the hell up. If you want Fayette County to go back to the time when raising sheep was profitable it’s time for you to just leave.

P.S. Councilman/clone Doug should un-hitch his wagon from one-term-wonder Haddix if he desires any creditability.

Council persons Learnard, Imker and Fleisch please continue to hand Mayor Haddix his dreaded 3-2 votes as you are representing the MAJORITY of PTC citizens.

ginga1414's picture

You are right. When someone has the courage to tell it like it is, the folks who can't deal with it start raving. Those folks resort to all kinds of low-down and dirty tactics. That is exactly what is happening with the push to oust Don Haddix from the RTR. The machine and their cohorts were threatened because Haddix had the audacity to shine a light on what they wanted left in the dark.

The machine also went into "Tilt" mode when folks had the audacity to shine a light on the lies and deceit surrounding the ROAD. I can't bring myself to call it by the latest name they have "officially" given it. Bad, do you know that there are veterans who will lose their hard earned property because the machine wants to build a road through that property? Those veterans consider it a violation to have to surrender their property and then have the ROAD glorified with a reference to their service to our country!

I don't like the truth either, but I can deal with it in far more productive ways than spouting off four letter words. The "local-yokels" were here long before most other folks and we aren't going anywhere. We aren't going to "shut ___ ____ up," and we aren't "heading for the fence." So, I guess you will just have to put-up with all us crazy _______ out here, Bad. And, for goodness sake, find a better way to express yourself.

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