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Budget crunch looms for new PTC mayor

Last week’s runoff election for the mayor’s post in Peachtree City ended with current Councilwoman Vanessa Fleisch wrapping up the win with 72 percent of the vote over challenger and former Mayor Harold Logsdon.

Fleisch earlier on election day had arranged to meet with city staff the next day on the offhand chance she might win, and thus her unofficial work as mayor had begun.

Fleisch will be the city’s first female mayor. The city has not yet certified the election results and Fleisch won’t be installed as mayor until Jan. 1.

The election results have sent two mayors into political retirement: Logsdon, who was mayor from 2005 to 2009, and the man he sued for libel two years ago, current Mayor Don Haddix, who came in last in a field of five mayoral contenders in November.

A grinning and hugging Fleisch was giddy at the outcome of the election at her election party at the Grazing Here restaurant.

Fleisch said she was excited for the city and glad to be “moving forward.” She also said she was looking forward to working with her other council members including new councilmen Terry Ernst and Mike King, re-elected Councilwoman Kim Learnard and holdover Councilman Eric Imker.

One of the biggest challenges facing the council in the upcoming year will be finding about $1.5 million a year in funding to cover the city’s road and cart path maintenance needs. A special sales tax that would have done so failed at the polls countywide, and thus council must come up with a “Plan B” for the work.

Council can look into options including a property tax increase, a general obligation bond that would need voter approval, cuts to the city budget, waiting for revenue increases or a combination of some or all of those options.

Meanwhile the city is poised to benefit this calendar year from a significant amount of sales tax revenue from its share of the county sales tax on activity at the about-to-open Pinewood Atlanta Studios which is located in the city of Fayetteville. While that revenue won’t cover the full $1.5 million road and cart path tab, it could turn out to a sizable enough chunk to make a difference.

The city is also eyeing another facilities bond to rehabilitate older buildings and infrastructure, having spent nearly all of the $3 million facilities authority bond authorized last year by council.

Another potential issue for the near or medium-range future of the city is whether property owners will be able to proceed with development of the annexed area in Wilksmoor Village. If so, that would allow for MacDuff Parkway to be extended further northward with access to Ga. Highway 74.

The catch is that extension is required to be constructed before a certificate of occupancy is issued for any lot in the development, and the new road will require a bridge to be built over the CSX railroad track.

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Comments

PTC Observer's picture

User fees for paths should be instituted for the city. $12.50 per month per registered golf cart should do the trick to raise the $1.5 million needed. Or alternatively, we can charge a annual fee for each house, apartment and business within the city limits as part of the property tax collection system. We live in a city with unique features and amenities, we need to pay for them.

Your absolutely right PTCO. PTC is special and many people moved here specifically for the these special features. They played a factor with my family. I don't have a problem paying for this either. As a cart rider, biker, and sometimes runner, we use the path system taking kids to school, library, shopping, ect.

I would recommend a registered cart fee of $125-150 per year and perhaps $75 per household without a registered cart for those who still have access whether they use the paths or not.

mudcat's picture

Joggers and dogwalkers should also participate financially. An annual fee of $50 gets you a colored wristband that identifies you as a resident and taxpayer. Those without wristbands can be stopped and questioned by police. Might turn up some weapons, drugs and thugs. As always, non-resident bands would be available for $250.

We readily accept wristbands at concerts and beach resorts and theme parks -why not here?

Eventually we can put GPS chips in the wristbands and know where everyone is.

Senior citizens should not have to pay. They need a tax/fee write off similar to their school exemption.

mudcat's picture

Unfortunately, we can't afford to be noble anymore. There are too many senior citizens in PTC - and probably the rest of the county, that can't sell their homes and downsize as they should. As a result they are not replaced by young working tax-paying families with children who attend our schools and the whole formula gets out of balance. We are "aging in place" as they say and the eventual outcome is that we will be a retirement community and a highly taxed one.

So, wristbands and user fees for seniors. Maybe a discount if they have a medical alert system with GPS already installed, but that's it No more freebies or discounts for seniors. And no retirement at 65 either - work and contribute to Obamaworld until you are at least 70. The layabouts are depending upon it.

rolling stone's picture

How about a 10 cent tax on every bottle of wine sold in PTC? Wrist bands? What about supporting a local business with an official PTC tattoo?

Let the walkers wear'em...

I have two. :)

Robert W. Morgan's picture

A wine tax would be fine as well. Liquor and cigarettes also. Tattoos, nah. You need to think ahead 20 years down the road before you get one - or maybe just far enough ahead to your next job interview. I have hired hundreds of people over the years and never anyone with a visible tattoo or piercing (except female ears) or anyone who was an obvious smoker or drinker or obesely overweight. My theory was that people who didn't care about their own body were less likely to care about my business and my other employees. Made perfect sense to me. Never got sued or challenged about it either.

Live free or die!

Houses in Florida, new rides, golf memberships, new carts...I say all households pay.

Just raise the milage and let's get the City looking like it should.

certainly isn't on my street and in my household. I know there are those that say if you can't afford it you shouldn't live in Peachtree City. Well, there are those who could afford it when they moved here but with all the increases on local, state and federal taxes it gets harder and harder. Just check your utility bills and see how many taxes are added to the original cost. Take a good look at just your telephone bill; the taxes are almost as much as the charge for service--then we have the famous Stormwater fiasco---and it goes on and on. Add all this up to those of us who lost a good portion of our savings to investments that went south and it is not a pretty picture and most seniors do not have the latest I-phone or whatever is the latest tech of the day--we have the basics, drive older cars and save where we can. But there finally comes a point where there is no where to save.

Robert W. Morgan's picture

Simple solution here is to rent out the PTC house for about $500 per month over the mortgage amount - or sell it if you can and move to the beach house year-round. You won't need the fancy golf cart, so include that with the rental or sell it. The condo in the mountains should be sold as well. Don't need but one old car or truck at the beach, so sell the Lexus.

All those pesky utility bills will be off your back.

Get a job at Publix or Walmart part-time of course and get $1200 a month plus social security, your other retirement pension and that $500 from renting your house - living large at the beach.

Live free or die!

jerk. For your information, I have never owned a Lexus, I drive a 20 year old car--have kept it in good condition so it runs great. I have no beach house, house in the mountains or a golf cart, fancy or otherwise. Your attempt at cuteness comes off as nothing but snarkiness. I have been a resident and homeowner in Peachtree City for over 30 years, paid my taxes and took active part in my community. The financial situation I am in was not due to foolish spending but things beyond my control. I have never asked or accepted any kind of a hand-out from anyone and never intend to. I am not one step away from the 'poor house' but do have to be very careful. When I wrote what I did i was giving another side of the situation. I am sure I am not the only long time resident in my situation. I did not move here as a retiree, but I never had a child attend school in the county, but for years did pay taxes to educate the children of other residents and never objected to it because this was the right thing to do. I do hope you never find yourself in this situation or, if you do, have to read the garbage spouted from some ignoramus such as yourself.

Robert W. Morgan's picture

Elect leaders who understand that growing jobs and encouraging business development and expansion reduces the tax burden on us regular and sometimes retired residents. Also more jobs mean more house sales and more young people paying more in taxes. This makes a lot of sense when your city just happens to have an industrial park with available land and even some empty buildings.

And another. The alternative solution is to elect people who will pander mightily to senior citizens giving them/us a discount on fees and taxes just to get their vote. Then everyone acts surprised when we don't have enough revenue to run the city or county. If we get to the point that 40 or 50% of the homeowners are retirees that are exempt from school taxes, we will have another school crisis.

I like #1 better than #2, but at least you have 2 more choices. BTW, I know several people living here as seniors who fit my sell the Lexus example, some realize how silly their cash strapped, inflated lifestyle is, some don't. No need to get snippy if it doesn't apply to you - just be thankful you are relatively normal. Posting after midnight seldom results in memorable missives.

Live free or die!

Amen!

Mytime, don't worry about a thing. The tea baggers have always got your back. They love conservative old people who vote against their pocketbooks. Good luck!!

The trickle down theory did not/is not working!

www.youtube.com/watch?v=f0ehzfQ4hAQ

Let's hope this seeming return to bi-partisanship in Congress awaken our elected leaders to the reality of the need for jobs and HOPE in our country!

As corny as it sounds to some, our representatives in Congress must work together !

As go 'burbs' like PTC and Fayetteville, so goes the country.

PTC Observer's picture

One of the primary principles of socialist dogma, thanks DM for the link you're right on target! If you're a socialist.

Did you bother to look at the entire video? Hardly a promotion for socialism. China and Cuba are examples of communist theory of socialism. We are hardly promoting 'socialism'. Do you even understand the economy under 'socialism'? The video hardly promotes 'wealth envy'. - but thanks for your knee jerk reaction.

PTC Observer's picture

watched enough to know the intent and message. The fact is if somehow magically you could redistribute wealth equally, within an hour someone would have more than someone else. People move into and out of different states of wealth every minute.

The issue is not wealth, the issue opportunity to use one's ability and skills to accumulate wealth freely. This is what we should strive for DM and nothing else.

Take the time to view the video. Not that it will change your opinion , but may make your answer comprehensible.

G35 Dude's picture

Interesting video DM. But it offers no solutions. So I'll give you my thoughts. Part of the reason that this distribution inequity exists is that our politicians are owned by large corporations. They have been allowed to ship our jobs overseas where taxes and wages are lower. The slightly smaller corporations that are trying to do business here are being taxed at the second highest tax rate in the world. Forget the Mom and Pop shops they are being destroyed. Obamacare will make this situation worse. The answer is not to just tax the wealthy even more. I think the answer is to provide incentives to bring jobs back. Reduce the corporate tax rates, reduce export taxes and increase import taxes. The government has proven time and again that they are the least efficient way to address any problem. They need to get out of the way to the extent possible. Yes these are things that Congress and the president would have to do and therefore I have no hope of it happening. The people that fund elections are that 1% that this video talks about. They have no problem with the way things are. In fact they are all for more citizens being dependent on the government.

You can't use logic with an illogical person.

[quote] I think the answer is to provide incentives to bring jobs back.[/quote]

Agreed!!

[quote]The people that fund elections are that 1% that this video talks about.[/quote]

IMO, this is the problem that more citizens becoming involved can solve. We take the vote for granted in our local, state, and federal elections. It is amazing how 'grassroots' funds are combating the funds of the extremes in both parties. I was disappointed at the published number of voters in PTC. Unfortunately this is not just a problem in PTC. The 1% excludes the rest of us - and this is not the way a successful organization should be run. The 1% represent themselves - and not the American people, IMO.

G35 Dude's picture

[quote]IMO, this is the problem that more citizens becoming involved can solve. We take the vote for granted in our local, state, and federal elections. It is amazing how 'grassroots' funds are combating the funds of the extremes in both parties. I was disappointed at the published number of voters in PTC. Unfortunately this is not just a problem in PTC. The 1% excludes the rest of us - and this is not the way a successful organization should be run. The 1% represent themselves - and not the American people, IMO.[/quote]

There is no way that the 99% can ever stand up to the 1% by playing a game that they control.

You can't use logic with an illogical person.

The Koch brothers and others were defeated. - right? The most creative grassroot fundraising in history won. Contrary to the belief of some, the vote could not be bought. Obviously some members of Congress were. That is beginning to change. We'll see.

G35 Dude's picture

[quote] The Koch brothers and others were defeated. - right?[/quote]

You think Obama isn't on the Koch brothers etc payroll? Then you are a prime example of what I'm saying. That is how the game is played. Fool the people. Make good speeches and then go do what Corporate America tells you too. The sad part is that Romney would not have been able to resist CA any more than Obama has.

You can't use logic with an illogical person.

Any 'factual' proof that the Koch brothers are financing Obama? I'm sure the Tea Party would be interested in that bit of information. Thanks for sharing.

G35 Dude's picture

No more proof than you have of "some" congress men/women being on their payroll.

You can't use logic with an illogical person.

Nearly every Republican signed a document and has benefitted from Mr. Norquist's organization. Did you forget?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/10/02/grover-norqui...

Some proudly have their signed statement to Mr. Norquist framed and hanging on their office wall. Now these men and women are 'paid' by the American people - our payroll. But some seem very hesitant to give up the financial support they receive from Mr. Norquist and his organization. Interesting use of words. payroll - support.

G35 Dude's picture

My point is that we can't trust any of them. They all lie. Some more than others.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/fact-checker/wp/2013/12/16/the-bigge...

Yet you take everything Obama says as gospel even now.

You can't use logic with an illogical person.

The gospel has one source for me. And you don't know me - so how do you know what I take as 'gospel'? Enjoy the holiday - and check your contributions and how they affect your credibility. I think I've lived just a bit longer than you - and agree with your statement - "you can't trust any of them". That's why it is important to do your own research - and analyze what will be best for you, your family, and your community.

G35 Dude's picture

Opps. Looks like I hit a nerve. LOL Interesting. I won't say enjoy your holidays. I insist on Merry Christmas. And I do wish you one.

You can't use logic with an illogical person.

This is a season of celebration, and a time to acknowledge that we live in a country where all religions are celebrated by those who believe. Also , those who don't believe are allowed that right. It is a time for family and friends to join together, hopefully in peace, and for Christians, a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. So Merry Christmas and happy holidays to all!!

(Sorry G35, but glad you also celebrate the birth of Jesus.)

PTC Observer's picture

Were they running for office?

They are buying a lot of newspapers, it's part of their plan DM, brainwashing the American people to pay attention to reality.

and Congressional representatives! Spin, spin , spin - but that guy in Las Vegas who spent millions woke up - it's the vote that counts - and sometimes it can't be bought if the message isn't appealing to the American people. Keep resisting changing the message (Extremists Republicans and Democrats) and there will be some changes made in Congress. Like it or not - Obama is president until 2016. Reality.

As usual your suppositions are way off base.

Mytime, my suppositions are that you cash your government check each month from FICA. You regularly utilize your government health care from Medicare. You pay far less tax on your property as a senior, yet enjoy the same resale values because of the educational system here in PTC. You may spend your afternoons at the government provided Gathering Place or Senior Center in Fayetteville. However, you are constantly dogged by those pesky taxes.

I begrudge you none of the benefits of your senior status. There merely seems to be a paucity of appreciation.

in anything I wrote were you able to come up with a lack of appreciaton on my part? As for your assumptions, just look at the first three letters of that word and you will see what your assumptions made of you. Yes, I get a check each month from Social Security-as you will some day if you have paid into it; I also use my Medicare as needed, as you will some day if you have paid into it. I also continue to pay into both of these from my part-time employment. I did not choose Social Security or Medicare--the government made that choice for me. If you are now paying into these entities are you going to turn them down when you become a 'senior citizen"? I sincerely doubt it. I have never entered the Gathering Place or Senior Center in Fayetteville. I have entered the Battered Women's facility to assist in any way possible. I also mentor at an elementary school and aid several other worthy causes with my time. Since your comprehension seems to be sorely lacking, let me refresh your memory: I paid school taxes gladly for years with no child ever attending a Fayette County school, I gladly paid for the cart paths with no golf cart; paid for Kedron pool without ever stepping foot into the facility--in fact, I paid to use the aquatic facilities of a local gym for some time. I have paid my way without moaning and still am not moaning--as I said before I was expressing another view from what Spy had written. Get your holier than thou attitude out of your vision and then perhaps you will be able to read correctly what someone has written. Stranger than fiction--perhaps you should change that to stranger to facts--since you evidently missed them completely.

I am not at all critical that you are living off the government in your senior years. Like you say, that's how the game is played. I also commend you for your volunteer services to the community. It is wonderful to hear that you are devoting so much energy to worthy causes.

I do see incongruity in your complaints about minor storm water and FCC taxes while you cash a government check. If that makes sense to you, complain away; you're old enough to have earned the right. Most people are careful not to bite the hand that feeds them. But it's clear that truth is stranger than fiction.

Robert W. Morgan's picture

I am in a local civic organization with this babe and touchy she is, feely she is not. City Hall has toughened her. 30 years of living on the lake has not.

Live free or die!

any other situation you stick your nose in. This 'babe' has never been in any organization that had you as a member. I have never lived on a lake and if driving by City Hall or stopping in occasionally to handle personal business can harden me-well what can I say. You are either on a fishing expedition, misinformed, outright lying or delusional. My guess would be you are all four.

suggarfoot's picture

but I do think some of you guys are self righteous and have led very sheltered lives.

suggarfoot's picture

"I do see incongruity in your complaints about minor storm water and FCC taxes while you cash a government check. If that makes sense to you, complain away; you're old enough to have earned the right. Most people are careful not to bite the hand that feeds them. But it's clear that truth is stranger than fiction."

To draw SS in the 1st place, you have to have PAID into the system. That money is FEDERAL, storm water taxes, etc., are local. Local taxes don't pay Mytmite's SS check. She paid it, and unless she lives to be 105, will draw back only a portion of what she paid in.

Now if you want to talk about the gov handouts, start with Section 8 and welfare Moms who have kids for money. To get Section 8, you have to not work at all, or have a low paying job. The FEDERAL gov comes in and pays their rent. There is no time limit and they can stay on it for life. http://www.gosection8.com/Section-8-housing-in-Fayette-county-GA/#.Uq2b0... http://www.wetakesection8.com/houses/GA/fayetteville/ They never pay into the system and are a huge drain on everyone else. Now, it gets worse. These same people get gov cash hand outs at the end of the year. If you don't work and have kids, the GOV GIVES YOU A CASH REFUND FOR EACH CHILD. The amount of the cash refund is in the thousands for each kid. That means Mytmite and you, are paying someone else to lay on their back, not work, and get a refund. Yes, they don't have to pay a dime into the system to get this cash refund.
Now if you don't think it can get worse, it can, and does. These welfare moms can turn these kids into more little money makers if they can get them on SSI (social security disability). If they can show they have a physical or mental problem and can find a shady doctor, well they get another $700 plus a month for each of the children. There is no incentive for the children to do well in school, the worse they do, and the more the act up...the more chance you can prove a learning disability and get the SSI. Again, you and Mytmite pay for this. These kids usually turn into carbon copies of their parents and go spawn another generation of "you owe me".
Your elected gov officals are VERY aware of them. They make the laws to make all this possible. They will never touch their programs because they think it will cost them THEIR votes.

....there are a ton of kids on SSI. I've filled out paperwork over the past 20+ years, so I know. And she is also correct regarding the lower they perform in school and they more they disrupt that the more likely they will qualify for a monthly stipend. There was even a woman in PTC that had a website where she advertised to "help" other parents get SSI for their children. She probably charged a hefty fee and made even more money. My thoughts are that that parents should pay for their children until they are of legal age. For the severely disabled (ie, need nonstop electricity to keep the machines running) I believe there is already some charitable program in place to ensure that their electric bill is paid each month. If these kids (not the severely disabled) every get it together they are not eligible for certain jobs simply because they were on SSI. It's really not fair to the kids. Doomed before you even leave the starting gate.

Cyclist's picture

in PTC that had a website where she advertised to "help" other parents get SSI for their children.

That's kind of like the USDA spending over 1 million a month to advertise their SNAP program. Oh, and what grand advertising did our taxes provide? Well, ads like:

“Throw a Great Party. Host social events where people mix and mingle,” the agency advises. “Make it fun by having activities, games, food, and entertainment, and provide information about SNAP. Putting SNAP information in a game format like BINGO, crossword puzzles, or even a ‘true/false’ quiz is fun and helps get your message across in a memorable way.”

Source: Daily Caller

Let's party!!!!!

Caution - The Surgeon General has determined that constant blogging is an addiction that can cause a sedentary life style.

suggarfoot's picture

in addition to housing and a cash bonus at the end of year for pumping out the babies, we also feed the kids with our federal dollars. They don't have to lift a hand for anything. Why work? We are so stupid we are paying for this to do this....so why bother to improve? Why work? Why act any different?

So our politicians give them food, housing, and a bonus with our tax dollars for breeding some of the most undesirable genes you can imagine. Talk about don't feed the bears????? how bout don't feed, house, and reward them?

Ask your representative in Congress what they are doing to improve monitoring and reform. Eliminating all programs is a lost cause at this time. There are Americans, in this economy, who have an honest need for help.

suggarfoot's picture

that is one reason some of the schools don't score as good as they use to. I pity the teachers that have to put up with the misbehavior so Mommy can draw that check. If they call these women's hand, I'm sure they would try their best to get the teachers fired or sue the school system. There is more that goes on right under your nose if you would take the time to look. These people don't give a dam if they ruin the schools for others. In fact, many get an entitled joy out of it. And you pick on Mytmite about not wanting to pay(but does pay) storm water taxes. Go find the REAL problems and address those.

PTC Observer's picture

When you can't afford something, then you shouldn't buy it. If you can't afford the tax structure in PTC, then it's time to move to an area with lower overall taxes.

The fact is that those taxes are put on your bill by political operatives hoping to get funding to get re-elected. They are payoffs to large corporations that act as cronies, or special interest groups that think they have answers to all of society's ills, or simply those that need funding to pay for unsustainable government jobs. It really doesn't matter does it? There are places in America where you can afford to live, move there until the taxes catch up to you. Like they have in PTC.

In the meantime, PTC has a need to raise $1.5 million in funds for multi-use paths. The residents of PTC should pay for them or not be residents of PTC. It's pretty simple.

Such a glib reply--Just move away--no consideration for the many years residing here, no consideration for the long standing friendships or other affiliations. If you would go back and read my initial blog I was not crying about the cost of living here, I was just replying to a poster, who like RWM, seemed to think that all older people who live here are loaded, drive luxury cars, have beach and mountain retreats. and money to burn. As for the taxes on phone bills, more than likely you will find them wherever you move. From some replies on here I expect the next step to be is the suggestion for mercy killing of seniors. In all the years I have lived here I have never resented paying for school taxes, though I have never had a child in the school system, have never used the cart paths as I have never had a golf cart or walked the paths, but have never objected to paying taxes for those who did, never used the Kedron pool but never objected to the expense for that --after all the fact that Peachtree City had those amenities and more is what has made me love Peachtree City all these years. I resent the fact that some bloggers on this site would twist what I had said to make it look like I was a whiner, and someone expecting something for nothing. Nothing is farther from the truth. I pay my own way and always will. As I said before, I hope those of you with the smug attitude never find your situation changed. I resent your attitude and feel sorry for you at the same time.

Well spoken and you have lots of company in this city. Repeat, lots of company.

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