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Lessons to be learned from the July 20 vote

Cal Beverly's picture

Fayette County Republicans Tuesday ended the one-term political careers of two well-connected county commissioners and extended for another four years that of a late-blooming school board reformer.

In the process, voters resurrected the electoral fortunes of a twice-defeated former Peachtree City mayor, elevated a political novice to the county commission and sent a nearly invisible school board candidate back to civic club functions.

Steve Brown beat Chairman Jack Smith by 916 votes out of 14,122 cast in the Post 4 County Commission race — 53 percent to 47 percent.

Newcomer Allen McCarty out-polled attorney Eric Maxwell by 1,180 votes in the Post 5 contest — 54 to 46 percent.

School board member Bob Todd will now have four more years to turn his new-found tough talk on behalf of taxpayers into action. Let’s hope he stays on offense and doesn’t retreat to mute — and moot — defense again. More on his race in another column.

Tuesday's vote had to have been a nuclear shock to the county’s power structure, since Smith and Maxwell had been very publicly endorsed and supported by Congressman Lynn Westmoreland, state Senator Ronnie Chance, state Representative Matt Ramsey, ex-Sheriff Randall Johnson, Fayetteville Mayor Ken Steele and four of the five members of the Fayetteville Council, two of the other three members of the County Commission, Clerk of Court Sheila Studdard and Tax Commissioner George Wingo and a veritable pantheon of who’s who in Fayette County politics.

They spent a few bucks with our paper, but they just about bought the front page of the legal organ for several weeks. Their yard signs were everywhere. Their robo-calls rang every phone to be rung in Fayette County.

All of these supposedly astute political types, and they completely missed the prevailing political winds: How could they all have been so wrong?

Is Steve Brown a compelling campaigner? No, and what little money he spent on campaigning came mostly from former Commissioner Harold Bost, so he didn’t buy his way onto the commission.

Allen McCarty was an unknown, and remains one. The one thing we know for sure about McCarty is that he wants to stop the West Fayetteville Bypass.

So what did what they — the power structure — miss in their calculations of victory?

Herewith some lessons for folks who are supposed to know these things:

1. The first is a negative: Don’t get on the wrong side of a true grassroots political movement.

The West Fayetteville Bypass is textbook waste of taxpayers’ money. It begins nowhere and goes nowhere — except to vast tracts of so-far undeveloped land in Fayette’s middle section. The only people who love that road will be the future developers of those properties. That’s $50-plus million that could have been better used elsewhere.

The waste and the continuing disrespect by Smith and Maxwell shown to the small group of anti-bypass citizens got the attention of the Tea Party supporters.

The issue resonated with an increasingly committed segment of motivated voters who saw local elected officials who seemed at best out of touch and at worst arrogant like some folks in the White House and Congress.

Guys like Smith and Maxwell and their supporters will never be true Tea Partiers because they’ve got too many well-connected friends they have to keep happy. The political world for them is divided into two parts: their friends and the rest of us. It’s the rest of us who tired of their disrespect and showed them the door.

2. The second is a directive: Get on the right side of the potent, motivating issues.

Smith had already sealed his fate with his votes on regional mass transit, up there in the boardrooms of Atlanta, far from the vox populi back here in Fayette. I can imagine the voters saying: Mr. Smith, don’t take us for fools. You say you voted for mass transit up there, but then you say your vote doesn’t really mean anything back here. You must think we are fools.

Maxwell, without those damning mass transit votes, could have staked out a strong, anti-MARTA position, criticizing his fellow commissioner for such obtuse foolishness. Maxwell could even have offered a local resolution to the commission, requiring any vote by the chairman to first be authorized by the board. He could have done any of many things to distance himself from Smith, but he chose not to.

So, he went down with Smith.

Lesson: Mass transit is toxic politics in Fayette County. Drink that Kool-Aid — at Atlanta Regional Commission board meetings or wherever — and be prepared to die at the ballot box.

Lesson: Smith and Maxwell placed themselves on the wrong side of potent issues that resonated with a motivated group of voters.

Brown and McCarty need to learn those same lessons on some other potent issues. Let ex-Mayor Brown bring up district voting again in Fayette County, and he will find himself an ex-commissioner as well.

Also, if Brown goes mucking about in the other constitutional officers’ operations, he will likewise find himself on the outside looking in. There’s plenty under the official purview of the commission to keep him busy for the next four years without going looking for extra-curricular fights.

And Mr. McCarty needs to prove himself more than a one-trick pony. Fight the bypass fight, yes; but fight FOR some worthwhile benefits to the taxpayers beyond the bypass.

To both the commissioners-elect, remember whose servant you are. I’ll be explicit: You are not put there to serve the government employees. You are put there to serve the taxpayers of this county. Sometimes — unfortunately and I hope rarely — you will find the interests of the employees will be at odds with the interests of the taxpayers.

Don’t forget who is paying the salaries of all of you. You work for us; we don’t work for you.

And one prediction: Commissioner Robert Horgan is going to surprise a lot of us. Watch for it.


"...nuclear shock to the county’s power structure..."

Poetry. Sheer poetry.

I'm a man of principles and my word! (must you tell me?) I intend to pay the teachers more (after we lay-off one-third of them!) I am not a racist. (but them what are here what are not mericans need roundin up (all 30 million of them) (need 10,000 big jails) (wait until the cucumbers are picked) I say shut off the welfare and the extended unemployment payments! (we ain't had soup lines since 1932).
I mean , you know, I'm just saying---get a grip!

Robert W. Morgan's picture

The power structure in Fayette County has certainly been rendered obsolete with this election, although I must say that the power structure built this city and county and it would not have happened without them. Say a sincere thank you and move on.

Horgan suprising us? Maybe he'll surprise you. But he won't surprise me when he aligns himself with Brown and the other guy. Horgan is looking for any self-respect he can get (and he's not getting any from Frady or anyone else - especially the "vox populi" - wow! you must have a thesaurus on your desk) therefore the brown clown and the other guy are a natural place for Horgan to settle. Now there is an interesting 3-2 vote scenario. Especially since Frady will be the leader of the pack. Let's televise the meetings.

You are correct that Brown is not a good campaigner, so I will have to redirect you to the real central fact of this election - Incumbents are toast! Got it? Hopefully this will happen again in November, although I really like Westmoreland. Nevertheless, I am prepared to sacrifice him if we can "Clean House" - pun intended.

District voting will get us a black county commissioner from north Fayette County. What's wrong with that? Are you a racist? Yes you are!!! But you are correct, not a good idea in Fayette County - let's see if Brown is dumb enough to bring it up.

Live free or die!

Citizen Bob's picture

"Incumbents are toast", but the guy with the largest margin over a challenger was... incumbent Bob Todd, by 24%

R.J. Ross

TinCan's picture

did anyone ever determine if Cave really exists?

I've been into many caves. There is a huge one in Mexico! He exists, I hear.
What was he running for?

TinCan's picture

Just my opinion, but I think it highly likely you harbor one between your ears. Oh, not a harbor where boats hang out.

Isn't it interesting how so many people with supposedly a high school education do not know the difference in percent (%) and points.
For instance, if a person wins and election with 60% of the votes counted and their opponent got 40%, many will say that 60% won by 20%! Some will say he won by 20 points (very few). But if only 10 of those points moved from the 60% guy, then they would be even at 50%!

Yet one would have to multiply 40% by 1.50 to get to 60%! So it is 50% better?

Now if you want to talk "ratio and proportion," oh, just forget that---that is worse than solving equations with two unknowns!
Or, calculating a trip to Mars by manual mathematics. (first one to the moon was done with a "PONG" computer wasn't it? ( one of the first PCs a 285 I think came along about 1980 or so? Everyone used them as a typewriter, or was that a MAC?

Do you suppose Adam even thought of "measurement?" My whole point here is all we teach kids anymore is how to get a government job.

Citizen Bob's picture

"Not everything that can be counted matters, and
not everything that matters can be counted."

A. Einstein

R.J. Ross

That doesn't sound like Einstein. But he could do what I suggested we learn!
Those sorts of things teach "Logic" not so much math! Something our youth seem to be devoid of. Heck we have weather men on cable telling us how to drill for oil and how to fix oil leaks, maybe 6 miles down. I heard one say today that they had gathered so Little oil by skimmers yesterday that they may just about have it up! That is called "false positivity" since he couldn't be that dumb!
My guess is that there are about a hundred million gallons underwater and near the bottom to get yet!
And the hole ain't permanently plugged yet.
They even found another leak from an old well two miles away of somebody's!
Just spewing away!
Do they think these old rusty pipes when abandoned will last forever? The mud they fill them with won't last long.

It is certainly regrettable that it took such a catastrophe to stop these bandits.

me.and_the_sea's picture

These 3 ran for us, the taxpayers and gave us a voice.

The other 3, looked at us as "the little people" and look where it got them.

Steve Brown was very clear he was going with term limits and NOT district voting. Get a grip.

carbonunit52's picture

Ignore "The Citizen" at your own peril.

Cal, maintaining your modesty while your news organization once again proves to be a force to be reckoned with is truly inspiring.

I don't think Eric and company are Tea people. Sounds as if you may be however which is all right with me, but if so you are going against your own advice about being on the wrong side.
That road will be built and I think you know it. No amount of "side taking" will stop it and it is hypocritical to say so.
As to the power structure it has hardly been touched by the vote in Fayette County, even with two judges and a DA thrown in before.
The powers, thank goodness are the voters and the vote results had little to do with throw the bums out. There was way too much vicious talk and people wanted those stupid jobs up for election too much for some reason!

Jobs like that are supposed to be for gentleman farmers! Hardware store owners for Mayors!

As to Steve Brown mucking around, I hope he does and sets all these civil "servants" onto their rear ends.
The idea that elected officials are "servants" is NOT accepted by those elected. Balancing budgets is pure politics and there are a lot of people who always vote in the civil service!
They do "work for us," but the part of the us they work for may be someone else. The money for budgets comes from many directions.
I'm sorry the dudes didn't patronize your paper more. It would seem that their particular voters read the subscription paper!
You also do carry way too many of FOX type columnists to get even one vote from the other side. Even the preachers are one-sided.

Why are elections for local officials partisan? Very little of what the national parties are for or against filters down to what power the county commission or school board wield. The sheriff? If the local party functionaries want to endorse a slate of candidates fine. I had to ask for a republican ballot or I may as well stayed home. Am I now a Republican?

No you aren't necessarily a republican, but in GA if you vote that way in the primary, that is the way you MUST vote in the election. I hate it also!
I want to vote for the best ones to run in the election from both sides.
I know some would vote for someone they hate so maybe he would be the weaker candidate for their candidate---but so be it. Both sides would then do that! Not me. I would vote for the best guy both times.

I voted for Handel for several reasons. The 1st being she was the only one of any of the Repubs for any office that wasn't running against Obama. (Never knew the power of state level officials.) I hope she did give money & support to Planned Parenthood & gay adoption. Is she the weakest in the general? Possibly. I won't be voting for her then anyway. I skipped a bunch of the rest of 'em.

What a list of defeated and beaten officials: Congressman Lynn Westmoreland, state Senator Ronnie Chance, state Representative Matt Ramsey, ex-Sheriff Randall Johnson, Fayetteville Mayor Ken Steele and four of the five members of the Fayetteville Council, two of the other three members of the County Commission, Clerk of Court Sheila Studdard and Tax Commissioner George Wingo

Sen. Chance and Rep. Ramsey have blown it twice in a row (first with Cyndi Plunkett and then with Jack Smith).

Hooray for the people! It's time to take our government back!

What Cal fails to mention is he willingly gave Steve Brown free space in his paper for months and months to offer his opinion (unchallenged)on issues thereby influencing the outcome. Congratulations, Cal...your candidate won.It's your paper but to hell with journalistic standards
(ever wonder why this paper never wins any kind of awards?). Now let us hope Brown doesn't do too much damage to this wonderful county. Pray for Fayette County! We will need those prayers.

Did he refuse to give you free space born? I think Brown got more pot shots from his articles than he influenced any of you guys! Believe it or not but people don't vote according to the volume of ads, just what they know.
As to the journalistic standards you mentioned, I think they are somewhat different in a free paper than for one paid by subscriptions. There really aren't many journalistic standards anymore ----look at FOX!

I thought you already prayed that Brown would lose?
Which of Brown's faults do you find detestable anyway?

There is a lesson to be learn, and that is to treat people how you want to be treated. I am the mystery woman that was standing in the Fayetteville square on election Day. Commissioner Maxwell has done some unethical things that I had experienced first hand. There are always reprecussions for your actions. Everything that I said on my sign was the truth. I would not risk a lawsuit being filed against me for slander. Maxwell, has lied to the courts. He has represented a Company in court that did not have a business license for over ten years. The Company has made over two million dollars, and have never paid business taxes to Fayette County. God doesn't like ugly, or liars.

So what is up with David Worley and appeal to state's high court on the GA 74 annexation in the Metro Section of AJC. Loved Haddix comment "there are so many uncertainties, we don't know what makes economic sense for Peachtree City". Well maybe we should get someone in office who does.

Everyone knows Cal will print your letter if you send. The "unchallenged" comment is crap.

highflyer2's picture

Your pissed because you didn't get any of the two million?
Get over it people! We have new leadership now!
OK, now where do i go to pick up my free stuff?

Cal, I like what you have to say, I think you hit the nail on the head as to what happen in this election. I was very surprised of the out come my self. Smith and Maxwell thought they had it in the bag with all the big time endorsements. But I think you are right about Horgan, he is going to be in the swing seat again. I also noticed that he was not at all involved in the campaigns of Smith and Maxwell, as was the other two commissioners. Since day one he has been very independent and voted his way. He works very hard for the citizens of Fayette. I know first hand that he does a lot with the Senior population and was instrumental in the Fayette Mental Health project’s new building in Fayetteville. I hope Brown and McCarthy work for the betterment of the County as you noted in your story. We have had enough infighting between elected officials and the municipalities. God bless Fayette County.

Robert W. Morgan's picture

If Horgan tumbles to Brown's overtures, there will be a price to pay. I think it will be district voting. Horgan can hold out for that as his reward for switching his vote and killing the WFB and he will be a local hero in his district and indeed regionally. State Senate next stop for him if he handles it right.

Ok, I know, that assumes both Brown and Horgan (and even the other guy) are smart enough to broker a deal behind closed doors and keep it under wraps. That is pretty unlikely, but I do think they will try - or at least Brown will. He has to do something to get in the spotlight and being on the losing end of a lot of 3-2 votes won't accomplish that. And yes I do know that Brown hasn't supported district voting, but having observed his 4 sorry years in PTC - he is -as they say - very flexible.

Save Fayette mentions that we have had enough infighting between elected officials and municipalities. Yes we have, but if you think that will end just because we elected Brown (God, it hurts to type that) you are dead wrong. Although I really want to try and take a wait and see approach and see if he has matured at all in the last several years. I really hope so.

Live free or die!

I don't know Mr Brown and I didn't even live in PTC when he was mayor. But you really seem to have a vendetta against him. You continue to bring up district voting even though he's said several times that he no longer supports it. To say that a politician should never change his mind is to say that he is not capable of learning from his mistakes. I wouldn't want such a person in office. To me thats a dead horse you're beating until he brings it up again. Then you'd be right to say I told you so. You'd also be OK with challenging his current stands if you disagreed with them.

The things I do remember about Brown was his change in stance on the TDK Blvd. And his willingness to fight that battle while it was not a popular fight. This and Mr Smiths hard headed stand on the West Fayette Bypass are why I voted for Brown.

Now having said all of that, Mr Brown if you ever call a Christmas tree a "spirit tree" again I'll never vote for you again.

Robert W. Morgan's picture

When they change their mind or break a campaign promise it is about the reality of politics - good old fashioned horse trading. Giving up a position or a vote in order to get something the politician sees as more important. I don't care about I told you so - I care about the county and the city and I want everyone to watch how our newly elected commissioners take over in January. Unfortunately I was here in January of 2001 when we had to endure the Brown, Rapson, Weed nonsense that even Dan Tenant bought into briefly. Surely he has learned from that and has matured.

For a non-resident you did a good job of recalling 2 of his many examples of "flexibility". Watch him like a hawk.

Live free or die!

birdman's picture

Too bad you weren't in PTC while Brown was mayor. You could have personally witnessed the reason he was resoundingly defeated for re-election. You mention his "change in stance on the TDK Blvd." Which change was that? His campaign slogan of 2001 of "TDK not now not ever" or his 2005 campaign letter where he states "Our current council was the only one that actually programmed funds in the city’s budget for TDK." Then his continued claim to have "never supported TDK." Or maybe it's his campaign promise of no annexation becoming a private negotiation with Wieland Homes to annex the West Village, during an Annexation Moratorium by the city!
Or maybe it's his promise to prevent the big boxes from coming to PTC. And yet strangely the Target Shopping Center was still built.
Mark my words, if the West Fayette Bypass becomes popular you'll see Brown touting its great merits and bragging as to how he was the only one to push for it.
By the way, did you ever ask yourself why he "buddied up" to another candidate? Here's my suspicion, Brown wants to be in charge. He will make a hard run for Chairman so he can again become the "white knight" he sees himself as and "save" all of us who live in the dark, dank, ruins of Fayette County.
Commission meetings will sure be a hoot now.

mudcat's picture

Don't even kid about our man-child becoming Chairman. True he wants it bad, but which of the sitting 3 commissioners would ever entertain putting someone like him in charge. Unlike most of the voters, those guys know what poison he is. To make him their leader would be the equivalent of hiring Bill Clinton to train the interns - after 3 of the 5 interns voted for him.

Frady may not want it and could throw his vote away if he has a short-timer attitude or plans to resign before his term is up, but that's the only way I see it happening. Hubby has spoken to Hearn and Horgan several times about Brown and believe me they are not fans. You know better than most that the newest commissioner does not have the slightest idea how to to get along with others, compromise or achieve consensus on issues. I give him 2 meetings before he calls out one of the other commissioners and demonizes him for not agreeing with some stupid proposal. And that's one of the reasons that Frady's early departure is not so far fetched. He will not be as amused as you or I at the chaos of the early 2011 commission meetings. He likes things calm and orderly.

birdman's picture

Hey, at least the commission meetings will have some fun to them. The weekly circus that we held at city hall while Brown was Mayor was always entertaining. Now the whole county can witness the "fun."
I'm not kidding. Brown is looking for his 3rd patsy. Once he gets the commission version of the Brown, Rapson, Weed triumverate, the fun will begin.
Good news is that the whole county will see. In four years he'll get the royal boot again. Hope it doesn't take 4 plus years to recover like it has in PTC.
Let's start a many meetings will it take for Brown to a) embroil the county in a lawsuit, b) violate the ethics laws, c) write a letter attacking the other commissioners, c) support the WFB, d) write a letter attacking Coweta County.
Let's hope the other commissioners keep their senses. I think they will, after all, they aren't Rapson and Weed.

He should be Chairman.
He is the only one strong enough to get much done.
Those folks who want everything done like your hubby talking to two of them and want everything quiet and orderly, make poor Chairmen!

Is their job to get along or vote correctly? Does US Congress "get along?"
Great leaders get health plans, pensions, Wall Street Laws, save the banks from depression, and appoint diligent Supreme Court Justices----all in about a year and a half.

Hey, I'm talking about Franklin Delano Roosevelt---who did you think?

Laissez Faire does not work anymore.

birdman's picture

HAHA.. funny stuff!

Robert W. Morgan's picture

Could be an interesting first meeting if Horgan nominates Brown and the other new guy seconds it. That sets up an immediate 3-2 vote for chairman and everything else. WFB goes away and Brown runs the county (into the ground of course) and a very angry Frady resigns and we get someone from the past coming back to take his place - Dunn? Maxwell? Maybe DeCotis? Maybe Brown's new buddy Bost.

Anyway, if that happens we have to watch for what Horgan gets out of it. Probably reelection, probably not district voting (although I believe anything is possible with Brown), maybe he just wants to be part of the majority and popular again. As Cal was the first to say - watch Horgan. He's the key in the whole thing.

Live free or die!

The pot smoker or the old man who sleeps during the meetings. You've done it again.

I agree with the post above that you're jealous of Brown.

birdman's picture

I know no one actually believes Brown ever supported TDK, so I am copying and pasting his letter out of the Citizen Archives. Here it is. Read it an tell me if this is a man who "opposes" TDK?

"Consider what record shows about council’s TDK extension decisions

It is time to correct all of the misinformation related to the TDK extension road project. I am citing all references and I urge to you check them. The political opposition is having a difficult time bringing substantive complaints against our current City Council. Their strategy has been to throw as many negative and misleading statements in the press as possible in the hopes that someone will believe them. Please look at officially statements of record.
The TDK project had been talked about for decades prior but the City Councils failed to act. In 2001, “[Councilwoman Annie] McMenamin felt the City needed to move ahead on the project, which had been going on since she came on Council 11 years ago,” (Council Minutes, Oct. 18, 2001).
In March of 2000, the Lenox administration finally acted but had no funds appropriated for the road. “[Councilman] Brooks made a motion to transfer $295,725 from the Council Contingency fund to award the contract to Dames and Moore for $272,725 and to provide $23,000 for geotechnical testing services through Untied Consulting,” (Council Minutes, Mar. 16, 2000).
Dames and Moore (later changed their name to URS) was the same firm that told the city council in a public meeting that the big box stores would not cause additional traffic on Ga. Highway 54 West and it became the top accident corridor in Fayette County.
The design changed several times and more non-budgeted funds were used. The road was planned for the spillway at Lake McIntosh. “She [McMenamin] moved to approve the $30,000 from the PIP contingency fund for the advanced design services for Lake McIntosh,” (Council Minutes, Oct. 18, 2001).
What the then-City Council did not tell the general public is that they used our taxpayer dollars ($165,000) to engineer the Coweta County side of the road as well.
It would not be until almost 2004 that I learned of that funding arrangement. I have spoken with Coweta County officials and the Coweta developer and they seem amenable to paying us back.
Most of my current City Council took office in January 2002. My two concerns were the priority of widening Ga. Highway 74 and the significant budget problems that we had inherited. “Mayor Brown introduced the next related item, saying he initially had concerns about TDK Boulevard because he did not want to supersede the emphasis on widening Hwy. 74 South, which was still important. Brown said that there had been significant progress on Hwy. 74 South, with cooperation from state representatives to local representatives, leading to some major breakthroughs. Barring anything happening to delay Hwy. 74, Brown said he had no problem with the TDK Boulevard project. Brown also expressed appreciation for Coweta County’s support of the project. He said funding for the project was the number one concern, and Peachtree City’s budget was very lean. A balancing act would be needed to prioritize the projects,” (Council Minutes, Sept. 5, 2002).
Our current council was the only one that actually programmed funds in the city’s budget for TDK. “Rapson said he had always been in favor of TDK, but highways 54 and 74 took precedence. No funds were committed to TDK extension until this Council approved the 2003 budget, which included capital funding for FY 2004 (October 2003), bringing the total to $825,000 on the table. Brown said there was not a person on Council against TDK,” (Council Minutes, Jan. 2, 2003).
However, signs of trouble were foretold in the newspaper headline that read, “Fayette-Coweta Connector: FORE! Errant golf balls, low-flying aircraft to greet motorists driving on future TDK Boulevard across Line Creek,” (Citizen, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2003).
Councilwoman McMenamin made a motion to which I seconded to sign a resolution in support of the TDK project asking for Fayette County to help with the effort because of the dire budget situation we were battling. “Motion carried unanimously,” (Council Minutes, Jan. 23, 2003).
Later a deal was made with Fayette County and the council unanimously approved to make a final payment of $200,000 toward the construction of the TDK extension (Council Minutes, Feb. 6, 2003; “County, PTC strike deal to move forward on TDK road extension,” Citizen, Feb. 5, 2003).
It later came to our attention that additional funding would be needed and “Brown moved to approve the additional expense of $18,650 to use toward the engineering for the changes requested for the Fayette-Coweta extension. Weed seconded,” (Council Minutes, June 5, 2003). We had met our commitments to build the road.
A 2004 headline read, “FAA opposes location of TDK Boulevard extension project,” (Citizen, Mar. 14, 2004). As it turned out, the engineering firm (URS) hired by the previous administration failed to consult with the Federal Aviation Administration regarding the location of the proposed road even though the end of the Falcon Field runway appeared on most drawings, maps and photos.
Even worse, URS has an aviation division and had no excuses about not knowing the official FAA concern (FAA 5200.8). A letter from FAA program manager Philip R. Cannon stated that the road “will degrade the runway 13 safety area.”
A runway safety area violation could negatively affect our airport’s chances of getting a precision landing system in the future. Falcon Field Airport is a multi-million-dollar asset that cannot be jeopardized and the City Council shared the concern of the Airport Authority.
“City staff met with Airport Authority members, airport staff, and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to look at alternatives to resolve the conflict. They had looked at a couple of ideas, and the proposal to realign the road prior to construction around the runway safety area looked like the best solution; however, that route was in conflict with holes five and six at Planterra Ridge Golf Course. The holes would have to be relocated,” (Council Minutes June 3, 2004).
We also do not want to destroy the golf course. Had previous City Councils acted on the road prior to the approval and construction of the Planterra Ridge Golf Course, we would be driving on the road now.
Currently, the Airport Authority is working with the FAA on purchasing a piece of property owned by Pathway Communities to relocate the two golf holes to satisfy the FAA objections. It will take a least one year to properly establish the two new holes once the land is purchased.
At the end of every council meeting Councilman Rapson publicly asks our city staff if there is anything that the city of Peachtree City is doing to hold up the progress of the TDK extension project. The staff always replies, “No.”
The claims of the Direct PAC do not hold up to the scrutiny of the official records and the unanimous votes.

Steve Brown, mayor
Peachtree City, Ga. "

The foolish child bloggers who supported Bob Lenox, Harold Logsdon, Eric Maxwell and Jack Smith are going to inflate their fragile egos one more time and try to make us think they know what's best for us.

Birdman and Robert W. Morgan do a fantastic job of supporting the people who cheat us the most!!!

Keep clinging to that TDK story from around 2004 because that's all you've got buddy. Your mind just can't handle any more than that.

Now go get a glass of water and take your Prozac.

When we want to get screwed royally by our government again we'll call you.

Dawg, as someone who supported the TDK extension in these blogs, it was Steve Brown who killed the deal. Jim Pace, Doug Mitchell and Sen. Mitch Seabaugh all told me Steve Brown was keeping them from moving the road along. Go ask those guys and they'll tell you the same thing.

The sad part was Steve Brown tried to compromise to make the road work and I could have employed about 45 people because of it. The Coweta developer Tom Reese got too stinking greedy with what he wanted to build and Brown refused to go along. Being a total idiot, Reese thought he could force the thing through with the help of Harold Logsdon whom I supported as mayor. But no one could swallow Reese's huge plan and Logsdon eventually took the same opinion as Brown.

Birdman and Robert W. Morgan are babbling fools who act like they know what they are talking about.

birdman's picture

simply read Brown's own letters, campaign material, etc. It's all there in writing. You simply have to research it. But then again, it would take a little verification work from you. Why bother when you can lazily believe what your side says about an issue right?
I strongly believe that as a simple commissioner Brown can't really impact the county to the level he impacted PTC. But then I didn't believe he could impact PTC to the level he did. We turned about 13,000 voters out county wide, on a major primary election day. In 2005 PTC alone turned out 11,000 voters in early Dec. for a runoff vote to get rid of Brown. The statistic screams.
As for a "fool," hardly. As for "knowing what I am talking about?" Again, I challenge you to research the comments, claims, deeds, facts. They are all still on the record.

You like "everything" Cal has to say. I did some of it.
Horgan couldn't be in the campaign due to his problems! No amount of "good works" wouldhave provided Horgan cover to campaign. He did the right thing.
I never have known what "instrumental" meant!

Steve Brown's picture

Robert W. Morgan is one conspiracy theory after another. I made the point, many times, no district voting proposal, never. Term limits will put it on the agenda.

Cal wrote at the end of his letter, "And one prediction: Commissioner Robert Horgan is going to surprise a lot of us. Watch for it." I know exactly what that means. Horgan knows he can't win and will not run for reelection ... unless he joins with Brown and McCarty to stop the WFB.
If he doesn't he might as well not waste the qualifying fee for reelection.

Unbelievable, this is the death of Fayette County as we know it. As far as freedom of the press goes, it's interesting that I applied to get on this site on July 7th. Cal chose not to allow dissenting opinions until the day after the elections.

One "Lesson" not mentioned in the editor's overview of the primary election:

The 27.9% turnout of the registered Fayette County voters made these electoral decisions, for better or worse.

Brown beat Smith by 916 votes; 1.3% of our total registered voters won the day in this contest.

McCarty defeated Maxwell, --again-- with less than 2% of total registered voters tipping the scales against the incumbent.

I suppose the greater part of the electorate works too hard, -- or we are just too-o-o-o-o busy. We certainly cannot expect the kids to miss baseball practice or skip a piano lesson so Mom & Dad can prioritize the time to cast their votes on election day.

Perhaps when it comes to local or statewide elections -- we are simply enamored with the default concept of blissfully ignorant apathy.

In my humble opinion, the "Use It or Lose It" principle is in definitely in play. If we don't pro-actively guard and exercise the franchise of freedom, it will continue to erode into a series of meaningless formalities, instead of clearly sounding the voice of a people blessed by those freedoms and protected rights.

From where I sit, America is in dire straits, and our liberties are truly in peril.

27.9% turnout is not going to "secure the Blessings of Liberty for ourselves and our posterity"

Just sayin'....

Everyone have a great day!

Voting in countries recently allowed to have that right is very high in participation! They are afraid it might be taken away at any time.
We are not afraid of that in Fayette, especially in primaries where only one party (republican) has any chance at all to win.
So those who do vote are the will of the people---those who do not vote have no say in it.
I think your number of those who elected Brown (1.3% of total registered voters) are incorrect.
There are about 55,000 or so registered voters, so the newspaper said.
!.3% of 55,000 is only 715 votes---he got a few more than that!

Since it doesn't matter very much to most people in a primary with all republicans it is a waste of time and money.

Also, there still is SOME intimidation left over from the 1960s and before, even for the average person-----march this way, show this ID, fill out these forms, why are you in a different place every vote time? etc.
All we need to do in this electronic age is vote by wire or phone. You would have a user name and a code like no one else.

The way we do it does provide some useless jobs however.


TURNOUT: 27.89 %

BROWN'S MARGIN OVER SMITH = 916 VOTES / 69119 (R.V.) = 1.325% (R.V.)

McCARTY'S MARGIN OVER MAXWELL = 1180 VOTES / 69119 (R.V.) = 1.707% (R.V)


So those who do vote are the will of the people---those who do not vote have no say in it.


(1) The expression of the will of the people is extremely weak-- AND...

(2) The outcome is easily managed ( --or manipulated) by a small but energized interest group. Our recent primary results are -- in the words of the intrepid editor - "a nuclear shock" - legitimately brought forth by less than 2% of the electorate.

Now add into this mix -- hypothetically add the smallest (contrived?) problems with vote counting or recounting, a little clandestine voter fraud (dead voters, felons voting, etc), or some of the typical election brouhaha with tallying absentee ballots... ad infinitum... ad nauseam.

...and in such cases the collective voice of the franchised citizens goes unheard-- and the will of the people easily thwarted.

We all pay the price for neglecting the care of our rights.

The comedian Al Franken sits and votes in the U.S. Senate because a small number of ballots cast by ineligible voters were wrongfully counted. Those few hundred bogus ballots cast statewide were the difference in the protracted multiple recounts that eventually called the election for that funny guy.

Time to wake up.... all of us......
Both sides of the aisle, every demographic and interest group.

Just my humble....
Again... have a great day!

There is NO LOGIC to comparing the DIFFERENCE in votes to the total registered voters! There is not 69,119 REGISTERED VOTERS anyway---there is not even that many people who could vote. Kids can't vote!
Chances are if everyone had voted, he would have won by the same PERCENTAGE margin.
My feeling however are that if all of those registered voters who didn't vote wanted Brown and Eric defeated, they would have voted!

These offices aren't very important anyway, especially in a total republican primary.
All those "powerful" endorsers must have made it even worse!

You need to face the fact that not many wanted those who lost!

AND --

Don't miss the point-- This has nothing to to with who won or lost.

The "logic" you can't see -- And the computations are an evidentiary demonstration that a very small percentage of the registered electorate decided this contest; And therewith the make-up and disposition of the County Commission until the next election cycle.

"Chances Are" is a great old pop standard.

Again... Learn to do your homework before you try to argue "what is"... and "what isn't" -- How many "aren't" registered.


Citizen Bob's picture

Is the number of registered voters the correct basis for your statistics? Realize that the list includes registrants who may have moved out of the county as long as eight years ago.

Of those who did vote, Brown bested Smith by 7% and McCarty outpaced Maxwell by 9% - very good margins in today's contests.

In their 2006 county primary, records show that Smith lagged the front runner by a full 20% and Maxwell edged his competition be a mere 2% (Smith prevailed in the run-off when his opponents' supporters were over-confident and mostly stayed home).

In this primary, the county elections office's "Unofficial & Incomplete" (lacks inclusion of a couple of hundred absentee/provisional votes) record lists 69,119 registered voters

R.J. Ross

The posted county results page -- yet unofficial--
...Provides the best available & recent info for making my very simple case:

How the energized and pro-active FEW of us make some really BIG CHOICES for everyone else.

Please follow the rest of the thread; my homework is posted there for your perusal.

Have a great day!


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