What motives drive commissioners, Steele to ignore public’s will?

I hope everyone got a chance to read the recent AJC article on gang activity in the MARTA system. A group of young gang thugs assaulted two male Delta employees on a MARTA train.

The fact that violence has been associated with MARTA is nothing new. Several people were shot dead at MARTA stations recently and a woman was kidnapped.

What should shock all of us right down to the bone is a majority of our Fayette Board of Commissioners have voted in favor of keeping our county linked into the regional transit plan with MARTA. I guess it’s a supply chain issue with the gangs needing more Delta employees to beat and rob. It’s tougher for the gangs to meet their quota, so they need Fayette County tied into the system.

It should also be said the same AJC article quoted long-time users of MARTA as saying the security on the system is pitiful. Is anyone else wondering why Chairman Herb Frady, Commissioner Lee Hearn, Commissioner Robert Horgan and Fayetteville Mayor Ken Steele want to keep us in that kind of disastrous plan? Their votes in the official meeting minutes speak much louder than their false rhetoric.

I was part of a large Fayette County contingent who attended the Atlanta Regional Commission’s Plan 2040 public meeting in Tyrone. A senior transportation planner named David Haynes gave an attention-grabbing presentation on regional transportation. One of the first sentences to come out of Mr. Haynes’ mouth was he didn’t think mass transit was needed in Fayette County because of the low population.

Something is bad wrong when the regional transportation planner says it’s not necessary and majorities of our Board of Commissioners say we are staying in it anyway.

The mass transit situation is just like the West Fayetteville Bypass deal. We obviously don’t need that bypass. But as you know, Chairman Frady, Commissioner Hearn and Commissioner Horgan say they’re building it anyway.

Then you have the appointment of Commissioner Hearn’s relative to the Board of Elections to oversee the reelection bid of the three holdovers from the previous commission. Even though the problems with the appointment were exposed, the three commissioners are saying they’re going to keep Hearn’s relative on the Board of Elections anyway.

Ask yourself what the motive could possibly be for their audacious actions? Why would any group of three commissioners and the mayor of Fayetteville act so counter to the will of the people?

Commissioner Allen McCarty, Commissioner Steve Brown, Mayor Don Haddix and Mayor Don Rehwaldt have all stated the case quite well as to why we don’t need to be in the regional mass transit plan.

Fayette County’s two representatives to the Atlanta Regional Commission, Chairman Frady and Mayor Steele, are leading us to the gallows with this new regional SPLOST referendum, trying to tell us it’s a great deal.

However, you have to keep in mind these are the same two who are pro-mass transit, pro-West Fayetteville Bypass and were pro-2009 SPLOST. Personally, I haven’t the slightest reason to believe anything the two of them say.

Fayetteville Mayor Steele is up for reelection this year. We need someone to run against the mass transit mayor and stand up for Fayette County values. I can assure you the support from voters will be significant. Fayetteville has never needed a change in leadership so badly.

Let’s not lose focus that the three holdovers on the Board of Commissioners are up for reelection in 2012 either.

It’s time to support candidates who support us and not the current guys who want to bring Clayton County farther south.

David Barlow

Tyrone, Ga.

pips1414
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Yes, Hearn and Steele are influential

It came out at the commissioners meeting that Addison Lester has not attended any of the elections board meetings. Mr. Hearn has continued to decline any comments relating to Lester's qualifications for the position by mentioning other county employees who are related to each other,but not to commissioners. The folks Hearn mentioned don't control the taxpayers' purse strings.

Hearn implied that the public would not be so quick to jump to conclusions if it would just look into the issues. The trouble is...we already have.

He didn't deny that commissioners do get elected or could influence elections by appointing whomever they choose to be on the elections board.So there's a difference between commissioners and other employees that just doesn't seem to get addressed in terms of impacting the taxpayers.

I'll also have to admit that I don't always see eye to eye with Mayor Steele. But let's face it, he's got charisma. I think it would behoove Mayor Steele to discuss his views on the West Bypass with the commissioners. The project could be something we may need 40 years from now, but we can't afford it now, and we don't have traffic problems in that area. Mayor Steele publicly stated that he believed the West Bypass was designated to be for future development. He could win many friends by trying to convince the 3 enforcers of the Commission to put it off and save tens of millions of dollars. Just one more vote would do it, and the majority of voters would respect him for that.

We have been advised to "follow the threads" that could finally document the elusive connection between the bypass and county hall, but there are so many holding companies, registered agents, favorite sons and flipped acreage in the area, it's like getting into the world's largest ball of string. Any who might come forward won't be thought of as finks, they'll be heroes.

Robert W. Morgan
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behoove Mayor Steele to discuss his views .... ? Huh pips?

No it would not. These guys after they are elected twice think they are the sole authority on all things. After all, they were reelected, they have attended many meetings, they have staff catering to them - the whole package. They really believe they are the only ones who should control things and getting input from a non-politician who is just a citizen is a waste of time.

Pay attention to how they act after their second election.

BBQ Jones
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Double Standard

Why is it acceptable for the Clerk of the Superior Courts husband to be on the Election Board? Isn't that the same thing? I don't see the outrage over that relationship!

roundabout
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Yeah, right...

....what about the Sheriff's wife? No comments?

Standard joke in old movies: I am the sheriff, this is cousinn Zeke, my aunt's boy; and thisin is my brother Harry, he is second in command.............. My nephew is the jailer.

Old Simon
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Hearn's cousin - Addison Lester

I would submit that Addison Lester would have ample opportunity to fix an election. The State Elections Board deals with dozens of such cases at each meeting. WHY is it up to Hearn alone to select the person on the Board of Elections? The whole power play by Krakeel and his puppets (3 amigos) is illegal and very fishy. There is no paper trail for the machines. Lester MUST go. He is just as dishonest as his cousin. Good Baptists they are.

pips1414
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Fayette County plumbing stopped up until next election

When a political machine gets to be as powerful as the 2010 Commissioners, you can understand why the 3 enforcers are fighting for their lives. The first step was getting Smith and Maxwell out. You can bet they won't be coming back anytime soon. Next step is to get Horgan, Hearn and Frady out, but that's virtually impossible until the next election. As for Steele, if he survives the three commissioners leaving office, his supporters will have plenty of room on the back of a bicycle.

What these folks can't seem to grasp is that they are supposed to be voting with the will of the people, but are voting against it. Granted, the last election did not include votes for them. But you've seen what the wrong kind of publicity and lack of response to the public did to Smith and Maxwell.

What more people need to do is attend the commissioners meetings and read the local newspapers. Those who do this will see that whatever credence the commissioners had is now gone. Each week they have to endure countless barbs of criticism. they get negative bypass, mass transit, and just plain poor management criticism from Public Comments, and simultaneously a constant barrage of negative press on the same subjects.Still, not one public comment has been in favor of the West Bypass.

All this will only get worse as time goes on. It paid off in getting Smith and Maxwell out, and it will continue until the other three are gone. The only reason I think they aren't caving is that all three know that they are lame ducks and haven't got a snowball's chance of getting reelected. In the public's hands are many skeletons that still haven't been taken out of the closet. I admire Commissioners Brown and McCarty for their efforts to bring about transparency in government.

In other words, all the three enforcers are doing is continuing to cast stumbling blocks at the new commissioners by clinging to their past doctrines.They are refusing to allow Brown and McCarty to represent the people who voted in the last election by blockading the Brown and McCarty votes involving transparency issues . It's a sad day in Fayette County.

roundabout
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The "will of the people"............

.........is represented by those elected by majority vote to represent the whole!

Doug
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You have to wonder

Who is advising Frady, Horgan and Hearn? I don't think there are any wheels left on the bus.

The mass transit votes and the Board of Elections debacle and the bypass make the sorry 2009 SPLOST look like the winner of the best decision ever made contest. For a while there it looked like Robert Horgan was the only one taking illegal drugs, but now I'm not so sure.

I think the situation is different with Mayor Steele. I don't think he's stupid at all. He's a sneaky little developer tool.

grizz
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Vote Steele out of office

Thank you for the letter, Mr. Barlow. We need to make sure that Mayor Steele is not re-elected this year. We don't need someone in office that ignores the will of the people. We've had enough of that nonsense with Obama - he takes his marching orders from Union goons and the far, far left.

ginga1414
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Hey, Mud, The Issues Include Qualifications

When Commissioner Hearn nominated his cousin to represent the Commissioners on our Board of Elections, he did not list Mr. Lester's qualifications for that position. The only qualifications Commissioner Hearn listed were those of a good church member and friend. In comparison, Marilyn Watts' experience and qualifications for the seat on our Elections Board could fill a book.

Just a few questions, Mud:

1. Why didn't Commissioner Hearn tell the entire Board of Commissioners and the public that Addison Lester is his cousin?

2. Why did our previous Commission (including Frady, Horgan, and Hearn) attempt to gain control over the decision process for appointing all Board of Elections members?

3. Why didn't other members of the Commission submit other names for consideration as nominees for the Elections Board?

4. When the issue was disclosed, why didn't Mr. Lester withdraw from the appointment?

5. Why hasn't Commission Chairman Frady initiated proceedings to withdraw Mr. Lester from the Elections Board and submit the name/names of other nominees?

6. Why hasn't Mr. Frady even addressed the issue?

7. Why did our previous Commission along with County Administrator Jack Krakeel conduct an illegal meeting at a local restaurant and discuss ways of gaining complete control over who serves on the Elections Board?

8. If it is just a matter of counting votes, why would the previous Commission even care who serves on the Elections Board?

9. Why did County Attorney Scott Bennett erroneously advise the Commission that it was perfectly acceptable to take away Fayette County's Republican and Democrat Parties selection power for their representatives on the Elections Board?

10. Is County Attorney Scott Bennett related to Commissioner Bennett Lee Hearn?

11. Why wouldn't we all want the most experienced and qualified person to guide our elections?

mudcat
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Hearn's re-election

How does Hearn's cousin (or anyone else) as 1 of 3 election supervisors influence who gets elected? We all vote - or at least some of us vote - and then the votes are counted and the totals show Hearn 2567 votes and Wily B. Coyote 4534 votes. Now how does the cousin change that?

Or is this just a non-issue that has gotten larger because Hearn forgot this guy was his cousin?

Spear Road Guy
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Mudcat

Hearn removed the only experienced Board of Election member with the help of Frady and Horgan. He replaces the only experienced person with his cousin. If you don't think his cousin can muddy up the waters in a field of rookies, you need to call it a day.

The letter writer is on target by asking what in the heck is the motive behind all of these stupid actions?

You forget Bush v. Gore in Florida and the fact there aren't any paper records of votes in our county. I'd settle for the ability to see a hanging chad at this point.

ginga1414
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Mud, The Issue Is Being Addressed

I know that there are a bunch of folks working on this from many different angles and down many different avenues.

I guess we will just have to wait and see what happens at the Commission Meeting tomorrow night.

mudcat
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Ok got it. It is about the experience of the individual

and I agree that it makes no sense to do what they did. Ginga's questions seem to cover the questions, but who the heck is going to answer them? Seems like a code of silence has been imposed.

If Frady is really the leader of the pack - at least the 3-pack, then he should do what ginga suggests - pull cuz's name and start over.

pips1414
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They won't buck the ARC

You won't see Horgan Hearn and Frady stand up to the ARC for the people of Fayette County. Mass transit is not making a profit anywhere in the Atlanta area. It's simple...not dense enough to justify Marta or mass transit.

The people are glad Fayette County is like it is. The three commissioners want it to change. The only problem is that when they get through with it, everybody will want to leave.

None of the three enforcers will even be able to get elected dog catcher when their terms are up. Just like Smith & Maxwell. Simple.

roundabout
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pips and others

NO mass transit makes any money!

If it did we would already have one!

It is for the convenience of the poor (who will always be with us).

Maids and housekeepers can travel up to 50 miles to clean and cook using mass transit for a dollar or two.

That is why slaves weren't allowed to have horses!

hutch866
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pips1414

It's a simple fact, MARTA isn't coming here, cry, scream, pitch a hissy fit, it just ain't happening. Horgan, Hearn, and Frady are irrelevant where MARTA is concerned, live with it.

Spear Road Guy
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Hutch On Transit

Do you seriously believe the powers over us aren't slowly bringing mass transit to Fayette County???

They keep voting in favor of it but you think that's irrelevant???

You need to get off the hard stuff Hutch.

Spyglass
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Write this down..

Marta is NOT coming to Fayette County. As others have said...and said over and over again. It's NOT going to happen.

hutch866
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Spear

Just an election ploy by Brown, but hey, if you want to be one of Brown's butt monkeys, be my guest.

skyspy
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It's Easy to Understand

frady, hearn, horgan, and steele can't admit that they are wrong. They can't own up to making a mistake and reversing their decision. Even in the face of a senior transportation officials testimony that we don't need to waste our money; they still can't put their big boy pants on, and admit that they are wrong.

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