Barlow: Restore trust, integrity to commission

If we are going to continue to succeed as a county well into the future, we need local governments we can trust. Leaders with integrity.

When you take a serious look at the situation, you’ll find it’s not about creating tougher standards or better ordinances. It’s really about electing people you can count on to do the right thing. Honest leadership.

Take the West Fayetteville Bypass, for example. Not a single citizen has come before the Board of Commissioners and said the road to nowhere was a good idea. On the other hand, many hundreds of people have crowded the meeting rooms, sent letters and email and posted opinions in the local newspaper against the road. Did our commissioners heed our comments?

It’s obvious the county’s ordinances don’t help much in that case. The only answer is finding someone who will listen to the people and do the right thing. Not occasionally, but ALL the time.

When Chairman Herb Frady, Commissioner Lee Hearn and Commissioner Robert Horgan tried to condemn land owned by the city of Peachtree City, they proved that the integrity of the person really does matter. It didn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out the key parcel of land was necessary for the implementation of the TDK Extension road project that the people of Peachtree City do not want.

Peachtree City could have been slammed with another source of major traffic congestion had people not protested so loudly about the deal. The three commissioners changed their plan because they got caught, not because their motivations were pure.

I think Commissioner Steve Brown was doing the right thing by questioning the legitimacy of the county’s special early retirement deal. When the county administrator is in charge of creating the deal and then turns around and takes the deal himself, a red flag is raised. What happened to personal integrity? Do the citizens care about our commissioners’ integrity? I think they do.

Commissioner Brown asked for an independent inspection of the early retirement deal because the county administrator did not recuse himself from the process. Chairman Frady and Commissioner Horgan tried to bully Commissioner Brown at the last meeting and keep the independent review from happening. Why do you think Frady and Horgan would try to stop the independent review?

You have an opportunity on July 31 to bring people into the elected county offices that fight for the citizens at board of commissioners meetings and in the local press.

Both Randy Ognio and I have done our best to bring attention to local issues that are important to all of us living in Fayette County. You have a choice of keeping the same inattentive majority who looks out for the special interests, or you can install a new majority that actually cares about you and your family.

I frequently video tape the board of commissioners meetings when important issues are discussed. Please go to Youtube.com, dbarlow777 channel, and see what is happening with your local government.

I would really appreciate your support and vote in the July 31 primary election. Remember that the primary election will determine who takes the seat in January 2013. Help bring integrity back to Fayette County politics.

David Barlow

Candidate, Fayette County Commissioner, Post 2

www.electbarlow.com

Tyrone, Ga.

ginga1414
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wedrod, A Lot of Assumptions Here

Come on wedrod. Your comments are only suppositions.

However, it is possible that you have information that the rest of us don't have.

If so, please share your information.

wedrod
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Mr. Krakeel

Come on Mr. Barlow. We all know that the only reason the Mr. Krakeel opted to retire was he saw the hand writing on the wall. He knew that as soon as Mr. Brown becomes County chairman he would have fired him. Pretty smart move if you ask me.

Steve Brown
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I have to admit ...

... Wedrod was right.

Jack Krakeel was definitely not looking out for the best interest of the citizens when he created his own retirement plan with disclosure. His position should have never been in the early retirement plan.

thcomments
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Steve Brown

Recalling the absolute disaster that Steve Brown and his cronies were for Peachtree City, I am still flabbergasted that the citizens of Fayette County were foolish enough to vote this self-serving political hack to a commission seat. Mr. Barlow, if you associate yourself with Mr. Brown, you lose because, even when he does come down on the right side of an issue, his position is taken for how it serves his personal agenda, NOT how it serves the citizens of Fayette County.

ginga1414
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thcomments - Facts PLEASE!

We need some facts to support the comments.

Fact: David Barlow is an Army Veteran of the Viet Nam War.

Fact: Mr. Barlow is a Certified Legal Video Specialist.

Fact: For several years, David has recorded Commission Meetings, Candidate Forums, and Board of Education meetings. He posts those videos on the internet as a service to working citizens and Senior Citizens who can't get to the meetings.

The David Barlow I know is "integrity" personified.

He wouldn't allow someone to write or speak for him.

Please, get to know David. Visit his website at www.electbarlow.com Or send him an email with your concerns: david@electbarlow.com

ginga1414
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hutch, The Only Thing That Mystifies Me

Is why some folks here just don't seem to be able to express themselves without calling other people names.

I can't account to you for what Steve Brown does or doesn't say or do. I shouldn't have to be nor will I accept the responsibility of accountability for anyone other than myself.

I know that you do not like me because you are constantly saying that I "threw East Bypass folks under the bus." If you had attended the commission meetings or the workshops, you would know that I have had absolutely nothing to do with whether or not the commissioners transferred their construction focus from the West Bypass to the East Bypass. I, also, had absolutely nothing to do with their decision to transfer their original focus from the East Bypass to the West Bypass.

When the Jack Smith commission was in power, the county had already spent $600,000 on the East Bypass. Then they decided they were going to build the West Bypass. Now, if you will pull up a current article by John Munford titled, "Fayette may shift funds from west bypass to start east bypass," you will see that they are contemplating switching back to the East Bypass.

Within the last few months, Commissioner Lee Hearn proposed the switch back to the East Bypass. I have no clue as to why he made that proposal. It seems to me that Mr. Hearn would have to know that there are just as many, if not more, people upset about the East Bypass as the West Bypass. Mr. Hearn would have to know that proposing the switch just before and during the election would be detrimental to his re-election.

As I've said many times before, I knew from the beginning that no matter how hard I fought the construction of the West Bypass I was not going to be able to stop the county from taking my property and building the road through my yard.

My only hope has been, from the beginning, to expose the circumstances surrounding the construction of the West Bypass. If you don't like those circumstances, join the crowd. I can't change the facts to suit you or anyone else. I would greatly encourage you to state where you think I have not given the true facts of what I've said about anything that has to do with the West Bypass.

Four years ago, I promised myself and every member of the West Fayetteville Bypass Coalition that we would absolutely not say anything that we could not document. I have tried extremely hard to keep to that standard.

Believe me, that stance has caused me many enemies. I'm sure that is to be expected. When a certain power structure has been in place for so many years, a transition most assuredly won't come easy.

Since you consider me to be "a joke" or "a hypocrite," because I have exposed facts and because I try to stand for all Fayette homeowners, that is your problem. It isn't mine.

hutch866
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Facts ginga?

Since when does your side deal in facts? Was it a fact when Steve lied about Hearn the other day? Was it a fact when he made up things about me, or NUK? Never heard you or the other Brownies crying about facts then. You people are such a joke, and act mystified when your called hypocrites.

Robert W. Morgan
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We are the actual losers, Mr. comments

Barlow's letter could have been written by Brown himself. It is pretty clear he will be elected and there's 3 votes right there to make Brown chairman. Barlow and McCarty will support Brown and be comfortable in their majority positions. Of course it is entirely possible that Horgan and Hearn's replacements will be brownies as well. Could be some rocky times ahead for Fayette County. Can't wait to see who the new county manager is. Steve Rapson would be a shoo-in.

ginga1414
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BBQ, A Few Facts

In the fall of 2011 a Fayetteville candidate forum was held at Wanda Hawkins church in Fayetteville. As I remember it, Mr. Barlow was there with his video equipment. You should be able to view that video on YouTube.

During that forum, I went to the microphone and asked then Mayor Ken Steele to address the issues surrounding the W. Bypass. During his remarks, Mayor Steele clearly said, "The West Fayetteville Bypass will not relieve traffic in Fayetteville."

Mayor Steele had previously said that, "The West Fayetteville Bypass is for future development."

Even prior to that, former Commission Chairman Jack Smith said during an interview with The Citizen that the West Bypass was for "future" development.

That "future" development was a highly secretive plan known as The West Fayetteville Neighborhoods.

Former Mayor Steele, Jack Smith's Commission, the Fayette County Development Authority, the land owners, and Historical Concepts had been planning the mega development for quite a few years. Mayor Steele had said to insiders that he didn't want the development to be made public until after the 2011 election. However, the information leaked out. Cal Beverly investigated the rumor, found it to be true, and published an article about it.

The WFBC knew from Aug. 2008, that the Bypass was for the explicit purpose of development. All anyone had to do was look at the map of the Bypass and research the owners of approximately 2000 acres.

It is a fact that Commissioner Hearn's relative owns property along the W. Bypass which is part of the West Fayetteville Neighborhoods development. That portion of the development will be known as Lester Hamlet. It is a fact that Mr. Hearn's relative sold property to the Fayette County School System so that a new high school could be built within the West Fayetteville Neighborhoods development.

It is a fact that Commissioner Hearn nominated that same relative to serve on the Fayette County Elections Board. I was at the Commission Meeting when Mr. Hearn nominated Addison Lester for that position on the Elections Board and he said that Mr. Lester was someone he knew from church. Two weeks later, when confronted, Commissioner Hearn had to publicly admit that Mr. Lester is his relative. If he wasn't trying to conceal the fact, why didn't Commissioner Hearn just say that Mr. Lester is his relative and a member of the Fayetteville Downtown Development Authority.

I have been in Commission Meetings where an Agenda Item appeared out of nowhere, was voted on, and approved.

PTC Observer
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Ginga - Excellent

Excellent post, but it won't change a thing. Our government will be run by self interested politicians because honor, duty and virtue are not looked upon with any value by our citizens.

Only special interests will win out in the end, pick any special interest group you want, if they can muster the "majority" of the voters they will run roughshod over your freedom, your rights and your property.

That's democracy in America.

Steve Brown
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BBQ Jones is Lee Hearn - too funny

That's right, the West Fayetteville Bypass is a fine road - LOL!

And that nasty old Steve Brown built a dog park - oh my! He did not even own a dog at the time!

BBQ Jones
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Non-sense Mr. Barlow / Where are the FACTS?

Mr. Barlow:
You titled your letter "Restore trust, integrity to the commission", yet you offer NO FACTS how the current Commissioners broke our trust or don't act with integrity. Just because people are vocal about an issue, does not mean the Commissioners did something wrong. This is AMERICA, a representative government, and not all people get what they want all the time.

I offer these FACTS for your consideration:

FACT 1: If the present Commission wanted to build TDK, why would they offer a buffer along the creek to PTC for the right of way needed for access to the pump station? You simply don't have the FACTS on this issue. The current Commission has said many times they would only support TDK if the Elected officials in PTC supported the project.

FACT 2: The West Fayetteville Project is a good project. It will allow motorist to take an alternate route instead of going thru downtown Fayetteville. Where would you recommend we build roads to help with traffic around Fayetteville and how would you pay for them? It's easy to be critical and harder to work on solutions.

FACT 3: From your glowing remarks, it appears that you would support Steve Brown for Chairman of the Commission? You may want to look at what happened in PTC under his leadership. Higher taxes bought land for a bridge over HWy 54, built a dog park, Mr. Brown had ethics complaints against him to name a few. Also remember Mr. Brown only got 26% of the vote when he ran for re election. Hence 74% of the voters said we don't want his style of leadership.

The current Commissioners ARE ACTING WITH TRUST and INTEGRITY.

Instead of made-up personal attacks, why don't you offer some items that you intend to accomplish?

Don Haddix
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.

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Robert W. Morgan
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Here's 4 election facts to consider

1. The only result that MIGHT keep Brown off the chair chair is Huddleston/Hearn. Oddo would be chair,then but if Huddleston is aligning herself with Hearn (which I think is a fatal mistake) we would be getting a 2-2 commission with Oddo as tiebreaker, which makes him king. Not sure that is good. In fact I'm not even sure Oddo would vote for himself. He seems to be a classy guy. If he won't, Brown certainly will. Of course that still makes Oddo the deciding vote, but I see a lot of disfunction with this outcome. Yes even more than now.
2. Barlow/Ognio presents a possibility that Barlow will nominate Ognio. I think that fails for lack of any other support. Brown wins on second ballot.
3. Huddleston/Ognio is highly unlikely, but Brown is still chair because Barlow is the only one who will nominate Ognio, but he won't be there unless he is doing the video. And you can't take a chance on voting this way because it could easily be Huddleston/Hearn and we've already discussed that.
4. Barlow/Hearn is most likely outcome and since Ognio isn't there Barlow will nominate or support Brown or he will leave with a broken arm.

So 4 possible outcomes and 3 or 4 chances Brown becomes chair. Might as well get used to that idea and vote long term.

I'll vote Barlow/Ognio, but I fully expect it to be Barlow/Hearn.

Of course in 2 years Brown and the other guy are up for reelection and Brown draws opponents like flies. And having 2 years as chairman - wow! He'll be writing his opponent's campaign ads at every meeting. Certainly Jack Smith and Greg Dunn would be tempted. When Haddix realizes he has no chance for a second term in PTC he can run against Brown as his graceful way out. Peter Pfeifer would be an excellent choice. So would Scott Bradshaw.

Don Haddix
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Haddix: Some Facts

Some corrections here have to be made.

Your FACT 1: A majority on the Commission, over a period of months, told me, personally, they intended to do an eminent domain of the PTC owned portions of The TDK Extension. A County taking property from a city within the city would never hold up in court. They were outside their jurisdiction.

Supporting if only we supported it was not the reality. They could not do it without our support and permission.

When it came down to a final negotiation between Chairman Frady and myself, they didn't offer a complete buffer. I required and pointed out where I wanted it to be. My proposal, not theirs, is what was agreed to.

There are more facts on this matter, but they are for another time and issue.

All of this on top of the reality the Mormon Holding Company had been pushing to move forward, beginning in late 2010. They met with me on the issue and bought two parcels from Pathways giving them property on both sides of the proposed bridge crossing in Coweta and PTC.

The threats began after the Holding Company met with Chairman Frady.

Reality is the County had been rejecting every effort, for months. to give them access to the dam in exchange for guarantees the bridge would not be built. Why did they keep saying no if they had everything they needed to get to the dam and proposed rec area if there was no desire to build the bridge?

Your FACT 2: The West Fayetteville Bypass was always a development corridor. I had been warning about the 2008 development proposal for 2,000 acres to be annexed into Fayetteville. All very secretively done.

It would dump excessively more congestion into PTC. Anyone studying the whole route could not justify the notion it was for traffic relief. It was for development.

I am only addressing the specific issues that impact PTC here.

Most assuredly I know the facts on these issues better than most.

David Barlow did his due diligence here here, including discussing this and other issues with me.

GeorgeDienhart
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Go Get 'em, David

Excellent letter

ginga1414
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It Takes Courage, Mr. Barlow!

It takes courage to stand up for what is right, Mr. Barlow. The last four years have taught me a lot about politics and politicians. I wouldn't give a dime for either one.

Politicians are folks who do the "go along to get along" thing. They say whatever they have to say in order to get their constituents off their case, and they do whatever they have to do to stay in good with their cronies.

Hopefully sooner or later, as has happened in Fayette County, We The People wake up.

Last night's commission meeting was an eye-opening experience. Chairman Frady was absent from the meeting, and believe it or not Vice-Chairman Horgan allowed Commissioner Brown to have his say. IT WAS A BEAUTIFUL THING TO BEHOLD! I WANTED TO STAND UP AND CHEER!

Mr. Barlow, thank you for having the courage to buck the current system here. Thank you for having the courage to stand up for The People.