4 BoE posts to be decided by district vote

Federal judge signs off on NAACP lawsuit settlement; first elections to be in July

UPDATED for print, Feb. 28, 2011 — Get ready for district voting in the upcoming Fayette County Board of Education races.

The signature by a federal judge late last week settled the lawsuit once and for all and paved the way for a new type of election process.

Seats held by school board members Terri Smith, Marion Key and Janet Smola are all up for a vote this year. And so is the one held by District 5 board member Leonard Presberg, though the particulars of that election have not been established.
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Young and younger elect delegates

Young and younger elect delegates

A recent meeting of the Fayette County Republican Party to elect delegates to the upcoming local convention saw the meeting room at the Fayette Family Church crowded with participants earlier this month. Among those was a number of decidedly younger people ready to get involved in the political process. Photo/Ben Nelms.

District voting for Fayette BoE is a done deal: judge approves settlement

It’s official: A federal judge’s signature Friday has made district voting for all posts on the Fayette County Board of Education the law of the land.

The consent decree proposal to settle the 2011 federal lawsuit filed by the Fayette County Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People against the Fayette County Board of Education to institute district voting has been signed by U.S. District Judge Timothy C. Batten, Sr.

The judge’s Feb. 24 order followed a 3-2 vote by the school board on Jan. 9 to settle the suit and agree to district voting, which will replace at-large voting for all posts. Read More»

Polls open for early presidential primary voting

Ruby Williams of Fayetteville cast her vote Friday morning at the elections office. Photo/John Munford.

Polls will be open this week in Fayetteville, Peachtree City and Tyrone for any voter who is ready to cast their ballot in the presidential preference primary.

The county elections office on Saturday welcomed voters from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the second floor of the county’s Stonewall government complex in downtown Fayetteville.

The idea of Saturday voting is to make it convenient for those who can’t vote early during the limited hours available Monday through Friday. Read More»

Polls to open Sat. for presidential primary

Polls will be open Saturday in Fayetteville for any voter who is ready to cast their ballot in the presidential preference primary. Read More»

Fayette Commission OKs new voting districts map; no at-large posts

Although Fayette residents will retain the right to vote on all five county commission seats, there is a significant change tied to the new commission district maps approved by commissioners last week.

The new five-district map would require all commission candidates to seek only the post for the corresponding district in which they live. Currently under its existing three-district map, the commission has two at-large seats that are not tied to a district residency requirement. Read More»

Frady, Hearn defend county’s new at-large voting district map

Composite shows Fayette County commissioners (from top clockwise) Steve Brown, Lee Hearn, Herb Frady and Robert Horgan.

Last week, two Fayette County Commissioners defended the current at-large voting method against the district voting scheme proposed by a lawsuit filed by the Fayette County National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

It marked the first time any commissioner has publicly spoken out about the matter since the lawsuit was filed Aug. 9 last year.

In defense of at-large voting, Commission Chairman Herb Frady said he felt that if he can vote to spend county taxpayers’ money, “you should be able to vote me in or out of office.”
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Fayette residents stump for their candidates at SATP forum

Local residents advocating for the presidential candidates they support included (from left) Monk Robinson, Dawn Skinner, Linda Sandwich, Benjamin Harbin, event moderator Bonnie Willis, Chip Flanegan, John Potts, Samuel Wofford, Taylor Griffin and Miles Ramos. Photo/Ben Nelms.

It was a time for local supporters of the range of presidential candidates to have their say on why they preferred one candidate over the other. That was the scene in a unique type of forum held Feb. 18 at the Fayette Family Church. A total of 11 local residents sounded off on their presidential preferences at the event sponsored by the South Atlanta Tea Party (SATP). Noteworthy at the event were the several younger speakers including Bennett’s Mill Middle School sixth-grader Miles Ramos. Read More»

Fayette Elections Board member defends support for Newt

Presidential candidate Newt Gingrich, flanked by his family, spoke at a campaign rally Friday at Falcon Field in Peachtree City. A crowd of about 300 supporters welcomed Gingrich to Fayette County, which he represented when he was a congressman from the late 1970s to the early 1990s. A side drama: Fayette County Board of Elections official Marilyn Watts draws fire for her support of Gingrich. Photo/John Munford.

Fayette County Elections Board Member Marilyn Watts says her support of presidential candidate Newt Gingrich is perfectly legal, despite assertions to the contrary by Fayette County Commissioner Steve Brown.

Brown is upset that Watts has participated in the Newt Gingrich presidential campaign, but she points out that Georgia law allows her to do so on her personal time.

“You just don’t bring it to the office or the polling place,” Watts said Tuesday. Read More»

Rep. Ramsey: Cut state red tape hampering small businesses

State Rep. Matt Ramsey, R-Peachtree City, is seeking input from small businesses in Fayette County for a special initiative currently underway by the Georgia House of Representatives to review and evaluate Georgia’s current regulatory environment.

The Red Tape Watch program will be carried out by the Special Committee on Small Business Development and Job Creation throughout the 2012 legislative session.
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