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Stockbridge adopts 2013 budget

By Jason A. Smith

jsmith@henryherald.com

STOCKBRIDGE — The Stockbridge City Council has met its budget deadline for 2013.

The Council unanimously adopted a budget of more than $22 million during a special called meeting Thursday, said Mayor Pro Tem Richard Steinberg.

The decision came less than a month after the ouster of former Mayor Lee Stuart by the City Council. Stuart was removed from office on six charges alleging misconduct within the city government.

The Council, earlier this month, rejected a seventh charge relating to Stuart’s failure to produce a city budget prior to a deadline established in the city’s charter.

Comments

mcarroll78 1 year, 7 months ago

I did notice that the budget was passed. I also noticed that the Council voted to spend $75,000 on a dog park. They also allocated $106,000 for the Eagles Landing Monument.

The $25,000 consultant fee to find a City Administrator is gone that the Council required for the Mayor.

The Executive salaries increased by more than $40,000. Let's see - Milliron came in as "Treasurer" and his salary went from $52,000 to $88,000. If you will recall, the City increased the City Administrator's salary for Mr. Gibson from $80,000 to $100,000. I'm guessing Milliron will get more than what they paid Mr. Gibson.

Legal jumped from $132,000 to $250,000. I guess the attorney is getting a bonus for his part in ousting the Mayor.

The City only has two events for 2013. Bridgefest in the fall and the Holiday Gala at Christmas. MLK March - gone. Memorial Day March - gone. Movie Night for the kids - gone. Music on the Lawn - gone. Veterans Day Parade - gone. Veterans Day Dinner -gone. Black History Gala - gone.

They have set their sights on more land acquisition in the amount of $300,000. But, there is absolutely no money in the budget for the Berry Street/Nolan sidewalks that have been requested and promised for more than a decade.

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TruthNJustice 1 year, 7 months ago

Mcarrol78 protests too much!

It is a shame that uninformed and uninvolved people jump to conclusions! Where were you at the 3 meetings where the budget was discussed and there was opportunity for public comment? The simple answer is you were no where to be found! I was told the room was vacant and devoid of any public comment!

There are so many fraudulent statements made by people like yourself who hide behind fake names.

People like you are gutless wonders!

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Sk 1 year, 7 months ago

Let me see, the public has to be there to question our elected officials so they will do the correct thing? We need public officials that will put the public first and not them selves. Ask the general public if their income has been raised the percentage that these official have raised their income? Answer: overwhelmingly NO!

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Philosoraptor 1 year, 7 months ago

I do find it amusing that you accuse someone of hiding behind a fake name, only to post a comment hiding behind a fake name...Also, you only assert the fact that no one was at the meeting, not that anything MCarrol78 says is incorrect. Also, how does someone "protest too much"?

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mcarroll78 1 year, 7 months ago

Everyone in this town knows that this budget was set from the beginning. It didn't matter who spoke or what was said at any of the budget hearings.

If (3) members of the City Council are able to remove the Mayor from office, then who can have any impact on the budget? Get real!

What I did do was read. I read the budget each time that it was released. And I have read what was approved, removed and ignored.

If what I stated was untrue, then say that. I reviewed the information that was adopted. By your response, it's clear that what was pointed out disturbed you, as it did me.

If you check with the other cities in the county, I bet you none of them passed their Operating Budget at 4 o'clock in the afternoon. Government Transparency? That's a joke.

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mcarroll78 1 year, 7 months ago

And the reason the room was empty is that people don't support what happened what Alarcon, Buschman, Cochran and Steinberg did. Plain and simple.

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eaglelanding 1 year, 6 months ago

TrustNJustice....my voice will be heard and my vote will be counted on election day...Let the clown show his colors....it will be easier to defeat him when the votes are counted.

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TruthNJustice 1 year, 6 months ago

It has already shown his colors and almost went to jail for illegal wire-tapping among other charges. His plea to the CRIMINAL count in Fulton County removed himself from office! MMMMmmmm! So much for the truth honesty rhetoric that came from his mouth! This situation, like everything else, starts and ends with the former mayor! He ALONE is responsible for his actions and creating the situation in the city for the past 3 years!. No one else .... just him.

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tiredofthetermitspolitics 1 year, 6 months ago

....and the saga continues with the new mayor! Wonder what things will unveil in the upcoming months on this new "ARRANGED" council.... yes, the upcoming election will hold a lot of truth...

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southsidediva 1 year, 6 months ago

mcarroll78: I see you have been conversing with Lee Stuart so I wanted to chime in and set the record straight for you.. Yes, there's $75,000 in the budget for a proposed new dog park. That money will only be spent if the city council approves such. The $106,000 for the Eagles Landing Monument was also in 2012's budget and will be an economic driver for the city ... stay tuned! The $25,000 consultant fee to find a City Administrator was removed because it was an act of the 2012 budget, which means the money was earmarked under GASB54 as a council resolution. The city council elected to save money and hire from within. You allude that the executive salaries increased by more than $40,000. Well, I reviewed the 2012 budget and 2013 budget and see that in 2012 the executive budget included the city administrator and economic development director. In the 2013 budget, the economic development officer was moved to the administration budget and the treasurer and city clerk were moved to the executive budget. So yes, it appears the salaries increased when in fact, you simply have to follow the money. And it was Lee Stuart who asked for the city administrator's salary to be budgeted at $125,000. Legal did get set at $250,000 to account for legal services, the Local Options Sales Tax negotiations and lawsuit filed against the cities by Henry County, the Service Delivery Strategy contract that has to be negotiated in 2013, and to fight all the frivolous lawsuits filed against the city by Lee Stuart. But that figure ought to be reduced by $52,000 once the city recoups what Lee Stuart owes them for settling his false lawsuit in bad faith and illegally tape recording private mediation sessions. Yes, the city reduced to two events and instead created a community grant program that allows nonprofit and civic organizations to compete for a slice of $100,000 to run events in the city. Lee Stuart kept crying foul that the Merle Manders was operating in the red yet the staff was pulled to run about a dozen events in the city, so there was no time to focus on economic development. So the move by the city council is a win-win. And yes, there is $300,000 in the budget for land acquisition. If you don't plan long-term, then the Livable Centers Initiative (LCI) will never become a reality. Each year there has been money for land acquisition and without it, for instance, the city couldn't have been able to buy the property that soon will become the youth and senior multiplex facility. Bottom line is the city is offering more services for less money. You say Lee Stuart cut the budget in past years? Not so ... he only eliminated splost and capital projects and deferred maintenance which has done nothing but hurt the city.

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mzholiday 1 year, 6 months ago

Hey mcarroll78 - you really got him stirred up. Who? David Milliron - stage name "southside diva". Seems the new City Administrator had his feelings hurt. My suggestion - respond to citizens in public open meetings. Not as the "SOUTHSIDE DIVA". Sad.

And as far as the $75,000 dog park is concerned, this is an idea copied from Avondale Estates.

The $106,000 Eagle's Landing monument and park is a beautification project - just saying, there are areas along N. Henry and other places in the City that have been neglected and could use some beautification funds.

Salaries - hmmm - you saved more money by hiring within? As I recall, Ray had to fight to get $100,000.And he didn't drive a City vehicle back and forth from his home every day. Fuel cost money, along with the maintenance, wear and tear. What savings?

And the "Community Grant Program" - another idea copied from Avondale Estates. Why should non-profits or any other group come in and spend their time doing what the City has the funds and manpower to do and should be doing for its citizens. You want others to come in and promote the City. That's your job! Not to mention, you tell them that whatever they do will not be funded 100% - meaning they will definitely be out-of-pocket some monies. And they have to compete with each other for the money. That's absurd.

And you and I both know that there is more to the PROPERTY ACQUISITIONS than what you have eluded to.

Maybe we'll read about that in your next report - another idea taken from Avondale Estates.Copy and Paste - gotta love it.

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tiredofthetermitspolitics 1 year, 6 months ago

No where is it reported on how much he will get paid for his new acquired position? If you go back through the archives here, you see they reported on Ray Gibson's. So why is Millirons so secret?

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southsidediva 1 year, 6 months ago

Dear @mcarroll78 (Chip Flanagan) and @mzholiday (Vanessa Holiday): You're way too funny posting stuff and trashing the city instead of moving it forward. We'll all pray for you come Sunday. I got a kick out of last night's neighborhood association meeting here in the 'hood. Lee Stuart was carrying on asking the usual who, what, when, where, etc. Even asked for the minutes. Then the fool blurted out that he's the sheriff of the neighborhood association. Good grief. What a Napoleon complex! But y'all just keep following your little man as I'm over you. Over and out! Roger that!

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mzholiday 1 year, 6 months ago

Say what? Hey, there's no question of who I am. I sign on as Mz. Holiday.

And let me be very clear, I have NEVER trashed the City.What I have done is inform my felllow citizens of the improper actions of this Council and administration.

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mcarroll78 1 year, 6 months ago

Wrong Milliron, I am NOT Chip Flanagan, and you owe him an apology.

I appreciate the Henry Herald for allowing me to put the truth out there about Stockbridge politics and the administration. Afterall, Milliron has blocked me from sending emails to the Mayor and Council members. And he deleted my facebook posts just blocked me from the City's facebook page.I can't send in my suggestions or comments through the City's website. Ihave not said anything that was untrue, nasty or vulgar. It was the truth, and he didn't like it, so he deleted it. In other words, if you tell the truth, you will be deleted and blocked.

That's interesting considering this Council removed Mayor Stuart on the THOUGHT of monitoring emails.

What I posted was: I asked why the City Administrator's salary had not been made public.

I asked why when the Customer Service Supervisor position was made vacant by Ms. Cheatwood retiring, the Clerk Kim Barnett was just handed the job and didn't have to apply for it. Yet, when the General Maintenance Supervisor postion became vacant, the Interim employee had to go through the process of applying.

I also asked them why they reposted the pictures from when Alarcon visted Stockbridge Elementary School for government day to make it look like they were actually sending the students off to Washington, DC for the inauguration. The City did not contribute or help those kids with any fundraising efforts and we all know that they were seeking funds up to the last minute.

Milliron deleted all that from facebook and blocked me - and he has blocked emails as well.

City of Stockbridge Mayor and administration - Afraid of the truth?

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mzholiday 1 year, 6 months ago

Amazing. No money in the budget for the sidewalk project that has been promised to a community for nearly 12 years. This community has asked for a safe path for their children to walk to and from school, and the City of Stockbridge has denied this request over and over again.

Most recently in 2012 Councilman Alarcon stated the City just didn't have the money for the project.

Fast forward to 2013 - Mark Alarcon and David Milliron brag about all of the money that the City received with the L.O.S.T. negotiations. The City's Auditior bragged about the sound financial status of the City. But 2013 has no money for sidewalks. They do purchase a new building for $630,000 and then must renovate. So it will likely be in the neighborhood of $1 million dollars before it's all said and done.

Additionally, they have budgeted for even more land acquisitions. Right now, the budget is set at $300,000. But we all know, that amount can and likely will increase.

But to provide sidewalks is just not on the priority list for the City of Stockbridge elected officials.

What is important to the City of Stockbridge officials is to schedule the demolition of the florist shop that the City purchased from the Meeks for $420,000 - atStrong 5 o'clock in the evening. Yes, right during the City's rush hour. No notice placed on the City's website, Facebook page, Public Notice in the Henry Herald or anything. It was a traffic nightmare. They shut down a major road and gave absolutely no notice or warning.

These are your elected officials. Not smart!

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