By DOUG NURSE The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Published on: 08/26/07
It's only been nine months since Johns Creek and Milton became functioning cities, but it's election time again.
Monday morning begins the qualifying period for the two new municipalities — and four of the five other cities in north Fulton and Forsyth counties. The chance to be on the ballot in Johns Creek and Milton closes Friday. Elections are set for Nov. 6.
Winners of this year's election will be the first in the two young cities to earn full four-year terms.
The legislative framers of Johns Creek and Milton wanted to stagger the terms on the city councils to avoid clean sweeps and create more stability. So half of the first elected city council members are serving less than a year before standing for re-election. The balance of the city council seats will be up for election in 2009. The seats are nonpartisan.
To qualify to be on the ballot requires a fee, usually a small percentage of the annual salary of the post sought, and the candidate must meet rules for residency and age.
Both cities have asked Fulton County to run their 2007 elections so the system will be the same as in the past, although a few polling places may have changed. For more information, call the Fulton County Office of Registration and Elections at 404-730-4000 or visit ww2.co.fulton.ga.us.
Oct. 9 is the cut-off date for registering to vote in the November elections. Voter registration forms are available at many public facilities, such as city halls, Fulton County offices, and libraries.
Other cities in north Fulton County are conducting elections as well.
Alpharetta has three seats plus the mayor's office up for a vote. Qualifying there runs Monday through Wednesday.
All five city council seats and the mayor's job in Cumming are up for re-election.
Mayor Henry Ford Gravitt and Councilmen Quincy Holton, Lewis Ledbetter and Rupert Sexton have all been at the helm of city government for the past 40 years. Councilmember Ralph Perry joined them in 1979, and Councilman John Pugh is the relative newcomer. He's been on the council since 1993, according to the city's Web site.
Qualifying runs Monday through Friday.
Roswell expects a competitive election season, with three City Council posts up for grabs. Already, six people have indicated they plan to run.
The defining issue is expected to be Roswell East, a $2 billion housing and retail development planned for the intersection of Holcomb Bridge Road and Ga. 400.
The development plan has yet to be submitted to the city, but developer Charlie Brown plans to move ahead shortly.
Tiny Mountain Park also will have a lively election this year. The 500-resident city is governed by a city council of seven members, and a mayor. Three positions will open, as will the slot for mayor.
Sandy Springs does not have an election this year.
Staff writers Mary MacDonald and Nancy Badertscher contributed