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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Thurman, Lusk Feel Left Out Of Milton City Council

by Jason Wright /www.northfulton.com / Milton Herald

MILTON-- After receiving 6,000 pages of e-mail correspondence by her fellow Milton City Council members, Karen Thurman said it is clear to her she has been left out of the decision-making process.Filed in late February, Thurman's inquiry was largest open records request in Milton's short history.It asked for "all e-mail correspondence between the City Council members and/or mayor and city staff and/or city attorney for 2008," according to her request.The result of digging through the e-mails, according to Thurman?"It clearly confirmed my belief that there were discussions taking place on items that were on our agendas prior to them coming forward for the whole council discussion," she said. "There were back room discussions."

And she said those discussions were had without including her or Councilman Bill Lusk, who previously were part of a 4-3 voting block on important issues. The other two members, Rick Mohrig and Neal O'Brien, were not re-elected in November. Instead they were replaced by Councilmen Alan Tart and Burt Hewitt respectively.Thurman said when she received the correspondence on a CD -- for which she will be charged $181.43 to pay for staff hours on the project -- it became clear e-mail chains were not forwarded to her and Lusk.

She said council members would address an e-mail to Mayor Joe Lockwood or City Manager Chris Lagerbloom, then discuss the question with each other in forwarded e-mails. However, the e-mails were never sent to her or Lusk.Because the e-mails were only sent to the mayor and city manager in the first round, "Chris and Joe probably didn't know," she said."Sometimes I feel like I show up to council meetings and everybody else has information I don't," she said.

She would not say exactly who was excluding her and Lusk, and specifically mentioned only one zoning case where she felt discussions were had without the two of them.

Councilwoman Tina D'Aversa said she was surprised to hear of the request and Thurman's claims."I have not spoken with [Councilwoman Thurman] about this request nor has she asked me for any information or to justify any situation where she was left out of appropriate council communication," she said. "I would need specifics to believe there is an initiative to leave a council member out of appropriate council communications. As far as I am aware, the city staff has been good to copy all council members on appropriate communications."

Lusk, who had seen some of the e-mails, agreed that they showed "an intentional effort to exclude her and me."The councilman said he hasn't talked to the other council members about Thurman's research."They know what they are doing and they know I know," he said.
"Obviously these people don't want to discuss it."

Mayor Joe Lockwood said he didn't think there was merit to Thurman's claims."When it comes to city affairs, everyone gets the same information," he said.Lockwood, who has recently been in conflict with Thurman over the 5-2 decision to move council meetings to Mondays (a CPA, she comes late due to tax season), said he thinks the feeling of being left out is due to a shift in dynamics on council after November's election, one which saw his endorsed slate of candidates voted in."Now everything is openly discussed in meetings," he said. "There's a shift in influence she doesn't like."

Lockwood added that he knows what it is like to be part of a marginalized clique, referencing the 4-3 split on council that sometimes saw him, D'Aversa and Julie Zahner Bailey voted down."I want to make sure that doesn't happen again on council anymore," he said. "The public spoke loud and clear in November that they won't stand for any back door games or behind-the-scenes stuff."

The other four members of council echoed his sentiments about Thurman's claims."When I came in here I certainly though council people Lusk and Thurman had value to add," said Hewitt.Tart said he thought the divisiveness on council was left in November's elections."I'm ready for everyone to move forward," he said. "The sooner we get that done, the better for Milton."

Thurman said she not trying to create any conflict on council."I'm just there trying to do what I feel I was elected to do," she said.

33 comments:

Anonymous said...

"I'm just there trying to do what I feel I was elected to do"

The question is: What do you feel you were elected to do?

Anonymous said...

As Milton Turns, Episode 92.
The soap continues. Edited by CH2M Hill. Actors Thurman and Lusk. Karen Thurman in a special appearance as Erica Kane. Bill Lusk, the guy who knows people in town and secretly plots revenge. Mark Scott, written off last episode. The plot thickens. Wait, isn't this supposed to be a new season?

Anonymous said...

awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww
puddin!

whaaa whaaa hicup waaaaaaa
I want my mommy!

Hey Karen I know of a great daycare for you and Bill. There you can play councilbabies. Bill can build a city for you out of building blocks while you run around being a brat tearing the city apart.
At least with the two of you in there the real Milton can be kept out of harms way.

Anonymous said...

Okay, so coucilman Hewitt felt they had value to add, but what does he bring to the table? Former Councilman O'Neil at least spoke during meetings! Maybe the council should order a moratorium on speaking to the press so they all stop embarrising the city!

Anonymous said...

It is much better to be quiet and have someone "think" you are a fool, than to open your mouth and prove them right!

You have got to be kidding, saying "at least O'Brien spoke".
Did he ever "speak", what an idiot!

(Not the blogger)!

Anonymous said...

The Jerry Spring blog continues ad nausium

Anonymous said...

The council and Milton employees will never be happy until "Mayor" Zahner" is....
gone
gone
gone

Anonymous said...

DISSOLVE MILTON.....BACK TO FULTON COUNTY !!!

Anonymous said...

Don't overreact....

Time heals everything.

Anonymous said...

Wait a minute, did Thurman say she was doing what she was "elected" to do?

Did anyone elect her? Is she electable? Just read all of the bad press that Milton has gotten in the last year and I will bet you over 80% of it has her name on it!

Anonymous said...

Karen has accomplished more than you...a simple bloggite.

Anonymous said...

Lets just say Karen and Bill donated their free time to help selfish, inconsiderate creeps like you.

Anonymous said...

How do you know that they have accomplished more than your fellow bloggite?

Anonymous said...

Naughty, naughty, the Easter Bunny is not coming to see you if you don't stop saying bad things to bloggite and inconsiderate creeps.

Anonymous said...

What has she done that has been good for Milton. Name one thing?

Anonymous said...

Didn't she miss some council meetings after day was changed, this should qualify as a good thing.

Anonymous said...

Yeah its very healthy to plan meetings you know everyone can't attend.

Great management skills there.

Anonymous said...

Why can't the bean counter reschedule her work to comply with new meeting day? It's not like she works on the swing shift, with an employer that will not grant time off for any reason other than sickness.

Anonymous said...

She didnt like the meeting change date only because it wasnt her idea and she could tell her weak followers, Neal, Rick, and Bill to do what she wanted, and that is the only reason she didnt show up on Mondays.

If she uses the excuse that she works for a CPA and it is tax time, well they are busy every day of the week, not just Mondays at tax time.

Anonymous said...

Why do you care so much idiot?

Anonymous said...

Why do you care so much idiot?

Anonymous said...

Don't ask, she has no life.

Anonymous said...

IDIOT..."Whatchoo talkin' about Willis?"

Anonymous said...

Let's see...if the article has any merit... Thurman obtained open records without telling the other council members except Bill Lusk... then she let only Bill Lusk peruse the records she received... now she publically claims the other council members are leaving THEM out of communications?

Anonymous said...

Well continuing your logic, we only need 1 person to run Milton.

Anonymous said...

This just shows what kind of person Thirman really is. When she had her secret little group and could control from the underground then she was fine, but now that she has to play on equal ground, she cant stand it and is trying to cause trouble.

Anonymous said...

Political Sherlock.....

Everything seems crystal clear from your couch....

Anonymous said...

Stirman.....you know like...the more you stir it the more it stinks.

Anonymous said...

No, you were not following my logic at all! My comment was about Thurman doing exactly what she's accusing other council members of.

Anonymous said...

Reading all of this, I want to go back to Fulton. All of you people are nuts and evil.

I don't want anything to do with you.

Anonymous said...

You weren't follwing me...Thurman the Vermin is the Stirman...get my drift now?

Anonymous said...

Isn't Tom Wilson running the City? He sits on a throne.

Anonymous said...

Nice picture of Mr. Lusk.