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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

One Crazy Season - A Look Back At The '06 Election


Part 1.

By Temura Bly;
Accessmilton.com

It is hard to believe that it has been three years since
Milton's first elections.

A total of nineteen candidates threw their names in the hat with the youngest being just past the drinking age and the oldest nearing 70.

Mudslinging, whispers in corners, and assumptions were common place. Some would end up spending a few grand with the hopes of unique ideas bringing them to the finish line while others would pay out an estimated $40,000 and eventually only hold office for a mere 10 months before being dethroned the following year.

Suffice to say, it was a story for the record books!

With another campaign season having recently started, we thought it would be fun to jump back to yesteryear and speak with those who ran in the first Milton,
Georgia election and get some feedback on the experience.

While some answered our questions item by item, others chose to
provide an overall answer. Finally, all responses were confirmed
and verified that they could be posted publiclly. Any candidates
who did not provide confirmation will be refered to as such.

Candidates for Mayor:

Joe Lockwood - Mr. Lockwood did not respond to our inquiry.
George Ragsdale - Mr. Ragsdale did not respond to our inquiry.

District 1:

Karen Thurman - Unopposed in 2006.

1. Why did you choose to run for office?

I felt that as a City Council member I could continue working for the community. It is important to me that the decisions that effect us everyday would preserve the rural character while at the same time insuring the financial stability of our city for many generations.

2. What did you learn about in being a candidate?

Personal agendas sometime get in the way of true public service and facts are often twisted to obtain a desired outcome.

3. If you had 2006 to do over again, would you have done anything differently?

No.

4. Do you have any regrets?

No.

5. For those who are either no longer in office or were not elected, are you still active with the City? If so, please share with us what you've been up to.

N/A

6. Are you pleased with the direction the City of Milton is headed in today?

For the most part. Government by it's very nature tends to take a longer time to get goals accomplished and plans implemented than in the private sector. We have come a long way and I look forward to working to continue setting and implementing the long-term vision of the residents of Milton.

7. If given the opportunity, would you run again?

Yes.

District 2:

Julie Bailey - Julie Bailey did not respond to our inquiry.

Gordon Hunter -

1. Why did you choose to run for office?

I chose to run for office to serve District 2 because I wanted to take an active role in our new city government and to put my previous experience in community service to good use. I had been involved in our community for over 23 years serving as the organizer of a Northwest Fulton Civic Assn when we went to battle with Fulton County over zoning issues in the 80’s and 90’s. It was like David facing Goliath! I had also served on Fulton County Citizen Advisory Boards for Transportation and then for Parks and Recreation. I also served on a North Fulton Revitalization Committee for several years. So I felt that I had plenty of experience and history that showed that I had a willingness and ability to serve.
2. What did you learn about in being a candidate?

I had no misconceptions when I entered the race for District 2 that a political campaign would take lots of time, money, and hard work. It proved to be all of that. I learned that I did not really enjoy the pressures of campaigning. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting people along the campaign trail, but disliked the confrontation of dealing with opponent organizations that pushed ethics over the limit and sought to discredit my past service. It was a very uncomfortable feeling in a community that I thought would be much more fair-minded.

3. If you had 2006 to do over again, would you have done anything differently?

In 2006, District 2 had two males running against a female neighborhood activist. As predicted, the males split their votes and the female went on to avoid a runoff with me by just a very few votes. If I had to do things over again I probably would have tried harder to convince the other male candidate to withdraw from the race early so that votes wouldn’t have split so much! I ran a campaign that took the high road, but it was very difficult to endure some of the tactics that were employed by the opposition. I didn’t want to be negative, but I could have pointed out some character limitations in the opposition that have since created so much of the disharmony that we have seen on our city council. However, that would have been a difficult thing for me to do.

4. Do you have any regrets?

Regrets? I wish that I had been elected for the good of the city. I am certain that there would have been harmony on the new city council from the very start if I had been elected. It has been embarrassing and expensive for the city to have gone through all the conflicts and controversies of the last 3 years.

5. For those who are either no longer in office or were not elected, are you still active with the City? If so, please share with us what you've been up to.

I have still been relatively active in community affairs over the past years and officially served on the Historical Preservation Ordinance Committee. I have been busy on the Christmas Tree Farm and have enjoyed family and church activities.

6. Are you pleased with the direction the City of Milton is headed in today?

I think the city is beginning to come out of the deep pit that the Council dug themselves into due to the personality issues that so dominated the first year or so. I knew that there would be a steep learning curve in leadership, but that is beginning to take care of itself. I think the future can be much better. There are good people in our community that could serve well and so we must be careful to elect the best. We do have many strong personalities in our community and we need to make sure that we elect people to represent us that are good hearted and humble with the ability to work together on all sides of issues.

7. If given the opportunity, would you run again?

At this time I have no desire to run for elected office. I would be happy to volunteer to serve in any way that I could.

Roger Santi - Mr. Santi did not respond to our inquiry.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Gordon, just remember, closeness only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.

Anonymous said...

Gordon, wish I would have voted for you now that I know.

Anonymous said...

Who is the "activist" he is referring to?

Anonymous said...

I think it is Julie.

Anonymous said...

Anyone see the report on the water in Fresno CA?
If we keep electing idiots like JZB, half pint, Tina and mouthpieces like Al & Bernie, we will join the rolls of failed liberal experiments from Cuba to California and beyond. Wake up everyone, for heaven sake.

Anonymous said...

Who was in office for 10 months?
If everyone was sworn in when city started, even runoff, and terms end on December 31st, how does that work? Shortest terms were therefore 13 not ten months. Since that seems to come up, there's a small correction in the interest of accuracy.