Thursday, October 22, 2009

Preserving Milton's Past - Securing It's Future

In tough economic times we need leadership that not only understands what is important to the community but has the requisite experience and ability to make sure our interests are protected. We need leadership that appreciates the true value of our community and will fight for the City we love. Milton is my home and I have dedicated over 15 years to preserving its rural character, open space and the other attributes that makes us unique. I understand the traffic problems we face each day driving our streets and through our intersections. I also understand the importance of both active and passive recreation areas to serve the needs of all citizens. My time spent as Co-Chairman of the Northwest Fulton Overlay and Chairman of the Rural Preservation Steering Committee, along with my professional accounting experience working with businesses and families, affords me the knowledge and insight to both PRESERVE MILTON'S PAST AND SECURE ITS FUTURE.

I am Karen Thurman and I ask for your vote.

Karen C. Thurman

Courtesy Paid for by Thurman for Milton


Anonymous said...

Understanding the issues and being willing to do the right thing when it comes to a vote for the City are two different things. She understands sewer extension but votes for it every time.
Go check and see for yourself.

Anonymous said...

Where was sewer extended exactly? It seems to me less that 15% of Milton has sewer and NO ONE on city council today has ever suggested any more.

Can anyone name a parcel given sewer in the last 3 years that wasn't already on the Fulton county sewer map years ago?

Please stop lying about Karen, Bill and Longoria! Try to win the election on facts and not fear over made up allegations.

Anonymous said...

Bitter issue: Milton council agrees to extend sewer lines
Vote was 4-3 in highly controversial decision; some fear sewer system will end pastoral flavor of area

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A bitterly divided Milton City Council on Monday finally put to rest an issue that has bedeviled the community since its inception — a sewer policy.

The council voted 4-3 to adopt a map and agreement with Fulton County defining where county sewer could go. In many communities, extending sewer is a routine activity. In Milton, it’s been grounds for political combat, leading to the defeat of two incumbents last November, and contributing to the resignation of the city manager after only five months on the job.

Related links:

• Milton sees septic tanks a defense for rural charm

Recent headlines:

Man rescued from creek
Sandy Springs to reward builders who conserve water
Sandy Springs Police Chase Ends in Dunwoody
• North Fulton County news
Milton residents treasure their tree-lined lanes, pastoral vistas and other rural characteristics, and they fear development, especially dense development, will ruin that. Many believe that sewer is an engine for density, and they favor limiting sewer as a way to control growth.

But others argue that density can be controlled through zoning, that sewer in some areas is reasonable, and the city needs the tax revenue from commercial projects.

After three hours of sometimes testy debate, Council member Karen Thurman moved to approve the map and agreement, hammered out by the city attorney and staff. Councilman Bill Lusk seconded. They were joined by Mayor Joe Lockwood and Councilman Burt Hewitt. Opposing the motion were Council members Julie Zahner Bailey, Tina D’Aversa and Alan Tart.

“It’s a landmark,” Lusk said. “We can remove this political football that’s been use and abused and maintain the character of the area that everyone wants, and get on the more important things of running this city. Now we can enforce sewer service and move on.”

The minority vigorously objected to voting Monday night, arguing they hadn’t seen the map until Friday, the agreement until Sunday, and the public hadn’t seen them at all. They lobbied for a work session next week so the details of the map and agreement could be fully vetted.

But Lockwood countered that after months of discussion it was time to make a decision.

The council’s decision establishes borders for sewer to go along Ga. 9 and in some spots in the Crabapple area.

The two sides could not agree on what defined “sewer extension,” the equivalent in Milton political parlance to a curse word. For the minority, sewer extension was defined as providing sewer to any new parcels. For the majority, extension was defined as running it beyond the defined service area.

City Council chambers initially was packed with about 100 people, including some from neighboring jurisdictions who came to watch the climatic showdown. About 20 residents and business owners spoke at the meeting. Although in the past, most speakers have been anti-sewer, on Monday those addressing the council were more evenly divided.

D’Aversa said after the meeting that by approving sewer extension, the City Council had established a dangerous precedent that could haunt the city later.

Zahner Bailey said that some on the council forgot earlier promises to voters.

“You just witnessed four people who claimed to not to support sewer extension vote to extend sewer,” she said. “Sewer equals density.”

Anonymous said...

2009-01-22 MILTON HERALD
Sewer discussion turns into verbal shoot-out in Milton

by Jason Wrightwrite the authorJanuary 19, 2009
MILTON - A discussion concerning Fulton's response to Milton's intergovernmental agreement (IGA) and sewer map passed in September 2008 turned into a verbal smackdown Jan. 12 when council members disagreed yet again whether the map and new provisions constituted "sewer extension."

City Attorney Ken Jarrard and City Manager Mort Smedley had met Jan. 12 with Fulton County Interim County Attorney Larry Ramsey to discuss discrepancies between Fulton's original 2006 sewer agreement and Milton's new one.

Fulton said it wants two things: Milton must recognize existing lines in the ground that would not affect service, which Jarrard said would be no problem. Also seven lots that Milton had not included in its map must be lumped in with the serviceable area.

Jarrard said he's tried to get Fulton to agree to Milton's map, which he said will cover 95 percent of the service area, and that they can negotiate when it comes to those seven lots. If not, everything reverts back to Fulton's original 2006 IGA, rendering Milton's work moot.

He said Fulton authorities have taken it into consideration. Ramsey could not be reached for a comment.

Then Mayor Joe Lockwood opened a can of worms by saying the seven lots probably would not be considered an "extension of service" because they were included in Fulton's map in the first place.

Councilwoman Julie Zahner Bailey took exception to that position and said anything new would be sewer extension. She then said the map passed in September was sewer extension, and hypothesized the whole thing might have something to do with county water and sewer usage being down.

"I don't think we would need to be the tool to increase revenue," she said.

Lockwood, Karen Thurman, Burt Hewitt and Bill Lusk outvoted Zahner Bailey, Tina D'Aversa and Alan Tart to pass the map. At the heart of the issue were those two little words – sewer extension.

Lockwood said that some members "firmly believe [the September map] was not sewer extension." Karen Thurman agreed and asked Community Development Director Alice Wakefield if she thought the map was sewer extension.

Wakefield said no.

Zahner Bailey countered by asking Jarrard if the seven new lots were.

He said yes, under the "working definition used at the time."

After an uneasy silence and several more jabs back and forth, it was decided to let negotiations take their course and see what happens.

Anonymous said...

Regular Meeting of the Milton City Council Monday August 4, 2008 at 6:00 pm Page 1 of 11
This summary is provided as a convenience and service to the public, media, and staff. It is not the intent to transcribe proceedings verbatim. Any reproduction of this summary must include this notice. Public comments are noted and heard by Council, but not quoted. This document includes limited presentation by Council and invited speakers in summary form. This is an official record of the Milton City Council Meeting proceedings. Official Meetings are audio recorded.
The Regular Council Meeting of the Mayor and Council of the City of Milton was held on August 4, 2008 at
6:00 PM, Mayor Joe Lockwood presiding.
Councilmember D’Aversa gave the invocation.
Mayor Lockwood called the meeting to order.
City Clerk Marchiafava called the roll and made general announcements.
Council Members Present: Councilmember Karen Thurman, Councilmember Julie Zahner Bailey, Councilmember Bill Lusk, Councilmember Burt Hewitt, Councilmember Tina D’Aversa, Councilmember Alan Tart
Mayor Lockwood led the Pledge of Allegiance.
City Clerk Marchiafava read agenda item 08-634.
Approval of the Meeting Agenda
Staff recommended the following changes to the Meeting Agenda.
Add an Executive Session to discuss pending litigation.
Under New Business, defer to the August 18, 2008 regular meeting, Approval of two facility use agreements with Hopewell youth Association for baseball programs at Bell Park.
Motion and Vote: Councilmember Thurman moved to approve the Meeting Agenda, as amended.
Councilmember Zahner Bailey seconded the motion. There was no Council discussion. The motion passed
Mayor Lockwood read the rules for Public Comment.
Roger Festa, 540 Champions Hills Drive, Milton, Georgia

Been a developer for 35 or more years.

Past President of North Fulton Home Builders.

State Vice President for the State of Georgia Home Builders.

National Director for the National Association of Home Builders.

To say the least, he has a little bit of experience.

All developers really ask for is a level playing field.

Good developers know what the rules are going into the development.

As long as the rules do not change afterwards, then we feel that is a fair shake.

Expanding sewer to try and bail out developers who have made bad economic business decisions at the expense of the rest of us residents is not good policy.

Worked with Councilmember Zahner Bailey when there was an overlay district for North Fulton before there was an IGA.

There was supposed to be no sewer in this quadrant of North Fulton.

Anonymous said...

Regular Meeting of the Milton City Council
Monday, August 4, 2008, 6:00 PM
Page 2 of 11

The IGA needs some tweaking as to where it is lacking of where sewer should be and where sewer is in Fulton County’s accommodation line.

Specifically, Bethany and Cogburn, which is a residential area.

There are a lot of solutions other than expansion of sewer.

If you look at countries that over crowded, there is community septic that does everything but turn out drinking water.

It would be drinking water if they treated it for Hepatitis B.

If you wanted to develop at the densities that are now allowed there is no reason you could not put in community septic.

Have that water recycled as gray water.

Community septic plant at White Water would be better than sewer.

A septic system is monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week with alarms and with gray water lines run, which would help not only alleviate the drought situation but also provide a lot more ground water back into the table.

Urges Council to modify the IGA, to correct areas that should not have sewer, and do not allow “the camels nose into the tent.”

“The camel’s nose into the tent” is usually followed by the rest of the body.

That means lawsuits.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of developers that do not mind a lot of lawsuits.

We do not need to spend money in litigation.

We need to spend the money on improvement of the City.
That completes Public Comment.

Anonymous said...

Any more questions on sewer extension? Try reading a real newspaper that at least attempts to report the truth. Getting your facts from the Beacon is like getting your facts on the Nation from Matt Damon, or Ashton Kutcher.

Anonymous said...

The Beacon is our very own Soap Opera Digest.
Scandalous Election Headlines.
As Milton Turns ----
You fill in the blanks.

Anonymous said...

Yeah and the People of Milton buy this People-esque sensationalistic crap.

Anonymous said...

please describe a property that was granted sewer extension" that should not have received it. The newspapers call it sewer extension because that was how the argument was framed.

The papers get many things wrong and simply repeating the words used to describe the battle doesn't make it real sewer extension.

I don't want sewer extension - no one does - but some level folks don't want to spend a fortune to fight giving sewer to properties that are surrounded by sewer, in commercial districts and were promised sewer years ago.

That is the point. No sewer extension was granted.

if it was please tell us where and why it is bad for those properties to have it.

Anonymous said...

Dead Economy.

Bankrupt builders.

No building for at least 5 years.

So what was your point anyway!

Lets elect her because she is intelligent and honest.

Anonymous said...

The sewer war is irrelevant.

Someone please say this at the next Birmingham-Hopewell Alliance meeting. These women don't get it yet. SEWER is the only election term they KNOW!