Plenty of Work Ahead for City Council
The mayor and six council members face a myriad of details and decisions in the coming weeks.
It was down to business for the Peachtree Corners City Council at Tuesday night's Special Called Work Session as they hammered out details on getting the new city up and running.
On the agenda was discussion of renting office space for the city hall, discussions on banking institutions that will handle the city's accounts, billing and collection of ad valorem taxes, organizational structure of the city and setting up a call center to respond to residents' queries.
The meeting, held at the Robert D. Fowler YMCA, began at 7:30 p.m. and didn't adjourn until 9:45 p.m. All council members were present with the exception of Phil Sadd (Post 1) who was out of town on business.
"We're going to beat this to death till we get it right," said Mayor Mason at the end of the evening. "It all comes down to how best to serve the citizens of Peachtree Corners."
The city's consultant John McDonough reported back on his findings on available office space to lease to serve as temporary facilities for city hall.
"Believe it or not, there's not a lot of space available in the 4,000 to 8,000 square-foot range," (which is what is projected the city would need) said McDonough. "It's a tight market for smaller space right now."
The city is looking at Class B+ space in the $11 - $19 per square foot price range.
In an agreement worked out with Gwinnett County, the tax commissioner has agreed to handle the tax billing and collection for the city. Property owners will not receive a separate bill from the city, rather there will be an additional line on their county tax bill indicating the amount of the city taxes. Tax bills will be mailed on August 15 and due on October 15.
The City Council also heard reports on the process of estimating revenue and planning for unexpected expenses. A draft expenditure presented included a projected $2,869,225 would be needed annually. The figure included a dedicated reserve amount of $500,000.
Discussion included how many staff members would be needed. Consultant John Kashmar recommended a city manager, city clerk, accounting manager, an administrative assistant and a planning & zoning manager who would oversee the contract workers hired by the city.
Kashmar suggested getting a planning and zoning person in place as soon as possible.
Last on the agenda was a discussion on setting up a call center to handle questions for the city's citizens. The cost would be determined, said Kashmar, by "what level of service do you want to provide for your city."
The City Council meets again next Tuesday. Unless notified otherwise, the meetings will be held at 7:30 p.m. at the Fowler YMCA.
Peachtree Corners Patch will announce the agenda for the May 29th meeting as soon as it's available.