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Mayor Addresses Budget Questions

Peachtree Corners mayor addresses budget concerns in a letter to residents.

Dear Citizens of Peachtree Corners,

After hearing from many of you following our first public hearing on the City’s proposed budget, I’d like to address two common concerns and the perceptions surrounding them: 

Perception:   We [Mayor and Council] are proposing a budget so high we cannot keep the one (1) millage rate promised during the campaign for cityhood.

Fact: The budget is exactly a 1 mill budget, which is what we stated during the campaign.  This 1 mill equates to a $10 per month increase in property taxes on a $300,000 home.

Perception: The Carl Vinson Institute’s Feasibility Study (CVI report) recommended a first year budget for the City.

Fact:  The report, issued in March 2010, solely:

  • Provided the Legislature with an estimated millage rate at which the City was feasible.  The report did not recommend a specific dollar expense budget for a first-year city facing unknown risks and approximately $1,005,000 in one-time start-up costs.
  • Recommended a 1 mill rate, which the state legislature accepted and wrote into our founding charter to ensure the City had sufficient funding to begin operations.  
  • Included, as guidelines, certain assumptions, which are not included in the budget because they are not reasonable (i.e., issuing long term bonds to build a City Hall).

I encourage you to read the proposed budget and the CVI report, noting its last sentence: “…the persons who would be responsible for the initial budget of the new city should be careful in the use of the data presented in this report and should probably add a margin of safety to our revenue estimates.”

During this important start-up phase, we ask that you focus with us on the budget, itself, and specifically:  revenue assumptions; level of service desired; known start-up costs; and, most importantly, the margin of safety needed for those unknown risks we might face.  The Council is committed to being good financial stewards of budgeted funds.

Please join us for the last public hearing on the budget Tuesday, June 26 at 7:30 p.m. at the Robert D. Fowler YMCA.   If you would like me to discuss the budget and the City’s progress at your HOA or civic meeting, please contact me at Mike.Mason@cityofpeachtreecornersga.com.

Thanks for your continued support of our efforts on your behalf.

Respectfully,
 
Mike Mason
Mayor

Bob June 27, 2012 at 10:26 AM
I'm reminded of an old popular phrase, "You can't fight city hall." I suppose it still rings true today.
Tina Russo June 27, 2012 at 08:30 PM
I've been reviewing the budget again today and have some comments. #1. I don't believe that these city employees are exempt from SS as are some Federal employees. If they are, why is there a line item budget for SS/medicare at all. #2. why would we give the city mgr a 25% 401K match and all of the other employees only 17%. I would like to see this 401K plan document. Each employee should be handled the same and the match should be no more than 6%. #3. If we will be paying an accounting manager $85k/year, what is the $50k needed for "Contractual services" to handle AP, AR, Procurement. Heck I could do that job for $20k part-time with no problem. #4. The relocation/temp housing for a new city mgr of $30k should not be necessary. We should be looking for local talent. #5. I haven't really heard anyone mention the "Community Development" budgeted salary of $120k. Plus $75k for Professional svcs - community dev. Tina
Rob Northrup June 28, 2012 at 08:37 AM
If it is so fraught with risk to become a city, perhaps we should cancel the whole city idea...
Rob Northrup June 28, 2012 at 08:38 AM
I don't trust ANY politician to "do the right thing", they need to be constantly watched over or they get delusional with other people's money.
Juan Blanco February 20, 2013 at 09:49 PM
Bob, I know this is old news already, but I do like and very much agree with your thought process. I would like to meet you and have the opportunity to sit down and exchange ideas regarding the new city, it's generous budget, our elected officials, surprising announcement to become landowners, etc... Please contact me via email jblanco@galaxyllc.net. I will forward my cell number privately when I reply to your email. Thanks... Juan Blanco, President Gran River HOA

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