City Council election
What: Vote to fill seats of two City Council members who resigned
When: Qualifying, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. April 27-29; Election: June 16
Where: City Hall, 5517 Main St., Flowery Branch
Flowery Branch voters will head back to the polls in June to decide on new leadership.
The city will hold a special election June 16 to replace two council members who resigned back to back.
The first reading of an ordinance to approve the June election was Thursday at the City Council’s meeting.
Post 1 Councilman Damon Gibbs’ resignation was effective March 1; Post 5 Councilwoman Tara Richards’ resignation will go into effect April 17. Both Gibbs and Richards resigned for job opportunities requiring them to move outside city limits.
Per the proposed ordinance, qualifying for the election will run 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. April 27-29 at Flowery Branch City Hall, 5517 Main St.
The qualifying fee of each post will be $144, which is 3 percent of the annual salary.
Richards’ position runs through December 2017, while Gibbs’ term is over Dec. 31.
“They would have to rerun if they wanted to remain in (Post 1) for 2016,” City Clerk Melissa McCain said.
Concerns over not being able to conduct city business have prompted council members to fill both seats at the same time, rather than wait until the November election for the Post 1 position.
“With the two seats open ... we would be pushed for a quorum with the minimum number, so any absence from any council member or myself, then we couldn’t hold business,” Mayor Mike Miller said. “Heaven forbid there’s a tragic accident or something happens, then we would basically have an insolvent government ... so we felt that it’s best to get it filled as soon as possible rather than hold off.”
A second vote is required for the special election to pass; the council will next meet April 2.
Also at Thursday’s meeting, council gave the go-ahead to Georgia Development Partners to begin construction on the Lights Ferry connector, a 130-foot roundabout at the Lights Ferry Road and Mitchell Street intersection improving access between Ga. 13/Atlanta Highway and McEver Road.
Of eight contractors bidding, Georgia Development Partners came in with the lowest bid at $1.21 million.
“They did a similar roundabout in Duluth (and) did a project down in Morrow and down at Georgia Tech,” City Planner John McHenry said. “They got excellent reviews, so we’re very much looking forward to working with them.”
Construction is expected to take around nine months.