by Robin Kemp
Good Monday morning from the Gold Dome, where lawmakers are considering House Bill 531, which critics say would limit voters’ access to the polls, especially absentee voters, and backers say would prevent election fraud, which Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said was not an issue during the last two elections. Demonstrators are gathering outside the Capitol despite the rainy day. We’re here all day and will continue to update as events warrant.
Back in Clayton County, here’s what’s going on this week:
- Monday, March 1
- 6 p.m.: The Forest Park City Council holds its work session, followed by the 7 p.m. regular meeting. On the preliminary agenda: The council will vote on the city’s Urban Redevelopment Plan, as well as consider a contract with Onsite Laboratories Inc. for COVID-19 testing, an amendment to allow indoor shopping centers and flea markets, and a drive-through job fair for AMB Aviation March 10 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Hines Ward Pass. Rep. Kim Schofield will speak on behalf of the CROWN Act; Lamont Jones will talk about Fathers Incorporated, a mentoring program for young fathers; a COVID-19 update; legislators are asking cities to pass similar laws. State officials are also asking the city to back HB 151, which would remove the ad valorem tax break for Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. The idea is to get the airport to put money back into the Clayton County Public Schools Access after the Federal Aviation Administration ruled the county could not collect taxes on jet fuel. Join the meeting on Zoom at https://bit.ly/2O9iK2Q using meeting ID 838 0124 7852 and passcode 961713, or join by phone by dialing (301) 715-8592, with the same meeting ID and passcode listed above if prompted. You can submit your public comment before 4 p.m. at https://www.forestparkga.gov/city-clerk/webform/alert-click-here-submit-public-comment-mayor-and-council-meeting-public-comments.
- 6 p.m.: The Jonesboro City Council’s work session will address three zoning-related matters, whether to include Turner Road in the Gateway South District Overlay; police chain of command, meetings, and procedures for use of force; volunteer litter pickup; and concrete walkways and public art installations on Broad Street. Join the Zoom meeting via https://us02web.zoom.us/j/2148237355 with Meeting ID: 214 823 7355 or call (929) 205-6099 and enter the same meeting ID followed by the pound (#) sign. See the agenda packet at http://jonesboroga.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=1&ID=1331&Inline=True
- 6:30 p.m. Clayton County’s Zoning Advisory Group meets online. Register at https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_CUrJDeY6QlWnARHdGsPa2g
- The Clayton County School Board is meeting online; you can watch at https://youtu.be/PiX73yUfViI and read the agenda at https://simbli.eboardsolutions.com/SB_Meetings/ViewMeeting.aspx?S=4038&MID=91166.
Tuesday, March 2
6:30 p.m.: The Clayton County Board of Commissioners holds its regular business meeting. The consent agenda contains the BOC’s legislative wish list for state officials, as well as contracts for landscaping, IT, fuel and diesel, disposition of old equipment, purchases for Clayton County International Park, and approval of a CCFES grant application to the Georgia Firefighters Standards and Training Council 2021 Fireworks Tax Grant. Also on the list: permission for Commissioner Gail Hambrick and Reverend Joseph Wheeler to hold the 4th Annual Lovefest Gospel Concert at the Clayton County International Park’s St. Thomas Pavilion on April 17; the ongoing BOC Code of Conduct debate; a new “timber harvesting” ordinance for subdivisions that requires harvesters to give notice to the county; changes to zoning for halfway houses and drug and alcohol rehabs. Also up for consideration is who will fill Jean Claude Bourget’s seat on the Development Authority (which is Commissioner DeMont Davis’ appointment), as well as Deborah Green’s seat (Chairman Jeff Turner’s appointment). Commissioner Sonna Gregory and Davis also have Animal Control Board appointments to fill. More details are in the agenda packet.
Wednesday, March 3: TBA
Thursday, March 4
6 p.m.: The City of Forest Park is hosting an online discussion of “Unity and Healing in the Community” that features several local Christian pastors. Anyone with questions can contact Councilwoman Kimberly James at email@example.com or (770) 473-2775.
Friday, March 5: TBA
Saturday, March 6
10 a.m.: Commissioner Gail Hambrick hosts the District 2 Community Meeting online with CCFES Chief Landry Merkison, Office of Youth Services Administrator Nicole Horne, and IT Dierector Jason Brookins. Topics include smart pedestrian pathway planning, resiliency, and vaccinations. Sign up at https://tinyurl.com/4rstdamb for a confirmation e-mail and link to the meeting. Send your questions in advance to firstname.lastname@example.org or call (770) 473-5751.