Early Voting – Times & Locations

MONDAY, OCTOBER 16 through FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2017  8:30am to 7:00pm

Weekend voting:
SATURDAY, OCTOBER, 28th – 8:30am to 7:00pm 

SUNDAY, OCTOBER, 29th – Noon to 5:00pm

Johns Creek Environmental Campus
8100 Holcomb Bridge Road

Ocee Library
5090 Abbotts Bridge Road

Dean Gardens Rezoning: The Truth from City Hall, Whose Responsible?

There are a LOT of rumors about Dean Gardens floating around the creek, mostly centered on trying to discredit the Johns Creek Post, and our articles written about the sad demise of the once Jewel of Johns Creek.

In an effort to reaffirm the truth within our posts regarding what happened, below is a video with the AUDIO from the Rezoning hearing.

Besides the Developer attorney, only 1 person, Irene Sanders, advocated in favor for the rezoning.

5 Residents spoke in opposition and ran out of time. More residents were in the audience, eager to speak against the proposal.

Yes! There was a bizarre bathroom break, in the middle of the hearing.

Who made the motion to approve the rezoning for 70 houses?!

Lenny Zaprowski.

Here is the City Council Minutes from the Dean Gardens Rezoning Hearing.
City Council Meeting Minutes for April 21, 2014

Source: City of Johns Creek

Fake Outrage Sweeps Johns Creek

It’s an election year, and nothing works better for politicians than generating fake outrage at non-issues if it keeps residents from talking about real issues.

Ask the Mayor Candidates: If TSPLOST were to be voted on today, would you vote for or against it, and why?

What does Johns Creek, GA, and Houston, TX have in common?

Houston, TX is a very large city in the USA, now ranked #4 in population and size. So how could little Johns Creek have anything in common?  Recently we witnessed some horrific flooding in Houston from Hurricane Harvey, so….how does this apply to Johns Creek?

Remember that Houston is the fastest growing city in Texas over the last 5 to 7 years with a 23% increase in population and housing.  Who is the fastest growing city in North Fulton County measured by density? Johns Creek is more DENSE per square mile than Roswell and Marietta.
Houston is much bigger in land mass and millions of people live there, how can we have any issue similar?  Let’s explore a historical problem that the current leadership in Johns Creek really doesn’t want to address. Storm Water management, what is that?  All of your highways, roads, parking lots, schools have storm drains which capture the rainwater and send it on its way. So why should I care?  Where does it go?
– 
As we continue to develop, build, expand more buildings, roads, highways, parking lots we create less and less land that naturally absorbs rainwater. The compounding effect is much GREATER volume and much GREATER velocity (speed) of water that is no longer absorbed by the undeveloped land.
 –
The current stormwater management system was put in place by Fulton County and the state via (GDOT). The low lying area’s within Johns Creek have retention ponds with earth dams designed to catch the stormwater runoff and slowly release the excess into the Johns Creek or tributaries that lead to Johns Creek or the Chattahoochee River.
The financial structure of this arrangement is that by law the subdivisions or neighborhoods that have these detention ponds must maintain the condition of them at their expense. This costly burden on the homeowner associations benefits the whole City including visitors who travel our roads, and highways safely whenever we have a rain storm. Is this a fair and equitable arrangement created by government?
– 
When Johns Creek became a City, those of us aware of this problem were excited we would get the better attention and solutions to our problem, but after 11 years, it has been ignored.
 –
Allow me to take you through a bit of history and show you the “dirty underbelly” of aggressive growth and high density. The picture below was taken in 2000, this is a backyard in Stonehaven that the Johns Creek river splits the owner’s yard in half. The bridge was built in 1993 the width of the creek/river was 35 feet wide. The water never reached within three feet of the bridge ever. 

In 2009 in the same backyard during the flood, in the middle of the picture below is a locked sewer cap and raw sewerage is coming out. This is NOT in the creek/river but as you can see somehow the sewer system becomes pressurized during the flood. 

The tool shed sitting on a 6-inch concrete pad was 40 feet from the creek bank.

In the 2013 Flood, note the fallen tree that is crashing into that very bridge. While in 2009 was only three years after the city was formed you can see what growth and development can do to a small little creek.

The development of all the property adjacent to the Standard Club on Medlock Bridge Rd, the Mixed-Use Development “Johns Creek Walk”, the Catholic Church and Jewish Temple on Parsons Rd, Emory Hospital also added more development and hardscape. You MUST develop greater infrastructure to deal with these stormwater events BEFORE you widen roads or develop the land. 

Is this the only location in Johns Creek with this issue?

NO, according to the City Manager Warren Hutmacher there are over 110 similar issues regarding stormwater and retention ponds.

Does the city provide any financial assistance to the subdivisions who have these retention ponds that capture all the stormwater runoff and silt from the roadways, parking lots, schools that contribute to this problem? NO.

This is a historical problem that is only growing worse.

The creators of these issues are the state of GA in the form of (GDOT), Fulton County and now for 11 years, the City of Johns Creek. The erosion continues and that sleepy little creek has gone from 35 feet wide to about 55 feet wide. Over 13 trees were lost in the 2013 flood and the shed with about 800 lbs of tools floated away. Fortunately, the shed was stuck between some trees so the owner was able to salvage some tools. A 700 lbs covered swing was swept away.

So as you can see this is very dramatic, yet more development is planned as we discuss this. I have brought up this subject many. many times to the Mayor and City Council and most recently the other night to the Planning Commission. The only thing I can say from my observation is we just might be trying to become the next Houston, TX which would really be sad.

The irony of it all, we form a new city called “Johns Creek” yet we abuse this small body of water which is our namesake? WE NEED T-SPLASH NOT T-Splost first before you actually harm people. This is a safety issue if we continue the “Ostrich” approach of ignoring the issue as the current leadership has done.

Since we’ve become a City 11 years ago what has been done to improve our stormwater management? Absolutely NOTHING…..why? Who in our local government has been here the whole time?

Tom Corrigan

Ask the Candidates: What are your thoughts on creating a park in Johns Creek capable of hosting sports tournaments?

Dispose of Prescription Drugs at JCPD’s ‘Drug Take-Back’ Day Oct. 28

Dispose of prescription drugs at JCPD’s ‘Drug Take-Back’ Day Oct. 28

Who is spreading the “Fake News” Hysteria? Defamatory Comments?

I guess the JCP is good when it is good for them.

Viral Video: “Fake” News Hysterics At Council Meeting

Please view our video compilation of these “Fake News” accusations & personal attacks by Tom Warren during City Council public comments.  Also, which Councilman got upset during this meeting? View the video to discern for yourself. We debunk with the facts.

Do you know how the Johns Creek Post got started? And why it continues? Watch the video to learn why we even exist.

A few Council Meetings ago, one resident Tom Warren called out the Johns Creek Post as “Fake News”.  While his comments were entertaining, it’s simply not accurate.

Readers of the Johns Creek Post have had more links and content to City documents than any other source.

From contracts to draft proposals to budgets to video content, the actual links to the content have been included for the readers to be able to access and see for themselves what is being discussed.

Time and again City Officials have challenged the content as not being factually correct. And yet, the majority of the time they are the source of the facts.

If readers do not like the facts being presented by City Hall, we are certainly not able to do much about that.

Readers also have the privilege to leave comments on items that they find of interest. And, just like all other places where people may leave comments, they may or may not be published.

There are dozens of comments that are indeed filtered because of their content. You be the judge of the following comment below, from this thread Tom Warren wrote to.

Proud to stand up to Nazi scum

Hey, anonymous coward,
Were you in Charlottesville last weekend? Pointy hats and tiki torches? Except you hide behind bogus posts instead of white sheets. No matter, the light of democracy will ferret out you “criticks”. It did in WWII and it will now.

Only wish my crib was worth half a million, but then, I don’t live in CCS.

 

Finally, the values of ALL properties are available at the Fulton County Property Records Website. You can find properties by name or by address. It is public record.

Time and again our City Government has wanted more input from residents. Residents cannot provide input unless they know what is happening. Now we are finding that some only want residents to know what is happening in a manner of which they approve. We say “No Thank You”.

We will continue to provide residents the information, city documents and links to the important issues affecting the residents of Johns Creek.

And we will continue to trust the readers of the Johns Creek Post that they are able to look at the content for themselves and discern the concerns that may affect them.

APPROVED: Water Tower Subdivision Homes

 

This proposed subdivision is squeezed into the land surrounding the water towers. It will only have 1 entrance & exit. In the Comp plan draft, the Citizen Advisory Committee (CAC) recommended that new developments have 2 entrances & exits, to ease up on the congestion. Again, the City Council goes against the resident’s advice it solicits.

In a contentious zoning case that was inundated with CH2 Staff mistakes and errors, ended with approval.

Voted for Approval:

  • Lenny Zaprowski
  • Jay Lin
  • Cori Davenport
  • Mayor Bodker
  • Steve Broadbent

 

Voted to Deny:

  • Chris Coughlin
  • Stephanie Endres

Source: City of Johns Creek

Post 5: Chris Jackson & Stephanie Endres

Below are videos of the questions and answers from the JCP Forum

1) Chris: Communication is an important part of your platform. What do you propose to improve communication?

Stephanie: What have you done in the past 18 months to improve communication?

2) The Arts & Cultural community contributes greatly to the quality of life in Johns Creek. They have been heavily campaigning for the city to pay for a feasibility study, which they contributed to recently.

Should the city invest in a performance arts center? If no, why If yes, how?

3) Johns Creek has many undocumented businesses, specifically work-at-home operations. What do you propose to bring these businesses out of the shadows?

4) Name an element in the City Charter that you would like to change?

5) Chris: Do you think the City should pursue CDBG HUD Grants?

Stephanie: Why are you so opposed to Johns Creek pursuing HUD Grants?

6) What would you like to improve within the City?

Post 3: Vicki Horton, Johns Bradberry & Mark Venco

Post 3: Vicki Horton, Johns Bradberry & Mark Venco

Below are videos of the questions and answers from the JCP Forum

1) Is a town center an appropriate goal?

2) Location unknown. Do you see value for the city to developing a sports complex capable of hosting large tournaments?

3) TSPLOST has been very controversial. What specific projects should the city pursue?

4) Economic Development seems to be the catalyst for many of the failed initiatives the City undertakes. What do you think the city should do for Economic Development?

5) What do you envision the final comp plan to look like?

Announcement Mark Venco For Johns Creek Post 3

  • I share in the traditional conservative beliefs that family comes first and your neighbors go beyond just a few doors down to where you live. Lower taxes and limited government with the purpose of serving the local community should be the focus of a City of Johns Creek public servant.
     –
    With 25 years of corporate management experience working for Fortune 500 organizations, my main focus is to apply that experience, as well as my City of Johns Creek community service as a candidate and move away from the “rhetoric talk” and focus on solutions with residents at a “Residential Node” level that will address the specific problems/issues that are affecting subdivisions and homeowners in their own have a solution. “I’ve listened to other candidates talk about the problems we face in generalities, but rarely do they come up with specific ideas.”
    – 
    Our current process as to how we approach projects within the city is broken. Residents have just about given up and feel that they can’t affect projects that are going on in their own backyards and their immediate surrounding areas. Many times, homeowners are not even aware of projects until construction has begun. I will change that process from the ground up, that includes soliciting greater input from residents, while bringing City Council members directly to the homeowners allowing residents to protect their largest financial asset, their homes.
     –
    Marks Relevant Experience
    City/Community Experience Counts
    City of Johns Creek Citizens Advisory Council – (20 yr. Comprehensive Planning Committee)
    2016/17 Johns Creek Community Association Board Member
    City of Johns Creek Noise Ordinance Committee
     –
    Corporate Experience
    25+ years of corporate management experience with Fortune 500 companies including leading teams in driving solutions to create growth.
    Financial responsibility for top line revenue, EBIT/P&L and operational budgets up to $190M

Ask the Mayor Candidates: When is it appropriate to consider the widening of roads in Johns Creek?

Post 1: Issure & Lenny Forum Videos ~Traffic, Comp Plan, Dean Gardens & Taxes

Below are videos of the questions and answers from the JCP Forum

POST 1: Issure Yang & Lenny Zaprowski

Lenny: What have you done in the past 3.5 years to improve traffic?

Issure: What solutions do you propose to solve our traffic woes?


Issure: What are your thoughts on the current comp plan draft?

*Apologies to Issure, at the end of the video, her last sentence got cut off. She stated:

“We already have traffic issues, why compound it with mixed-use development”.


Lenny: What are your thoughts on the current comp plan draft?

Dean Gardens

What is an appropriate and effective tax rate for homeowners?

Thank you Issure Yang & Lenny Zaprowski for attending the JCP Forum!

JCP Candidate Forum: Smashing Success! Mayor Candidate Alex Marchetti Videos on the Issues

It was a packed clubhouse Sunday afternoon, for the JCP Mayor & City Council Candidate Forum.

Special Thanks to Karyn Greer of CBS46, Medlock Bridge HOA & all of the residents that attended. Thank you!

All the Candidates were in attendance. Unfortunately, Mayor Bodker left early after the introduction, to attend the funeral of a former city employee. Lenny Zaprowski attended the same funeral, as was able to stay an hour longer and answers questions. Below are videos of Alex Marchetti solely answering the questions:

Mayor Seat

On Traffic Congestion

City Contracts

What are some strengths and weaknesses of our police force?

What are your thoughts on how to implement the parks plan and spend the park bond monies?

Should the city be involved in providing workforce housing?

What do you want to do regarding public works outsourced to CH2?

Letter to the Editor: Dismayed Over Lack of HUD Funding

I attended Sunday’s September 17th candidate forum and was dismayed to hear Stephanie Endres’ position on the CDBG (Community Development Block Grant) funding that the City was unable to fully utilize in 2015-2017 cycle and has elected not to apply for in the 2018-2020 cycle. I wish this question would have been posed to all of the candidates instead of just two because this is an important issue.

I believe turning back the CDBG money is an enormous disservice to our at-risk residents and I wanted to share my feedback and concerns. Is Johns Creek a primarily affluent community? Yes. Does this mean we don’t have people living on the edge? NO! Did our City Council consider that every high school in our city has a liaison serving homeless students? NO!

Did our City Council consider that North Fulton Community Charities regularly provides services to Johns Creek residents who cannot afford to make ends meet? Sort of…they did say that they would provide funding to North Fulton Community Charities out of the city’s operating budget, but I imagine it won’t be significant as compared to the amount of CDBG funding we could secure. Did our City Council consult with any of the organizations who provide these services before it made its decision to turn away this funding? NO! Do our citizens understand that this money is not only for brick-and-mortar projects, as Ms. Endres led people to believe during the forum? According to the state’s CDBG information, “The primary purpose of the CDBG program is to benefit low- to moderate income people by developing viable communities, providing decent housing, creating suitable living environments, and expanding economic opportunities.” This is much more than eliminating blight as Ms. Endres would have us believe. What our citizens are being told by our leaders is that CDBG has no use for the City of Johns Creek because we are too wealthy.

According to the state’s CDBG information, “The primary purpose of the CDBG program is to benefit low- to moderate income people by developing viable communities, providing decent housing, creating suitable living environments, and expanding economic opportunities.” This is much more than eliminating blight as Ms. Endres would have us believe. What our citizens are being told by our leaders is that CDBG has no use for the City of Johns Creek because we are too wealthy. The truth is poverty hides in the most affluent neighborhoods. You have no idea how many of your neighbors live paycheck to paycheck, and how many need occasional assistance to make ends meet. Johns Creek had the opportunity to use CDBG funds to benefit our citizens by partnering with North Fulton Community Charities to distribute them appropriately, yet our City leaders made a decision to turn away this money without seeking any input from the organizations who provide these services. I’d like to think that our City has more heart than this, that we would not turn our backs on neighbors in need. We have lost this opportunity for the next three years. I only hope that our next Mayor and Council will do the right thing by contacting North Fulton Community Charities for some hard data, and distributing enough money to NFCC to pay for the services they provide to our citizens on a daily basis.

Alli Neal

IGNORED: Traffic Lights Improvement Discussion

Who knew that a motel/hotel tax & performing arts center feasibility study would be a higher priority than addressing traffic congestion.

In the past several months, the Mayor and City Council have spent many hours discussing those items and not the Traffic lights, despite both being on the same agendas.

The Mayor and City Council have NOT discussed the traffic lights and improvements with the CH2 Public Works staff, despite it being on the agenda, meeting after meeting, it gets ignored.

Hundreds of thousands of dollars are identified in the budget for these suggestions, the City Council and staff have not discussed. Why isn’t this a priority? If this remains in the budget, staff can spend the money on these so-called improvements without City Council input.

Source: City of Johns Creek

Ch2 ‘Perennial’ Public Works Contractor to be Rehired without Competitive Bidding!

Since the City was incorporated Ch2 has been outsourced to handle Public Works and other departments over the years.

According to the City Checkbook, in past 11 years, Ch2 has been paid a total of $49,270,000

The Contract has NEVER EVER been put out for Competitive Bidding.

Councilman Jay Lin has been busy negotiating the new contract.

View CH2 New Contract here…

View CH2 TSPLOST Contract here…

View CH2 Park Bond Contract here…

Another important contract is being renewed. SAFEbuilt, who perform the building permit and inspections for the city, has a lucrative deal. The Revenue-sharing contract is split: 60% to SAFEbuilt – 40% retained by City.

HOAs representing the MAJORITY of households in the city have a shared opinion of concern about the over-regulated permitting the city requires, which has been silenced by city staff and the majority of current elected officials for 12 full months.

View Safebuilt’s Contract here…

Source: City of Johns Creek

Bodker’s Budget Buster Highlights: We Identify the Frivolous Spending

Budget Busters = Unexpected Expenses

Mayor Bodker presented his proposed budget on August 14th, and that budget was to be voted on by the City Council on Sept 11th.  Due to the recent weather event, the new date for that vote will be Sept 19th. The release of the proposed budget occurred prior to the Labor Day holiday.  Clearly, that doesn’t provide much time to go through the 143-page document in sufficient detail, along with the other hefty agenda items such as CH2 renewal contracts.

Bodker states that a driving force in the budget process was cost containment, yet the budget is riddled with overspending.  Below is some highlights:

Across the board, ALL STAFF will receive a 3.3% merit raise, increasing to 3.5% for department heads. This is in addition to a cost of living adjustment (COLA) of 1.5%. Yes, some staff deserve a raise, but ALL?

The city owns and maintains several vehicles for staff to use, but that doesn’t stop taxpayers for footing the bill with extra cash for staff to drive their own cars. Car Allowances are a big expense for the city – $49,560. City Manager department has the biggest cost at $18,360, for 4 employees. That breaks down to an average of $382 per employee EVERY month.

The staff will be well supplied, with $58,190 identified for Folders, Pens, etc.  With 219 full-time employees, that is $269 per worker on folders and pens.

$547,000 is the total for Operating Supplies. This includes important police & fire supplies, IT equipment refresh, and fun events such as the parade, art festival, and recreation activities. There are several items that can be considered frivolous, such as $13,000 for city council meals, $8,000 on shirts for employees ($50 each), and $2,500 for ink cartridges for Park Place.

Education & Training is a HUGE expense, totaling $371,718. City Council’s line item is $38,000 and includes $17,500 for travel expenses. Mayor Bodker is the big utilizer of “education & training”. He frequently travels at the city’s expense for groups and organizations that are not mandatory or essential.

Those organizations Mayor Bodker belongs to are under “Dues and Fees” and total more than $30,000.

The total cost for him to belong to these groups and attend their meetings is $68,000.

“Dues and Fees” budget for the entire city is $196,827. This composes of essential and non-essential organizations for staff.

 

$780,000 is listed for electricity for street lights and traffic signals. It is not indicated if LED lights are used to reduce the energy costs.

The City Manager has expressed a desire to have a facility for storage and maintenance activities in the Central Part of City, for $300,000.

The City Manager has over $300,000 itemized for economic development, consulting & renderings. This includes $18,000 for citizen surveys.

Also of interest is $150,000 for Urban designers and attorney for the UDC. The city has historically spent significantly for plans on redeveloping property it does NOT own. A few years ago it spent over $250,000 on the “District”.

Recently it spent $363,275 on TUNNELL SPANGLER & ASSOCIATES. They are better known as TSW, the group hired to develop the Comprehensive Use Plan draft.

Traffic Lights: The Mayor and City Council have NOT discussed the traffic lights and improvements with the CH2 Public Works staff, despite it being on the agenda, meeting after meeting, it gets ignored.
Hundreds of thousands of dollars are identified in the budget for these suggestions, the City Council and staff have not discussed. Why isn’t this a priority? If this remains in the budget, staff can spend the money on these so-called improvements without City Council input.
Are these unexpected expenses frivolous to you?
Did you know your hard earned tax dollars are to be spent this way?
Source: City of Johns Creek