Monday, March 30, 2009

Peachtree City at Fork in the Road

Without question Peachtree City is at a unique time in its history. We stand at build out, recession, some experts now saying depression, and a Council that has two different views of what the Comprehensive Plan and Vision say and mean. To this we must add very different visions of what Peachtree City needs for the future.

The votes on abandoning parts of the Line Creek roadways, the Special Use Permit to build Big Boxes and a Super Size Retail Development and the recent light application at Line Creek on 54, all 3-2 votes, are prime examples, from this development alone, of those differences. These votes were all to enable an over sized Big Box development that Peachtree City has made clear it did not want or need.

Now we have the issue of the Hyde annexation and rezoning request. Will that end in yet another 3-2 to approve? I hope not.

This needs to be put off until there is a clear understanding of need for Peachtree City, which will be years away, or maybe never.

We also have the issue of the rezoning of property in the Industrial Park to residential to build large two story and expensive downsizing homes, which they are not, next to industry and about 90 feet from the Falcon Field runway buffer zone. A major mistake if allowed.

Clearly, we are at a fork in the road where each path constitutes a very different future for Peachtree City. One path has Peachtree City keeping its Village Concept and Vision. The other is the old 'Build it and they will Come' thinking that dominated such as Cobb and Gwinett for decades, resulting in what many moved here to escape.

This election will set the path and mile marker for out future journey as a city.

Do things change over time? Absolutely. In example, we cannot plan as if we are a commuter driven community any longer. The stats and other data confirm that reality has been disappearing for the last decade.

What is happening to the economy also is a demonstration that things change.

Does it mean we cannot come out of this unique time better than what we were? Absolutely not. We have so much untapped potential to make Peachtree City even more attractive as a place to live than it has ever been before.

The key element we must change is our focus. It must be on good jobs that pay enough for people to live here. We need to stay focused on what attracted so many of us to come here over time; being low crime, sense of neighborhood, good schools and the Path System. Our goal must be to keep and grow our Vision in a new way, using a new economic engine, with growth by redeveloping what we have to be better than what it replaces, not annexing in new property to build on, while leaving the old to become blight.

Future annexation must be only for compelling need or something too good to pass up. Not annexation for growth's sake.

So... this election is when the voters of Peachtree City will choose the future of Peachtree City via whom you elect.

If you agree with me, then I ask for your vote in my bid to be Mayor. I also would ask that you consider helping defray the costs of running for Mayor, since historically it has proven to be an expensive venture for most.

I will be buying signs, handouts and maybe campaign buttons. I will not be spending money on mailers and telephone campaign calls, which I dislike getting myself.

Special Interest groups have historically poured thousands of dollars into their candidates for Mayor. I am only asking for 5, 10, $20, or whatever one feels comfortable with donating.

Who will be running against me I do not know. All I know is there is a group looking to fund someone.

If so inclined, you can send such contributions to:

Elect Don Haddix Mayor
7 Dover Trail
Peachtree City, GA. 30269

Your help and vote will be greatly appreciated.

Please remember that all Council Post Seats are critical to where the next Council will take Peachtree City. So please consider everyone carefully and then vote on November 3rd. It is your City and you will be choosing its future.

If you have questions on any topic, please contact me via the information listed below.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Don Haddix
Mayoral Candidate

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