Responsibility and Accountability
There is a pattern that has been repeating itself in Johns Creek that Councilman Bradberry addressed during the January 17, 2019 City Council Work Session. That pattern involves information being provided to the public, typically associated with contentious decisions facing the Council, that is subsequently found to be inaccurate. The most recent example was the repeated assurance that Peachtree Corners has definite plans to add a Michigan Thru U (MTU) at State Road 141 and East Jones Bridge Road. That assertion was provided in response to resident concerns about Johns Creek’s consideration of MTU configurations at the Medlock Bridge Road/141 and State Bridge Road intersection. That assurance was given by City Staff, City Manager Warren Hutmacher, and Mayor Mike Bodker.
Councilman Bradberry took the time to research the claim that Peachtree Corners was planning to install a MTU in their city. He learned that Peachtree Corners had no such plans. Indeed, upon learning that Johns Creek was promoting a story that they had such plans, Peachtree Corners contacted City Manager Hutmacher requesting that the record be accurately corrected, and any such references be removed from Johns Creek documents. As of January 17, 2019, Johns Creek officials had failed to respond to the Peachtree Corners request.
The discussion in the video below is well worth the time to better understand how decisions in Johns Creek seem to be guided and orchestrated to a conclusion.
Another example of this pattern of spreading false information that is subsequently found to be inaccurate is associated with TSPLOST. Prior to the vote on TSPLOST, Johns Creek residents were told repeatedly that the list of potential projects shared with the public were simply budgets. Residents were assured that no TSPLOST effort would move forward without first being presented to the City Council for their review and approval.
Six months after TSPLOST was approved by the narrowest of margins, city residents were told that we were bound to a very strict definition of projects, and that our elected officials had no discretion over TSPLOST decisions.
In both instances, repeated claims that were subsequently proven to be false were waved away with the statement that information was shared that was thought to be true at the time, and that the information was corrected once it was clear that the claims were inaccurate. In the case of TSPLOST, that was well after the vote was held.
Ironically, the Johns Creek website recently added a “Hot Topics” page to combat what was claimed to be inaccurate information.
Our City Council must necessarily make decisions based on the best available information. Voter likewise depend upon the veracity of information and claims communicated to them. We applaud Councilman Bradberry for doing the research necessary to correct inaccurate information, and for bringing it to light. We need more diligence like this on display at our City Council, and look forward to greater transparency and accuracy in communications.