BY: The Staff Reporters of Georgia Weekly Post
Messy.. Messy.. Messy.. at the state level, DeKalb County.. the race for the 40th District Senate seat has become more interesting with the recent news that businessman and political newcomer Paul Maner will challenge long-time incumbent Fran Millar in the Republican Primary.
Insiders say Maner is “determined with a take-no-prisoners attitude,” unlimited resources and has won favor from some key conservative legislators.
Another state race sure to draw attention is in the 80th House District where north DeKalb County voters will vote in a special election July 14 from a field of four candidates vying to replace Rep. Mike Jacobs who resigned earlier this year for a seat as DeKalb State Judge. The field includes Republicans J. Max Davis, who resigned as Brookhaven’s first mayor in June, and attorneys Catherine Bernard and Loren Collins. Former Georgia Tech quarterback Taylor Bennett is running as the lone Democrat.
Bernard, who mounted an unsuccessful bid to unseat Jacobs in the 2014 GOP primary, is making waves in Brookhaven, calling out former Mayor Davis for allowing “waste and cover-ups” to establish a beachhead in the young city.
Her political battles over the past decade have given her a reputation for speaking out against the “politics as usual” mindset she says permeates state and local government.
Democrat Bennett, who earned a law degree after several years in professional football, is also calling for political reform in a somewhat milder tone. He says Georgia’s pursuit of commercial growth and a business-friendly climate has ignored the working class. He proposes a policy aimed at attracting business while ensuring workers are not left behind.
Sources on the grounds confirm a strong support of Catherine by several groups and members of the Tea Party. " DGOP - DeKalb Republican party's almost entire leadership is openly supporting Catherine Bernard" said Norb Leahy, Chairman of Dunwoody, GA's Tea Party to Georgia Weekly Post.. Supporters predict a run off among two; Catherine Bernard - the Republican - and Taylor Bennett - the Democrat. All sides are counting votes.
▲ Dennis Shortal and Paul Maner. In a risky move,.both are taking on HENREY VIII. They met at The Meng House of Dunwwody after marching at the wet fourth of July Parade. The sun came out after the Parade. Both were among many invited guests enjoyed an all day Korean BBQ.
The heat is, however, already on in Dunwoody, where incumbent Mayor Mike Davis, who has officially declared, would face a challenge from long-time City Councilman Denny Shortal.
A retired Marine Brigadier General with 32 years of service, Shortal is running on a position of more open and positive government.
The city has weathered several storms under Davis, who is in his first term as mayor.
Defending his leadership for the past four years, Davis wrote to the voters. "When we created the city, we were all focused on our infrastructure needs – I refer to these as the "Three P's": Police, Parks and Paving. We as a City Council have strived to keep these priorities in the forefront of everything we do, which we believe are the same priorities you have", he wrote.
"Policing and public safety are the key to any city's success. Without residents, visitors and workers feeling safe, it is difficult to accomplish much else. We have focused in a major way on ensuring that our citizens feel safe in their own community, but we are also home to many large and small businesses. The ability to shop, dine and move about the city with a confidence of safety is paramount", he added.
"Parks are also important to a city's sense of self. The county never invested heavily in park land in Dunwoody primarily because land was so much cheaper in other parts of the county. Since we’ve acquired our parks from the county, it's been our duty to figure out how best to use the limited land we have. I love what we have done with new parks, playgrounds, trails, and all the other amenities we’ve added in the 5 short years since we won our land back from the county", wrote Mike Davis.
"Paving is also one of the basic functions of a city. We have excellent transportation infrastructure in Dunwoody, and we make sure that our roads stay in top-notch condition so that businesses and residents will continue to find us attractive. This is so important", he said in his open letter to the voters of Dunwoody and his supporters.
According to a political observer, Becky Springer is taking steps to enter the city wide race and challenge Terry Nall.
Some political pundits speculate Springer is able to offer incumbent Terry Nall an early retirement after four years in office.
"She made her intentions very loud to her friends and supporters at a social event very recently", Georgia Weekly Post was informed by a knowledgeable observer.
Nall announced his plans to keep his seat for four more years. He refused to enter the Mayoral race and face his friend Mike Davis. Both are close.
Candidate Pam Tallmadge told GWP that she is interested in joining Springer on the City Council of Dunwoody. " I intend to support Becky in the race to unseat Terry Nall. "She has my full support. I want see Both Nall and Davis gone", she told Georgia Weekly Post.
"Springer, a mother of three - a newcomer - expected to make it official around the middle of July or sooner".
When asked about her future with the parade, " I intend to keep on doing the Parade while serving".
Describing this year's parade, she did not expect bad weather. "It is the first wet parade I know of", she said.
Tallmadge, is well known in Dunwoody, well liked, respected and admired, started to make the rounds.
As soon as the fourth of July became history, she started packing and taking a break from it all and catching up with many school friends in a class reunion in Denver, Colorado.
She and her husband are expected to set up an organization of volunteers and kick off her race for councilwoman.
She wants to be the education councilwoman. She is described as an expert and an advocate, according to her friends.
▲ Attorney Catherine Bernard, dressing the part as she marches at the Fourth of July parade. Will she be the spoiler and hand the democrats a state seat this year? Several members of DGOP were observed working overtly and covertly, endorsing her.