Georgia Politics, Campaigns and Elections for March 11, 2024

11
Mar

Georgia Politics, Campaigns and Elections for March 11, 2024

On March 11, 1779, Congress created the United States Army Corps of Engineers.

On March 11, 1861, the Confederate Congress, assembled in Montgomery, Alabama, adopted the Constitution of the Confederate States of America. Today the original signed manuscript of the Confederate Constitution is in the Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library at the University of Georgia Special Collections Libraries.

On March 11, 1942, General Douglas MacArthur obeyed the President’s order dated February 20, 1942, and left the Philippines.

On March 11, 2005, Brian Nichols shot and killed Fulton County Superior Court Judge Rowland Barnes and court reporter Julie Brandau in the Fulton County Courthouse, leading to a lockdown of the state capitol and a number of nearby buildings. Nichols killed two more before taking a young woman hostage in Duluth; that woman, Ashley Smith, would talk Nichols into surrendering the next day. Nichols was eventually convicted for four murders and is serving consecutive life sentences.

Happy Birthday to former Governor Roy Barnes, who served from 1999-2003, and lost to Republican Sonny Perdue in 2002, and to current Governor Nathan Deal in 2010.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns and Elections

Voters go to the polls tomorrow for the Presidential Preference Primary Election, according to WRDW.

In Richmond County

Election Day voting will be available from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on March 12, and all polling locations in Augusta-Richmond County will be open.

Voters must report to their assigned precinct to vote on Election Day.

All voters voting in person whether in advance or on Election Day must provide one of the six acceptable forms of photo identification.

Mail-in ballots must be received by 7 p.m. March 12.

On Election Day, all regular and established precincts will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. in Columbia County.

State House District 125 has a Special Runoff Election, according to the Augusta Chronicle.

Georgia House District 125 runoff: The district includes western Columbia County. The battle is for attorney Barry Fleming’s former legislative seat, after he resigned to accept an appointment to a superior court judgeship. The two Republicans running for the seat are former Columbia County Commissioner Gary Richardson, who runs a chain of area car washes, and C.J. Pearson, 22, a Grovetown resident perhaps best known for drawing national attention as a middle-schooler for his online videos with a conservative slant.

Because the presidential preference primary and the runoff election fall on the same day, March 12, voters eligible to participate in both elections will have to either cast their ballots on separate voting machines or submit two absentee ballots. “We realize this may be confusing, but this is what law requires,” the Columbia County Board of Elections said on its website.

All Columbia County voters can vote in the preference primary. District 125 voters can cast ballots only in 15 of the county’s 46 polling places.

President Trump headlined a rally in Rome yesterday. From the Associated Press via the Athens Banner Herald:

President Joe Biden said Saturday that he regretted using the term “illegal” during his State of the Union address to describe the suspected killer of Laken Riley, as his all-but-certain 2024 GOP rival, Donald Trump, blasted the Democrat’s immigration policies and blamed them for her death at a rally attended by the Georgia nursing student’s family and friends.

“I shouldn’t have used illegal, it’s undocumented,” he said in an interview with MSNBC’s Jonathan Capehart taped in Atlanta, where the president was meeting with small business owners and holding a campaign rally.

Trump, campaigning in Rome, Georgia, at the same time, blasted Biden for the comments.

“Joe Biden went on television and apologized for calling Laken’s murderer an illegal,” he said to loud jeers and boos. “Biden should be apologizing for apologizing to this killer.”

Trump was joined at his rally by Riley’s parents, her sister and friends and met with them before he took the stage. They were welcomed with a standing ovation and large signs handed out by the campaign that featured Riley’s photograph and the words “SAY HER NAME!” “REMEMBER OUR ANGELS,” they read on the back.

“We share your grief,” Trump told them in his remarks.

Trump, in a lengthy speech that lasted nearly two hours, hammered Biden on the border and for mispronouncing Riley’s name during his State of the Union address this past week.

“What Joe Biden has done on our border is a crime against humanity and the people of this nation for which he will never be forgiven,” Trump charged, alleging that Riley “would be alive today if Joe Biden had not willfully and maliciously eviscerated the borders of the United States and set loose thousands and thousands of dangerous criminals into our country.”

He contrasted his rhetoric with Biden’s — “I say he was an illegal alien. He was an illegal immigrant. He was an illegal migrant” — and accused Biden, who has long been seen as an empathetic leader, of having “no remorse. He’s got no regret, he’s got no empathy, no compassion, and worst of all, he has no intention of stopping the deadly invasion that stole precious Laken’s beautiful American life,” Trump said.

Among those who attended the rally was Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, who represents Rome in Congress and yelled at Biden during Thursday’s State of the Union to “Say her name!”

Trump campaign senior adviser Chris LaCivita slammed Biden for apologizing for his language and not to Riley’s family.

“He should be apologizing to the family as opposed to apologizing for the word that he used which is an accurate description,” he told reporters before Trump took the stage, blasting the response as “tone deaf” and highlighting the candidates’ “two very distinct differences in approach on the border invasion.”

From the AJC:

Former President Donald Trump Saturday blasted District Attorney Fani Willis, saying she had enriched herself by prosecuting him and other defendants in the Fulton County election interference case.

The former president cited allegations that Willis had benefitted financially by hiring Nathan Wade to oversee the case. Defense attorneys in the case say Wade then paid thousands of dollars for trips they took to Aruba, Napa Valley and other locales.

“Corrupt Fani Willis hired her lover Nathan Wade so they could fraudulently make money together,” Trump said. “‘Let’s see, darling, who can we go after?’”

Trump called the case a “witch hunt” and said it should be dismissed.

“We did nothing wrong,” he said, “other than we challenged the honesty of this election. This election was rigged.”

On Saturday, Trump cited the accusations against Willis in a speech at Rome’s Forum River Center. He mocked the Willis-Wade relationship as “almost a beautiful love story.”

“They went on these magnificent cruises,” Trump said. “And they got [Wade] because he’s paying a fortune for taking more vacations than anybody has ever taken… with money made wrongfully prosecuting me and other innocent American patriots.”

“They went after me. Now she’s in trouble because she’s taking money that she just gave him,” Trump said. “She said she gave it back in cash. That’s a lie. That’s a total lie.”

The Rome News Tribune has a great photo gallery from the event last night.

Under the Gold Dome Today: Legislative Day

TBD Senate Rules: Upon Adjournment – 450 CAP
8:00 AM Cancelled- Senate Banking Sub – Mezz 1 CAP
8:00 AM Senate Transportation – 450 CAP
9:00 AM HOUSE RULES – 341 CAP
9:00 AM Senate Approps: Economic Dev Sub – 310 CLOB
9:30 AM Senate Approps: Education/ Higher Ed Sub – 307 CLOB
9:30 AM Senate Regulated Industries & Utilities – 450 CAP
10:00 AM HOUSE FLOOR SESSION (LD33) – House Chamber
12:00 PM Senate Floor Session (LD 33) – Senate Chamber
1:00 PM HOUSE EDUCATION – 506 CLOB
1:30 PM HOUSE Judy NC Hong Sub – 132 CAP
2:00 PM HOUSE Reg. Ind. Occup / Prof Licensing Sub – 606 CLOB
2:00 PM HOUSE HEALTH – 403 CAP
2:00 PM Cancelled- Senate Agriculture – 450 CAP
3:00 PM HOUSE PUBLIC HEALTH – 506 CLOB
3:00 PM HOUSE DEFENSE & VETERANS AFF– 406 CLOB
3:00 PM Senate Health & Human Services – 450 CAP
3:00 PM Senate Government Oversight – 307 CLOB
3:30 PM HOUSE JUDY NC UPON ADJMT HONG SUB – 132 CAP
4:00 PM Senate Finance – Mezz 1 CAP
5:00 PM Senate State & Local Govtal Ops – 125 CAP
5:00 PM Senate Judiciary – 307 CLOB
6:00 PM Senate Ethics – 310 CLOB

The State House last week passed their version of the FY 2025 state budget, according to the Savannah Morning News.

The budget, dubbed House Bill 916, allocates funding for all state departments, programs and employees from July 1 to June 30, 2025. Passing the budget is the only thing legislators are constitutionally required to complete during a legislative session.

This year, legislators estimated that the state revenue increased by $3.6 billion, or 11.3%, compared to the estimate for the 2024 budget.

“We really and truly have one job in this state capitol, and that is to be the appropriators,” said state Rep. Matt Hatchett (R-Dublin), who chairs the House Appropriations Committee. “If we can’t do that, why are we here?”

The new proposal included 1,170 lines of changes from Gov. Brian Kemp’s version of the budget, Hatchett said, with many of the changes aimed at tackling issues like wage stagnation for government workers, staffing shortages and lack of infrastructure. Here are some of the highlights from HB 916:

The FY 2025 budget includes $4.6 million to increase reimbursement rates for the Childcare and Parent Services (CAPS) program. Lawmakers hope that with a combination of state and federal funds, reimbursement rates for childcare providers will improve Georgia’s standing nationwide.

With primary as well as general (and likely runoff) elections on the horizon, the 2025 budget has included funds to bolster election security, including $2.5 million for the Secretary of State’s office to cover “third-party ballot-text auditing technology” that would allow election officials to certify the results without relying on QR codes.

The budget also includes about $405,000 to fund four investigators who will help address complaints submitted to the Elections and Professional Licensing Boards Divisions, as well as $146,000 to fund State Elections Board investigations.

The FY25 budget included funds to increase Medicaid reimbursement rates, which legislators say will ensure that those on Medicare will be better able to access necessary healthcare services.

“Adequately compensating providers ensures access to care,” Hatchett said. “That’s why the House funds $27 million in Medicaid provider rate adjustments, including the Georgia Pediatric Program or GAP, speech therapists, audiologists, physical therapists and occupational therapists, primary care physicians and obstetricians, and optometrists, to name a few. The House also provides $9.6 million to include basic dental care as a covered service for the Medicaid population.”

The House also proposed allocating $3.2 million to create a crisis stabilization unit in Macon, which would be the first support center for adults with disabilities.

From the Associated Press:

Pay raises for Georgia public school teachers and state employees took a step forward Tuesday, as the House Appropriations Committee approved a spending plan for the budget year that begins July 1.

The budget would spend $36.1 billion in state money and $66.5 billion overall, including federal and other funds. The full House will vote on the measure on Thursday, with Senate debate to follow.

Spending would actually fall after lawmakers amended this year’s budget to sharply increase outlays. After Gov. Brian Kemp signed the amended spending plan last week, Georgia will have spent $38 billion in state revenue and $68 billion overall in the year ending June 30.

Public school teachers would get a $2,500 raise beginning July 1, boosting average teacher pay in Georgia above $65,000 annually, as the Republican governor proposed in January. That’s in addition to a $1,000 bonus Kemp sent out in December, a move lawmakers ratified when they amended the current budget. State and university employees also would get a 4% pay increase, up to $70,000 in salary. The typical state employee makes $50,400.

Combined, that’s more than $600 million in pay raises. Teachers previously received $7,000 in raises during Kemp’s first five years in office.

State law enforcement officers would get an additional $3,000 bump, atop the $6,000 special boost they got last year. Child welfare workers would also receive extra $3,000 raises.

Many judges would also get a raise under the plan. The House proposes spending more than $10 million to implement half of a plan to raise and standardize judicial pay, with House Appropriations Committee Chairman Matt Hatchett saying the second half would come next year. The plan would link top pay for judges to what federal judges in Atlanta make. State Supreme Court justices could see their pay rise from $186,000 to more than $223,000, while Court of Appeals judges could see their pay rise from $185,000 now to $212,000.

Adults who get health insurance from Georgia’s Medicaid program would get basic dental care covered for the first time, at a cost of $9 million in state money, or $28 million once federal money is included.

Georgia State House Democratic Leader James Beverly (D-Macon) is not running for reelection, according to the Macon Telegraph.

House Minority Leader James Beverly of Macon told The Associated Press in a Thursday interview that he’s stepping down to seek other ways to serve the public. Beverly said the decision was driven in part by a redrawn district that introduced new territory and the recognition that Democrats are unlikely to win a majority in the 180-member House in this year’s legislative election.

Beverly is the second top legislative Democrat to announce he’s stepping down. Senate Minority Leader Gloria Butler of Stone Mountain announced her retirement last month.

But unlike the 82-year-old Butler, Beverly is 55. He said there’s a chance he’ll run for office again in the future, although probably not as a House member.

One motivation for his decision is that Democrats, who now hold 78 seats House, did not benefit strongly enough from recent court-ordered redistricting to give them a realistic chance to win a majority in this year’s legislative elections.

“I don’t know that we flip the House, so being speaker or something like that, probably not in the stars at this point,” he said.

First elected to the House in a 2011 special election, Beverly took over his caucus in November 2020 after former House Minority Leader Bob Trammell lost his reelection bid. With the departure of Beverly and Butler, it means Republicans and Democrats in both the House and Senate will get new leaders in a span barely longer than two years.

Beverly said he’ll back a candidate to succeed him in House District 143, which now covers parts of Macon-Bibb and Houston counties. However, Beverly said he won’t try to influence who succeeds him as Democratic leader.

All United States House of Representatives members from Georgia drew opposition, according to the Athens Banner Herald.

While 10 of the 13 congressional incumbents seeking reelection will not face a primary challenge, three others will have win party primaries on May 21 to advance to the general election in November.

Rep. Lucy McBath, D-Marietta, who is running for another two-year term in the newly redrawn 6th Congressional District, is being challenged for the Democratic nomination by Cobb County Commissioner Jerica Richardson and state Rep. Mandisha Thomas of South Fulton. In the 11th Congressional District, Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Cassville, will face two challengers in the Republican primary.

But the congressional incumbent facing the most opponents from inside his party is Rep. David Scott, D-Atlanta. Scott’s 13th District – like McBath’s 6th District – was significantly redrawn by the General Assembly’s Republican majorities late last year, leaving him with a lot of new constituents.

Six Democrats qualified this week to challenge Scott in the upcoming primary, including Marcus Flowers, the Democrat who ran unsuccessfully against Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Rome, in 2022.

Sixteen Republican state senators and 10 Democrats skated through Qualifying Week unchallenged and, thus, have automatically won another two-year term under the Gold Dome.

Four of the 56 Georgia Senate seats are being vacated by incumbents deciding not to seek reelection. Republican Sen. Shelly Echols of Gainesville, who chaired the Senate redistricting committee that redrew the Senate maps last year, announced Friday that she is leaving office after serving a single term.

Longtime Democratic Sens. Horacena Tate of Atlanta, who has missed this year’s legislative session due to illness, and Valencia Seay of Riverdale also did not qualify to seek reelection this week. Senate Minority Leader Gloria Butler, D-Stone Mountain, announced late last month that she will leave office this year.

Nadine Thomas, another former Democratic lawmaker who left the Senate way back in 2005, qualified in Senate District 44, where she will take on incumbent Sen. Elena Parent, D-Atlanta, in the Democratic primary. The new Senate map moved Parent’s district east and south to include part of Clayton County, where Thomas lives.

In the Georgia House, eight incumbents have opted not to seek reelection. The most prominent departure is that of House Minority Leader James Beverly, D-Macon. Other Democrats leaving office at the end of this year include Reps. Pedro “Pete” Marin of Duluth, Gloria Frazier of Hephzibah, Gregg Kinnard of Lawrenceville, and Doug Stoner of Smyrna.

On the Republican side, the retirees include Reps. Penny Houston of Nashville, Clay Pirkle of Ashburn, and David Knight of Griffin.

Glynn County finished candidate qualifying, according to The Brunswick News.

GLYNN COUNTY COMMISSION

At-large Post 2
• Walter Rafolski (I), Julian “Puddy” Smith and Elizabeth Atkins for the Republican nomination. No Democrats qualified. Independent Laura Khurana (pending petition) is also running.

District 2
• Amy Abbott, Bob Duncan and George T. Ragsdale qualified for the Republican nomination. Cap Fendig is not seeking another term.
• No Democrats qualified

GLYNN COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD

• Jeff Dodgen and Mark Newman are seeking the Republican nomination in District 1. Marcus Edgy is not seeking reelection

• Audrey Gibbons will face Shawn Brown for the Democratic nomination in District 5. No Republicans are seeking the seat.

STATE COURT SOLICITOR
• Maria Lugue (I) will face James Wrixam “Wrox” McIlvaine for the nonpartisan seat.

Bulloch County Commission Chair Roy Thompson faces an opponent, according to the Statesboro Herald.

David Bennett, after vowing during public comments at a couple of Bulloch County Board of Commissioners meetings to run against one of the commissioners, qualified Thursday as a candidate for chairman. Roy Thompson, who is in his eighth year as chairman after a previous 12 years as a district commissioner, also signed up and paid the fee that same day.

Both qualified as Republicans, so with just two candidates, the race will probably be decided in the May 21 Republican primary. The race for sheriff, with Keith L. Howard, who ran in 2016 and 2020 again challenging incumbent Noel J. Brown, is also completely in the Republican primary. Some other contests – whose candidates are named toward the end of this story – involve both Republicans and Democrats and so will go to November.

Hall and Giwnnett Counties have a number of contested elections, according to AccessWDUN.

Gainesville City Council Ward 4 Special Election
Abigail Guzman
Devin Pandy

Hall County Commission Chairman
Craig Lutz (R)
David Gibbs (R)
Richard Higgins (R) (I)

Clerk of Superior Court
Chris Slate (R)
Mark Pettitt (R)

Sheriff
Gerald Couch (R) (I)
Jim Hammock (R)
Jerry Ramos (D)

State Court Judge (John Breakfield’s seat)
Andy Maddox
Brian Heck
John “Tripp” Wingate, III

State Senate

District 5
Lisa Babbage (R)
Sheikh Rahman (D) (I)

District 7
Clara Luisa Richardson-Olguin (R)
Fred Clayton (R)
J. Gregory Howard (R)
Louis Ligon (R)
Nabilah Islam Parkes (D) (I)

District 9
Michael Gargiulo (R)
Nikki Merritt (D) (I)

District 27
Greg Dolezal (R) (I)
Hamza Nazir (D)

District 46
Bill Cowsert (R) (I)
Gareth Fenley (D)

District 47
Frank Ginn (R) (I)
Ross Harvin (R)
Conolus Scott (D)

District 48
Shawn Still (R) (I)
Ashwin Ramaswami (D)

District 49
Drew Echols (R)
Josh Clark (R)

District 50
Bo Hatchett (R) (I)
June Krise (D)

State House

District 8
Dick Mills (R) (I)
Stan Gunter (R)
Charlotte Sleczkowski (D)

District 10
Victor Anderson (R) (I)
Paulette Williams (D)

District 11
Rick Jasperse (R) (I)
Kayle Hollifield (D)

District 24
Carter Barrett (R) (I)
Randye Dugan (D)

District 25
Cary Lucas (R)
Todd Jones (R) (I)
Elaine Padgett (D)

District 26
Lauren McDonald (R) (I)
Lakiea Bailey (D)

District 30
Derrick McCollum (R) (I)
Norine Cantor (R)
Kim Floria (D)

District 96
Arlene Beckles (D)
Neva Thompson (D)
Sonia Lopez (D)

District 97
Michael Allen Corbin (R)
Ruwa Romman (D) (I)

District 99
Matt Reeves (R) (I)
Michelle Kang (D)

District 100
David Clark (R) (I)
Michael Day (R)
Jennifer Ambler (D)

District 102
J. Scott Vandiver (R)
Gabe Okoye (D) (I)

District 103
Soo Hong (R) (I)
Chris Luchey (D)

District 105
Sandy Donatucci (R)
Farooq Mughal (D) (I)

District 107
Hai Cao (R)
Sam Park (D) (I)

District 110
Charles Lollar (R)
Segun Adeyina (D) (I)

District 111
Rey Martinez (R) (I)
Scott Jackson (D)

District 120
Houston Gaines (R) (I)
Andrew Ferguson (D)

The Augusta area has a number of contested elections, according to the Augusta Chronicle.

Augusta Commissioner, District 3:Incumbent Catherine Smith McKnight will defend her seat against Augusta University associate professor Joidaz Ganes, and Richmond County Housing Authority Commissioner Carol Jones Yancy.

Augusta Commission, District 5:Incumbent Bobby Williams will be running against Cisco Network Operations manager Don “DC” Clark.

Augusta Commission, District 7 will go either to physician Dr. Marshall Bedder, an associate professor and director of the Addiction Medicine Fellowship program at Wellstar MCG Augusta; or office management and administrative services veteran Tina Slendak. Term limits prohibit Augusta Commissioner Sean Frantom from running for re-election.

Richmond County Sheriff: Three Democrats – incumbent Richard Roundtree, Richmond County Marshal’s Office Sgt. Eugene “Gino Rock” Brantley and former chief deputy marshal Bo Johnson – will compete against an independent candidate, Richard Dixon, who has spent the past 20 years working at the Georgia Public Safety Training Center.

Judge of Superior Court for the Augusta Judicial Circuit: Competing are Chief Judge of the Richmond County Juvenile Court Willie Saunders, attorney Matt Matson and attorney Charles H. S. Lyons III. This seat is being left empty by Daniel J. Craig, who plans to retire by the end of the year.

Georgia House District 131: The district straddles the Richmond-Columbia county line. Five candidates, all Republican, are battling for the former seat of nurse practitioner Jodi Lott, who announced in July 2023 that she was term-limiting herself despite rising to a senior leadership role among House members.

Columbia County Coroner: Terry Norman, a longtime officer with the Richmond County Marshal’s Office, is running as a Republican against Democratic challenger Helen Bratton, who has owned and operated a bereavement consultancy. Tommy King, formerly of the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, has served as interim coroner since August 2023, after longtime incumbent Vernon Collins announced his retirement.

A Columbus City Council At Large Seat drew four candidates, according to WTVM.

This election is unique in that the voters will see all four candidates names on that ballot twice. One for the special election to fill former councilor John House’s remaining term. House stepped down last April due to personal reasons. Those candidates names will appear again under the new four year term starting January 2025. Elections Director, Nancy Boren says its left up to the voters to decide who will fill the two terms.

“The special election will be for May 21 and that will be for a 7 month term that will end on December of this year there also an election for the full 4 year term so that is also on the May 21 ballot voters will see not only the um the special election for at large but also the 4 year term.” said Boren.

We spoke with several of those vying to fill the At Large Seat. Businessman Travis Chambers says one of his top priority will be economic development.

Pastor Patrick Leonard says he’s very passionate about preventing animal cruelty and establishing workforce housing for first responders.

Community Partner Rocky Marsh says he’s committed to continued prosperity of Columbus.

Former Mayor candidate and businessman, John Anker was not available for comment, but here’s what he told News Leader 9 previously.

“The reason I”m running the reason why, I want to stand with the few councilors who are listening to their constituents. Who are asking the heard questions.”

Columbus lawyer Anthony Johnson is running for District Attorney against Acting District Attorney Don Kelly after DA Stacey Jackson announced he is not running, according to the Ledger-Enquirer.

Columbus criminal defense attorney Anthony Johnson is running for district attorney as a Democrat, making it a competitive race to see who replaces Stacey Jackson in the November General Election.

Jackson decided not to qualify for the election as he has been on extended medical leave for months.

He will be competing with acting District Attorney Don Kelly, who is running as a Republican to be the chief prosecutor for the six-county Chattahoochee Judicial Circuit.

Gov. Brian Kemp appointed Jackson to the post in 2022. The Harris County native was sworn in that May.

With neither candidate facing opposition in the May 21 party primaries, the vote will be on Nov. 5.

Glynn County will host an open house to discuss the upcoming Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax {“SPLOST”) referendum, according to The Brunswick News.

Open houses are planned 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Brunswick Glynn Public Library, 208 Gloucester St. in Brunswick, and 6 p.m. Wednesday at the St. Simons Island Casino Building, 530 Beachview Drive.

Katie Baasen, the county’s public information officer, said there will not be any formal presentations, but there will be plenty of county officials on hand to answer any questions regarding the status of the projects.

The meeting format will be similar to those held by county officials in 2022 prior to the referendum vote to convince voters to support the tax which is projected to generate anywhere from $1.8 million to $2.4 million a month to fund a wide variety of capital projects.

Glynn County voters were given the hard sell in 2022 to convince them to approve a Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax after they rejected one in a previous referendum.

One of the selling points for the tax was University of Georgia study that determined anywhere from 36% to 43.6% of the revenue generated by the sales tax comes from visitors living outside the Golden Isles.

The 1% tax had been rejected by voters because some of the projects approved in earlier SPLOSTs took much longer to complete than anticipated, and voters wanted more guarantees work would be done in a timely manner. Some opponents also criticized the long list of projects funded by the tax.

Gwinnett County will partner to redevelop part of Gwinnett Place Mall, according to AccessWDUN.

A release last week said the county is partnering with CBRE to redevelop a portion of the property off of Satellite Boulevard between Duluth and Lawrenceville. The county purchased the 39-acre portion of the property in 2020.

Gwinnett County Commission Chairwoman Nicole Hendrickson said she is looking forward to working with CBRE on the project.

“This is a significant and exciting new development in the story of the mall’s revitalization,” Hendrickson said. “CBRE is the right partner to help bring a transformative redevelopment project to the Gwinnett Place Mall site.”

County officials said the goal is to redevelop the property as a dense “mixed-use activity center” that is connected and walkable. They said the next step for the project will be to work with CBRE on optimizing the county’s plan before then looking for development partners.

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