Stone Mountain City Council discusses ‘rules of decorum’

City of Stone Mountain seal on the historic railroad depot. Photo by Dean Hesse.

By Tenesha L. Curtis, contributor 

Stone Mountain, GA — The Stone Mountain City Council discussed rules of decorum, honorary street sign policy, and more at an in-person meeting on Tuesday, August 2.

Though scheduled to be voted on, the item regarding City Council Rules of Decorum was skipped and scheduled to be discussed at the next work session.

Councilmember Gil Freeman expressed his personal concern that the current language of the Rules of Decorum “can be weaponized.”

He noted that his study of decorum guidelines for other cities, including Dunwoody and Suwanee, helped him come to this conclusion.

“I think that we should reconsider some of the language,” Freeman said.

Councilmember Chakira Johnson said that the language for the rules had not changed significantly during the previous few months.

“I don’t understand why all of a sudden we feel like they’d be weaponized if we didn’t feel like that from the beginning,” Johnson said.

The council agreed unanimously to discuss this item further during the next work session.

In other business:

– Virginia Townes’ appointment to the Historical Preservation Committee was unanimously approved by the council.

– A bid for siphon hole repair services at 5253 Cherry Wood Drive by Construction 57 was approved unanimously. Service charges are not to exceed $7,500 and would be paid for using money for the Storm Water fund.

– A bid for drainage improvements along the Main Street streetscape near 951 Main Street by Lovvorn Construction was approved unanimously. Service charges are not to exceed $19,200.

– A two-hour parking limit for the Main Street Municipal Lot was approved unanimously.

– Councilmember Freeman motioned to strike from the Honorary Street Sign Policy a provision that requires the city to notify citizens of any proposed installations. Councilmember Clint Monroe seconded the motion. The council rejected the motion, with only councilmembers Freeman and Monroe supporting the edit. The council then voted on whether to approve the policy as currently written. The council voted to approve the street sign policy as currently written. Only Councilmembers Teresa Crowe and Shawnette Bryant voted against the policy.

– The approval of a contract with Chaffins Landscaping for the maintenance of the City Cemetery was postponed. Further discussion of the contract will take place at the next work session.

– Councilmember Freeman moved to postpone the vote on contracting with iParametrics for grant management and grant writing services, so there could be more discussion of the item. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Monroe.

Councilmember Teresa Crowe said, “we need to move forward with a grant administrator.”

She mentioned that someone had suggested waiting until a permanent city manager had been chosen, but she didn’t believe waiting until then was necessary.

Councilmember Freeman said, “I think it’s important that we not straddle a future permanent city manager” with a grant administrator chosen before the permanent city manager is selected and hired.  The council voted to move this issue to the next work session. Councilmembers Johnson and Crowe voted against the postponement.

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