@Me: AMB is correct.
I don't often take issue publicly with readers' comments, but I must say I'm continuously amazed by how some folks can be so confused about the concept of bias.
Ullom pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter; that makes him a convict, not a defendant. In other words, he longer has a "defense."
Perhaps these facts make you unhappy, but they are facts nonetheless.
That's correct or in a shoulder holster. Frankly, I'm not so sure that you couldn't stand outside baggage claim holding an AK-47.
I'm serious about that.
Thanks, SDV, for reminding me about the Gateway Center, which was, as you note, the jail used before the ADC. When I moved here in 1987, the old jail on Decatur street still housed the APD and municipal courtrooms, but that doesn't explain my cerebral flatulence
Still, CTP, I don't follow your claim that I'm misrepresenting the ADC's high operating costs. The bottom line is that the city cannot charge other jurisdictions enough to even approach the actual costs of housing their inmates. Therefore, the jail loses money by leasing bed space.
And if you can show me where I implied that the jail ever could have made money, I'll be interested to see it.
Damn, I knew there was something I forgot to address: the jail employees. I hadn't seen CTP's follow-up comment before I wrote mine, but his reference to "300 Corrections employees out of work" seems somewhat disingenuous. If Fulton takes over the jail, it will need most if not all of those people to run the place. Granted, they will have to exit the city pension plan and enter whatever plan the county offers, but Atlanta is in the business of providing public services, not permanent employment.
City Tax Payer, thanks for your detailed and well-informed comments. I agree that such details as how city detainees are to be managed if the county takes over the jail will need to be worked out if they haven't been already. Michael Bond has brought up some of these practical issues, which is appropriate since he has more knowledge of jail operations than most.
My complaint is that Bond does not seem to be taking part in these discussions in good faith. For instance, I've heard him claim that if the jail is sold to the county, city taxpayers inside Fulton will be paying twice for the same service. This isn't true, which is perhaps why I've never heard him back it up with any evidence.
Frankly, my beef with this process overall is that the discussions wind on and on remember that the sale of the jail was first recommended by a city audit last March and yet Council members seem more interested in keeping city employees busy making new charts and graphs.
If we know the jail has never taken in more than $10,000 a year in inmate revenue phone calls, candy bars, cigarettes, etc. then why would we need those numbers broken down by year and category? In all this minutiae, some Council members seem to lose sight of the big picture: that the jail is costing Atlanta taxpayers $30 million a year at a time when money is scarce.
Soultrane, I would love to watch the Council "openly discuss an issue and come up with the best solution." Hell, I'd pay to see it since now I'm paying for something else. But between Moore's document fetish and Martin's unquenchable zeal for belittling city officials, an open, productive discussion is not what we're getting.
Perhaps if there were a frank, respectful, informed dialogue, we'd find out that selling the jail is not the best idea. But if there's another answer to this problem, it better be worth about $30 million, because that's what this facility is costing us now.
Nicholas, I don't agree that the Council has "looted white neighborhoods," but it is true that the three members I called out above are black. Out of 16 Council members and the president, 12 are black. But if you read our past few "Golden Sleaze" issues, you'll see that most of the state lawmakers I call out there are white. Effectiveness and common sense don't come in colors.
That said, there's also a shortage of leadership at work here. Councilwoman Yolanda Adrean, who chaired the meetings described above, has undoubtedly not done enough to rein in the many time-wasting tangents. I'm cutting her some slack because she's new to the Council, but she's also a CPA, so I'd hoped she would be better at keeping the discussion on track. Another CPA is Aaron Watson, whom we heartily endorsed for Council because he has enviable experience with these kinds of deals. I was disappointed that Watson didn't say a word during Tuesday's meeting.
Finally, Sore Loser, you'll have to decide for yourself whether I can be objective covering City Hall. But your Norwood conspiracy theory is laughable and not just because Bennett didn't join Reed's team until after the election. Norwood was one of the worst for always asking for detailed information that she couldn't understand. If she were mayor now well, let's not go there.
Actually, Morsburger stands to lose $1 million in earnest money. But as far as I can tell, the city is partly to blame for the deal going sour because it took so long to move the APD out of CHE into the new cop shop.
Thanks for the mention. Pal's rules. I'm glad a new generation seems to have discovered it, as evidenced by the fact that No Brakes started recent "alley cat" ride from Pal's.
I first discovered it in 2004 while researching a previous story about Sweet Auburn.
I remember talking one night with then-owner Shirley Murray, who nursed a highball and wore sunglasses inside the darkened bar. Cool place.
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