Like so many in North Fulton, Sen. John Albers (R- Roswell), who represents a portions of Johns Creek, wants to see the return of Milton County - sooner than later.
Albers introduced Senate Resolution 273 yesterday, Wednesday, Feb. 20. If passed, the resolution would propose an amendment to the Constitution of the State of Georgia to allow for the re-creation of Milton County, according to information from the State Senate press office. The Georgia Constitution caps the number of counties at 159. An amendment is "required to merge, consolidate or divide local governments." If approved by a supermajority of the General Assembly, as well as the voters, Senate Resolution 273 would allow any former counties, such as Milton, to be exempt from the cap, said the press release.
"I am working diligently with my counterparts to re-create Milton County," said Albers.
The resolution comes not long after several in the Georgia House of Representatives - including Rep. Lynne Riley (R-Johns Creek) and Rep. Chuck Martin (R-Alpharetta) - Rep. Jan Jones (R-Milton) also recently introduced legislation to double the homestead exemption for Fulton County homeowners to $60,000.
But several members of the current Fulton County Commission have spoken out against the proposed changes and even approved a resolution opposing the effort to add an additional North Fulton seat to the commission, much less okay a county split.
However, Albers is a fan of the efforts to shift power away from the current commission, though he would like to see it done differently.
"Many years ago, Fulton County was three separate counties that merged during the great depression," he said in a release. "Much has changed since the 1930’s and the time is right for Milton County to rise again and provide responsible and accountable county government."
Albers points to the size of Fulton County, which is larger than six U.S. states, as a major reason for his belief that re-apportioning the county is necessary for the good of its residents. Currently, he says, county services are "ineffective and inefficient."
"The creation of a smaller government will be more accountable to the residents and the remaining areas," he said. "North Fulton and South Fulton schools are also geographically split by a fragile Atlanta school system. Our students deserve better."
The proposed constitutional amendment would allow counties to determine by local referendum what type of government they wish to establish and how it should be funded, says the release. Senate Resolution 273 is currently waiting to be assigned to a committee.
See also: Speak Out: Are Fulton's Commission Lines Fair?