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25 November 2013

Dear Benny Crane & South Fulton United, No More Secrets. Let the Sunshine In on Cityhood Talks

Dear Benny Crane,

Six years ago, in 2007, you and I came together united under a common cause.

We both supported cityhood for south Fulton.

We supported cityhood for south Fulton because we both understood that it was no longer feasible for Fulton County to keep providing city services to less than ten percent of the county's total population. We supported cityhood because we both believed in local control over our local community. We supported cityhood because it was the right thing to do.

Benny, you and your South Fulton United organization cannot expect our friends and our neighbors to support creating a new layer of government when that government's foundation is built upon the foundation of closed door meetings and backroom deals.
You and I, Benny, spent countless hours together trying to convince our neighbors and our friends that the City of South Fulton was the right idea at the right time. We tried to do this in an open and transparent manner because we both felt, Benny, that it was important for south Fulton residents to have confidence in their new city; confidence that business in the new City of South Fulton would not feature secret deals brokered in smoke-filled backrooms. To this day, any individual can visit ethics.ga.gov, search for the campaign committee "Citizens for the City of South Fulton," and review every penny raised and spent in support of south Fulton cityhood efforts.

While 85% of south Fulton voters said no to cityhood in 2007, you and I, Benny, had nothing to be ashamed of and nothing to regret. We conducted that campaign the right way. We conducted that campaign openly, honestly, and transparently.

Contrast our open and honest efforts to create the City of South Fulton in 2007 to the new cityhood movement today.

A new organization, South Fulton United, has been created supporting cityhood for south Fulton; and once again, the organization's articles of incorporation puts Benny Crane in charge.

However, little else is known about the group.

There is no South Fulton United website. There is no South Fulton United calendar publicizing the organization's meetings. What the public knows about South Fulton United comes from the due diligence of Georgia Unfiltered researching and inspecting public records to find out the who, what, when, where, why, and how of this new pro-city group [Staff Reports (9 October 2013). Atlanta Falcons Board of Directors Member Part of New Group Advocating South Fulton Cityhood. Georgia Unfiltered. Retrieved on 25 November 2013.].

Members of the general public, who don't have the resources and wherewithal of Georgia Unfiltered to dig and dig and dig into the activities of South Fulton United, would know nothing about the renewed push for cityhood in south Fulton until all the decisions have been made.

Benny, you and your South Fulton United organization cannot expect our friends and our neighbors to support creating a new layer of government when that government's foundation is built upon the foundation of closed door meetings and backroom deals.

Benny, the time for secrecy is over. It is time to open up the doors, and let the sunshine in on the proposed City of South Fulton.

Let us truly unite south Fulton and hold these cityhood talks in full view of the public.