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Snellville mayor, council members take oaths of office

SNELLVILLE - Mayor Jerry Oberholtzer and council members Kelly Kautz and Tod Warner were sworn into office Monday night, following the Nov. 6 election and subsequent recount for the mayor's seat.

Oberholtzer and Kautz won their elections and are returning to their positions, while Tod Warner ran unopposed for Council Post 2. Warner recently served on the city's Planning Commission.

Snellville to observe Martin Luther King holiday

Snellville's interim city manager Jim Brooks reported Monday night results of the feasibility study recently commissioned to determine whether the city could realistically observe the Martin Luther King holiday. According to Brooks, the city could add a tenth paid holiday, at a cost of $46,000 to $50,000; allow a floating holiday to be observed on Martin Luther King day, at no additional cost to the city; or allow employees who work Monday to Thursday to work Tuesday to Friday during the week of the Martin Luther King holiday.

In any case, City Hall would be closed and the holiday observed by all but "critical" city employees, such as police officers. One of the three choices must be selected for the upcoming January holiday, since no provisions have been made in the current fiscal year budget.

Kautz said Monday she trusts Brooks to choose how the city should deal with the issue in January, saying, "I don't care how it gets done. I just want to make sure the day is observed."

Mayor pro tem Warren Auld agreed with Kautz and said the question of how to pay for the holiday was not the issue; the issue was whether to observe it citywide.

When the budget process begins next year, the Martin Luther King holiday will be taken into consideration and reflected in the new budget.

Southeast Gwinnett Cooperative Ministry publicly supported by council

Auld read a resolution at Monday night's city council meeting that stated the city's recognition and support of the Southeast Gwinnett Cooperative Ministry. The ministry recently re-opened its doors at a Grayson address, having been without a location for over a year. It has been in operation in southeast Gwinnett for about 15 years.

Auld, Kautz and councilman Robert Jenkins encouraged residents to donate money and/or time to the co-op. "This is still a local organization helping local people," Kautz said.

The resolution was adopted unanimously.

Jenkins hints at election irregularities

On the heels of a particularly nasty election season, Jenkins announced Monday night that he wants to move forward with Snellville politics and the handling of city matters in peace. He then accused Oberhotzer of acting improperly during his campaign for the office of mayor.

Jenkins went on to say he had heard people were intimidated into voting for the mayor out of the fear of losing their jobs if they voted otherwise. The

councilman closed his remarks by saying he was ashamed of the fact that, with about 11,000 registered voters in Snellville, only about 2,000 turned out to vote last week.