Ethics complaint filed over stadium

LAWRENCEVILLE - For months, Gwinnett residents have complained about commissioners' decision to build a minor league baseball stadium without consulting with them.

On Tuesday, a Rome man sent an official complaint to the grand jury.

George Anderson of the Ethics and Government Group sent in a 17-page complaint with hundreds of documents outlining what he sees as problems with the stadium deal, which was announced last year.

"What bothers me and bothers several citizens of Gwinnett County ... is they have had no say," in the $5 million land purchase, $33 million bond package for construction and the $19 million in upgrades. "(Commissioners) have left the public on the sidelines."

Anderson said the deal, negotiated by then Gwinnett Convention and Visitors Bureau Board Chairman Richard Tucker and his son Lee Tucker, the bureau's attorney, and included land purchased from brothers Bartow and Brand Morgan, who own a community bank, is a sign of a "good ol' boy clique."

As a Floyd County native, Anderson offered as a contrast the sales tax referendum officials held to decide if the Braves Single-A team moved to Rome, which allowed the stadium to be paid off before the first pitch was thrown.

In his complaint, which could be considered by the grand jury over the next six months, Anderson also brought up ties between Commissioner Kevin Kenerly and developer D.G. Jenkins which first surfaced before Kenerly's re-election in 2006. He also questioned the involvement of the Gwinnett Place and Gwinnett Village community improvement districts in last year's referendum over tax allocation districts.