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Snellville councilwoman resigns to run for mayor

Town halls Thursday, new candidate announces

A week before the qualifying period begins, Snellville’s Barbara Bender got her mayoral run under way, resigning from her council position.

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Barbara Bender

Bender, a certified public accountant who is the only announced candidate to replace term-limited Jerry Oberholtzer, said she has raised nearly $20,000 for the campaign.

“It has been an honor to serve the people of Snellville on the City Council for the last six years,” Bender said. “I am proud of the meaningful accomplishments I have achieved. Within the last year, we have made tremendous steps to move Snellville forward.”

Bender listed positives such as attracting jobs, creating the Towne Center @ Snellville plan, completing a public safety building and proposing a budget that reduced taxes as the highlights for the year.

“It is vital that we continue moving Snellville forward,” Bender said. “This election will determine whether Snellville continues moving forward or goes back to the stagnation of the past.”

Ireland seeks Suwanee seat

Businessman Doug Ireland has stepped up to seek a Suwanee council seat being vacated by Jimmy Burnette. Burnette, a second generation councilman, is giving up the seat he held for years to run for mayor.

“Suwanee is the best place to raise a family and work. It’s a privilege to be a part of such a true trend setter for other cities to model themselves after all over the state and country,” Ireland said. “I have always been a big believer in serving my community. Suwanee and the people of Suwanee have done a lot for my family and my business, and now I want to give a little back by serving the people of Suwanee on the City Council.”

Ireland, who has served as a city planning and zoning board commissioner, said he wants to continue implementing the vision that has created a great quality of life in Suwanee.

“I want Suwanee to continue to attract businesses and jobs while keeping our taxes low,” Ireland said.

Tonight’s town halls

U.S. Rep. Rob Woodall will host the final of his August town hall meetings tonight. The last event is set for 7 p.m. at Snellville City Hall.

Commissioner Lynette Howard will also be meeting with constituents in the final of a series of meetings.That town hall event is slated for 7 p.m. at Lucky Shoals Park. In addition to a talk about county finances, Gwinnett Chamber Vice President Nick Masino will be on hand to discuss the county’s economic development efforts.

Democrats propose map

Disappointed in a proposed new district map for the Gwinnett commission, local Democrats asked commissioners to forward another drawing to legislators.

The Republican-drawn proposal currently being considered at the General Assembly does not create a minority-majority district, but neither does the Democratic proposal.

“I have been told by a number of people that once again the map has been gerrymandered to ensure Republican control for the next 10 years, not the interests of the community,” an email from Steve Deak to party supporters said of the GOP plan. “Gwinnett is a majority-minority county yet the new map ensures these communities have no voice in our local government.”

Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Camie Young can be reached via email at camie.young@gwinnettdailypost.com.

For archived columns, go to www.gwinnettdailypost.com/politics.