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POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: Chamber to stay neutral on charter school issue

Camie Young

Camie Young

A week after the governor used a Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce event to announce his support of an upcoming charter school referendum, the local business group has backed off its opposition to the matter.

In an email Tuesday, Chamber President Jim Maran told leaders a Sept. 5 fundraiser slated to raise money for a vote no campaign has been canceled.

"With respect to all parties engaged in this issue, the Executive Committee of the Board has decided the Chamber shall remain neutral on this subject," he wrote, adding that the change came after "recent conversations" with business leaders and legislators.

Last week, Gov. Nathan Deal related the issue to the state's job climate, saying state-supported charter schools provide opportunities for a better education.

The Gwinnett school board approved a resolution earlier this month saying members do not support the referendum, which is on November ballots as a constitutional amendment guaranteeing the ability of the state to approve charters when local school systems do not agree.

Gwinnett County Public Schools Superintendent J. Alvin Wilbanks said the system supports some charter schools and has sanctioned several.

But the amendment is a bad policy, he added.

"This amendment is about who gets to approve them, who gets to control them and fund them," he said.TampaWhile the party is continuing in Tampa for Republicans happy to nominate Mitt Romney for president, a local woman is upset about a rule change that could be imposed during the convention.

Julianne Thompson, a Suwanee woman serving as a delegate, said the rules change would allow the presidential nominee to override the state party process of choosing delegates.

"The GOP is the political party of the grassroots," she wrote to the voting delegation. "We have always believed that our party is the one who best represents what it means to be an American ... freedom. With your current attempt at this rules change, you are essentially striking the first blow that ships away at that freedom, and you disenfranchise the very people that turned the tide for the GOP in 2010 by returning power in the U.S. House of Representatives to Republicans."

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.

Comments

rco1847 2 years, 1 month ago

Oh yeah - The Chamber of Communists remaining neutral? Not hardly. They lined their pockets with money from the school board for about 5 years now and then tried to claimed they deserved it.

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rco1847 2 years, 1 month ago

Charter schools in Gwinnett County will be brainwashing institutions for the politically conservative Nazis.

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kevin 2 years, 1 month ago

They know where their bread is buttered! Bette to have them in Georgian than not to have them. Are Liberals that stupid that they don't even care about our kids getting a better education than from a failing "unionized" school? Give me a break. One other note: since when did Liberals ever worry about spending too much money? (when it doesn't suit their union causes)

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