Tyrone Mayor candidates

Wed, 10/17/2007 - 3:34pm
By: The Citizen

Tyrone Mayor candidates

Don Rehwaldt

I wish to thank those of The Citizen newspapers for the opportunity to express some of my ideas to improve the life styles of ALL citizens of Tyrone.

As many of Tyrone citizens already know, there are many issues separating the town. Foremost is the development that is being thrust upon us. This, seemingly, is without considering that a corresponding level of infrastructure has to be planned to support these visions; i.e., traffic congestion, citizen safety, etc.

Secondly, what can we do to protect the way of life that most citizens moved to Tyrone to achieve, both now and in the future? Paramount are the concerns about overcrowding and citizen safety.

Additionally, decisions must be made to meld Tyrone into our surrounding area; i.e., Fayette County, Peachtree City and Fayetteville, and even Coweta County, our neighbor to the immediate west.

As surrounding entities struggle to bring the best possible life experiences to their citizens, it is imperative that Tyrone become an active participant. Tyrone cannot be an island to itself!

I have the time and desire to interact with our neighbors and represent Tyrone. It is to this end that I will work diligently and provide the best possible government based on the desires and economic well-being of our businesses and residents.

As The Citizen has agreed to provide a forum for all candidates for three consecutive weeks, I will use this space to address a portion of issues each week. This week, I will discuss the issue of what to do with the down-town area.

Although well known that business development in the downtown area is desirable, lack of sewer in old Tyrone is a limiting factor. Tyrone has, as do most cities and towns, have the power of eminent domain.

Mandating expensive sewer tie-in at each home or business, whether desired or not, seems unrealistic and unfair. Business people were asked about what business or businesses they would build in downtown Tyrone that would be viable enough to earn a living. Answers were sparse.

Today, almost any business or service that a Tyrone citizen desires is available within a 15-minute drive or less. Further discussions concerning downtown are necessary.

Next week, I’ll address our citizen’s public safety and emergency plans, our parks and the need to review our current ordinances and charter to bring these items into readable, easily updated documents.




Mike Smola

This you can count on

My opponent’s campaign literature is very vague. It is hard to determine what he thinks the issues are or where he stands on them. Let me address some of the issues I think he has raised and, more importantly, some he has not.

Eminent Domain

My opponent — He mentions it in his essay but never indicates if he is for or against it.

Smola — Eminent domain is a four-letter word to me. Unless it is an issue of public health or safety, it will never happen on my watch.

Tyrone Isolationism

My opponent — Believes we do not engage with surrounding governments.

Smola — I have been an active member of the Association of Fayette County Governments for five years, acting as both vice-chairman and chairman. In addition, I attend as many traffic and accessibility meetings as I can because I sit in the same traffic as my constituents do every day. Lastly, I break bread every evening with a member of the Fayette County School Board.

Big Box Development

My opponent — Does not address this very important issue.

Smola — During our planning retreat earlier this year my fellow councilperson Grace Caldwell indicated she saw no problems with big boxes. Hearing that and knowing that both Lowe’s and Kohl’s were actively seeking sites, I drafted an ordinance limiting the size of a big box to 30,000 square feet, about two thirds the size of our Publix. Caldwell fought it right up to the time we voted on it. Since Caldwell is actively and visibly campaigning for my opponent, I may be the only vote standing between them and a big box.


My opponent — He makes some vague reference to traffic congestion. Further on he says we should not develop downtown because everything we need is within a 15-minute drive. Wouldn’t that make traffic even worse?

Smola — The key traffic issue here is Tyrone-Palmetto Road and whether it should be four-laned from Senoia to I-85. I grew up in a city that was bisected by a highway and it never recovered. To this day that city still suffers from that decision. We do alright as a town, considering that 74 splits us in half. I will not stand for a widened Tyrone-Palmetto Road to divide us in quarters.

Until next week, please feel free to contact me at 770-841-6763 or visit my website, www.mikesmola.com.

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