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Beaudreau Calls Airport Proposal Delay ‘Borderline Insubordination’

District 3 commissioner voices displeasure over county failure to issue a request for proposals for the privatization of Briscoe Field.

Tuesday night, District 3 Commissioner Mike Beaudreau once again voted in favor of issuing a request for proposals (RFP) for the privatization of Briscoe Field according to a report in the Gwinnett Daily Post. The decision, accompanied by allegations of violating Georgia’s sunshine laws, was reportedly made as a behind-the-scenes "consensus" decision and without the involvement of .

The Gwinnett Daily Post further reports that Beaudreau, who along with District 1 Commissioner Shirley Lasseter and District 2 Commissioner Lynette Howard , described the lack of action by county staff over the summer to prepare an RFP as “borderline insubordination."

The May vote followed a motion by District 4 Commissioner John Heard to eliminate commercialization as an option for Briscoe Field. Beaudreau proposed a substitute motion to direct staff to issue a request for proposals (RFPs) for privatization that could include commercialization. In making the proposal, Beaudreau said commissioners were elected to make the difficult decisions and needed to move forward with the RFPs for the benefit of the county.

“The citizens have spoken and they would like a decision,” Beaudreau said during the May meeting. “This is the right thing to do for the citizens.”

Not all of Beaudreau’s constituents agreed however. During his June 11 constituent meeting, saying he wanted more information.

“There’s so much misinformation going on right now,” Beaudreau said at his constituent meeting. “I’m in favor of seeing facts before I make decisions about things instead of just some people that are yelling and screaming about something.”

Beaudreau also added that .

“We’ll see what offers we get and then we can talk about fact versus fiction,” Beaudreau said in June.

According to the Gwinnett Daily Post report, Tuesday night's vote by the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners means the county will follow the speediest option available for the potential privatization of Briscoe Field.

For more on Tuesday night's meeting, by Citizens for a Better Gwinnett board member and Dacula Patch blogger Jim Regan.

Daryl August 27, 2011 at 05:27 AM
The airport should be privatized. The area seriously needs some economic development and new businesses, and letting scheduled commercial flights take off and land from there would obviously be a real boost to that. Opponents of this have been so disingenuous.
Alice O'Lenick August 28, 2011 at 04:18 PM
I agree with Daryl, at present it is just using up our tax dollars, let's get the county out of it, privatize and not demand commercial flights but allow some and generate some jobs in this area. BTW most of the opponents don't realize large jets come in and out of Briscoe several times a week but you didn't notice any of the noise did you? Don't oppose until all the facts are presented.
Just Peachy August 28, 2011 at 05:31 PM
Wahoo some voice of reason! Let's hear the FACTS! I was wondering where the supporter comments were given the results on the poll above. Good to see lots of folks are not only in support of the airport but in support of hearing the results of the RFP.
Hugh C. August 28, 2011 at 07:17 PM
Alice - by your comments I assume you don't live anywhere near Briscoe. That makes it a lot easier to be in favor of commercialization doesn't it? And as far as not noticing the jet noise, where did you get that idea from? I notice the periodic jet noise all the time and I live 3 miles from Briscoe but with the current frequency of take offs and landings it is not objectionable. With commercialization lets assume for the sake of discussion that there are 60 take offs and landings over a 16 hour window (6am to 10pm) each day. That is about one every 15 minutes for 16 hours every day. I think most normal people are going to find that to be more than objectionable. Yes - I'd like to see some facts. Where are they going to come from? Propeller Investments? Why doesn't the County follow the IMG recommendations and get the studies done: 1) Market demand 2) Technical planning 3) Environmental review 4) Financial feasibility 5) Economic impact. Why did we hire IMG if we aren't going to follow their recommendations? And what's the big rush to push this through anyway? IMG estimated all the studies could be done in 3 months. Given the scope and impact of this, that seems like a very reasonable thing to do. But after the last BOC meeting it seems like reason is becoming a more and more rare commodity because this is being treated by the "gang of 3" like it is some urgent crisis that has to get done asap. Why?
Andrew McNeil August 28, 2011 at 11:42 PM
Alice...do you know the difference between a coporate jet (allowed now to use Briscoe) and a 737 jet that holds 150 people??? The decible level of a corporate jet is 35...the level of a 737 is 92 decibles! How do you like the idea of hearing that every 15-20 minutes or so? Take the time to read the two studies completed by non-biased groups...educate yourself before you speak. The decible levels are factual. Also, proponents promising jobs and economic boost have NO facts with which to back their claims. I agree...go ahead and privatize...take it out of taxpayer hands, but no commercial service
R++ One of the Famous Dacula Crew August 29, 2011 at 01:18 AM
OK - Airport is approved commercial traffic is developed, gates sold ..... its 3 years later, the airline that leased the gates merges, goes under or withdraws due to flight income not matching projections or market needs. Now the county holds TWO major assets its on the hook for, the Airport and Stadium and the Braves have just indicated that the stadium needs refurbishment early so they're looking at other cities. Can't happen? Look at the Stadium impact vs. the promises to date Did we reach the forecasted level of jobs and revenue? Gwinnett self insures and can it cover the "prefect storm" without a tax increase? These are just some of facts we need to know and I doubt this can really be completely addressed in the 120 days so a CONTRACT can be signed. Privatization as the airfield operates today is one item while adding commercial traffic is a completely different issue all together. Based on what happened Tuesday night, do you really feel this group can completely protect us from the downside if they execute a contract in 2011? A real request for qoute should probably be open nationally for at least 6 months to get real in depth responses. I for one would like to see the county/city shared services dispute completely resolved with all remaining parties BEFORE we enter yet another project. Just a reminder, the shared services failure occurred before the Braves stadium was even out of the ground, we were in default a couple of years before the court got involved.
Tim August 29, 2011 at 02:24 PM
Getting rid of a commissioner who clearly does NOT represent the people in the northern part his district should be a priority for every H.O.A. from Lawrenceville north. Has Beaudreau sold out to the to the sleaze bag developers in order to gain their support for a future campaign for chairman? It's up to those of us in the northern part of his district to do everything we can to see to it that his political career ends soon and forever! He has clearly shown that he does not care what the people in the northern part of his district think. At meetings he has arrogantly dismissed comments made by the people who will be most impacted by commercialization. The only opinions that matter to him are those of the slimy developers and his buddies in the Stone Mt HWY CID. We need to rise up and take government back from these crooks & elect commissioners who will actually listen to the people that live here. The one good aspect of this boondoggle has been the outright anger it has fueled in the Dacula area. If this tremendous anger can be directed towards breaking the strangle hold that big business and evil developers have had on this county then it will have served a noble and good purpose.
Mark August 30, 2011 at 12:38 AM
@ Just Peachy... You do know that poll was conducted by a consultant for the company that wants to privatize Briscoe, don't you? They also refuse to release the actual questions that were asked for the poll. @Alice...Have you ever actually BEEN to Briscoe? Your statement shows a shocking lack of knowledge about it. @ Daryl....How is it disingenuous to want to protect your home and family? Please explain.
Just Peachy August 30, 2011 at 06:20 PM
Actually @Mark you are incorrect about the polling; Landmark Communications (Mark Rountree) did the polling, not Propeller or either of the other two firms that are interested in bidding. I do believe Propeller paid Landmark to conduct the poll if that is what you mean though. Regardless, Landmark does great polling and is usually right on and would not release a poll that wasn't consistant with their findings. I've seen the questions before online (though can't find them right now) but wil be happy to find them and post here. You mention a shocking lack of knowledge and I would have to agree that most posting comments are showing a lack of knowledge but I find it to more form those opposed to the research than those in favor. The bottom line is that the county not legally make money from the airport therefore selling or leasing to a privitized company will being in revenue to the county. Atlanta will eventually host two airports we are the only big city that doesn't already. If we don't take this opportunity in Gwinnett now it will happen somewhere else (likely in Cobb County) and Gwinnett will have missed out on a great opportunity for our economy.
Hugh C. August 30, 2011 at 08:29 PM
Fantastic! Do you think Cobb would really take it?
Just Peachy August 30, 2011 at 08:47 PM
LOL Hugh C. I hope not!
North Georgia Weather August 30, 2011 at 08:50 PM
Alice, my house is directly under the outbound flights headed east. Please don't tell me I don't hear them. On top of that, I'm directly between the inbound flights coming in from the northeast and the outbound northeast flights from Hartsfield. Please don't tell me I don't hear them either.
Mark August 31, 2011 at 08:02 PM
@ Just Peachy Isn't that what I said regarding the poll? I would very much like to see the questions from the poll and am glad you were privy to them. I have asked Mark Roundtree and Brett Smith for them..... without success. Please do post the questions once you find them. While at Emory I worked for a market/political research firm and have had several statistics courses so I know how questions can be worded to give you the results you want. For instance: "Would you approve of commercial flights at Briscoe Field if it meant a financial windfall for the county, provided hundreds of jobs and increased local property values?" would yield very different results from a question such as: "Would you approve of commercial jet flights at Briscoe Field?" Last week I posted about one dozen studies on the Fly Gwinnett Forward site that show a correlation between airport proximity and depressed property values. I try to show some measure of intelligence on these boards and do not "shoot from the hip."
Walter Patterson September 01, 2011 at 12:07 AM
Wow, I guess you haven't seen the articles out there that show home values drop being around a commercial airport. Just google Santa Monica from AOL news and you'll see.
Walter Patterson September 01, 2011 at 12:10 AM
What is really sad about all of this is that Commissioner Beaudreau felt it was okay to throw the county staff under the bus. Way to take a stand Mike. Pass the buck and blame someone else while teetering on the edge of breaking an open meetings law or two.
Jonathan Cates September 02, 2011 at 12:41 PM
I'd like to see Briscoe Field area turned into movie studio....Perfect location, plenty of parking for trailers, and it would generate lots of money.....Plus, a very quiet environment. Tyler Perry has a studio near Cumberland Mall, Lakewood has a studio now....How about the Northeast Atlanta Area? Just an idea.....
Todd M September 02, 2011 at 02:35 PM
Here is the problem with your post, which is also the problem with the logic from most of the BOC voting to move forward with this whole thing. #1 - Show me the huge economic impact. The people for this keep saying, "Let's see the facts first", but they keep ignoring the numerous articles out there about how smaller privatized airports like Briscoe have become a huge FAIL, not an economic boom. Do a simple google search about small airports..its not difficult to find these facts. #2 Common Decency/Sense- NOBODY denies that this will hurt the prices of the homes in the area in a very BIG way, but nobody wants to own that issue. Maybe people are against it, because they are being ignored. Those who support this want those effected to "take one for the team" and accept the loss for the perceived good of the county. Any real plan by the BOC to proceed should also have a seperate effort to look at compensating the homeowners for their economic loss. Doesn't this seem fair to you? Nobody argues that they would not want to buy a home under the approach, so the idea that some are going to take it across the nose for the economic benefit of others is without question. If the economic benefit is so great...and the BOC feels so confident about that, why not look into and commit that they will reimburse homeowners for their loss of home value since the homeowners will be the one making sacrifices for the PERCEIVED benefit of the entire county.
Todd M September 02, 2011 at 02:48 PM
And I think your comment "The truth is polls show"...is funny. TRUTH and POLLS in the same sentence is like saying JUMBO SHRIMP, or similar. I could easily get the results that I wanted in a poll by asking the question in the right way. In this case the poll asked it in such a way that assumed that there would be a financial gain for the county. The same way that our Stadium was supposed to be a huge gain right? Again the FACTS need to be presented to the public, but polls are not about getting to the truth (normally) they are about trying to show that people are for something. You and I both know that the public is assuming that an airport would mean great things for the county, but in fact the evidence does not support this at all. Those who try to say the evidence supports this are really just using partial evidence, because they are failing to answer why so many small airports are failing in a big way. Let me ask a poll to the good people of Gwinnett my own way and lets see the results. What if we asked who would be for commercialization if there was no way to assure economic gain, while at the same time the effort would result in thousands of fellow county residents losing thousands of dollars of savings (from their homes) and entire communities being destroyed? That to me is a more honest question, so why not use the results of such a poll to determine the direction of our next steps as a county before we destroy the lives of so many for nothing?
Todd M September 02, 2011 at 03:03 PM
Daryl..do you know the definition of disingenuous? What is disengenuous about knowing that there is a mere possibility of economic gain, not strongly supported by numerous examples. What is disengenuous about not wanting to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars in home values for something that very well may not produce an economic gain? What is disingenuous about loving the community that you live in, and not wanting residents miles and miles away making decisions about the fate of your community..or having decisions that effect the quality of life you are able to provide your kids, etc? To me your post is disingenuous becuase you sir are making this a "simple" effort, like it is a fait accompli..or an established fact. Also...those against this are NOT against privatization, they are against commercialization. Most of us against it are financially conservative, believe in small government, and feel like most services should be handled outside of the government. With that said, GOVERNMENT should only exist to protect the life, liberty, and property of its citizens. The BOC is not holding true to these all all. Should my rights to economic gain exceed your rights to life, liberty or property? NO..that is a simple answer. My rights end where your rights begin, so why are people who are so for this thing so unwilling to consider the rights of others who will be 100% surely effected by it? You are only HOPING for an econimic gain, my loss is assured.
Todd M September 02, 2011 at 03:23 PM
JP. I see you like to support efforts to privatize, maybe even commercialize, but you are not being intellectually honest with yourself, or with all of us. If Propeller paid Landmark, then they TOLD THEM WHAT QUESTIONS TO ASK!! That's like saying, I told the builder to build me a house, I didn't tell him how I wanted it built! The results of a poll are strongly based on how the questions are asked. If I pay a Polling company to do a poll, then I am telling them what questions I want asked, then is that truly unbiased? I don't question Landmark's ability to conduct a poll, but I do question how they asked the questions. The premise of the question was certainly based on an assumption that it would mean an econimic gain for Gwinnett. So, I'm sure the results were in support of privatizing because this wonderful county is largely conservative, and largely believe that government should get out of our lives. What wasn't asked though is if residents would support making an airport private with commercial flights if that meant no promise of economic gain, no promise of what would happen if it was not successful, while at the same time the decision would economically destroy thousands of homeowners who were busy trying to live the American dream before their dreams were dashed and they lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in equity in their homes. Let me ask the questions my way and lets see the results. How could anyone support uncertain gains on the backs of a few?
Todd M September 02, 2011 at 03:37 PM
JP..so your argument is that the financial gain is certain, and that all big towns have two airports...so we should jump on the train before it leaves...right? What facts? Show me those facts. You are clearly not comparing apples to apples, or even apples to an organism! Any big city with an airport has had that airport for a long time so the community that has grown around it knew about the flights coming into/out of the area before they bought the home. How about showing me any recent airports that have been a success? How about being honest and saying there are numerous airports that have been a failure, and have lost commercial flights, and are largely sitting vacant with the money that was invested in them lost or going to waste, but the areas around them unfit for real community growth because nobody wants to risk building subdivisions or homes in the area due to the possibility of flights returning? What about those studies? I've read a few just recently myself. How can you rationlize your support of commercialization knowing the damage it will cause, while at the same time not having any assurance that it will lead to the growth or economic gain you claim? You speak like this is a sure thing, like "Everyone is doing it...so should we", but the facts do not support that. The facts support that private airports are sitting empty, and that major carriers are closing their service to smaller airports for economic reasons. Private=OK, Commercial=NO WAY!
R++ One of the Famous Dacula Crew September 06, 2011 at 11:34 PM
Well it would appear that the Propeller SOUTH Atlanta Job applicants can follow instructions. Privatized and open to commercial flights =185. Gee the voter IP list that made that up would be a trip for sure. Just remember, the airport expansion doesn't work WITHOUT MARTA. YEA!!!
GregRodgers September 21, 2011 at 03:32 PM
Its getting pushed because Beaudreau wants to make sure he stamps is name on it for personal gain before he gets voted out next year....
GregRodgers September 21, 2011 at 03:35 PM
Yes... I love all of the hotels and businesses that have sprung up by the stadium with all of the jobs. I am about to go shopping in the beautiful shops that I saw pictured in the artists renderings...its just so beautiful with all of those people working over there!!
Barbara Davis June 13, 2012 at 08:41 PM
I am happy for you. Have you ever lived in the flight path of a commercial airport? Poll the folks who live with the noise and pollution from Hartsfield and ask them how they feel. My grandmother growing up lived not to far from Kennedy airport in NY and I vividly remember the deafening noise and how her whole house would shake whenthe 747's flew overhead. I don't want that. My house is worth half of its original value and if I had to sell it in the next few years the planes flying overhead would mena that I would have to pay a buyer to take my house. Are you friends with Beaudreau?
Barbara Davis June 13, 2012 at 08:41 PM
Amen
Barbara Davis June 13, 2012 at 08:47 PM
Amen. Now that we have 3 corrupt commissioners who used their office to line their own pockets it begs the question....what is in it for Beaudreau? What is his connection to Propeller? He refuses to listen to his constituents so he needs to go.And the DOT and other agencies have turned a thumbs down to this project-yet Beaudreau pushes on and of course we now know that Lasseter's vote on it was up for sale-and she put her corrupt son on the zoning board where his vote could be bought..why isn't that illegal? I am a life long republican but I have never seen such rampant and arrogant corruption. It is time to clean the whole house!!
Barbara Davis June 13, 2012 at 08:49 PM
Daryl....where do you live? Will the 707's be flying over your home day and night? or do you live near Commissioner Beaudreau who lives on a nice property on the outskirts and won't be bothered by the plane traffic. If you are so gung-ho, will you buy my house and let me get out of Gwinnett? Probably not. Gwinnett is teeming in self-serving politicians and corruption and they all need to go!
Barbara Davis June 13, 2012 at 08:52 PM
Where do you live, Alice? I suspect you don't live where the jet planes will be flying over your home day and night. This BOC is rife with self-serving commissioners who want to line their own pockets-the latest embarrassment is Lasseter. She was having financial problems (who isn't) so she put her vote up for sale and appointed her drug-dealing son to a zoning board where he could be counted on to okay whatever his momma wanted. 3 commissioners found guilty of lining their pockets and the hell with the Gwinnett citizens. I am a lifelong Republican but I am truly ashamed of this corrupt crew. They all need to be thrown out.
Barbara Davis June 13, 2012 at 09:31 PM
Brilliant!! Of course, any property directly adjacent to the airport is going to lose substantial value-my property is already worth half of what I bought it for 8 years ago and having jet planes flying overhead will decrease the value and will certainly decrease my value of life while I am stuck living in Gwinnett. Beaudreau was quick to throw his staff under the bus as you pointed out. He just refuses to listen to the citizens as well as the many entities who have all said the commercialization is a no-go! He needs to be voted out this election. He is no longer listening to the citizens and I would also like to know what is in it for him witht his airport-especially since his 3 fellow commissioners have left office in total disgrace with their self-serving actions. Lasseter even appointed her son to the zoning board-gee, you think he won't vote for what Mom wants.....he is also a drug dealer...and Mom did not know her son was dealing coke? And her vote was up for sale-she was having financial problems-not unlike me and many of her constituents these days. But she sold out for the buck. They all need to go!!! And I say this as a lifelong Republican. These people are truly shameful. Let them go......

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