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Roswell votes to outsource court services

Special election for municipal judge in May 2014

September 24, 2013
ROSWELL, Ga. — On Sept. 23, Roswell City Council unanimously approved Deputy City Administrator Michael Fischer's request to outsource court services to a private contractor.

The council deferred this item at the Aug. 26 meeting, but Fischer brought this to the council's attention on Aug. 13, citing issues such as workload, efficiency and customer service as reasons to consider the shift.

Roswell's courts will now be reorganized with the clerks working under the private company, Jacobs Group, which already handles court services for Sandy Springs and Brookhaven. It comes with glowing recommendations from both cities, Fischer said.

"I have heard from churches and other people in the community about how exceptional our court services are as far as empathy and compassion," said Councilmember Nancy Diamond. "I just want to make sure that is a priority because that is a level of service we aren't willing to give up."

Fischer assured the council that Jacobs understands the quality of services to the citizens will remain the same as it is today.

Three positions in total will be eliminated, and Fischer predicts about $30,000 in savings to the city.

The council also unanimously approved the resolution to hold a special election for the chief Municipal Court judge on May 20, 2014.

City Attorney David Davidson said this was one of two resolutions that will cost the city much less money because May 20 is the day of the general primary.

If the council decided to hold the election on March 20, Davidson said it would have cost the city about $150,000 to $200,000, because it is not a state-run election.

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Tags: Government & News & Crime

  1. report print email
    Court services & Judgeship
    September 24, 2013 | 09:09 PM

    And now for the rest of the story: to those displaced city employees, I am sorry that you were misled to believe that you would be able to retain your positions with the Jacobs Group, when in fact, it is unlikely that you will ever be placed in a position in Roswell.

    It must also be noted that Mayor Wood went out of his way, on two separate occasions, to insist that the upcoming vote for a municipal judge might be cancelled when the council receives a study at the end of October recommending appointing a municipal judge. And if that comes to pass any Council Member that votes to appoint a municipal judge (and subsequently cancel the election of a Judge) will be subject to recall for violating their oaths of office to uphold the Roswell City Charter which specifically states that Roswell’s Municipal Judgeship is an elected position.

    Lee Fleck
  2. report print email
    Court Services
    October 16, 2013 | 09:46 AM

    To quote the vernacular, "OMG"!
    I actually, agree with Lee Fleck! Stop selling out our city!! Council has demolished two departments already, and I'm sure they're looking to ruin some more lives with this privatization theory. When are they gonna learn that the "lowest bidder" isn't always the right choice?!? What's next...bring in a failing YMCA to run the nation's second best Recreation & Parks Department?!? Stop trying to fix what ain't broke so you can get a few more votes at election time!

    Linda S
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