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City Council breaks law in first move of year – fires city manager, attorney illegally

By Blake Pittman, Editor

Personnel moves by the Homerville City Council – including the firing of the city manager – are invalid because the city council acted illegally in their first meeting of the new year Tuesday.

Georgia Press Association Attorney David Hudson, who wrote most of the state’s open records and meeting laws, said the Homerville City Council violated state law at their meeting Tuesday by not voting in an open meeting with a public vote on their annual appointments.

The Homerville City Council violated state Sunshine Laws in their first meeting of 2022 Tuesday.

At Tuesday night’s meeting, shortly after new Homerville Mayor Brooks Blitch IV was sworn in, the council went into executive session to deliberate on annual appointments. When they returned out of executive session 50 minutes later, Blitch stated “On the annual appointments, this is what we have,” before  announcing that they had decided to appoint Wallace Mincey as city manager, replacing the current city manager, Nan Mikell. He also announced that Homerville Police officer Mack Drury will replace interim Police Chief Lonnie Webb, and that Chad Corlee has been appointed as city attorney, replacing longtime Homerville City Attorney Jeff Helms. He told Mikell that her dismissal was “not personal.” 

After announcing the appointments, Blitch never opened the floor for a vote. No one from the council made a motion to accept the appointments, and no vote was taken on the issue in open session. The other decisions made by the council Tuesday were reappointments, including longtime Homerville City Council member Willie Hardee as Mayor Pro Tem. 

State law requires votes to be taken in open session, and any decision that violates the law is not binding, said Hudson.

“If someone challenges the firings and hirings, there is a sound legal basis to do so,” said Hudson. “The city could remedy those legal deficiencies by properly calling another meeting and putting these topics on the agenda for a public vote.” 

The News will have full details about the meeting in their next print edition.

4 Comments

  1. Bonnie Whitley on January 5, 2022 at 7:17 pm

    I maybe wrong but seem to recall years ago that Jeff was replaced with Chad. Chad had to give up being City Attorney because he was also serving as County Attorney and that was a conflict. Isn’t Chad also School Board Attorney? Couldn’t this be considered a conflict also?
    Is the City required to advertise for job openings especially management position. This has not been done since Wade Daniels for City Manager. Also the last Chief of Police advertised was after Mark Register died.

  2. Conflicted on January 6, 2022 at 2:39 pm

    Since we are on the subject of conflicts of interest Bonnie, let’s not forget that it is also a conflict of interest for the “city manager” to hire her daughter to work in the office with her but yet here we are. As you can tell, Homerville is one big conflict.

  3. Frances on March 17, 2022 at 3:29 am

    I can’t believe that there isn’t more for the community and clean up the sidewalks start looking out for the people of homerville instead of using your athority for personal satisfaction especially these city police they are corrupt and do what they want😤

  4. Kimberly bennefield on March 17, 2022 at 10:10 pm

    This isn’t the only law clinch county has broken in 2020 I was locked for clinch county disorderly conduct charge being held in coffee county and had court august 21 2020 and it was for cusdoty of my children and clinch county was supposed to ensure I made it to court or I’d lose my kids … No one ever showed up and I lost my kids something has got to be done about this county

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