Posted: Thursday, September 27th 2012 at 11:58pm
Commission: No Hall $$$ to Iran or Sudan
By Marc Eggers Staff
GAINESVILLE – The Hall County Commission Thursday night unanimously approved a resolution that normally would be outside the scope of their jurisdiction: business relationships with the nations of Iran and Sudan.
"I know that it is very rare that (we) deal with matters of foreign policy and international trade…at a County Commission meeting," Commissioner Ashley Bell said.
The motion on the floor before the Commission was for a resolution supporting and encouraging the disinvestment of all funds managed by the county which had been placed in any company with active business operations in the energy industry in either Iran or Sudan.
"These tax dollars that you give us…we invest them and we spend them…they could end up anywhere. We need to make sure that the places where we are spending our money and investing your hard earned money…those places match our moral values and they match our ethics," Bell explained.
"This particular resolution deals with two major countries where we know we have serious concerns. They (the governments of Sudan and Iran) are no friends of ours, by any means," Bell added.
"We have a fiduciary duty to our employees…and their retirement dollars…to our taxpayers, to make sure that the investments we make in our community come from the right place," Commissioner Craig Lutz said.
"This is one of those types of resolutions that help to proclaim we understand how connected the world is," Lutz added.
Rabbi Mark Zimmerman of Congregation Beth Shalom in Dunwoody gave the opening invocation and expressed his appreciation for the Commission’s stance.
"I applaud… this Commission for providing the leadership to make this bold act, to take the necessary steps to insure that the public funds of Hall County are not used inadvertently to subsidize terrorist activities in Iran or Sudan," Zimmerman said.
"We hope all counties and all jurisdictions in this great country of ours will act with the same diligence and foresight."
NEW STREETLIGHTS FOR FLOYD ROAD & BARNES DRIVE
New streetlights will brighten the night along Barnes Drive and Floyd Road.
Nearly two dozen area residents attended tonight’s meeting to express their gratitude to the Commission for approving a resolution aimed at increasing safety in the historic neighborhood on Gainesville’s east side.
"One of the darkest places in Hall County," Reverend Eddie Walker told the Commission, "would be Floyd Road. Thank you to Commissioner Bell and others who have worked with you."
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