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Committee For a Better Atlanta Releases City Candidate Evaluations

July 12,2010

Committee for a Better Atlanta’s evaluations and candidates’ questionnaires available at www.betteratlanta.org

ATLANTA (July 13, 2010) The Committee for a Better Atlanta (CBA), a coalition of Atlanta businesses and business organizations, released its Consumer Reports-style evaluations today of the candidates running for Fulton County Commission. The CBA Voter Guide “scores” candidates on business issues important to the community at-large.

“Municipalization” was the prevalent theme in 2006 and continues to be relevant in 2010 as Fulton County adjusts to cities created over the past four years. In addition, many of this year’s candidates pointed to the potential creation of Milton County, economic development and effective delivery of county services as the most important issues for this election. Infrastructure needs, specifically around transportation, ranked high as well.

CBA is pleased to report that eight out of 12 candidates participated in our process. In addition, there are a number of qualified candidates running in this year's election as indicated by the fact that three candidates rated “excellent” in the CBA evaluation and three are “well qualified.”

“Fulton County citizens should be pleased that we have a strong slate of candidates this year vying for posts in county government,” said Jeff Wansley, vice president of government affairs for Equifax, Inc., and the 2010 chair of CBA. “There are a number of important issues that the commissioners will grapple with, especially in a tough economic environment, over the next four years and this election could have a significant impact on the direction of the Commission. We must therefore be informed and make choices based on how candidates view the very important issues that will shape our county for the next four years.”

To provide the best possible information on issues important to voters, CBA developed a detailed questionnaire for the Fulton County Commission election and conducted personal interviews that probe candidates about high-priority community concerns. Committee members used a scale for scoring the responses to the questionnaire and the interviews, and an average was calculated for each candidate:

• 88 or higher is considered “excellent;”
• 79 to 87 is “well qualified;”
• 70 to 78 is “average;”
• below 70 is “not qualified.”


Following are the scores for each candidate:

District 1 (chair)

Steve Broadbent (R)
WELL QUALIFIED
86

John Eaves
EXCELLENT
93
   
District 2 Lori Henry (R)
EXCELLENT
88
Robb Pitts (D)
EXCELLENT
90
   
District 3 Liz Hausmann (R)
WELL QUALIFIED
85
     
District 4 Tom Lowe (R)
Did not participate
     
District 5 Emma Darnell (D)
Did not participate
     
District 6 Joan Garner (D)
WELL QUALIFIED
85
David Holder, Sr. (D)
Did not participate
Sally Smith (D)
AVERAGE
70
Keisha Waites (D)
AVERAGE
78
District 7 Bill Edwards (D)
Did not participate
     

A complete list of scores can be found here.

CBA strives to make the evaluation process as fair as possible across all races and only takes into account responses provided to the questionnaire and in the interview process. Interviewers were provided extensive training to ensure consistency in evaluating candidates. Prior voting records were not considered for this purpose but may be included in future CBA processes.

The entire voter guide, including candidates’ scores and questionnaires, is available on CBA’s web site: www.betteratlanta.org. CBA encourages its members to distribute the guide to their employees.

CBA has evaluated candidates for elected offices since 1997. This year’s CBA members include:

100 Black Men of Atlanta
AGL Resources, Inc.
Americas Mart
Atlanta & Georgia Apartment Association
Atlanta Board of Realtors
Atlanta Commercial Board of Realtors
Atlanta Business League
Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau
Atlanta Hotel Council
Atlanta Restaurant Council
Atlanta Licensed Beverage Council
Atlanta Urban League
AT&T
Bank of America
Buckhead Business Association
Buckhead Coalition
Building Owners & Managers Association
Business Wise Incorporated
Central Atlanta Progress
Council for Quality Growth
Georgia Beverage Association
Delta Air Lines
Equifax
GE Energy
Georgia-Pacific Corp.
Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association
Metro Atlanta Chamber
SunTrust Corp.
Turner Broadcasting System

 

Contact: Che Watkins
404-586-8468
cwatkins@macoc.com