Fulton County Outsourcing Lobbying To Save Money?

Look, somebody should be lobbying for Fulton County, because they need some help. And according to the AJC, after several attempts at rigging a bid selecting a firm to represent the interests of the Fulton County taxpayers, the County will voted on Wednesday to select Arnall Golden & Gregory, led by former State GOP Chair and Sandy Springs City Councilman Rusty Paul.

From the AJC: “After months of deadlock over how to handle the upcoming state Legislative session, on Wednesday the Fulton County Commission will consider hiring an outside lobbying firm at a cost of $260,416. AGG scored the best out of three bidders for the state- and federal-level lobbying job. Rusty Paul, a former Republican state senator and leader of the Georgia GOP, is a senior policy advisor at the firm and co-chairs its government affairs team.”

Paul is quite familiar with Fulton County and their related governmental entities.  Take, for instance, his experience representing the Fulton County Development Authority – and his experience with board lunches that cost $1,000, as presented by Fox5 Atlanta’s Dale Russell:

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$1,100 for a lunch for a 9-member board? You might be asking yourself “WTF?” (which stands for “Welcome to Fulton.”)  Paul’s answer: “I don’t think the board knew…what the cost of those lunches were.” Because, you know, they’re just some board. It’s not like they’re not in charge of any money or anything. Let’s see what they have to say on their website:

With a reputation for cordial professionalism and attention to detail, the Authority has issued more than $16 billion in bonds and helped well over 300 businesses and institutions build, upgrade, renovate, expand or relocate in Fulton County.

Whoops. I hope they’re paying more attention to those tax exempt bond thingies than they were to the lobster bisque. Because bad bisque is one thing, but having somebody withdraw a credit enhanced rating on say, your Series 2008 VRDRBs is something else altogether.

So, Fulton County – excellent way to present yourself to a legislature that wants to end you as you currently exist. Hire as your chief lobbyist someone who apparently thinks that Boards of Fulton County authorities can’t be held accountable for what they were spending until an enterprising reporter points it out to them. (And he’s got some rather interesting ideas about where the State Capitol should go, too.) Well done!

You keep it up with stuff like that, and Milton County becomes more possible every day. As they say over at Arnall, Golden and Gregory, “Not if, but how.”

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