Leadership in a Time of Crisis

June 5, 2020

By Larry Hanson, GMA Executive Director

As we navigate through these unprecedented times, I continue to be so impressed by the leadership and dedication of our city officials.

Our cities and those who lead them have adapted quickly and successfully and uncovered new ways of conducting business, delivering services and protecting the public and employees. This is a credit to you and an example of how city leaders are innovative and will­ing to adapt to whatever circumstances they face. I am not surprised that national polling shows the public has the highest level of trust and confidence in their local elected officials over all others. You know best the unique needs of the citizens of your city and its circumstances.
We at GMA are proud to stand with you and sup­port you during this time. I hope you have found our communications to be helpful and informative and our legal guidance, webinars, documents, best practices, dedicated website and other avenues to be a trusted resource to assist you. I am also proud of how well our member cities help and support one another and free­ly share information with each other.
I want to update you on several important efforts. First, we continue to work closely and cooperatively with Gov. Kemp and his team. We are also working as partners with ACCG, and together we have made a proposal to Gov. Kemp for sharing of the CARES Act funding. Hopefully by the time you read this, an an­nouncement will have been made to provide funding to all 538 cities and 159 counties in Georgia, with the exception of four counties and one city who received direct funding from the CARES Act. GMA’s Advisory Committee has met at least weekly to provide lead­ership and guidance on the CARES Act proposal as well as input on Executive Orders. We continue to ad­vocate for federal funding to support you and remain hopeful that a fourth stimulus bill will provide direct funding to all cities.
Our building project continues to move forward and has avoided negative impacts or delays. The struc­tural steel for the new building is going up fast and we recently began construction of the parking deck. This completed parking deck will have nearly 150 spac­es and allow us to serve our member cities in excit­ing new ways. Upon completion, this new four story, 29,000-square-foot building will be connected to our existing building by a 2,500-square-foot courtyard. Our project is on-time and within budget with an antic­ipated December 2020 ribbon cutting. We can’t wait to share it with all of you!
In closing, I again want to express my admiration to each of you for your leadership during these trying times. Please know we are here to serve you, support you and be a trusted resource for you. Please stay healthy, stay safe and stay kind.

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