County will hire, loan development staffer to South Cobb
by Jon Gillooly
September 18, 2012 01:12 AM | 3153 views | 4 4 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Cobb Board of Commissioners Chairman Tim Lee (MDJ/File)
Cobb Board of Commissioners Chairman Tim Lee (MDJ/File)
MABLETON — County Chairman Tim Lee said the county will be loaning a member of its economic development department to help with the redevelopment efforts underway in South Cobb.

But first that person needs to be hired.

Michael Hughes, the county’s economic development director, told the seven-member South Cobb Redevelopment Authority on Monday that county manager David Hankerson has whittled down more than 140 applications for the position of economic development coordinator, a job left vacant last year when Terrilyn Hannah took a position with Keep Cobb Beautiful.

The top candidate will receive a verbal offer either Monday or today, Hughes said. Whoever fills the position, which has a salary range of $44,366 to $69,723, would work out of the county’s economic development offices by the Marietta Square, Hughes said.

Lee referenced the recent plan adopted by the Redevelopment Authority, which outlines the best ways to redevelop south Cobb.

“So we’re going to loan a staff person to that effort to help facilitate moving that along,” Lee said.

But don’t confuse that effort with another economic development proposal Lee’s working on called Cobb’s Competitive EDGE, a nonprofit organization being created in concert with the Cobb Chamber of Commerce that plans to launch in January.

“It’s a whole different program,” Lee said, noting one is county-wide and the other is specific to south Cobb.

“The EDGE program is for improvement in business development throughout the county,” Lee said. “The South Cobb Redevelopment Authority and the South Cobb Redevelopment Implementation Plan are specific to it.”

Ford Thigpen of Kennesaw, president of Hiram-based Westside Bank, was unanimously re-elected as chairman of the South Cobb Redevelopment Authority during its Monday morning meeting held at the Mable House Arts Center.

Thigpen said the Authority was started about a year ago by the state Legislature, spearheaded by state Sen. Doug Stoner (D-Smyrna) and state Rep. Alisha Thomas Morgan (D-Austell).

“Our mission is just to make South Cobb a better place to live, work, play,” Thigpen said.

The Authority was given $25,000 in seed money to launch from a leftover $1 million state grant from the former South Cobb Development Authority, which had since gone dormant, Thigpen said.

The county oversees the $213,000 that remains from the original $1million grant, Hughes said.
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Mableton Maven
October 05, 2012
I have lived in Mableton for some time now and I see the changes that are slowly taking place. I believe as with all similar communities that mindset is everything. When there are negative beliefs about where you live, its pretty much your fault if you complain but yet don't do anything to change your community. Get active and stop waiting for others to do something. Be the change you want to see in the world.
September 18, 2012
what nonsense.
September 18, 2012
The county leaders are just a bunch of knuckleheads!!

The whole northwestern 285 corridor is rough & negleted. It doesn't look too inviting of a place to bring in businesses.

And Smyrna, a cornerstone of south Cobb, which should have been leading the way, has proven to be anti business and anti good growth.

Just this week, a business along South Cobb Drive was threatenend w/ fines and legal action, because the 'color' wasn't in a neutral palatte.

The business was a car wash/detail shop in a '50's bungalow along a poor stretch of road that's known for fast food, furniture rental and mexican resturants.

When you treat your small businessman so poorly, your city sure becomes less attractive to any businesses.

I believe South Cobb has been ignored & treated like it wasn't part of the 'good' (EAST COBB) for so long,.. there's really no turning this ship around at this point.

Gwinnett, , Cherokee, Dekalb, Henry , Newnan & Fulton have worked hard to attract businesses.

South Cobb has attracted thugs & poverty!
Leaving in a hurry
September 18, 2012
You are correct, South Cobb is so far gone there is no chance of turning it around! I know first hand, I reside in South Cobb county (for now), it's completely run down.
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