Harlem Mayor asks for House Bill 598 to be vetoed

Landowner writes a letter opposing the annexation

Harlem Mayor asks for House Bill 598 to be vetoed

HARLEM, Ga. (WFXG) - The Mayor of Harlem is asking Governor Kemp to veto House Bill 598. Mayor Roxanne Whitaker received a letter from a landowner Friday opposing the bill which led to her decision.

A press release states, “City of Harlem Mayor Roxanne Whitaker contacted State Representative Barry Fleming and requested House Bill 598 be vetoed by Governor Kemp. Representative Fleming told City Officials he would sponsor the bill if the affected property owners were not opposed to annexation.”

The City Manager, Brett Cook, says “On behalf of the City of Harlem, we apologize to Representative Fleming that we were not able to achieve a 100% support of this bill from land owners that we previously informed him we would have.”

The city has been working on expanding Harlem with landowners for a couple years and reportedly had a majority of the support for the annexation into the city. The annexation would allow the landowners to receive the benefit of Harlems utilities and services.

The release also states, “Mayor Pro Tem John Thigpen pledged to continue working with property owners who wish to come into the City for utilities. Although this is a setback for the City, Thigpen says it will not hinder Harlem long term in accomplishing their previously approved plan for confronting the massive growth in the Harlem area.”

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