Hoschton divided over reported racist remarks
HOSCHTON, Ga. (FOX 5 Atlanta) - A divided community turned out Thursday night at the Hoschton City Council working session.
Many were calling on the mayor and a council member to step down after reported racist remarks including Hoschton resident Ron Cooper.
"If you love this city you should resign and resign today, thank you very much," said Cooper.
At the meeting, many held up "just resign" signs directed at Mayor Teresa Kenerly and Mayor Pro Tem council member Jim Cleveland.
On attorney advice, neither had any comments about allegations of racists comments.
The mayor reportedly said the city wasn't ready for a black administrator after reports she withdrew the application of a black candidate a couple of months ago.
Council member Cleveland added to the controversy with a comment that he's Christian and doesn't believe in interracial marriage.
Margaret Van Buren like others called on them to resign.
"Please resign to allow this fractured community to move forward this bell cannot be unrung," said Van Buren.
Amid the calls for resignation, there were also calls for clarity.
"I would like make sure before we cast stones at everyone that we all make sure we are perfect because the last perfect person that walked this earth was nailed to a cross," said Hoschton resident Tracy Jordan.
A slew of ethics complaints against Kenerly and Cleveland led to a new ordinance to establish an ethics board.
Dale Hall, the City Administrator, said more research is needed.
"Who would that actually be, a state attorney, a state judge? The council is concerned who it could be and we're don't more research who it could be and the number of individuals," said Hall.
Many aren't waiting for decisions from a yet to be formed ethics board, they have already started the process of a recall election against Kenerly and Cleveland.
Hoschton resident Pete Fuller is among those working to collect signatures and fill legal requirements.
"We're looking at at least two or three months before an election could be held? I believe so yeah," said Fuller.
However, not everyone is onboard. A Hoschton resident who would not tell FOX 5 News his name put it this way.
"We are small community and we should be working together instead of attacking this person or attacking that person," he said.