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Johns Creek Mayor responds to city council investigation
by Nicole Dow
June 19, 2013 01:35 PM | 2705 views | 8 8 comments | 99 99 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Johns Creek Mayor Mike Bodker
Johns Creek Mayor Mike Bodker
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Responding to an investigation launched by the Johns Creek City Council, Mayor Mike Bodker said he is “disappointed that it has come to this.”

The investigation centers around alleged violations of the city’s charter and ethics ordinance.

Bodker said he welcomes the investigation as a chance to clear his name and any suspicion that has been placed upon him.

“My actions have always been to do what I believe is best for the citizens and businesses of Johns Creek,” he said.

Bodker said part of his responsibilities as mayor include speaking to people outside of city government.

“Sometimes those conversations get misconstrued by others who are not a party to them,” he said. “I’ve tried to clear up each and every misunderstanding that I’ve ever been made aware of, and I would say that [this investigation] is indicative of the fact that that hasn’t clearly gotten across.”

Bodker added, “One of the downsides of being the mayor — or a councilmember sometimes — is people will … sometimes on purpose state that you’ve said something or done something if it suits their needs. There have been many, many things that have been attributed to me that I’ve not even known about.”

In a statement released Tuesday, Councilman Randall Johnson said the launch of the investigation follows “several reprimands of Mayor Bodker about certain questionable actions he’s taken over the last several years.”

Johnson added, “There have been allegations that he’s repeatedly involved himself in actions and situations that were outside the will of council.”

One such reprimand Bodker recalled involved the restoration of Rogers Bridge. As Bodker explained, before Johns Creek was chartered as a city, officials from Fulton County, Duluth and Gwinnett County came to an understanding to each contribute to the bridge restoration.

“When we became a city, that project had not yet been done and Gwinnett and Duluth had apparently set aside their money but … [Johns Creek councilmembers] decided they did not want to move forward with that project,” he said. “I didn’t agree with the decision, but at the end of the day, the council decision is the council decision.”

Bodker said he continued receiving calls from Duluth officials but told them he could not change council’s decision.

When Brad Raffensperger was elected to council, Bodker explained the situation to him and asked if Raffensperger might want to meet with Duluth officials and take an objective look at the issue.

“[Councilmembers] interpreted it as me trying to go against their will, and they reprimanded me,” Bodker said.

In other instances of reprimand, Bodker said his actions have just been his attempt to back the will of the council and to gather information to make sure they had all the facts.

Bodker said the investigation will not interfere with city operations and said he hopes it will move forward quickly and professionally.

The city has contracted with Wilson, Morton & Downs of Decatur to handle the investigation, which could take up to six weeks. A report will be made public once the investigation is complete.
Comments
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not the only charge
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June 26, 2013
Dear Mr.Investigate:

How do you know what the charges are until the report comes out? You are presuming that the bridge issue is the ONLY charge. So how in the heck are you stating (on this blog) that you know what the details are? Your posting sounds kind of fishy to me.

The 5 members of the city council were elected by the people of Johns Creek. I think that these 5 elected officials have the right to protect the interests of the city and its people by investigating any unethical behavior.

Precisely
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June 22, 2013
To those posting below: The City Council is not being investigated for unethical behaviour, the mayor is!

The City Council chose a law group not associated with Johns Creek. They chose an unbiased one.

As for the mayor, betcha he is sweating!
watchdogs
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June 20, 2013
If someone in a city, state, or county office abuses his/her power and goes against the others in power. then he/she should be checked out and fast.

We don't want a person in power over-stepping his/her bounds and doing whatever he/she wants.

A third term for any person on a city council

, should be nixed. it is the continued replacement of these people that keeps the group on its toes, gets new ideas, and keeps the "watchdogs" watching.

I will not be voting for the current mayor this fall. He's "outa" there.

investigatecouncil
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June 20, 2013
Watchdogs... so are you in favor of "checking out fast" the city council members? A very weak and far from black/white example was used by the council as the entire basis of this investigation. Is it good that a council be able to launch an investigation and spend tax dollars over something so vague and not compelling? If abuse of power is what you wish to guard against, how do you justify supporting the council's actions? I hope you feel the same a few months down the road. Objectively speaking, I'm not for one or the other. I am not for what the council has done here though. They are using my money to try and drum up skepticism about Bodker in the community so "one" of them can make a run for office. And just you wait if you think that "one" will be any treasure to the city as a Mayor. There may only be a few of us commenting, but I know there is a large number of people very unhappy with the council. I think the gang of five could see this blow up in their face while your tax dollars and mine are having a party in some attorney's wallet. You know... maybe one of the attorneys Randall Johnson just so happens to know and was happy to provide this business to, right? Isn't that pretty much the way it went down?
Investigatecouncil
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June 20, 2013
Hair brained schemes... like becoming a city? Was it his idea to move forward with projects and fund them that Roswell didn't want? Is he the one at odds with Alpharetta over just about everything? Wait, no... that's the City Council who is supposed to be able to work and play professionally with others to get the things our city needs accomplished. I don't have an issue with those that say he's an ego maniac, maybe he is. I know he can be very abrasive and direct. He is also very ethical, very interested in doing what serves the whole, not the few, and must be very frustrated with the ineptitude of "those" around him. This should be seen for what it is, a flagrant misuse of tax payer money to discredit Bodker because the council is weaker than him and wants him out. One wants to run against him and knows they have no chance without a scandal to discredit his name and throw poo. This is campaign antics on the tax payer dime. Very unacceptable. By the way, some the of City Council members could use better interpersonal communication skills too. Let's see who on the council surfaces as an opposition candidate to Bodker during qualifying (coincidentally coming up soon). The citizens shouldn't stand for this kind of abuse of funds. Wouldn't pay for the stinking bridge improvement but will pay for this? By the way, is it appropriate for persons of executive position in the city to go around telling civic and other influential organizations not to attend the city council meeting last week and ordering them not to get involved or appear to take a side? Hmmm... Do they have a right to tell private civic citizen organizations what they can or can't participate in? Something stinks alright but I'm not convinced it's Bodker at this point.
Me thinks
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June 20, 2013
I agree with you, methinks. Bodker is not getting my vote. 2 terms are enough. Time for a change.
MeThinks HeDoth
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June 19, 2013
Protest too much. While I don't think Bodker has done anything criminal or evil, he does believe he's smarter than everyone else and knows "what's best for the citizens and businesses of Johns Creek" better than the rest of council and therefore tries to go over, around and through them whenever they don't agree with his often hair-brained ideas. But his motivation IS self-serving and that's simply to stroke his own massive ego. Being mayor is probably the most significant thing he's ever done or will do. He's a political groupie who wants to run with the big dogs and fancies himself the great facilitator, working behind the scenes to get things done, negotiate deals and save the day. He loves the camera and probably even relishes this bit of public spotlight even though it's negative. What a sad little man.
taxpayerX2
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June 19, 2013
Sounds like Bodker was going behind the backs of the council members to me!
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