In my opinion, and many other water rate payers and taxpayers, the issue of Commissioner Brian Tam’s conflict of interest is not over.
Mr. Tam stated in a similar 4/21 AJC article and your 4/22 FCN article that “he is tired of having his integrity challenged.” Any public official that feels this way should encourage further and deeper investigation into the allegations — if he is a true servant of the people.
Then, in your article, Tam talks about how a similar case was dismissed by the county Board of Ethics by a unanimous vote back in 2010. I would almost bet on my life’s savings that not one member of the Board of Ethics was familiar with lease law, terms, conditions and negotiations involved in leasing retail space; they were neither qualified nor understood the real issue about this atypical lease the Tam family holds with the city of Cumming.
In addition to the atypical provisions of this retail lease in question already identified in your article of 4/22, any retail lease that does not impose any late fees for late rent payments is atypical; any retail lease that has “all you can eat” utilities is atypical; any lease that has no rent increases for 11 years, is atypical; and it is not standard business practice in the retail lease arena to only have a $500 deposit when one month’s rent is the standard of the industry. Having a lease with the city and no increases in the agreement until 2016, one wouldn’t care what water rates would go up to (for the restaurant) since the business would not be affected until 2016. This is not a conflict? Poppycock!
With the sad state of our nation with the lack of full transparency, perception is reality. There is a conflict of interest to have Mr. Tam participate in any discussions or votes involving intergovernmental agreements with the county and the city of Cumming. If Mr. Tam still refuses to recuse himself there will be additional research and investigation regarding this conflict of interest.
If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it is not a goose!
Robert (Bob) Rorke