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Mayor of Hull and the conspiracy to dissolve the city's charter

By Paul Walton

The Conspiracy to dissolve Hull`s charter. There have been some

interesting things that`s been happening in Madison County

regarding the city of Hull. The plan to eliminate Hull`s Local

Option Sales Tax (LOST) funding. A city is required to provide at

least three services out of six. The city of Hull has in the past

provided fire protection, water, and police protection. Each was

through an Intergovernmental Agreement. The city was requested to

provide a contract with the Madison County Sheriff Department to

receive it`s LOST funding. The city of Hull has not had a current

contract with the MCS department since 2012, before my tenure as

mayor. The last contract was for $0 dollars to provide police

protection. All of a sudden, I was told by the Board of

Commissioners County attorney that in order to have a contract with

the MCS, we have to ask for a specific service which would cost

around $150.000 annually knowing that the city of Hull could not

afford that. Therefore; that lacked the city to receive LOST funding.

I`ll never forget the chairman of the BOC stating in the MCJ that the

mayor may want to pump the breaks on building that new city hall,

but I`ll come back to that later. So, to provide that third service I

acquired a location for a Hull public library. So, what was the next

move. Put the Hull mayor in a position so he cannot direct and

perform his duties. In November 2022, I was served by the Madison

County Sheriff a retraining order. That I shall not perform any of

my mayoral duties and a court date wasn`t set until over a month

and half later for me to appear in court. This retraining order was

supposedly because of when I qualified to run for Congress in

March 2022. Remember, this order was signed approximately 9

months later. Like all of a sudden, a light bulb went off. Well, a

light bulb did go off when I terminated the city of Hull`s former

clerk in September 2022. Part of that restraining order has in it that

the mayor shall not do any hiring or firing, change the city charter or

do any annexation. Now, when I saw that, I asked myself among

other things regarding this, why would a judge mention annexation.

But first of all; why would a judge even sign such thing and then

wouldn’t set a date to appear in court until over two months out.

The other interesting thing is that when the sheriff gave me this

order, he asked for my keys to the city without me ever being in or

attending court. I felt this was highly unusual. I informed him that I

did not have the city keys with me and he replied and I quote, “well

when you come to court bring the keys with you”. Right then I

knew it was and is a conspiracy to dissolve the city of Hull. Let`s

talk annexation. The city of Hull had plans to annex the

unincorporated part of Hull which was discussed at my very first

town hall meeting in 2019. Doing that would have made Hull the

largest city in Madison County under my leadership. It would have

grown tremendously by population, LOST funding, excise taxes,

occupational taxes, two banks, several gas stations and businesses,

the largest supermarket (Ingles), land for sale etc. Now, going back

to this restraining order. The bases of this were because of when I

ran for Congress my mayor seat became vacant supposedly. In

Article 2, § 2, 15 of the Constitution of the State of Georgia, entitled

"Vacancies created by elected officials qualifying for other office"


The office of any state, county, or municipal elected official shall be declared

vacant upon such elected official qualifying, in a general primary or general

election, or special primary or special election, for another state, county, or

municipal elective office or qualifying for the House of Representatives or the

Senate of the United States if the term of the office for which such official is

qualifying for begins more than 30 days prior to the expiration of such official's

present term of office. The vacancy created in any such office shall be filled as

provided by this Constitution or any general or local law. This provision shall not

apply to any elected official seeking or holding more than one elective office when

the holding of such offices simultaneously is specifically authorized by law.

(Emphasis added) The term for the 2023 10th Congressional District of the United

States House of Representatives for which I qualified, began on January 3, 2022.

My term ended on December 31, 2021 resulting from an election that was to have

taken place in November of 2021. Consequently, the mayor was not in violation of

Article 2, § 2, ¶5 of the Constitution of the State of Georgia and there was not a

vacancy created by his qualifying for the general primary. 

These Facts were presented in court with a copy of the original ad that ran in the

MCJ newspaper stating that my term ended in December 2021. The judge ignored

these facts. The two Hull city councilmembers, John Barber and Mike McElroy

hired Colbert city attorney to bring this case. They did not have any facts at all to

debunk our records and instead tried to use an old charter the was repealed when

the Governor signed a new Hull charter in May 2021. The old charter stated that

anyone whose term ends in December 2022 shall end in 2023. Keep in mind my

term ended in December 2021. They then resorted to a Sons of Confederate Sons

of Confederate Veterans v. Newton County Bd of Comm’r case which states

citizens have a right to remove officers from service. So does the city of Hull and

it`s called a charter that was signed by the governor stating the proper procedures

removing a public officer from office along with a city ordinance, both of which

was ignored by the two councilmembers who swore to uphold it and the judge who

is suppose to be fair and impartial. Each city in the state of Georgia is governed by

it`s charter and not a judicial court. It`s called Home Rule for those who may not

know. Two councilmembers have known authority to make any decisions

regarding city business outside of an open city council meeting with the proper

number of a quorum to conduct business which is three to four councilmembers,

none less. Four councilmembers my conduct city business without a mayor, none

less than that. The city of Hull only has two. To act without a quorum is in

violation of what`s called Georgia`s Sunshine Law. I`ll let the Georgia Attorney

General deal with that. How did Hull end up with only two councilmembers when

it previously had four. The first resigned due to the disrespect she received while

attempting to hold a council meeting without my presence from the other

councilmembers. So resigned because of it and I don`t blame her. The second

Hull councilmember would have the public believe that he resigned out of protest

of me terminating the former city clerk. I terminated her September 16, 2022. He

could have resigned immediately but stayed as a councilmember and had another

meeting in October 2022. During this meeting, I was out of town during a two-day

training session with the Georgia Municipal Association in Hiwassee. I asked the

mayor pro tem to facilitate the meeting while I listen on the phone. I also asked

then councilmember Brian Keopnick to record the meeting with my personal

recorder and do not erase anything from beginning to end of the meeting in case

there may be any additions or corrections of the meeting. During this meeting the

former city clerk showed up knowing I would be out of town and approached the

council with paperwork stating supposedly the real reason of why she was

terminated. The city of Hull has a Rule of Decorum Policy which the councilmen

failed to uphold outside of my presence. The two councilmembers John Barber

and Brian Keopnick went on a tantrum against me and threatened to have me

removed from office. When I got back into town, I asked then Brian Keopnick

could I pick up my recorder and if he had transcribed everything that was said at

the meeting. He said he would have it ready on Monday. I pick it up from him

and listened to the meeting. After listening I noticed he erased only the tantrum

and the voice of the former city clerk asking her claims to be put in the minutes as

if she was a councilmember of some sort when in fact, she is not even a citizen of

Hull. It was totally unacceptable for any councilmember to behave in this matter.

After then listening to the meeting and realizing these portions were erased, I

contacted former councilmen Koepnick and inquired about this missing recording

of the meeting and he said he forgot that I told him to not erase anything. I said to

him and I quote “you have been a councilman over 9 years and you know better,

I`ll take this up with the proper authorities in the morning. Approximately 30

minutes later he sent me a letter of resignation via email. He did not want the

public to know how they behaved in that meeting. I have a copy of the text

messages if anyone wants to question my trustfulness in this matter. Better than

that, I searched around the State of Georgia to find a company that could retrieve

this recording and finally found GC Computers in the Georgia Square Mall after

months of searching. They have recovered the files and I have the recordings. By

the way, let`s talk about the role of a councilmember. Councilmembers are

empowered to make policy decisions and to approve ordinances, resolutions, and

other local legislation to govern the health, welfare, comfort, and safety of the

city's residents. Not once have either of these two councilmembers ever put on my

desk an ordinance, resolution, local legislation or policy for the health, welfare,

comfort, and safety of the city residents. Councilmember John Barber was a no

call no show for so many meetings. I had to have an attendance policy drawn up

because of his actions. I have no allegiance to any councilmember, employee, only

to the United States Constitution, The Georgia State Constitution, my oaths that I

swore to and the City of Hull citizens. These councilmembers caused the city of