Dalton’s New City Charter Signed into Law After Decades in the Making

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp recently signed Dalton’s new city charter into law, marking the culmination of a lengthy process initiated by the city’s leadership. The charter, which underwent revisions by city officials and staff for over a year, received final approval from Mayor and Council last November before being submitted to the state legislature earlier this year.

“It was a project that was 50 years in the making,” said City Administrator Andrew Parker who oversaw the effort to draft the new charter. “Once it was approved by the General Assembly and recently signed by the governor into law, it was a small celebration internally because for those involved in the elected body and the staff that had a hand in putting it together, that was kind of special to see it had made it finally through the process finally of being signed into law.”

“Hopefully this charter will serve the city for the next 50 years before it ever needs to be updated again,” Parker added.

Initiated in 2022, the overhaul of the previous charter, untouched since the 1970s, aimed to address outdated sections dating back to Dalton’s founding in 1847. With collaboration from legal counsel and city department heads, the new charter underwent thorough scrutiny to align with current practices and state laws, culminating in its recent ratification.

City Administrator Andrew Parker, overseeing the drafting effort, expressed satisfaction at the charter’s journey to becoming law, describing it as a project decades in the making. Public input played a crucial role, with multiple work sessions and hearings facilitating citizen feedback. Despite substantial changes necessitating approval by the Georgia General Assembly, the day-to-day functioning of Dalton’s government remains largely unaffected, albeit modernized to current practices.

Looking ahead, Mayor and Council will focus on aligning the city’s Code of Ordinances with the newly enacted charter in future meetings.

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