Voters pass Macon-Bibb Consolidation
Following a century of debate and 'no' votes, Tuesday proved historic as voters elected to transition Macon and Bibb county into a single consolidated government.
With 100% of precincts reporting, the 'Yes' votes totaled 57% of the total vote.
Macon Mayor Robert Reichert told our media partner, the Telegraph, "I think tonight marks the time that Macon and Bibb County have embraced the future, and set out to be a more unified community.” Both city and county voters had to approve for consolidation to be passed. It was an overwhelming 'Yes' from both city and county voters.
Those opposed to consolidation are now looking ahead. Bibb County Commissioner Lonzy Edwards told the Telegraph that he hopes his predictions about consolidation’s troubles -- including a demand for a 20-percent cut in the cost of government -- get proven wrong. “You have to respect the voice of the people. That doesn’t change the fact you’re going to have to make those cuts,” Edwards said.
State Rep. Allen Peake, who had been pushing consolidation for years, said Tuesday’s votes show Bibb County came together.
“This is a game-changer day for our community,” Peake said.
Under the legislation that led to Tuesday’s referendum, consolidation will dissolve the governments of Macon, Bibb County and Payne City, then replace them with a single government led by a mayor and nine county commissioners.