Warner Robins Mayor LaRhonda Patrick reaches 100 days in office
It's been more than 100 days since Warner Robins Mayor LaRhonda Patrick took office, and while she's faced challenges, she's also accomplished some of the platform she ran on.
WARNER ROBINS, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) — It’s been more than 100 days since Warner Robins Mayor LaRhonda Patrick took office, and while she’s faced challenges, she’s also accomplished some of the platform she ran on.
“We’ve already made progress with making sure our citizens have a voice here at the city by creating four new boards,” Mayor Patrick said.
Mayor Patrick says those four boards include veterans issues to focus on creating a Vietnam Veterans memorial. There’s also an events board, a retail safety board and a local business owners board.
She says the local business owners board will allow business owners who might not live within city limits to have a voice, too.
“The perfect solution would be create a space for them to all come together,” she said. “No matter if they live inside the city limits or outside the city limits and collaborate on things that are affecting their businesses, and also help mayor and council come up with solutions.”
The first 100 days haven’t been without challenges. During her first month in office, she suspended now former City Administrator, David Corbin, for two weeks without pay.
Patrick accused Corbin of signing a contract without proper permission or authority. He resigned two weeks later.
Mayor Patrick says the Middle Georgia Regional Commission is vetting candidates for the City Administrator opening, but the city is functioning well without one.
“Our department heads are doing what they’ve always done, which is handling the personnel issues at their level,” she said. “And if there’s ever anytime things escalate and we need to go further, they’ll come over to me, which may have happened once since we’ve been without a City Administrator.”
Mayor Patrick says she inherited an IRS tax lien and levy from the previous administration and that those issues should be resolved soon.
The city also dealt with former employee Pamela Mullis being charged with theft by taking fiduciary. Mayor Patrick says the city made all of the affected accounts whole again.
“It’s now under the investigation, the authority of our district attorney, our police department,” she said. “They are cooperating with anything that’s needed to see this case through.”
Mayor Patrick says the skills she gained from her career as an attorney have helped her as mayor. She says she’s feeling great about the first 100 days.
“We’re going to be a city that has the green space for families to come and enjoy live music or get food at the food truck, kids can run around and play,” she said. “We’ll have more parks that are renovated. The potential is limitless. We’re going to have that live, work, play community here in that city center that we’re trying to create.”
As for the next 100 days, Mayor Patrick is hoping to resolve some of the lawsuits her administration inherited. She’s also hoping to announce new community events and to create a solid plan to make Warner Robins a smart city.
Mayor Patrick also announced that the Lieutenant Governor’s office appointed her to the Georgia Commission on Women.
She calls the appointment surreal.
“I didn’t think that the state office knew my name,” she said. “Let alone knew enough about me to feel confident that making a nomination with me would actually be approved, but it was, and I’m elated to know that I can now serve the city of Warner Robins and other women across the state at that level.”
The Georgia Commission on Women monitors the status, rights and opportunities of women in Georgia. It currently focuses on human trafficking, maternal mortality and women’s health.