DeKalb commissioners vote for new position for DCTV

by: Erica Byfield Updated:

DECATUR, Ga. - DeKalb County Commissioners voted to hire their own public information officer on Tuesday.

The vote was 6-1 in favor of the new position.

"We should not be moving the money around from one to the other, and we can take care of our individual communication needs through our individual offices," Commissioner Kathie Gannon said, who voted against the measure.

The commission's decision stems from a fight we first told you about earlier this year.

The commissioners want DCTV, the county's public access channel, to air their commission meetings.

DCTV is run by CEO Burrell Ellis' office.

In February, the commissioners were up in arms when they learned the CEO's State of the Union speech aired 60 times a week.

A county spokesperson told Channel 2 Action News all of the county's programming runs several times a week due to budget and manpower constraints.

Commissioner Elaine Boyer said in the meeting in an effort to make sure the public had video access to their committee meetings, she asked her chief of staff to shoot the committee meetings on a camera she purchased and then post the video on a website.

The commission's new public information officer will be responsible for shooting and broadcasting their committee meetings.

The groups vote allows the commissioners to take up to $75,000 from the CEO's office to fund the position.

"The vote has been taken and the damage is done and I'm going to try to see what I can do to mitigate the damage that it does to the operations of DeKalb County," DeKalb County spokesperson Burke Brennan said.

The commissioners will have access to the money on July 1.