Gray City Council members made the decision at their monthly meeting to make the City of Gray a Second Amendment Sanctuary City.
The idea for the resolution that was approved with a unanimous vote at the March 2 meeting was presented to the council at its Feb. 18 meeting of all committees by Mayor Pro Tem James Collins.
The Mayor Pro Tem viewed the passage of the resolution as a historic event and explained his feeling in a March 4 text.
“Over 200 years ago our forefathers ratified the Second Amendment, the right of citizens to bear arms. They were not providing a right but affirming its existence.
“This week the city of Gray, in a unanimous vote, became the second city in Georgia to join many others nationwide in declaring and reaffirming their support and acknowledgment of this right. It is an exciting event, which sends a positive message to our citizens and the nation that we still hold strong to that right our forefathers held so close,” Collins said. “As Mayor Pro Tem, it was an honor on behalf of our citizens to introduce the resolution to council. Like spouses renewing vows, we have reaffirmed and proclaimed our commitment to our citizens and our great Constitution.”
The monthly council meeting was called to order by Mayor Ed Barbee, and the first report was by Main Street Gray Manager Haley Watson. The manager said work was moving ahead with the city’s second Turkey Festival, scheduled for April 18.
Egg Hunt is planned in partnership with the Gray Jaycees April 4 at the pecan orchard next to Jones County pre-K.
Watson said a Networking Night was planned June 27 that would include a fireworks display. She said last year food for the event was sponsored by a partnership of Jones County and the City of Gray and asked the council to consider continuing that partnership. Watson said the first 500 attendees to the event would receive free hotdogs.
The first item of New Business was a general appropriations resolution that in essence gave the funds from the Hotel/ Motel Tax collected by the city to the Jones County/Gray Chamber of Commerce to use for tourism for the City of Gray and general promotion of the city, which is the purpose of the tax.
The amount of appropriation was $11,000. The transfer and use of the funds was agreed upon when the city passed the Hotel/Motel Tax.
Following the Second Amendment Sanctuary City vote that was the only other item on the agenda, Tina Hunter with the 2020 Census introduced herself and asked that the City of Gray become a partner in the Census.
She said April 1 is Census Day, and residents should start receiving their Census forms by the middle of this month. Hunter said the form would have an invitation for recipients to go online and submit their form but there are multiple options.
In addition to online, forms can be submitted on the phone, by mail or in person with a Census worker. Internet access is available at the Jones County Public Library for anyone without the internet.
The speaker said the goal is to have all Census forms submitted by April 1. She said Jones County was undercounted in 2010, which means the loss of millions of dollars in federal funds and under representation in government.
Hunter said participating in the Census is safe and is required by the U.S. Constitution.
The next meeting of the Gray City Council is an all committees meeting March 16, and the next scheduled business meeting is April 6.