Senators spar of territory, C-Tran at issue

It is about 21 miles from Decatur, where Sen. Emanuel Jones, lives to Riverdale, where Sen. Valencia Seay resides. It is about 10 steps from their offices inside a suite on the fourth floor of the State Capitol.

Seems like enough distance, but there is a turf war building.

Seay (D-Riverdale), went to the well of the Senate Wednesday and ripped Jones (D-Decatur), for his comments and involvement in the C-Tran matter. For the record, Jones had just spoken from the well about the need to do more on the issue.

Clayton County is less than two months away from having no public transportation.

“I rise to let it be known that I too care about the people of Clayton County. We have been working diligently on this matter,” Seay said.  “And the last time I looked, the “C” in C-Tran stood for Clayton.”

Seay said it would cost about $12 million to keep the system running. Last October the Clayton Commission voted 4-1 to shut down C-Tran at the end of March because it was losing money.

Since the session started, Jones has held several meetings and rallies around the transportation issue. On Tuesday night, he spoke at the Clayton County Commissioners meeting and has said that issue is very important to the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus, of which he is the president.

Seay, who is a dues paying member of the caucus, said she has not seen any minutes from the body to suggest they take the matter on.

“Around here, we have a committee on state and local government. In local government, we typically respect the local politics of our colleagues,” Seay said. “I think what the senator from the 10th is doing is disrespectful.”

Jones quietly listened and smiled during Seay’s comments. When she exited the well, she gently tapped him on the shoulder. He left to get ready for Wednesday’s Black Caucus dinner and Seay tended to her grandchildren.

“Hey,” Seay said later. “We are suitemates, we are colleagues and we still have respect for each other.”

Editor’s note: Commenting has been closed on this entry.

23 comments Add your comment

Newter Gingrich

February 17th, 2010
6:49 pm

If the “c” in C-Tran stands for Clayton County, then let Clayton County pay for C-Tran.

Did Senator Seay ever consider that approach?

AJC Reader

February 17th, 2010
7:04 pm

Why is Senator Jones fighting for an issue outside his district? Yes, he’s the president of the GLBC, but why wouldn’t he include the elected officials of Clayton county? Sounds like he’s planning to run for a statewide position, or is his term for president coming to an end and he wants to run for re-election?

Aaron and Chris = two cowards who hide behind a keyboard (and too hooded peas in a pod)

February 17th, 2010
7:51 pm

With comments like that, I’m surprised that Aaron and Chris can read, much less walk upright, think and chew gum at the same time….Oh, that’s right, they can’t. Sorry. Despite the comments from our highly enlightened friends, Aaron and Chris, no matter his true intentions, it’s good that Senator Jones spoke up and brought some much needed attention to this issue because no one is doing so. Think about it, a significant portion of the metro area, one of the five core urban counties of the metro area is going to be completely without bus service on April 1st and until now we’ve heard not a peep about it from our state leaders and nothing more from the people who matter most in the decision-making, the Clayton County Commission.

Looks like Senator Seay seems to be more upset about being called out and protecting her so-called “turf” than she does about serving her constitutents and helping to make sure that her entire constituency doesn’t go without bus service to get to their jobs at the very least. If at the very least, it takes people like Senator Jones and like-minded others to speak out and at least shame those like Senator Seay, the state and the Clayton County Commission to in some way address a pressing issue then whatever it takes. This is not a state problem and it is not the state’s responsibility to keep C-Tran operating, but it doesn’t hurt for the state to put some public pressure on those who “serve” Clayton County like the Clayton County Commission to take some responsibility for what goes on in their own community and make a tough decision to at least raise fares and ask for at the very least a slight tax increase in the county’s sales tax to keep their own county system operating instead of saying “there’s no money, shut down the bus service and hope that the state deals with it for us”.

Not Going To Use My Usual Name

February 17th, 2010
7:58 pm

This may be news to most of you, but just like individuals exist in families and social networks, so Jones’ district exists in a system that includes Clayton County. In other words, people in *his* district will be affected by C-Tran’s closing. Since when is that not his business?

Seay should be grateful that someone is stepping up to try to find alternate sources of funding for C-Tran. He ought to have communicated with her first, and shame on him if he didn’t, but the bottom line is that Jones does in fact have a reason to address this issue.

Aaron, Chris and Ron = three great spokesman for the entire white race

February 17th, 2010
8:15 pm

What’s wrong, did you guys get up on the wrong side of the swatizka this morning? Did you burn yourselves trying to set a cross on fire or did Hitler put a little bit too much Mein in your Kopf? Despite bigoted “morans” like Aaron, Chris and Ron not being able pass up the slightest opportunity to needlessly inject race (or petty racism) into any and every issue at every available turn, this issue is not about race. This issue is about the people elected to supposedly represent and serve their constituents not wanting to do fulfill their responsibilities and do their jobs and pass the buck along to the state. Aaron, Chris and Ron may not have enough common sense to know that the overwhelmingly vast majority of blacks don’t rob, steal, kill or sell drugs, but the vast majority of those who are white and those who are not white have enough common to know that the overwhelmingly vast majority of whites don’t commit child rape, incest, go postal and commit workplace shootings and gruesome mass murders where they sit around eating people (Shocker! Not all white people are like Jeffery Dalmer). Stop hiding behind a computer screen while dating your right hand in your mommy’s basement and get a life, losers!

Rob Vinson

February 17th, 2010
9:03 pm

If the C tran is going to close its’ doors….which looks like it’s going to happen, then the passenger’s will just have to carpool or go buy cars or take taxis or walk….Whatever, it’s a Clayton County thing and they shouldn’t be asking the State for money. Marta doesn’t get any money from the state either and they make do. Make do with what you have people and do for your selves…find a way to make it and do it!


February 17th, 2010
9:05 pm

It is great that the senator spoke up for the people that rides the C-train bus. I am not a regular rider however, since i had a car accident a month ago I have became a rider and really appreciate the bus service thus far. I hope something is done about this problem real sooon. Forget about who doing what, bus or no bus, we all have a sinful naTURE.

NO name is better

February 17th, 2010
9:28 pm

Why does everything in metro Atlanta have to broken down by race. That’s why I left the State


February 17th, 2010
9:35 pm

tax dollars and are wholly unprepared to lead.


February 17th, 2010
9:42 pm

then, not that regarding the college degree.

Seay constituent (hopefully not for long)

February 17th, 2010
9:55 pm

Wow. Amazing that Seay can exert such energy to represent Clayton but she ignores her Fayette constituents. She doesn’t return phone calls. Her staff has a nasty attitude when you call. Will someone PLEASE run against this idiot!!!!! Send her sorry @$$ home and get her off the public dime.


February 17th, 2010
10:04 pm

It’s sad that racist comments are being posted. This article is about people losing their transportation. Let’s stop being selfish and focus on others.


February 17th, 2010
10:19 pm

Wondering why Clayton doesn’t take care of its citizens like the other counties. Just a thought, Why does MARTA operate the CTran system, They have MARTA in the red and why would they operate CTran efficiently. Maybe Clayton should join MARTA and they could save money with only 1 lobbist trying to get our money. If Clayton managed the transit system and hired non MARTA drivers, how much could they save, like could they afford to operate the system?


February 18th, 2010
5:08 am

There are some disgusting, awful people posting here today. Aaron, Chris, Cindi, Ron, Liz .. you should be ashamed of yourself. Your willful ignorance is as deplorable as you obvious lack of education and critical thinking skills. I hope you choose to pursue an education and to seek therapy for your unreasonable fear and loathing of your fellow Americans. Sad, very sad.


February 18th, 2010
5:27 am

Children, when I arranged it so that some of you would have more pigmentation in your skin than others, I meant it for variety – just like you don’t always want to consume the same food or same drink – hence my variety of foods I placed down there.

You sure have made skin color an issue.

Not that I’m surprised, given what happened to my Son when he dared to suggest that everyone treat everyone else with love and respect.

This internet invention is handy though – you spout your bad thoughts while remaining private, then go about your lives.

I’ll be here when you need to talk. Until then, be as happy as you choose to be.


February 18th, 2010
7:01 am

People…the point of the article, I believe, is that the honorable from Dekalb seems to be taking a more active role in trying to help C-tran than the honorable from Clayco. And it is a telling point. What has Seay done for Clayco lately? (Hmmm…made a little speech and then went off to tend to her grandkids…while the legislature is in session…hmmm.)


February 18th, 2010
7:40 am

Ah, the good ole days when we whites controlled everything. It sure was great when 1/3 of the state couldn’t vote, could get lynched simply for looking a white woman the wrong way, were forced to have their own restaurants, hotels, restrooms and theater balconies, and generally knew their place in the world and not get all uppity with those of us belonging to the superior race. Things were so swell back then – no war, no crime, no poverty, no disease. It was heaven on earth.

At least for the 2/3 of us lucky enough to be born with the right color skin pigmentation. Something tells me the other 1/3 may beg to differ.

It’s sad that the 21st century is still inhabited by so many people who never evolved past the world of 1860 (or 1950 for that matter).


February 18th, 2010
9:27 am

Yeah Cindi thats a fact- Go to the U.S. Bureau of Prisons websit and view for yourself. If only the media sensationalized white crimes like they do blacks. Seems that the police were looking for three black males who shot and killed the police officer Tuesday, and lo and behold the shooter had a white hue to him. People like you are really showing off your first class Georgia education.


February 18th, 2010
10:12 am

Those statistics sure do get in the way don’t they? Seems like when someone is on the wrong end of facts they resort to insinuations and innuendos. “Just the facts, Ma’m, Just the facts”. Let’s talk about percent of the population.


February 18th, 2010
10:20 am

Go to any world class city any you will find a first class transit system, i.e., New York, San Francisco, Chicago, London, Paris, most major cities in Europe, Tokyo, etc. The transit systems usually take in an area at least as large as the Atlanta Metropolitan area (the 13 contiguous counties around the city of Atlanta). If we as a region continue to look at the metro area piecemeal versus one large transportation district, then Atlanta will continue to be a “wanna be” world class city. But if that’s what the voters want, then so be it. It takes more than a “wanna be” to in reality be a world class city. It takes a world-class transportation system of coordinated and connected that encompasses heavy rail, commuter rail, light rail, bus, and yes pedestrian and bicycle friendly trails and paths. Oh, and don’t forget that outside of the United States, Europe in particular, high speed rail is a major part of the transportation network. And because of disinterest by the current local, State, and national GA representatives, in the future you will have to drive to Charlotte, NC or Florida to catch a high speed train.


February 18th, 2010
10:30 am

I prefer those high speed planes….and what about LA and their world class transit? What is in Houston & Phoenix? Newer cities do not have the concentrated population centers that more of the old world cities have. Another factor is these newer cities are not limited by geography as many of the old cities always were bordered by water.

Mr Attitude

February 18th, 2010
10:30 am

Wow!! Talk about losing focus. There will be many residents losing access to transportation at the end of March, yet there are those who chose to disect this matter and turn it into a race issue. Pretty amazing. I’m baffled in how we can tell our children to stay focused, yet we as adults have a hard problem doing it. I have yet to see one tidbit of a suggestion that the minds at the Gold Dome can use to fix this bad situation.

Mr Attitude

February 18th, 2010
10:38 am

Retiredds, I agree with your post. I am still trying to comprehend how the great minds in the stat legislature have not brought Georgia into the 21st century in regards to transportation. To read recently that Georgia is receiving $0 in fed transportation funds is a hard pill to swallow. In addition to having the Sec of Trans come into Georgia and basically state that Georgia needs to get its act together in regards to upgrading our transporation needs is pretty embarassing.