FORT OGLETHORPE, GA (WDEF-TV) Fort Oglethorpe voters rejected the present city council make-up and elected two new members on Tuesday.
It marked the final chapter in a bitter eight-month-long saga that started with the firing of three city employees.
The voters spoke with a loud voice at the polls.
The city of Fort Oglethorpe was shaken last March when the mayor and council called for the resignation of popular city manager Ron Goulart. And then immediately firing public works director Jeff Long and police chief David Eubanks.
Organized opposition formed quickly with the goal of getting rid of Louis Hamm and Clay Kissner, the two council members who were up for election. That happened when were handily defeated.
Paula Stinnett and Craig Crawford will join encumbent Earl Gray who voted to keep the three employees.
Much of the battle was fought on public TV.
SOT---JUDY O'NEAL, OWNER, UCTV in:34:17 "I expected it to be a land-slide victory..just exactly like it went."
O'neal had invited all of the candidates to appear on TV, but the challengers made the best use of their free, and sometimes purchased TV time.
The winners were there election night, but silent about their plans now.
JUDY O'NEAL "I expect they will do what the people want..and what the people want is to give Jeff Long his job back, and give Ron Goulart his job back, and David Eubanks. They said they will listen to the people and do what's right for the people."
Private citizens, including the owner of Park Place restaurant, waded into the conflict and paid for political programs that fought the council's actions last March.
JACK GOODLET , PARK PLACE RESTAURANT "I couldn't be happier with the election."
Goodlet doesn't live in Fort Oglethorpe, but says he pays taxes on his business there.
He says it may not have been a smart business decision, but he's glad he did it.
JACK GOODLET "I stepped up because what was done was not right, it wasn't done right..even if it had been justified, it wasn't done right."