COVINGTON, Ga. - City Manager Leigh Anne Knight took a moment during the Covington City Council’s May 15 meeting to dispel rumors about her opinion on the city’s alcohol ordinances.
Knight started her prepared statement by explaining her history with the City of Covington, both professionally and personally.
“Just over eight years ago, I came to the City of Covington to work on the city’s budget on their finance director,” she said.
Knight started in the finance department and was eventually appointed as city manager in 2013.
“It was not an easy decision to put my name in the hat – so to speak – for the city manager’s position, but after some persuasion I did,” she said. “My personal goal for even being willing to apply for the position was to do what was in the best interest of the city, its citizens and its employees.”
Knight said she was born and raised in Covington and has seen it change over the years.
“This is my home,” she said. “I remember the vibrant little town bustling with activity, meeting friends on the streets and gathering for special events in our little, small town. I also watched as the vibrant town stopped growing and the vibrance began to fade away. I wanted to see that back again. Would it be the same? No, we are a different place and a different time, but vibrancy comes in many shapes and sizes. I wanted to be part in helping bring our town back to the great place it had been.”
Knight said she is constantly faced with challenges in her position as city manager. However, recently those challenges have become personal.
“I’ve always been willing to work and fight towards the goal of making Covington better, but lately the inherent challenges of making Covington better have been worsened by the negative effects of some that is unfair to the community, the employees and to myself,” she said.
“Someone has started a rumor that I am against changing ordinances currently in place that address alcohol consumption on the square. First of all, it is not my job to be for or against an ordinance. It is my job to find the best way to implement them if passed and handle any repercussions if there are any.
“I have three main concerns: the welfare of the City of Covington, the citizens in the City of Covington and the employees of the City of Covington. Anytime an ordinance is proposed, I immediately think of the impact to those three entities because that is my job. It doesn’t matter what the ordinance is and for anyone to think that I let my personal opinion interfere with the function of my job does not know me very well.”
Knight asked the councilmembers to not let any opinions they think she has influence their opinions or votes. She also encouraged the public to reach out to her with any concerns or questions they may have to reach out to her personally.
“Please, do not assume for any reason what you hear from your friends or your enemies for that matter, or what you read on Facebook to be factual because it is not always,” she said.