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The Covington City Council voted to hold their annual retreat at the Brasstown Valley Resort and Spa located in the scenic North Georgia Mountains.

The retreat, which is planned for March, is estimated to cost $6,700 - $5,000 of that amount is to go to a facilitator.

A retreat committee, appointed by Mayor Kim Carter, is made up of councilwomen Ocie Franklin and Janet Goodman and Councilman Mike Whatley. The committee made the decision to go to Brasstown to hold a city retreat over Unicoi State Park where the accommodations were about $34 a night less expensive.

Council members defended the choice of Brasstown by saying that the Brasstown Hotel and Spa is a better facility and that you get what you pay for.

Really? Places where a retreat could be held at a reasonable price exist in our local area.

Members of this council think that because it is fortunate enough to have extra funds in the treasury because of the multimillion-dollar sale of its cable company that they have the right to spend it.

We might remind council members that many of their constituents can barely pay their bills or have enough money to put decent food on their table.

It also galls us that $5,000 is going to be spent on a facilitator when there is plenty of talent in our community who could perform these services for little or no compensation.

For the city council and staffers to take off, travel almost 150 miles out of town and spend unnecessary tax money to "get away" for three days so they can make bold decisions while lounging in a hot tub, is ludicrous.