Challengers target incumbent Smyrna mayor during forum

From left, Alex Backry, Max Bacon and Wade Lnenicka during an Oct. 20, 2015, candidate forum sponsored by the Smyrna Business Association. (Photos by Todd DeFeo)

SMYRNA, Ga. — Incumbent Max Bacon and the political establishment were in the crosshairs early during a candidate forum this evening.

Alex Backry, a former city animal control officer, ran unsuccessfully in 2011 and 2007; Max Bacon, who has served as mayor since 1985; and Wade S. Lnenicka, a 28-year member of the City Council, are vying for the top post in this Cobb County city of roughly 53,000 located about a dozen miles from Downtown Atlanta.

Voters head to the polls Nov. 3. Early voting for the Nov. 3 election is currently under way.

“It’s time for strong leadership in the city,” said Wade S. Lnenicka, a 28-year member of the City Council. “And, I promise tonight that I will stop the wasteful spending that we’ve engaged in the last four years. We deserve better. We’ve got to get past the good-ole-boy style system of government and get into professional leadership.”

Backy focused his early remarks on citizen engagement. Among his ideas, he said he would place a comment box in city hall where residents and employees could leave suggestions.

“Stay out of the real estate business and focus on business,” Backry said when asked the biggest challenges facing the city. “No. 2 is again getting the people interested to come to the council meetings.”

Backy was referencing Hickory Lake Apartments, a Windy Hill Road complex. The city purchased the site and sold the complex in September 2014 to Southeast Capital Companies, but lost $2 million on the investment.

But, in his opening remarks, Bacon lauded the direction of the city.

“I’ve watched this city transform into, I think, one of the greatest cities in the Southeast United States,”  Bacon said.

The forum was sponsored by the Smyrna Business Association.

About the author

Todd DeFeo

Todd DeFeo loves to travel anywhere, anytime, taking pictures and notes. An award-winning reporter, Todd revels in the experience and the fact that every place has a story to tell. He is owner of The DeFeo Groupe and also edits The Travel Trolley and Railfanning.org.