Eva Galambos: Farewell to an Iron Lady of Georgia

Friends:

The funeral for Eva Galambos, the first mayor of Sandy Springs, Ga., was Tuesday, April 21, 2015.

Eva was a memorable lady; read her official obituary here. I remember the first time I met her. She came by the Georgia Public Policy Foundation to discuss her favorite topic: creating the City of Sandy Springs.

Sandy Springs Mayor Eva Galambos joined Leonard Gilroy of the Reason Foundation at the first Georgia Legislative Policy Forum for a panel discussion on privatization of government services.

Sandy Springs Mayor Eva Galambos joined Leonard Gilroy of the Reason Foundation at the first Georgia Legislative Policy Forum in 2010 for a panel discussion on the privatization and outsourcing of government services.

We pushed back, questioning the need to create another layer of government. She maintained that consolidated government typically consolidates at the highest service level.

She explained: Imagine, for example, two local governments. One has a volunteer fire department and one has a full-service fire department. If the two governments were to consolidate, the citizens who were happy with their volunteer fire department would in all likelihood get a full-service fire department – and higher taxes in order to pay for it.

Eva Galambos believed a City of Sandy Springs could operate far more efficiently, providing better services at lower cost to citizens, than receiving services from Fulton County. We asked her to write a paper outlining her arguments, which we later published: “Sandy Springs: A Case on Centralization of Local Government.”

The rest, as they say, is history. In 2005, Sandy Springs was incorporated; she served as mayor until Rusty Paul was inaugurated in 2014. Sandy Springs became a pioneer of privatization in Georgia and a model across the nation and the world.

She was indeed an “Iron Lady,” as Edward Lindsey described her recently. She was cheerful in demeanor but tenacious in her beliefs. And she never gave up hope.

We will miss her.

Kelly McCutchen
President,
Georgia Public Policy Foundation

 

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