Your Town Government
The Town's 11 departments and other key partners work to provide efficient and effective services that meet community needs and expectations.
Administration (900 7th Ave.) consists of eight Town officials—town manager, assistant town manager-operations, assistant town manager-development services, town clerk, deputy town clerk, communications manager, budget and special projects manager and neighborhood improvement manager. The town manager's office is responsible for the day-to-day activities of the Town, including advising the Town Council on the financial position and future needs of the Town; ensuring the implementation of policies and activities in each Town department; and representing the Town Council and the Town in business with other agencies. In addition, the town manager researches and proposes alternative approaches for achieving Council objectives and presents data to assist the Council in policy development and ordinance adoption.
Economic Development (900 7th Ave.) is dedicated to improving the quality of life for our community by promoting our assets and developing partnerships with citizens, other Town departments, boards and commissions, elected officials, State agencies, civic organizations, Chamber of Commerce and others. The department's goal is to effectively and efficiently foster a positive environment for existing and new businesses within Garner and those considering developing in, or a relocation to, the Garner community.
Engineering (900 7th Ave.) oversees the development of public infrastructure, which includes Town streets, sidewalk, storm water drainage and the water and sewer utility system. The Engineering Department is the primary contact for issues regarding potential illicit discharges into the storm drainage system. Although the City of Raleigh is the owner and operator of the Town’s public water and sewer utility system, the Engineering staff can provide general information regarding the existing utility system layout, proposed system expansion plans and general design guidelines and standards.
Finance (900 7th Ave.) is responsible for accounting, debt administration, cash management, payroll, purchasing and business licenses. The department also provides utility collections for the City of Raleigh and tax collections for Wake County.
Human Resources (900 7th Ave., garnernc.gov/jobs) is responsible for the recruitment and selection of Town employees, position classification and compensation, training and development, employee recognition, personnel policy management, benefits administration, workers' compensation and the employee wellness program. The department is also responsible for ensuring that the Town of Garner is in compliance with all federal, state, and local employment and labor laws.
Information Technology (912 7th Ave.) serves as a consultant to the Town Council, Town manager and other departments in the management and use of information technology. Responsibilities include tools and training for data analysis; creation, development, maintenance and training.
Inspections (900 7th Ave.) reviews construction plans for code compliance and issues building, mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire permits. The department performs inspections on all permits to determine compliance; enforces minimum housing standards and nuisance violations; performs periodic fire inspections on all commercial buildings and maintains and enforces the rental registration program.
Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources (205 E. Garner Road) provides a well-balanced offering of recreation, athletic and environmental education programs, as well as community special events that enhance the lives of our citizens and participants. In addition to programming, the Town has an extensive listing of parks with picnic shelters, ball fields, walking and greenway trails, community centers and a performing arts center.
Planning (900 7th Ave.) serves as technical adviser to the town manager and Town Council on growth and development matters. The department prepares growth management policies and land-use, transportation and housing plans. It analyzes demographics and maintains GIS maps. Planning handles zoning, annexation, development plan review, sign permits, temporary use permits and zoning compliance permits. The department provides staff support to the Town's Planning Commission and Board of Adjustment.
Police (912 7th Ave.) is responsible for proactively providing a safe community for residents, visitors and businesses. It combines enforcement and prevention in programs such as the Police Athletic and Activities League, the Citizens Police Academy, Neighborhood Watch groups and deployment of school resource officers. The Police Department is a nationally accredited and professional law enforcement agency that is committed to community policing as an organizational philosophy aimed at improving the overall quality of life in the Town.
Public Works (610 Rand Mill Road) has a wide variety of responsibilities including solid waste services and maintenance of Town streets, parks, right-of-ways, buildings, equipment and vehicles. Office staff are available to handle phone calls requesting information or to answer questions and assist with problems.
Town Attorney is the legal adviser for Town Council and staff.
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Garner Volunteer Fire-Rescue, Inc., is a not-for-profit, fully certified fire department that is funded by the Town of Garner and Wake County. It services an 80-square-mile town/county area and is responsible for all fire protection and fire education within Town limits. All emergencies are dispatched through the 911 systems. Non-emergency calls can be directed to (919) 772-1550.
Town Mourns Loss of Council Member Jackie Johns
Town leaders, staff and the Garner community are mourning the loss of Council Member Jackie Johns, who passed away Sunday, Jan. 6, following a brief illness. He was 81.
Johns served as a Town alderman and, later, council member for a total of nearly 36 years over his three separate tenures in elected office. He was Garner’s first and, to date, only African-American elected official in town history.
Mayor Ronnie Williams, who served as an alderman and then Council member starting in 1985 before becoming mayor in 2005, says Council Member Johns “was a true advocate for the people.”
“He was the people’s politician,” Mayor Williams said. “He looked out for the interests of every citizen in town.”
Longtime Garner resident and community activist Helen Phillips had similar recollections of Mr. Johns. “He has always spoken for the community,” she said. “He was always trying to help people live better.”
In a message to Town employees Monday morning, Town Manager Rodney Dickerson noted Council Member Johns’ consistent support over the years.
“Mr. Johns was always an advocate for employees and repeatedly expressed his appreciation for everything all of us do for the Town of Garner,” Dickerson said. “He greeted everyone with kind words and a smile regardless of what was going on. We can honor his legacy by continuing to do a great job to make the town he loved even better. He will be missed.”
Mr. Johns was first elected as an alderman in 1973 and served four years. He then had a second stint as an alderman from 1979 to 1983.
In 1991, he was voted into office again. This time, he would serve as an alderman and council member until his death.
Recently, when asked about the accomplishment of which he was most proud as an elected official, Mr. Johns cited being part of the leadership that decided to purchase the land that became Lake Benson Park. Prior to its purchase by the Town in the early 1980s, the land had been a hog farm.
In recent years, Mr. Johns hosted a luncheon in the spring to honor his late wife and late son. It was one of the top social events of the season in Garner, and it was typically attended by over 200 people, from ordinary citizens to judges to county and state officials. Congressman David Price even made the trip to attend the annual gathering.
“They all came because of Jackie—to show their respect for him,” Mayor Williams said.
Mr. Johns was a member and deacon of Springfield Baptist Church in Garner. He also served on the church’s Board of Trustees and as a Sunday school superintendent.
Council Member Johns’ faith was central to his identity, Mayor Williams said. “What I’ve always admired about Jackie is his faith,” the mayor said.
The Town Council will hold its regularly scheduled meeting tonight at 7 p.m. in the Council Chambers at Town Hall at 900 7th Ave. At a later date, in accordance with state statute, Town Council members will appoint a citizen to serve out the remainder of Mr. Johns’ term, which is set to expire this December. The municipal election for Mr. Johns’ seat and other open Council seats is scheduled for Nov. 5.