'Ashford Neighbors' Petition Gov. Deal for Delay of Proposed Cityhood
Group wants neighbors' help in slowing down the proposed Brookhaven incorporation.
Ashford Neighbors, a group of Brookhaven and unincorporated DeKalb County residents, has created a petition asking Gov. Nathan Deal for a one-year delay in the creation of the proposed City of Brookhaven.
The petition reads: "If you want the Governor to allow DeKalb County time to study the effect of a "New City" on its populace, both North and South, please sign the petition! Why should we accept the opinion of the study paid for by the people who want a "New City", without getting a second opinion?"
Opponents of the plan said that the idea is being 'forced' upon residents by Rep. Mike Jacobs, the Republican state legislator who introduced the cityhood bill in March, and sits as a board member on the non-profit group Citizens for North DeKalb (C4ND). The group was commissioned to raise funds for a feasibility study. If the bill is approved in the General Assembly, it will be forwarded to the Governor.
"We need time before the July ballot to get our own study on the effect of a new city... [Jacobs'] study was financed by a few members of the Committee for Citizens for North DeKalb who have already discussed who will run for office," the site said.
Jacobs denied the allegation dismissing it as part of a "misinformation campaign."
"Citizens for North DeKalb is in the process of disbanding. So, the notion that it is some kind of secret city government is absurd,” Jacobs said.
The site lists about 30 points that range from accusations that the Carl Vincent Institute study used inaccurate police data to accusing Jacobs of misleading residents in the time frame it would take to conduct the study.
"Rep. Jacobs confuses the citizen by saying it will take two years to "create" a new city. The citizen asks for two years to "study" the effects of a new city. Rep. Jacobs muddles the difference between two years to "create" a new city and two years to "study" a new city because the new city will be created in July at the ballot box and take two years to organize," the site claims.
Jacobs also denied the statements.
“I respect individual citizens who oppose cityhood, but it is difficult to respect misinformation or take it seriously,” Jacobs said of the site. “This diatribe is coming from the same group of folks who alerted the community to a secret roundabout plan at Ashford Dunwoody and Johnson Ferry Road that doesn’t exist.”
Despite the petition, Jacobs said he plans to move forward with the bill.
"We’re going to address the bill in the General Assembly and then it will go to Gov. Deal’s desk where he will make a decision on it."
Calls to the group's representative, Laurenthia Mesh, went unanswered at the time of the report.