Brookhaven Has A Shared Fate With DeKalb County

A supporter of Brookhaven cityhood responds to a recent commentary by the president of Oglethorpe University.

In a recent , Dr. Lawrence Schall of posits that society should be measured not by how it treats the most capable members, but rather how it treats those who, from time to time, need investment in their future and an investment in a shared fate.

Dr. Schall's assertion will certainly steel the resolve of those who agree.

The opinion is well-written and contains moral and emotional appeal, but Dr. Schall has glossed over vital points to draw a conclusion on Brookhaven incorporation not supported by his own facts.

DeKalb County has nearly 750,000 residents and it will continue to have the same number of residents after the city of Brookhaven is incorporated. 

After incorporation, approximately 14 percent of a Brookhaven residents tax bill will shift from county control to city government, but those revenues will still be used to benefit all DeKalb citizens. The city will provide police; parks; roads; zoning; and code enforcement for both residents and visitors of the 12 square miles called Brookhaven. Everyone will benefit from improved parks, well maintained roads, and more efficient government.

Eighty-six percent of the revenues will remain under the direct control of the county and school board. That 86 percent of our taxes will continue to fund educating all the children of DeKalb County; it will pay for providing clean safe drinking water and sanitation for all the citizens of DeKalb; it will continue to fund the office of our chief executive and our board of commissioners; and it will provide premium trash and waste collection, fire safety, and a court system we can be proud of as citizens of DeKalb.

Regardless of who has authority, 100 percent of the tax revenues collected will benefit the shared fate of DeKalb residents.

When the city of Brookhaven is incorporated, we will continue to live in DeKalb County.

So I agree with Dr Schall that we cannot and should not divorce ourselves from the county, and that we should be measured by how the most capable in our community contribute to improve the common good of all DeKalb residents and visitors. Brookhaven incorporation will improve local government and further the common good.

I will vote YES for a city of Brookhaven on July 31.

Stan Segal

Eddie E. July 16, 2012 at 05:38 PM
One would hope Rep. Jacobs is working hard on presenting an ACCURATE pretense of a CVI study. We wouldn't want people to vote on anything based on such a glaringly flawed mis-representation of revenue and expenses!
Jack of Kings July 16, 2012 at 06:23 PM
Dekalb County--A Retrospective for a Perspective "Meanwhile the county is attempting to reduce its workforce as a short-term fix to close the anticipated budget deficit, pending final revenue projections in June when the BOC has to set the millage rate for property taxes. The question becomes how to best downsize the workforce. The administration, to my regret, chose to proceed with an across-the-board approach by offering any early retirement package. At last count, more than 820 employees accepted the offer, well above the stated goal of 550 employees. Because the administration allowed the employees to self-select which positions to vacate, the county lost talented and experienced personnel, most notably in public safety departments. More than 30 percent of those early retirees are from police, fire and sheriff's departments." http://www.commissionerrader.com/reader-rader-updates/items/staffing-study-cites-inefficiencies-in-county-government.html Now we, as voters in Brookhaven, have the opportunity to have some more direct say in how some services are managed and paid for. Decision making has much to be desired in Decatur. If we could get just some mroe local control, we may be able to have a positive impact for at least some parts of government.. After all, the proposed budget for park maintenance is a 300% increase over current expenditures. Any increase will be an improvement--even a 100% increase.
Carl Childers July 16, 2012 at 06:32 PM
The link is over 2 years old. Try this link instead. http://web.co.dekalb.ga.us/TaxCommissioner/pdf/Millage.pdf
Carl Childers July 16, 2012 at 06:34 PM
The link is over 2 years old. Try this link instead. http://web.co.dekalb.ga.us/TaxCommissioner/pdf/Millage.pdf And I forgot to mention... I am a scientist, and a genius. Notice my enormous cranium.
Fred July 16, 2012 at 06:44 PM
Bingo. $$$ spend closer to home instead of being sent away to other areas where I don't drive, my kids don't play in those parks, etc, etc ....this whole issue is a no brainer. If you want to enjoy the benefits of "your" tax dollars, vote YES. The arguments for NO are just pure nonsense. "layers of government" ... false. "higher taxes" ... false. Etc, etc.
Booyah July 16, 2012 at 07:44 PM
Voting YES is the best of both worlds. We get to invest a portion of our tax money locally and we continue to support the countywide infrastructure. Brookhaven is good for the entire County. Vote YES.
Eddie E. July 16, 2012 at 08:29 PM
Fred, So your contention is that the new layer of government would be free and the absolutely guaranteed fact that taxes would be higher doesn't count? What libations drive you guys to believe this drivel?
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 08:44 PM
funny how we pay taxes and get nothing in return. i would like to see what I get for each tax dolalr and where it goes... RAISES. Bloated jobs program. HIRING FAMILY AND FRIENDS. SENDING SEVEN WORKERS & 2 Trucks to fill a pothole. So many things doesn't Mr. Childer$$$$$$. http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/www/groups/public/@finance/documents/webcontent/wcms1p-084900.pdf
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 08:46 PM
EXACTLY! 1. You either pay and get something in return: Brookhaven City hood. OR: 2. You pay and get nothing: Dekalb County Govt. (except headline AJC stories filled with nepotism and corruption)....
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 08:47 PM
You are the opposite of the things you say.
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 08:49 PM
No Carl Childers in Dekalb County tax records...fuuny guess he doesn't live there!
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 08:51 PM
Eddie: Likes old development, no ammenities, no sidewalks or parks. No alndscaping or buffers! And lies about City of Brookhaven Tax increases! Funny. Can't wait till August 1. Never have to say or see that name again! YAY! I have lived here 30 years, blah blah blah! Good almost time to retire!
Eddie E. July 16, 2012 at 09:01 PM
not much, Just think what a twisted World it would be if everyone thought 'their' taxes should only benefit 'them' and nobody else. The whine of a 'yesser', 'I GOT MINE'!
Eddie E. July 16, 2012 at 09:02 PM
not much, How are you at math? With the new digest and new tax rates, tell me how the Opposed City will do anything BUT RAISE OUR TAXES?
Eddie E. July 16, 2012 at 09:03 PM
Vote No, unless you want to find out how the folks in San Bernadino get by.
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 09:06 PM
Thanks Eddie! Yep, i want my tax dollars spent in my community! Not on keeping all of your family and friends employed and getting cola raises/paid holidays and unlimited sick leave days: Every year! MORE MORE MORE for the deklab county workers, & Less Less Less for us poor little citizens!
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 09:08 PM
Eddie you are absolutely right: DeKalb will probably RAISE the General Fund county-wide post Brookhaven incorporation to offset the loss of revenue! VERY SAD but VERY likely too! Like they always do in a budget conundrum: Raise TAXES: they don’t want to see their family and friends work for a living… Eddie money, lol!
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 09:11 PM
CA: as a whole and San Bernadino, as a city: is more like the Dekalb General Fund then the city Brookahven will ever be! Ever read about Bell CA. Could easily be replaced with Dekalb County Gob-ment!
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 09:19 PM
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 09:20 PM
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 09:20 PM
not one of 60 July 16, 2012 at 09:20 PM
Booyah July 16, 2012 at 09:23 PM
Is it within code to have the little planters on the sidewalk in front of Mesh Corners. The planters block the sidewalk and make it more difficult to pass.
Eddie E. July 17, 2012 at 03:36 AM
not much (at least that's what they tell me), You must have me mistaken for someone else. I've been 100% private sector since before you were born. Maybe you should whine at someone else.
Eddie E. July 17, 2012 at 03:37 AM
not much, The initial sales pitch was 'lower taxes', the battle cry for the GA one party state. Like it or not, that was a lie. When will the yessers tell the truth? (or do they just not know how?)
Eddie E. July 17, 2012 at 03:38 AM
Then walk elsewhere.
Eddie E. July 17, 2012 at 12:06 PM
not much, Only Bell CA was the size of the Opposed City and spending like they had the population of the whole County. Sounds to me like the future if the incorporation should somehow, accidentally pass.
Jack of Kings July 18, 2012 at 01:44 AM
"The Brookhaven rate supposes that the area becomes a city and its city council agrees to a city millage rate at the full cap of 3.35 mills. None of the area’s new cities has set a millage rate at its cap"-- Dunwoody Crier POINT TAKEN: Everyone presumes that the new City of Brookhaven MUST use the 3.35 millage rate--which is the highest rate possible without a referendum for voter approval to go higher. There is NO budget yet. And the other cities did not start out at their millage rate cap. This 3.35 millage rate to start is NOT set in stone by any means. But it has been repeated over and over by the opponents to the point that Dr. Goebbels would be proud. Repeating a lie does not make it true.
Jordan Fox July 18, 2012 at 01:18 PM
This is actually a pretty good opinion piece by Stan. The City of Brookhaven is a great concept, but because of the way C4ND and Mike Jacobs have gone about trying to create a City of Brookhaven, those in the proposed city should vote no. It's too bad because if Jacobs and C4ND had gone about things differently, there wouldn't be nearly as many people against the proposed city as there are. If this fails it's on Jacobs and C4ND.
HDM July 18, 2012 at 01:50 PM
Translation: "Brookhaven is good but I got my feelings hurt so I'm going to cry about it at every opportunity even though I don't live in the city footprint". Thanks for having the wellbeing of actual Brookhaven residents in mind, neighbor.


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