Note From The Editor: The Forum is a new department designed to let you, our readers, express your viewpoint on any issue of the day. The issue of Brookhaven cityhood is dominating much of the dialogue of today, and over the next several days, we'll be running letters we've received on that issue in this spot, each day at 12 noon. Brookhaven Patch is your site, and we want everyone to take advantage of this opportunity for dialogue on any issue or topic on your mind.
My partner and I have lived in DeKalb County for over 17 years. We were attracted to the area because of the modest home prices, low property taxes, good county services, and low crime. All of that changed shortly after moving to our home.
Over-development and poor planning has caused traffic to be some of the worst in Atlanta. The county has essentially ignored the pleas of its residents to widen the roads, improve traffic signals, fix choke points, and reduce congestion.
Property taxes has risen dramatically in the past year; over 25% with no approval from its citizens. The new city of Brookhaven will cap the millage rate at 3.35, nearly half of what we're paying now. And it will require the citizens to vote on any increase in that millage rate as a matter of law.
In the 17 years we've lived in the Brookhaven area, our street has never been resurfaced or even sealed. The storm drains are broken. Street signs and traffic signals go unrepaired. Park equipment is not maintained. Right-of-ways are overgrown. We are not getting the services we are paying for.
Most importantly, we need better police protection. Crime in our neighborhood was so bad that we had to hire off-duty DeKalb Police officers to patrol our streets. That costs my household $500 a year to supplement the police protection we are already paying the county to provide.
It's time to take local control of our taxes and our neighborhoods. Join us and vote YES on July 31st.