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DeKalb Lawmakers Discuss Brookhaven Cityhood

Members of DeKalb's legislative delegation held a town hall meeting in Chamblee on Thursday night.

A newly installed electronic billboard in Brookhaven became the center of debate over the merits of cityhood Thursday, as members of DeKalb’s legislative delegation met with constituents in a town hall meeting.

“Here you have people living in an LCI, who want to have a say in what comes into their community, and DeKalb County just decides to allow that billboard to be installed,” (R-80, Atlanta) said. “I guarantee you the county gave no other thought to that billboard other than simply as a revenue generator.”

The billboard, installed less than a month ago, sits high above the intersection of Peachtree and North Druid Hills roads. The intersection is part of the Brookhaven-Peachtree Hills Livable Centers Initiative, which the county approved in 2007 to guide zoning and development in the area.

Thursday evening’s public hearing – the first of three the delegation will hold before the beginning of the 2012 legislative session – was held at Chamblee Middle School. Jacobs, the only Republican lawmaker who was present, is that would incorporate Brookhaven into a city.

However, (D-81, Atlanta), who, like Jacobs, also represents portions of Brookhaven, said the legal process to incorporate cities in Georgia “is flawed.”

“When you create a new city you absolutely impact a lot of people,” she said. “A lot of my constituents who live in the area between I-85 and Clairmont Road are being left out of the process. I respect and appreciate the concept of local control, but the process by which the General Assembly approves cityhood is flawed.”

Also at the meeting was , who has proposed to give the county a chance to study its effects.

“With all due respect to Commissioner Rader, I doubt his proposal will gain very much traction in the General Assembly,” Jacobs said.

Another DeKalb lawmaker present, (D-83, Decatur) said she is pre-filing a bill next week that would require communities wanting to incorporate themselves to follow two-year process, including a study to determine the impact on surrounding areas.

“We are definitely in a trend of municipalization,” she said. “But the economic viability of Brookhaven has to be analyzed on some level, and with some participation from its neighbors.

"But just for the record, I hate billboards as much as anyone."

Justin Turner November 14, 2011 at 01:52 AM
Thank you Tom Hogan for reiterating the points that Clairmont Terrace and DECA residents have been making all along... This process is being pushed along way too hastily and is not fair. Furthermore, since the CVI feasibility study showed that there would be a surplus of revenue for a city of Brookhaven.... Mike Jacobs/C4ND do not need to cherry pick the Plaza Fiesta and Airport properties to make their city viable, so I would challenge any "excuse" provided by them as to why they should still be included.
Enuff Govt Already November 14, 2011 at 02:33 PM
There's electronic billboards @ PIB & Chamblee Dunwoody inside the City of Chamblee, North Peachtree & I-285 inside of the City of Dunwoody and Tilly Mill Rd & PIB inside the City of Dunwoody. So can we guarantee these cities gave no other thought to the billboards other than simply as a revenue generator? Lets revisit the ideal of townships. Local areas control zoning, code enforcement and maybe storm water management. Leave the more expensive items like roads, traffic engineering and police to the county. Maybe craft a partnership for parks.
Frustrated Incorporated November 14, 2011 at 04:49 PM
. “I guarantee you the county gave no other thought to that billboard other than simply as a revenue generator.” I think the same is true when Jacobs a C4ND drew PDK and Plaza Fiesta into the boundaries of proposed Brookhaven.
Jordan Fox November 14, 2011 at 07:16 PM
Great comment, Tom. I agree with almost everything you said. The eastern city boundary should be Clairmont Road heading south towards Buford Highway. Beginning at the intersection of Clairmont Road and Buford Highway, the eastern boundary should be Buford Highway all the way south to I-85. The area between I-85, Buford Highway and Clairmont Road shouldn't be part of Brookhaven. This area has never been considered part of Brookhaven. Citizens for North DeKalb grabbed this land to gain commercial revenue for the city. As Justin Turner said, "Furthermore, since the CVI feasibility study showed that there would be a surplus of revenue for a city of Brookhaven.... Mike Jacobs/C4ND do not need to cherry pick the Plaza Fiesta and Airport properties to make their city viable, so I would challenge any "excuse" provided by them as to why they should still be included."
don Gabacho January 30, 2012 at 03:33 AM
"Jacobs, the only Republican lawmaker who was present, is the author of a bill that would incorporate Brookhaven into a city...However, state Rep. Elena Parent (D-81, Atlanta)... I respect and appreciate the concept of local control." Where is even the beginning of "local control" when a politician, of any party, elected to Represent a District in State Government, obviously for the district's affairs in State Government, "authors [and presses] a bill" for Local Government? "Local Control'"? This is top-down. Has not the City of Brookhaven already been preordained by State powers?

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