Could 'City of DeKalb' Affect Decatur's Annex Decision?

The mayor says people are talking about turning all unincorporated areas of DeKalb County into a municipality.


A nonexistent "City of DeKalb" may become a factor .

A City of DeKalb would incorporate the all unincorporated areas that are left in DeKalb County. If it happened, Decatur couldn't grow because there wouldn't be any land left to annex.

It's not just talk. Last February, state Rep. Billy Mitchell (D-Stone Mountain) introduced a bill to create a City of DeKalb.

According to the Crossroad News, Mitchell said a City of DeKalb would have 600,000 residents.

The bill didn't go anywhere because fellow DeKalb legislators weren't comfortable with the idea. State Rep. Michelle Henson was quoted as saying the idea has been talked about for at least two decades.

Decatur Mayor Bill Floyd is certainly aware of the possibility. At the end of the annexation workshop Monday night, he mentioned that discussions are under way about forming a City of DeKalb.

While the idea seems like a long shot, the chances of success may have improved because the county is already losing land to municipalization and annexation.

Since 2009, the cities of Dunwoody and Brookhaven have been created. Both have plenty of commercial property that produces high tax revenue.

Decatur talked about annexing land about five years ago but backed off because it would have overloaded the school system.

Should Decatur move ahead with annexation now because a City of DeKalb may be created?

Ralph Ellis August 22, 2012 at 11:32 AM
Should Decatur annex ASAP?
Steve August 22, 2012 at 12:17 PM
The timeline outlined in the work session is about as fast as things can happen, given that the legislature doesn't meet until next January anyway.
bulldogger August 22, 2012 at 12:43 PM
@Mr. Mayor Floyd - At the end of the annexation workshop Monday night, he mentioned that discussions are under way about forming a City of DeKalb. This sounds like a tactic that the Obama Administration would use, like threats, coercion, muddling the waters, changing the subject, not wanting to talk about the real issues. How would a "City of DeKalb" be any different than this mess we have now? How would Decatur "Not getting bigger" be a bad thing? However, if Burrell Ellis would go away, if might be something to consider.
decaturite August 22, 2012 at 12:48 PM
no,Decatur should not Annex at all before they do The teachers need input. It will effect the classroom size. This year classroom sizes have grown this year even without annexation. City of Decatur has plenty of VACANT commericial buildings if business want to move into city of decatur, they also can rezone some residential houses in downtown and on church street to commercial. the city has vacant land that can be developed. they can make some of the public housing that is up and coming into muds (mixed use development). there are plenty of options for increased revenue without increasing our classroom sizes. That is why the school is successful, it is not over "burdened yet. Most teachers don't even know about the proposed annexation. They should be asked for their opinion and given a safe (free from threat of losing their job) forum to respond. Instead we should all help Dekalb form a city and improve their schools!
JG August 22, 2012 at 03:33 PM
I live in Avondale Estates, so I really do not have a dog in the fight. Nevertheless, I get why Decatur wants to annex areas around it. Unincorporated Dekalb is a bit like the wild west. Anything goes, there is virtually no zoning enforcement. Decatur has a very clear and well executed plan for development. I wish we could say the same in Avondale Estates. The area Decatur annexed out east on College toward the Avondale Marta station is in much better condition than it was prior to Decatur annexing it. Go Decatur!! You are doing a great job!
Rhonda Patterson August 22, 2012 at 04:40 PM
This is getting really messy. I saw that Avondale moved their city limit sign, which would put me inside Avondale Estates (I wouldn't mind this). However, I'm in a residential area, which supposedly leaves me in Dekalb County with a Decatur address, yet inside Avondale's city limit sign. Now, I would like to start a home based business. Where do I get my license? Dekalb since I'm in their residential zone, or Avondale since I'm in their commercial zone? Now there might be a third city?? sigh... (and I really do need the answer as to where I'd get a license lol)
Ms. August 23, 2012 at 10:42 AM
"How would a "City of DeKalb" be any different than this mess we have now?" Whether you're on the pro or against side, the Brookhaven cityhood debates are a good primer for the arguments on cityhood. "How would Decatur "Not getting bigger" be a bad thing?" Decatur not getting bigger means they will continue to have a limited pool of money to pull from. Expanding the area to the places they'd like to, includes large parcels of commercial that are guaranteed cash cows. (Suburban Plaza and Emory Commons.)
Sally August 24, 2012 at 01:49 PM
If South Dekalb wants to form a city let it. But including what's left of unincorporated North Dekalb in that would be stupid. As someone said, how would that change the mess we have now? Dekalb County government needs to downsize dramatically. It's their own fault. When you don't use the power you have responsibly, you lose it. One way or the other.


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