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Decatur Annex Foes Create Website

People in the neighborhood off the northeast corner of Decatur created www.annexmenot.com to collect petition signatures to oppose annexation.

Residents of a neighborhood that might be annexed into Decatur have created a website to collect signatures on an anti-annexation petition.

Www.annexmenot.com represents people living in the area called B-1 .

The website defines area B-1 as "directly east of the Suburban Plaza shopping center ... and to the south of DeKalb Medical Center."

A petition that opposes annexation needs to be submitted to the city by Nov. 1, the website says.

If an annexation referendum happens, it would be held in November 2013.

The city commission at which it talked about the pros and cons of annexing six areas scattered around the borders of Decatur.

The commission decided to talk to people in the affected areas for a few months and figure out if it wants to move ahead with annexation and, if so, which areas to include.

The city says annexation of all the areas to Decatur, which now has about 19,000 people in four square miles.

The chief argument on www.annexmenot.com is that taxes would increase. The website includes a chart showing what it contends are tax rates before and after annexation.

Here are some previous stories about annexation in Decatur.

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D Ebaugh September 11, 2012 at 02:52 PM
I live in that neighborhood and I support annexation.
D Baldwin September 11, 2012 at 05:15 PM
I also live in that neighborhood and I strongly support annexation. And no, I do not have children and will not be having any children to put in to the Decatur school system. That website presents a quite propagandist view and is using scare tactics instead of the truth. If you oppose annexation for valid reasons, I respect that, but don't try scaring our older residents with false information.
wiggedout September 11, 2012 at 09:55 PM
i live in this neighborhood too and am completely against annexation so i'm very happy to see this go up.
Daggerscar September 12, 2012 at 01:27 PM
Annexation is a gift. City of Decatur posts their year ending budget surpluses, I'd gather taxes are going to be stable over the next decade. Dekalb county is a mess, there is no way taxes won't steadily increase in the future. Garbage collectors haggle with contractors to take their debris. Where can one compare 911 response times? School system being watched right now by SAACS because of fiscal mismanagement. You've heard of Clayton County, right? And I don't recall any outgoing COD Chiefs of Police assassinating their rivals. Annexation is a gift.
Keith September 12, 2012 at 07:21 PM
i dont live those territories but annexation is the first step towards clean up and growth. plus ill echo sentiments about the county and its epic woes.
Why say that? September 13, 2012 at 03:37 AM
D Ebaugh, I would think the people who are in Good Growth DeKalb are in support of annexation of the commercial property on the hope that it Decatur's zoning laws would stop the Walmart (if Walmart is delayed and the city hurries). I don't think they'd care about the residential property -- that is up to the residents. I also am not sure why you think Good Growth DeKalb is a hiding its identity. There have been close to 10 demonstrations at Suburban Plaza, a parade and a rally on the Decatur Square, a website with people's faces on it, a Facebook site with faces and names, a community forum, weekly (and now monthly) meetings open to anyone who wants to attend, a Change.org site where you can see the names of the 1,700+ people who signed the petition online, and dozens of print and TV news articles with people's names, pictures and quotes. Oh, and it's not hard to ask your neighbors with STOP WALMART signs what their names are. Good Growth DeKalb may be one of the most transparent groups ever -- and it's a community group "run" by the people in the community. Or do you mean the people who are against annexation? That flag on the Annex Me Not site should give you the first clue that the two groups aren't related! One is promoting community. One is promoting whatever that flag means -- to me, individualism.
Why say that? September 13, 2012 at 03:47 AM
After reading the site, I'll admit that the flag was a turn off -- but the site is pretty neutral. And if it is a community effort, that's cool.
Oakhurst Curator September 13, 2012 at 11:55 AM
Decatur ain't such a squeaky clean burg, you know. There are current and former residents outraged over development policies who are actually trying to get state and federal authorities to look at corruption and conflict of interest among elected and appointed COD officials. But that message doesn't mesh with the official Decatur story line and folks dumb enough to mention it aloud get marginalized by Decatur's boosterist PR machine.
Jethro September 13, 2012 at 01:51 PM
Oakhurst Curator, I suspect that you are confusing "Decatur" with "DeKalb County" when you talk about" corruption" and "conflict of interest"! In all seriousness, Decatur doesn't need a "boosterist PR machine". It is an oasis of stability and openness in a sea of craziness (see City of Atlanta, City of Avondale, DeKalb County etc...). If you know something about City of Decatur that I don't, please enlightnen us all. My family has had nothing but a positive and enriching experience since moving to this great town. Sorry if that sounds too "boosterist" :-)
Jethro September 13, 2012 at 02:17 PM
Wow. Just read through the site. I'd actually respect these folks if they were honest and simply said "We don't want to pay higher taxes." While I'd argue that remaining in unincorporated DeKalb does not accomplish that goal long-term, it's true that they will see a short-term spike in their taxes relative to DeKalb. Instead, they try to argue that Decatur doesn't necessarily provide better police and emergency services and that DeKalb schools are just fine. When you make such silly arguments, how can you expect people to take you seriously?
Gzgeorge George Hampton September 13, 2012 at 06:33 PM
Since City of Decatur schools are doing better than Dekalb Schools why not annex all of Dekalb County and come the City of Dekalb County. The City seems to run fine an enterprise of a City which could run all of Dekalb County. There is plenty of Commercial property for City of Decatur if they just annex all of Dekalb County. Therefore everyone would have better schools for all the children. They would be more developed in learning. Lets start a rally for City of Decatur to annex all 660,000 homes in Dekalb County and be the City of Dekalb County. The City of Decatur once established as the City of Dekalb it can charge all kinds of fees back to the other cities of City of Decatur(Dekalb County).
Avon Dale September 13, 2012 at 06:56 PM
Great idea George! Annex all of Dekalb! But leave Avondale Estates alone because we're trying to keep it lame! - http://keep-avondale-estates-lame.org
J September 14, 2012 at 01:03 AM
I also live in this neighborhood and am totally opposed to annexation. The website is clear that it IS all about about tax increases and, in my view, the older residents should be concerned. According to Decatur's own spreadsheet tax calculator, my taxes will increase 44.12% immediately over what I am now paying in DeKalb and at age 65, just when I was looking forward to a tax break, I will be paying 286.68% more in Decatur than I would have in DeKalb. The numbers of tax exemptions for seniors appear to be much lower in Decatur (according to the Decatur website) which, logically, would have a negative impact on our seniors who are typically on a fixed income.
wiggedout September 14, 2012 at 05:08 AM
I don't see anywhere on the site whre it says the county schools are just fine it only says that if you move to the county you knew where you were moving to and if you want better schools then you pay for them.
wiggedout September 14, 2012 at 05:20 AM
Funny how you talk about being truthful and ethical but your assuming here in a public forum that GGD wrote the site and it isn't true. way to spread lies, dude.
D Ebaugh September 14, 2012 at 03:01 PM
Sorry if I wasn't clear! My assumption was that it was some of the same people as GGD since they are using similar language. Yes, GGD is being transparent and open -- but the ANNEXMENOT site administrator is not, so there's no way to know who it is. That's why I said "probably"... due to lack of clear identification, it seems similar to me.
D Ebaugh September 14, 2012 at 03:09 PM
Thank you ! And - people who moved to this neighborhood a few years ago *didn't* know that Dekalb schools would fall into this 'hole' of indebtedness, that Medlock would be closed, that class-sizes would keep increasing. So the argument of "you knew where you were moving to" doesn't hold. Nor does it hold for those who didn't have kids when they moved here, but now they do. And - even though the homes may be small(er) than some in other areas, we like our neighborhood and don't want to move out ... so why not improve our neighborhood and improve the quality of life where we are rather than 'fleeing' it?
wiggedout September 14, 2012 at 04:38 PM
and what do you mean by a short-term spike in taxes? that doesn't make any sense!
wiggedout September 14, 2012 at 04:38 PM
what is the false info?
Avon Dale September 14, 2012 at 06:56 PM
Thanks for the grammar correction, wiggedout although i had to comb the site for the error lol
wiggedout September 15, 2012 at 04:48 AM
really interesting photo posted to the site. see the "additions and edits" page.
Jethro September 16, 2012 at 06:39 PM
Wiggedout, if you don't understand why there'd be a short-term spike in taxes then maybe you should reevaluate your whole knee-jerk opposition to annexation. Yes, COD taxes are higher than unincorporated county taxes. But the difference between the two has been shrinking. In a few years it's very likely that the once huge difference in tax bills between COD and the county will become negligible. Make sense now?
wiggedout September 16, 2012 at 07:17 PM
Jethro you are only giving me opinion and speculation. That doesn't work for me. Do you always feel so sure of yourself? There is no proof that city taxes won't go up.
Steve September 17, 2012 at 01:26 AM
Nor is there proof that country taxes won't go up. And BTW, some of the difference could be offset by lower fire insurance rates in COD, since its rating is better than DeKalb.
wiggedout September 17, 2012 at 01:57 AM
the fire part is not nearly a big part of the tax bill its the schools! you are not serious.
Steve September 17, 2012 at 12:07 PM
I'm not talking about fire taxes, I'm talking about fire INSURANCE rates. Not the same thing.
wiggedout September 17, 2012 at 12:36 PM
Even less significant! I can pay my whole insurance bill twice with what i'm going to be paying in added taxes if i'm in the decatur city limits!
Jethro September 17, 2012 at 12:47 PM
Forget it, Steve. He's just a troll who won't address the issues. Or else he doesn't understand what you are talking about and it's even more futile talking to him.
wiggedout September 17, 2012 at 01:57 PM
wrong. i'm a citizen with a different opinion than yours. a lot of people do not wnat to be annexed! this site is open to both opinions so i am not a troll. what you are saying is that your insurance will drop if in the city. what i am saying is that, unlike you said, it will NOT OFFSET the amount of added tax that you will pay. some of it -- yes, but not even close to enough.
Gzgeorge George Hampton September 30, 2012 at 12:33 PM
All About Legacy Why annexation such a large portion into the City of Decatur? It is about legacy. What kind of accomplishments has Peggy Merriss and Bill Floyd done for the City of Decatur for the last 30 years. What better way to go out in style and retire. Peggy Merris started working for the City in 1983. She will have 30 years in by May of 2013. By annexing a large portion of commercial property for the City she would be the only sitting City Manager to ever get it done. It has been rumoured that she is having problems getting more home owners on board her dream of a big City. She has asked that a letter be sent to every home owner in the Areas that are being considered for Annexation. It is unclear what is being said in the letter to the home owners to make them want to be annexed into the City. The City Citizens of Decatur will have to wait and hear about it.

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