County Community Council Meetings February 2012

From: ONE DeKalb - Office Of Neighborhood Empowerment onedekalb@dekalbcountyga.gov: Next meeting for our district is Wednesday, February 15: District 2, Mason Mill Center for Seniors & Disabled at 6:30 pm1340-B McConnell Dr., Decatur 30032

Board of Education Reapportionment

From board member Nancy Jester via DeKalb School Watch: "...The Georgia legislature is in session. As you may recall, they passed a bill in the 2011 session to shrink the DeKalb board from nine to seven (click here to view the bill). In addition to this process, we must also reapportion the districts based on the most recent census information. This is done every ten years. Please keep in mind that the majority of your property taxes (22.98 mils) fund the school system. Your district on the DeKalb Board of Education will be set for ten years based on what happens in the next week.  It is my understanding that the DeKalb delegation is expected to deliver new district maps for the Board of Education and the DeKalb Commission by mid-February. I further understand that the delegation will be voting on this matter next week.  As you know, five members of the current nine member board were elected in 2010 and took office in January 2011. Those five members (Jester, Copelin-Wood, Edler, Cunningham and Walker) were elected for terms that end in December 2014. It is my understanding that in the absence of a referendum, terms of office cannot be reduced. If the DeKalb delegation must submit maps by the middle of this month, it appears that a referendum is not possible given the time constraint. Therefore the five members elected in 2010, must serve their terms through 2014. If we are to reduce the board to seven members, then only two districts will be up for election this year and four current members will be collapsed into these two districts (McChesney, Womack, Bowen and Speaks).... I have placed the maps I have seen on my blog for your review. Click here to go to my blog to see them. As you will note, there are some maps that appear to create some long, irregular districts. I believe that this dilutes the representation of communities of interest. My current preference is the map listed first on my blog.... " [Read More]

New county commission districts

Note the the new map (attached) appears to move our near neighbors from District 2 (Jeff Rader) to District 4 (Sharon Barnes Sutton).  We remain in Jeff Rader's district.  From the North Druid Hills Briarcliff Patch: ...."Rader also brought a map showing proposed new county commission districts that was released only hours earlier. He feels the map is problematic because it packs about three percent more people into the district than there should be, meaning that the voting power of its residents is diluted. This map also takes the Briarcliff Elementary, Druid Hills Middle and North Decatur voting precincts out of his district.  “This process, unfortunately, has really fallen apart this year,” he said. He also said the county school board’s redistricting process is “a trainwreck” because they must reduce from nine districts to seven or fewer. Rader said DeKalb is the only county that has not been able to propose maps like this. He encouraged concerned residents to contact their state representatives as soon as possible because maps must be submitted before Feb. 14. The U.S. Department of Justice must approve all maps, and they require 60 days for approval. However, many legislators will be out of town for a recess this weekend and they will want to get it done sooner."... [Read more]

Our new Georgia State House District

As a result of the redistricting done at the state level last year, according to our current state rep. Mary Margaret Oliver via email, we will no longer be in her district.  According to the linked maps, we will be in a new House District 84 and our "incumbent" will be Rahn Mayo currently representing old district 91.  The new district meanders all the way to south DeKalb. 

http://www.ajc.com/news/georgia-politics-elections/map-new-state-house-1102669.html

http://www.legis.ga.gov/Joint/reapportionment/Documents/hseprop1-met.pdf

Gardening classes

For our gardeners from the DeKalb Extension Service, via Medlock Neighbors Facebook Group: They are $10 each and start at 7pm at the Main Extension Office Auditorium, 4380 Memorial Drive,  Decatur 30032

Decatur Old House Fair

Event Date and Time: 
02/18/2012 - 9:00am - 5:00pm

From Decatur Old House Fair website: Overview: A day of new ideas, practical advice, innovative materials and quality services for homeowners. Discover . . . New ideas, materials and techniques for rehabilitating, furnishing and maintaining your older home.  Meet . . .  Jodi Marks, HGTV personality and co-host of Today’s Homeowner on 11Alive, will be a guest speaker. She’ll present “Fun Projects to Enhance Your Home”, with plenty of great advice and giveaways.  Just in time for spring, Roger Moss, exterior paint color specialist and author of 1820-1920, Century of Color, and Victorian Exterior Decoration, will be a guest speaker. Attendees can schedule a 20 minute exterior color consultation with Roger Moss for $25 (2 back to back sessions can be requested). Homeowners should bring printed photographs of all facades (images on phones will not work), or drawings of the house. Contact Regina Brewer at regina.brewer@decaturga.com or call 404-371-8383. Don’t buy paint for your house until you’ve attended this seminar.  Shop . . .  A large exhibit area of retailers, suppliers and other professionals in home improvement, historic preservation, renovation, interior furnishings and construction.  Learn . . .  How to restore original windows, improve your older home’s energy efficiency, develop a maintenance plan, research old-house history, earn tax incentives for certified rehabilitation – and more – through seminars and hands-on demonstrations.

House ok's vote on new City in DeKalb

From the AJC: No Brookhaven, but Ashford still a possibility By April Hunt. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 2:11 p.m. Tuesday, February 7, 2012.  Goodbye, city of Brookhaven, at least for now. A House committee agreed Tuesday that residents of north-central DeKalb County should be allowed to vote this summer on whether to create a city there. But over objections of state Rep. Mike Jacobs, the Republican from the area leading the cityhood fight, the name will be Ashford. [Read more]

Nature Preserve work day this Sunday

Event Date and Time: 
02/12/2012 - 1:00pm - 4:00pm

From CSNP president Chris Beck:  Come join us this Sunday, February 12, from 1-4pm for a volunteer day. Check out the progress on the new kiosk/pavilion and then help us maintain trails and continue habitat restoration after the privet removal

Chris Beck
President, Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve

Directions

To get to the Nature Preserve take Medlock Road north to Medlock Elementary School. Turn right onto Wood Trail Lane and follow to the preserve entrance. For complete directions and for more information, visit http://www.cshepherdpreserve.org, leave a detailed message at 678-951-0105, or email us at information@cshepherdpreserve.org.

News from county CEO Burrell Ellis

From county CEO Burrell Ellis: CEO Town Halls; State of the County; Sewer Bonds Sell Out; 2012 Executive Budget Recommendation; Gresham Park Trail Ribbon Cutting; Harley Anti-Aging Institute

South Peachtree Creek Trail Phase II

Here are new photos and video (February 4, 2012) of the phase 2 segment of  the trail.  Also attached are old photos dating back to May 2011 when construction started, as well as photos of the adjacent but separate county project on the old Decatur Water Works section of the park which was done concurrently.  That project entailed clearing out invasive privet, installing stormwater mitigation controls -- a cascading waterfall and a detention pond, restoring the streambank, and planting native shrubs and trees.

Location on Google Maps.  An earlier posting on this project can be found here and comments on the project by commissioner Jeff Rader here.

Bicycle South Community News February 2012

For our cyclists: 2012 Georgia Rides To The Capitol Ride - March 27th! Benefit Film - Bicycle Dreams - at the Plaza Theater. Feb. 22nd.  Bike MS: Registration Now Open: $10 for 10 Days!

Rep. Hank Johnson’s E-Newsletter for Feb. 3 , 2012

From congressman Hank Johnson, 4th District of Georgia: Seniors; Veterans' COLA; Vets' homes; Jobs; Stocks; Gabby; Class; Transportation; RWJF; Heroes; Back on their feet; Conyers; Health fair.

AJC explains redrawn flood maps

From the AJC: Redrawn maps show updated risks. By Brad Loar. 6:12 p.m. Thursday, January 26, 2012.  You may have seen recent news stories about updated flood insurance rate maps for communities across the Upper Chattahoochee River Region, specifically communities in Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Forsyth, Fulton and Gwinnett counties.  Because these stories have raised questions as to what this means for residents in these areas, we want you to know about the purpose of these maps and how they might affect you. [Read more]

Friends of DeKalb Animals seeks donations

From"Wardell Castles" wardellcastles@hotmail.com via Clairemont Great Lakes Neighborhood Association:In January, Friends of Dekalb Animals (FODA), http://friendsofdekalbanimals.com rescued over 100 pets from uthanization at the DeKalb County shelter. (In case you are not aware, pets picked up by our Decatur Animal Control officer are taken to the DeKalb Animal Shelter for ummmm cough-cough "processing".) While 100 lives have been saved, there are many more to be rescued. Unfortunately FODA is out of funds. As a consequence, they are officially putting rescue on hold until they get their veterinary bills paid off and raise enough money to treat/transport more dogs and cats.

Early voting starts Feb. 13. Register by Feb. 6

From the North Druid Hills Briarcliff Patch: Not Registered to Vote? Monday's The Deadline For March 6 Primary. Early voting starts Feb. 13.... Go to the Georgia Secretary of State's office to check your registration status and to find other information such as your poll location and early voting places. The link also has a tab for you to register to vote. You can also go to the DeKalb County elections web site for voting information. [Read more]

Road Runners (50+)

From the North Druid Hills Briarcliff Patch: Thursday, February 9, 9:30 am Mason Mill Center, 1340 McConnell Dr, Decatur, GA | Get Directions »
$3 trip

This hardy group of senior women and men step out to enjoy fresh air and fellowship. Walking sites include local parks, malls and mountain trails. Bring your lunch money for a stop at local restaurants afterward to refuel.

Ages 50+.  [read more]

Mall Walking program

From the North Druid Hills Briarcliff Patch: North DeKalb Mall and DeKalb Medical Center have formed a partnership to create a mall walking program. Tuesday and Thursday from 8:30-9:30 am

Accessible Voting Poll

From: ONE DeKalb - Office of Neighborhood Empowerment

Break-in on North Superior Ave

Hi there, my name is Helena O. Feagans and I live on North Superior and a family on our street North Superior had their house broken into. She said it was OK for me to share the following information with our listserv but she didn't want her specific address listed: Earlier this week, a family member was called by a neighbor who saw some commotion at their house, and police were called. It was late in the afternoon. Once home, my neighbors saw their front door busted open. But it was brazen: the door was very secure and a special tool had to have been used to bust through the the door to get inside. The actual frame and lock in the door was still intact. Several things in the house were thrown around; some items were stolen. (no one was home at the time of the incident). But it was still quite upsetting. DeKalb police said there have been reports of robberies in various neighborhoods in DeKalb and groups of men canvassing neighborhoods. Helena

Workday at Ira B Melton Park Sat. Feb. 11 1-3

Event Date and Time: 
02/11/2012 - 1:00pm - 3:00pm

From Valerie Boss: Workday at Ira B Melton Park on Saturday, Feb. 11 from 1-3pm. Join your neighbors at the park as we pick up trash and remove invasive plants. Please bring work gloves, water, and tools, such as shovels, loppers, and wheelbarrows. Plastic bags for trash and recycling will be supplied. The event will be canceled if it is raining.

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