We’ve told you that the annexation of Emory University and adjacent properties into Atlanta, the most important expansion of the city in generations, is being conducted in an unprecedented fashion.
While the city of Atlanta proper would wrap in the properties, the DeKalb County school system would retain jurisdiction over the limited number of students involved.
We’re presuming this is intended to avoid stirring up opposition, legal and otherwise, from DeKalb County. However, the Atlanta Public School system apparently doesn’t want to be left behind. And while the city school system has been silent on the issue, that’s not likely to last.
We’ve obtained an Aug. 21 letter from Emory University in which Christopher Augostini, executive vice president for business and administration, and addressed to Meria Carstarphen, the superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools. Augostini apparently declares his institution’s neutrality on the issue. The key paragraph:
“Emory’s position is that the APS boundary issues need to be resolved between the city of Atlanta and APS. Emory anticipates and expects that both the city of Atlanta and APS will resolve the issue in a manner that is in the best interest of the K-12 students who live within the annexation area.”
Now, state Rep. Beth Beskin, R-Atlanta, has forwarded us an Aug. 24 missive from Carstarphen in which the APS superintendent indicates she expects the City Council to allow the school system to expand with the city. Writes Carstarphen:
” I am pleased to see the City grow, and we are excited to learn that outstanding institutions like Emory University, the CDC, and CHOA want to become part of the City of Atlanta. The School Board and I want to ensure that the students and families served by APS also get to participate in that growth. Therefore, we are looking forward to a resolution where APS boundaries expand coterminous with the City of Atlanta.”
Over at 11Alive, Doug Richard reports on a challenger to incumbent Ivory Young for the District 3 seat on the Atlanta City Council, which includes the Vine City and English Avenue neighborhoods. Ricky Brown served 13 years in federal prison on a cocaine conviction. Said Brown: “I think the westside would be better off with somebody that’s like them.”
Get ready to see a lot more of photos like these:
Atlanta City Councilwoman Mary Norwood leads in the latest WSB-TV poll of the race for Atlanta mayor. And, just like her second-place finish in the 2009 race, Democrats seem likely to cast her as a closet Republican.
And while Norwood is determined that same label won’t sink her in 2017 — witness her recent visit to the Democratic National Committee meeting in Atlanta last February — her adversaries are already trying to draw a firmer line between her and the GOP.
The photo above of Norwood flanked by a pair of Republicans – Fulton Commissioner Liz Hausmann and U.S. Rep. Karen Handel — at the unveiling of the Martin Luther King Jr. statue at the state Capitol is already making the rounds. We wouldn’t be shocked to see it in a campaign ad soon.
Vox.com has the best guide we’ve seen on how to talk, other than carefully, about climate change in the context of the Harvey disaster in Texas. A taste:
Climate is not central, but by the same token it is grossly irresponsible to leave climate out of the story, for the simple reason that climate change is, as the US military puts it, a threat multiplier. The storms, the challenges of emergency response, the consequences of poor adaptation — they all predate climate change. But climate change will steadily make them worse.
Two paragraphs leap out in a report by Tony Adams of the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer on a Monday appearance by U.S. Sen. David Perdue:
[Perdue] pointed to the lack of quality candidates in last year’s presidential election, the lack of candidates with a record of getting results, as the perfect example of how not to hire for the top job.
“We hire a president of the United States differently than you will hire an executive vice president in your company. That’s got to change,” Perdue said. “We elect senators in a way you wouldn’t hire a janitor. We’ve got to change that … I’m telling you that we have a dramatic lack of leadership, that the overwhelming drive in Washington is to get re-elected. It drives everything. In reality, there are few leaders in Congress willing to take tough votes or make a hard decision to get results.”
Andy Miller of Georgia Health News reports that Blake Fulenwider, a health care consultant and former deputy commissioner of the Department of Community Health, has been named the new chief of the Georgia Medicaid program.
The largest container ship ever to reach the eastern coast of the United States, the French-owned Theodore Roosevelt, docked in Virginia on Monday and is expected in Savannah on Friday, the Savannah Morning News reports.
The trailer is out for the Watergate drama, “Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down the White House.” You can’t tell from the clip below, but much of it was shot in and around the state Capitol:
Local funeral home owner Tom Lord has announced his candidacy for the District 119 House seat vacated by Chuck Williams, who has been named director of the Georgia Forestry Commission, according to the Athens Banner-Herald. Six special elections for the Legislature are now in the works. Three are already scheduled for the first Tuesday in November, according to Secretary of State Brian Kemp’s office.
Republican Michael Williams said he would eliminate the state income tax for active duty and retired military members if he was elected governor, a move that his campaign estimated would cost at least $200 million.
“While we may receive positive lip service, we know the establishment of both parties will fight this at every turn,” Williams said. “Eliminating Georgia’s income tax for everyone is a top priority for my campaign. A sensible place to start is with military pay.”
The proposal is not likely to get very far during next year’s legislative session. House and Senate leaders couldn’t broker an agreement on tax cuts last year, and Gov. Nathan Deal urged candidates running to succeed him to resist the “temptation” of broader changes to the tax system that could jeopardize the state’s revenue base.
Williams campaign manager Seth Weathers said the tax cuts would cost between $200-$300 million and that “simply freezing the budget” would help pay for the cost.
But it’s not as simple as that. Our AJC colleague James Salzer reports that the state takes in an extra $700 million to $900 million in tax collections every year, but much of that increase is taken up by growing enrollment in K-12 schools and universities, the rising cost of Medicaid and increased costs to the state’s pension system.
As a result, Deal’s office recently warned state agencies, there’s little room left for discretionary spending in the state’s budget.