Community Task Force on county zoning code update

From task force member Betty Blondeau: The Community Task Force on the ZCU is a group of citizens representing every area of DeKalb County. The Task Force has spent many months working with the county commissioners, the county planning and development staff, and community organizations throughout the county studying the very complex 500 page document which was developed by POND, a consulting firm.  The Task Force has focused on strengthening the voice of the communities and neighborhoods in zoning decisions. Presently the proposed code favors developers and staff and makes the citizens' right of appeal complicated and extremely difficult. The Task Force recommendations seek to assure the standing of both nearby residents and county officials to appeal land use decisions.  

DeKalb History Center lunch and learn with the Junior League

Event Date and Time: 
09/16/2014 - 12:00pm - 1:00pm

From Melissa Forgey of the DeKalb History Center: "The Junior League of DeKalb County, Inc. (JLD) is an organization of women committed to promoting volunteerism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. During the presentation, Active and Sustaining members of JLD will highlight some of the organizations most significant accomplishments over the past eight decades...."

Blueprint to Redefine DeKalb

From "Blueprint to Redefine DeKalb," a citizen group, via District 2 Commissioner Jeff Rader: "In the wake of swirling charges of corruption, a group of engaged DeKalb citizens is bringing forth recommendations to reform DeKalb County government. The diverse group of neighborhood leaders has been working since February to draft the Blueprint to Redefine DeKalb County. The Blueprint is a framework for reform - it addresses: procurement policies, ethics, inefficient operations and the stale political environment.  .... The Blueprints Leadership Team will review these reforms in a community meeting on September 30th at 6:30 PM in the Maloof Auditorium in Decatur.  " 

Basic Bicycle Skills

Event Date and Time: 
10/11/2014 - 9:00am - 1:00pm

For our cyclists from Bicycle South: "Basic Bicycle Skills Class - Sat. Oct. 11 Come to the Decatur Recreation Center on Saturday, October 11 from 9 AM to 1 PM for a basic bicycle skills class covering the basics of bike safety, rules of the road, and group riding skills. Finish the class with a 5 mile bike ride around Decatur. Your instructor/ride leader is Mike Sheehan, a LAB Certified Instructor.  For more information, contact Mike at 770-309-1992. There is a fee for the class. " [Read more.]

Attempted child abductions 9/6/14

From nearby Leafmore neighborhood (Leafmore Security Patrol <leafmore@leafmoresecuritypatrol.org>) 9/6/14: Neighbors,  Our off-duty officers informed me this afternoon that there was another attempted child abduction in our neighborhood yesterday at approximately 4:20PM near the intersection of Vista Leaf and Wood Leaf.  Both the detectives assigned to the case and our officers are working feverishly in an effort to track down the suspect who has been described by the victim (a 10 year old white male) as a black male with green eyes.  The suspect was driving an older model red Ford Bronco with a black stripe and tinted windows.  The county has put out an APB for this vehicle.

District 2 update 9/4/14

From District 2 Commissioner Jeff Rader: BOC agenda; MARTA repairs and temporary schedule adjustments.

District 6 update 9/5/14

From District 6 Commissioner Kathie Gannon: Tour de CASA Bike ride for child advocacy; Brookside Park; Blueprint Meeting; Pet Adoption Special; South River Jamboree.

CHCA elects new board, discusses future of schools and government

Last Friday, August 29, over 100 members of the CHCA community met at the North Decatur Presbyterian Church to elect a new board and discuss issues centering on the future of our schools, esp. Fernbank and Druid Hills High School.  Members of the new board are the following.

Noah's Ark for children at Emory's Carlos Museum

Event Date and Time: 
09/13/2014 - 10:00am

From Emory's Carlos Museum: Noah’s Ark: Storytelling & art at the Carlos Museum, September 13 at 10am. Ages 3-5 with accompanying adults. 10 am, Works on Paper Gallery, Level One.  Noah’s Ark by Jerry Pinkney, a Caldecott Honor Book, illustrates the biblical story of Noah and the great good.

Fernbank Forest guided tour

Event Date and Time: 
09/06/2014 - 10:00am - 12:00pm

Fernbank Forest Guided Tour: Join museum educators to learn about the forest ecosystem,September 6, 10am-noon. Ages 12 & up; tour included with museum admission and free for members. Space is limited to 20 participants and advance reservations are required at 404-929-6400.

GPC plant sales

For our gardeners from the Georgia Perimeter College native plant garden:  Our 2014 Fall Lunch and Wildflower Series and Ferntastic Plant Sale start Sept. 5.

DeKalb Animal adoptions September 2014

From Wardell Castles via Clairemont Great Lakes Neighborhood Association: If you thought that it's time to to adopt a new friend and save a life, then September is the month to do it.  The DeKalb Animal Shelter's "FALL in love" promotion has the adoption fee WAIVED for all puppies, kittens, cats, and dogs for the month of September. That's right, $0.00 (Standard adoption qualification still applies).  These are all healthy pets looking for a new home. All have been spayed/neutered, micro-chipped, and fully vaccinated. Try to get that kind of deal at your local pet store. Ha!!

County CEO at DHHS

Event Date and Time: 
09/04/2014 - 7:00pm - 8:30pm

From Druid Hills Civic Association: Join DeKalb County Interim CEO Lee May in a community conversation, Thursday, September 4, 7- 8:30pm at Druid Hills High School. Topics are sure to include government ethics, cityhood options for Druid Hills, and Clifton Ridge. This is an opportunity for you to ask questions directly to Mr. May, so we encourage everyone to come. DHHS is located at 1798 Haygood Drive, NE, Atlanta, GA 30307.

Emory LaVista Parent Council letter 9/2/14

From the Emory LaVista Parent Council to school superintendent Michael Thurmond, registering disappointment with a perceived lack of transparency on the part of a school district representative sent to a public meeting to address the Druid Hills Charter Cluster issue: ".... There is much discussion of potential changes in our county and schools. Cityhood movements abound. Annexation looms. DCSD has indicated that they hope to obtain charter system status in the future. As parents and stakeholders, we would like to be able to work with DCSD in addressing these challenging issues. When parents perceive DCSD as being evasive or opaque, the option of all stakeholders working together seems less likely. ..." [Read more.]

Sanitation schedule this week 9/1-9/5

From the county's sanitation calendar flyer: All collection services will run one day late.  Regular garbage collection schedule will resume on Thursday, 9/4. Blue box and yard trimming recycling will run one day late thru Friday, 9/5

AJC on DeKalb corruption

From Johnny Edwards and Mark Niesse in the AJC: ".... Now, under public pressure, county leaders have revived the dormant ethics board, authorized an audit of purchase card expenses and strengthened rules on contracting. But that’s not enough to create the kinds of financial accountability that can protect taxpayers, the AJC found. And some top officials seem to still be focused on the hits to the county’s reputation. They’ve talked so much about getting past the perception that DeKalb has a culture of corruption that it’s hard to tell at times what concerns them more: A politician pilfering public money, or all the outside scrutiny now aimed their way...." [Read more.]  See also Bill Torpy's article on the race issue (behind the AJC paywall).  

Cityhood news mentions CHCA, MANA, DHCA

From Lisa George on WABE: ".... For Medlock Park, annexation by Atlanta would put it at the tail end of other areas that would have to be annexed. That includes Medlock’s next-door neighborhood, Clairmont Heights, another group of DeKalb residents now listening closely to the cityhood discussion.  Part of Druid Hills is already in the City of Atlanta, but Critz thinks there is another issue. “Schools are probably, you know the linchpin on this, I think even more so than taxes.” He points to Fernbank Elementary, a DeKalb County school that draws people to the neighborhood...."  [Read more.]

Decatur Book Festival

Event Date and Time: 
08/29/2014 - 2:00pm - 08/31/2014 - 5:45pm

Keynote events feature Joyce Carol Oates and Pat Conroy.  Here is the website FAQ and the schedule.  Here is an overview from their FAQ page.

What happens at a book festival?

A lot. Every book festival is a little different, but at most festivals you can expect:

District 2 update 8/28/14

From District 2 Commissioner Jeff Rader: BOC agenda; MARTA survey; Bike ride for childrens' advocacy; Emory Village Open Streets.

Voter Education and Outreach Training for Community Organizations

Event Date and Time: 
09/03/2014 - 6:30pm - 8:00pm

From the county CEO's Office of Neighborhood Empowerment (OneDeKalb): Wednesday, September 3 | 6:30 - 8:00 pm DeKalb County Registration & Elections Office, 4380 Memorial Drive, Decatur GA 30032. Learn the when, why, and how of voting. This training will provide information on the following topics:   

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