Push for a new ‘city of North Decatur’ goes ‘dormant’

Organizers said there’s a lack of ‘legislative consensus’ to move forward

Just a few months after it went public, the push for a new “city of North Decatur” has stalled.

In an email sent to supporters Sunday night, cityhood organizers said the movement does not have the “legislative consensus” necessary to move forward. They said the initiative is not dead — but they do consider it “dormant.”

“While our legislators see the benefits of creating a city, they have not been able to convince the requisite number of fellow DeKalb legislators to move our bill forward as a local bill,” the email said.

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Backers announced their vision — which would be an expanded version of a previously proposed municipality called Vista Grove — in March. They touted the support of state Sen. Sally Harrell, D-Atlanta, who called the discussion “urgent” and said a city of North Decatur would protect the county school system and its tax base by preventing future annexations by the cities of Atlanta and Decatur.

Such a city, Harrell said at the time, would also prevent other municipalities with their own police departments from continuing to annex unincorporated neighborhoods in the area, which Harrell said “significantly and adversely” impacts the DeKalb County Department of Public Safety.

Under previously announced proposals, the new city would’ve been responsible for its own planning and zoning, roads and drainage, and parks and recreation efforts, but remain under the jurisdiction of the DeKalb County Police Department and continue rely on the county for other services.

Cityhood leaders said they would continue to “watch the political climate” and “revisit our mission” throughout the upcoming election cycle and the subsequent legislative session.

“We strongly encourage everybody to share their ideas of how we should move forward whether that means pursuing annexation into existing cities, staying unincorporated or biding our time until the political climate changes so that a city bill can be brought,” they wrote. “Either way you should all tell your legislators what you think.”