Supporters of Greenhaven said a city would give them the local control needed to recruit businesses and create jobs. They said lawmakers should allow residents the opportunity to vote on Greenhaven, which a feasibility study showed would be financially sound.
"There is a marked difference between North DeKalb and South DeKalb because South DeKalb is less developed," said Kathryn Rice, chairwoman of Concerned Citizens for Cityhood of South DeKalb. "Economic development — that is the primary reason we are forming Greenhaven."
Despite its population, Greenhaven would have run a small government providing three services: parks and recreation, planning and zoning, and code enforcement. Greenhaven would have continued to use DeKalb police.
Four members of the Clarkston City Council told state representatives they want to expand their city, and having Greenhaven as a neighbor would have prevented that effort.
“Think about the surrounding cities and make sure we’re not landlocked,” said Clarkston Councilwoman Beverly Burks. “We also want to continue that growth.”
Eight cities have been created in metro Atlanta over the last decade since Sandy Springs incorporated, but Rep. Hugh Floyd said Greenhaven wasn't ready.
“It’s a massive undertaking,” said Floyd, D-Norcross. “It needs to go back for a lot more study.”
A separate proposal to form the city of Stonecrest in southeast DeKalb is still advancing in the Georgia Legislature.
Stonecrest, which would cover about 50,000 residents along Interstate 20 near Stonecrest Mall, passed a key committee this month and could soon receive a vote by the full House.