Opponents of Mableton cityhood say they will request de-annexation

Credit: Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@

Credit: Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@

The morning after voters in the southern portion of Cobb County appeared to ratify the new city of Mableton, cityhood opponent Christie Lynn said residents will consider requesting that the state de-annex precincts inside the city boundaries where a majority voted in opposition.

“Since this has always been presented as an issue about local control, local control includes looking at options to de-annex areas that were heavily against incorporation,” said Lynn, who organized Preserve South Cobb against Mableton cityhood.

Nearly 53% of voters inside the proposed city limits voted in favor of proposal, and just over 47% opposed. The results are unofficial until they are certified next week, but 100% of precincts are reporting.

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In three precincts north of Veterans Memorial Highway, more than 70% of voters opposed the measure. Lynn said these precincts will be the ones pushed to be removed from the future city.

“Yes, I see that they won the vote and got 50% of the vote,” she said. “But I wouldn’t say that getting 13,100 votes in an area of 78,000 people represents overwhelming support for cityhood.”

South of Veterans Memorial Highway, support for the city was stronger. Precincts in the northwest corner of the city lines also had a majority support for the measure, despite being closer to Austell and Powder Springs.

Mableton, soon to be the largest city in Cobb County, is the only successful cityhood movement of the four proposals earlier this year. Voters in East Cobb, Vinings, and Lost Mountain rejected cityhood during the spring primary election.

Cityhood advocates proposed a “city lite” model with limited services – including parks and recreation, code enforcement, planning and zoning, and sanitation — in order to spur development and revitalize the area.

Mableton will not be a city for another two years after a transition period. Newly-elected Gov. Brian Kemp will appoint a transition committee to begin the two-year process of creating the city government.

Rep. David Wilkerson, a Democrat representing Powder Springs and an outspoken opponent of cityhood, said he would support de-annexation.

“So now the focus will be on next steps,” Wilkerson said. “These areas overwhelmingly, over 70%, said, ‘Don’t include us.’ So now you move to the next step of, what does de-annexation look like?”

William Wilson, a pro-cityhood advocate for Mableton, said engaging with those who opposed cityhood will be crucial to the future city’s success.

“We’re a community, we’re one, and it’s important to bring everyone together and have all hands on deck,” he said. “Because the way that this is gonna succeed moving forward is that everyone works together as a community.”

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