COVE Report – November 18, 2014

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Proposed City of LaVista Hills Borders Victoria Estates and Mason Mill



City of LaVista Hills


The initiatives to form the cities of Lakeside and Briarcliff have officially merged to promote the city of LaVista Hills. A new map which excludes Victoria Estates and Mason Mill neighborhoods was delivered to the state legislature yesterday. The newly proposed city does include the Toco Hill Shopping Center.
Click for Interactive Map
Click for Press Release
Click for LaVista Yes website



Close up of Victoria Estates and Mason Mill area

Close up of Victoria Estates and Mason Mill area








Letter Concerning LaVista Hills

In a letter posted on the Civic Association Networks’ (CAN) communications site, Allen Venet, LaVista Hills organizer, stated “We have also worked very hard trying to respect the preferences expressed by surveys and petitions in neighborhoods facing two or more cityhood or annexation choices.” Allen is formerly with the Briarcliff initiative and the letter was in response to an informational notification by Patrick Noonan, former president of the Mason Mill Civic Association and drafter of our recent neighborhood survey.

Thank you, Patrick, for helping to spread the word about the City of LaVista Hills.

As each of you, and your respective neighborhoods, study our map, and continue to monitor the multiple annexation and cityhood proposals, please understand that the volunteers of the LaVista Hills effort — both Lakeside supporters and Briarcliff supporters — have labored long and hard to define this map. That was true in the difficult mediation that led to our successful merger, and in the difficult mediation with our friends in the Tucker 2015 effort which unfortunately failed. We have also worked very hard trying to respect the preferences expressed by surveys and petitions in neighborhoods facing two or more cityhood or annexation choices. Those neighborhood preferences, along with the “no island” rule, largely dictated our borders. The boundaries are not as simple as any of us would like, but they do follow — as closely as we could — the desires of the neighborhoods in question.

Some have criticized a perceived lack of transparency because only “old” maps have been displayed for weeks. During this time we were engaged in mediation, while also continuing to meet with multiple neighborhood groups. We neither requested nor had any input into the design of the mediation process created by the Georgia House leadership (although we had long supported the idea of mediation as first suggested by Representative Oliver, and later championed by Representative Jacobs). We do, however, respect the legislative leadership, and we have done our best to abide by the rules and the spirit of their process. In keeping with this commitment to the process, our negotiations have been confidential. Now that the initial deadline has passed, we are pleased to present our map, and to answer any questions, as we move into the next phase of the process.

It goes without saying that some of you support our efforts, and some of you disagree. This is a political process, and differences of opinion are to be expected. I hope that we can all respect each other’s opinions as we continue to debate these critical topics.

We are excited to be moving forward with a plan that we sincerely believe will be an important part of the solution for DeKalb County, and we welcome your questions and comments, as always.


Proposed Atlanta Annexation to Include Victoria Estates and Mason Mill

Proposed Atlanta Annexation of Victoria Estates and Mason Mill

Proposed Atlanta Annexation of Victoria Estates and Mason Mill


Together in Atlanta, Inc. has delivered to the state legislature a proposed map for Atlanta annexation that includes Victoria Estates and Mason Mill neighborhoods. In a communication from Amy Power she stated “We are extremely pleased and grateful to have the support of Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, and will be working with his office through the legislative session and hopefully onward toward a referendum next year.” Thanks to Jen Tipping for forwarding this information.

Together In Atlanta, Inc.
P.O. Box 133255
Atlanta, Georgia 30333


November 17, 2014

The Honorable Amy Carter
House Governmental Affairs Committee
Georgia House of Representatives
218 State Capitol
Atlanta, Georgia 30334

Re: Proposed Atlanta Annexation

Dear Chairman Carter:

On behalf of the steering committee of Together In Atlanta (“TIA”), we respectfully submit the attached map of a proposed Atlanta annexation in west central DeKalb County for your consideration. The proposed map includes Emory University, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the complete school zones for Briar Vista Elementary and Fernbank Elementary.

As an organization, TIA’s formation is an outgrowth of the anticipated further municipalization of central and north DeKalb County being handled by your committee. The attached map of a proposed Atlanta annexation helps to prevent an unincorporated island at Atlanta’s eastern boundary, allows the neighborhoods in the proposed annexation area to preserve their elementary school zones within the same local governmental jurisdiction, and creates a manageable service area for municipal services.

Thank you very much for your consideration and for your leadership on the issue of municipalization. We look forward to working with you, other legislators, and City of Atlanta officials to support a legislative resolution that incorporates this proposed Atlanta annexation map and permits it to be put to voter referendum in 2015.


Matthew S. Lewis
Steering Committee Member
Together In Atlanta, Inc.

Attachment (Proposed Atlanta Annexation Map)

cc: Representative Buzz Brockway, Vice Chairman (w/attachment)
Representative Tyrone Brooks, Member (w/attachment)
Representative Howard Mosby, Member (w/attachment)
Representative Mary Margaret Oliver, Member (w/attachment)
Matthew Lewis

A Comparison of Atlanta vs. New City vs. remaining Unincorporated

The Woodland Hills Neighborhood Association has created a comparison of the three options. Atlanta Lakeside-Briarcliff City Comparison FINAL

LaVista Park Neighborhood Cityhood Survey Results

Neighbors in LaVista Park have indicated in a survey that their top choices are remaining unincorporated and joining the proposed new city, now named LaVista Hills. Click for details

DeKalb Police Join


Chief James Conroy posted that the department will be utilizing Nextdoor to facilitate virtual neighborhood watches and to facilitate better communications, including local crime and safety updates.

James Conroy, DeKalb County Police Department CITY
My name is Chief James Conroy, and I am pleased to announce that starting today, the DeKalb County Police Department will be utilizing Nextdoor to facilitate virtual neighborhood watch and foster neighbor-to-neighbor communications.
Nextdoor is a tool for us to effectively share information on crime prevention and safety, public events, and emergency notifications. You can expect to receive local crime and safety updates from the DeKalb County Police Department on Nextdoor. Please be assured that your website remains private. DeKalb County Police Department staff will NOT be able to see any of the content on your neighborhood website except for the direct replies to our posts.
Please be aware that Nextdoor is not the appropriate way to request emergency services, police services, report criminal or suspicious activity, file a report, etc. If you require emergency services, please call 911.
We look forward to connecting with you on Nextdoor to build stronger, safer neighborhoods throughout DeKalb County.
– Chief James Conroy

Atlanta Annexation Meeting – November 19

The Laurel Ridge Shamrock Civic Association (LRSCA) is hosting an informational meeting on Atlanta annexation. All are invited to attend. Alex Wan and APS School Board Member Matt Westmoreland are scheduled to attend. The information session will be on Wednesday Nov. 19 at 7 pm at University Heights Methodist Church.

Blueprint DeKalb Meeting – November 20

Blueprint DeKalb


Members of this citizen driven movement to improve DeKalb will be coming to Druid Hills Middle School to discuss their research and recommendations. Please come out on Thursday Nov. 20 at 7pm at Druid Hills Middle School Library to learn more about this citizen driven group.

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