Former Decatur mayor pessimistic about annexation chances this year
The Georgia Assembly is in session and there are currently no bills regarding annexation or cityhood under consideration.
Bill Floyd, Decatur’s former mayor, who is now Executive Director of the DeKalb Municipal Association, told Decaturish that he doesn’t think any annexation plans will move forward in 2015.
“I think the chances of it happening are probably not very good,” Floyd said. “The county’s obviously going to oppose it. I don’t think the DeKalb delegation is going to be very much in favor of it because of that. So it’s going to be hard.”
However, he’s much more optimistic about proposals for creating new cities.
Floyd attended DeKalb County CEO Lee May’s State of the County Address last week and answered several questions about the move to incorporate all of DeKalb County. Floyd resigned in 2013 to take a job with a consulting firm, saying that the new job could create a conflict of interest with his duties as mayor. Last year, Floyd participated in mediation between the cityhood movements of LaVista Hills and Tucker. Ultimately, the boundaries for those two proposed cities were decided in December by a legislative panel.
Floyd said that may have been jumping the gun.
“As far as annexation, I’ve said all along that I thought they ought to wait and see about the two new cities in the middle of DeKalb,” he said. “If those bills get done, and have a referendum and they pass, then you can start talking about annexation.”
Floyd said the cityhood movements have been promised a hearing this year, at a minimum. He thinks both would have a good chance of being approved by voters.
“If I had to pick one, I would think LaVista Hills is probably a pretty sure thing,” he said, adding that he is only speaking for himself.
Tucker recently announced it is updating its feasibility study to reflect the new maps approved by the legislative panel.
Mary Kay Woodworth, with LaVista Hills YES, said, “We have not filed our bill yet. Still working on it.”
Kathryn Rice, with the City of South DeKalb cityhood movement, said the group soon plans to announce a new name and other details about its plans for 2015.
Meanwhile, there’s also a growing number DeKalb County residents who want to remain unincorporated.
Several groups are working to convince legislators that the best decision they can make in the 2015 session is no decision at all. There are also several petitions circulating with a similar message.