Brookhaven representatives in the General Assembly are urging the City Council to drop its lawsuit with Chamblee over the Century Center office park.
Rep. Mike Jacobs, R-Brookhaven, who authored the legislation creating the city of Brookhaven, said he has personally called the mayor and council about the matter. Reps. Scott Holcomb and Mary Margaret Oliver, both DeKalb Democrats, sent an email to the elected officials urging them to “recognize the will of our constituents and allow the annexation to move forward without legal interference from Brookhaven.”
On Nov. 5, residents of the Dresden East neighborhoods voted to have their area – which includes the commercial property known as Century Center – annexed into the city of Chamblee. But earlier, on Oct. 8, Brookhaven City Council had voted to annex Century Center alone after a request for annexation from the property’s owners.
The two cities went to court, and a DeKalb judge ruled Brookhaven could only annex the property if Chamblee’s annexation referendum failed. Brookhaven then appealed that ruling to the Georgia Supreme Court. A hearing date has not yet been set.
“We had a referendum on Tuesday and the voters rendered a decisive verdict in favor of being annexed into Chamblee. As Brookhaven citizens who sought our own incorporation approximately a year and a half ago, I would hope that we would respect the decision of the citizens who have voted to annex into Chamblee,” Jacobs said. “Furthermore, it is critically important for the future of north DeKalb that these two cities — Chamblee and Brookhaven — be able to work together. Each day that passes with Brookhaven’s participation in this lawsuit, from here forward, only jeopardizes that very important working relationship.”
Holcomb, who represents a portion of Brookhaven, pointed out that it’s not a political issue. A bi-partisan group of legislators from the General Assembly is asking to end the lawsuit over Century Center.
“My view is that the vote having passed should end the conversation,” Holcomb said. “I understand that there was litigation prior to the vote and the court allowed the vote to take place. Now that the vote has taken place, I think that we should respect that outcome.”
Oliver, who authored the bill creating the Chamblee annexation referendum, said the outcome of the vote was an important step for the residents in that area and the future of the city of Chamblee.
“For the record, Brookhaven has lost in the court and lost with the voters,” Oliver said. “It’s time for Brookhaven to cooperate and be a good citizen with the rest of the county.”