Category: Politics

Buckhead executive named new U.S. senator for Georgia, replacing Isakson

Buckhead business executive Kelly Loeffler will be the new U.S. senator for Georgia, replacing incumbent Johnny Isakson, who is stepping down mid-term at year’s end for health reasons. Loeffler, a Republican, was appointed to the Senate seat Dec. 4 by Gov. Brian Kemp. If she seeks to stay in the seat beyond the vacancy appointment, she will have to defend it in a 2020 special election. The seat will be on the ballot yet again in 2022, when Isakson’s original term expires. In a social media post, Kemp praised Loeffler as political conservative: “Kelly is a patriot who believes...

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Brookhaven to vote on LGBTQ nondiscrimination ordinance in January

Brookhaven could soon join the movement of metro Atlanta cities passing nondiscrimination ordinances that include protections for people based on their sexual orientation and gender identity. Councilmember Linley Jones said at a Dec. 2 community meeting that a nondiscrimination ordinance banning businesses from discriminating against minority groups including LGBTQ people is being written now and would be introduced at the Dec. 10 council meeting. A vote on the ordinance would then follow in January after District 3 Councilmember-elect Madeleine Simmons is sworn into office, she said. “We’re all going to want to spread the message to be here Dec....

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Dunwoody Mayor Shortal honored with proclamation for years of service to city

Denis Shortal was honored with a proclamation thanking him for his service to Dunwoody, which spanned from its incorporation more than a decade ago to his term as mayor that ends this year. The proclamation was presented to Shortal at the city’s annual volunteer dinner held Nov. 14 that recognizes residents who service on local boards and commissions as well as other nonprofit organizations. “Denny stuck to his principles … and played such an important role in the formation of the city,” said Mayor-elect Lynn Deutsch in an interview. “He stuck to his principles and values and he will...

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Worth Knowing: Sandy Springs resident joins the ‘Georgia Gang’

The table on the set of the state’s longest-running TV issues show, “The Georgia Gang,” now has a new occupant of the middle seat: Sandy Springs resident Janelle King. As anyone who has watched the 37-year-old Sunday morning talk show on FOX 5 knows, the panel consists of two commentators from the political left, two from the right and a moderator. King, 35, joined the show in August and, as the show’s youngest panelist, offers a youthful perspective. An avowed Republican political activist and President Trump supporter, she seems reasonable and thoughtful, perhaps because of how she became a...

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Mayor-elect Deutsch says Dunwoody is ready to ‘imagine what else it can be’

Lynn Deutsch said being elected as the city’s next mayor validates her vision that Dunwoody is ready to move beyond just providing basic services to its residents and to begin to create a city where people want to live, work and play. Deutsch, who served two terms on the City Council, defeated Terry Nall on Nov. 5 and will be sworn in as mayor on Jan. 2. She said she is ready to begin implementing a vision that includes vibrant commercial areas, multiuse paths and sidewalks for more connectivity, an arts and culture scene – attributes that residents have...

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Amid behind-the-scenes debate, Brookhaven officials to hold public meeting on possible LGBTQ protections

Brookhaven officials will hold a community meeting about a possible LGBTQ nondiscrimination ordinance as they also consider taking the path of passing an unenforceable resolution stating their support for the LGBTQ community. The public meeting follows months of behind-the-scenes lobbying by local activists including state Rep. Matthew Wilson and Councilmember-elect Madeleine Simmons. The group is urging the City Council to pass a nondiscrimination ordinance to protect minority groups including LGBTQ people. However, an apparent informal opinion from City Attorney Chris Balch that the city may not have the authority to pass such an ordinance has made Councilmember Linley Jones...

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APS superintendent blasts tax breaks as equity issue; no decision on ‘what’s next’ for job

Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Meria Carstarphen continued her call for scrutiny of tax breaks for luxury developments at a Nov. 20 community meeting where she praised the Buckhead Council of Neighborhoods for launching a new tax-reform task force she inspired. Tax breaks can contribute to equity gaps in the district and city, she said. Facing a controversial ouster from APS, Carstarphen spoke at the Northwest Community Alliance meeting with the trademark force and charisma that has many residents speculating – or wishing – that if she can’t stay, she might seek the top job at the DeKalb County School...

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Buckhead Council property tax reform task force starts work

A new property tax reform “task force” within the Buckhead Council of Neighborhoods has begun taking aim at commercial tax breaks and discounts. The idea is to produce a list of recommended reforms to state and local governments, which were represented at the meeting by several elected officials. The Taxes/TADs Task Force came from a team-up suggestion from Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Meria Carstarphen, who blasted tax breaks as hurting her district’s budget at the Oct. 10 BCN meeting. BCN Chair Mary Norwood agreed at that meeting to form the task force from volunteers from the group’s member neighborhood...

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Women for Trump event to feature prominent Republican figures at Heritage Sandy Springs Nov. 19

A national advocacy group of women campaigning for the re-election of President Donald Trump will host an event featuring two prominent Republic figures as keynote speakers at Heritage Sandy Springs on Nov. 19. Women for Trump will host the event, called “Empower Hour,” beginning at 6:30 p.m. on the museum and park’s campus at 6110 Blue Stone Road. The event is restricted to registration only and is being held ahead of the fifth Democratic Debate Nov. 20 at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta. The meeting aims to highlight the accomplishments of President Trump’s administration and his commitment to empowering...

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Brookhaven mayor town hall set for Nov. 21

Brookhaven Mayor John Ernst is holding his monthly town hall on Thursday, Nov. 21, where residents are given the opportunity to ask questions of him and city staff. There will also be a presentation from the Atlanta-Region Transit Link Authority, known as The ATL, on a regional transit plan. The town hall is from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at City Hall, 4362 Peachtree Road. The ATL, responsible for transit planning for the 13 counties in metro Atlanta, is in the process of preparing a regional transit plan for submission to the General Assembly next year. Some of the...

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Dunwoody Mayor Shortal’s last town hall Nov. 19 to include ‘transparent’ dialogue

Dunwoody’s outgoing mayor Denis Shortal’s last town hall on Tuesday, Nov. 19, is expected to include a “transparent and informative dialogue” about city issues, according to a press release. The town hall starts at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 4800 Ashford-Dunwoody Road. The meeting will begin with a presentation by Shortal followed by a “transparent and informative dialogue,” according to a press release. Questions or comments can be submitted in advance by emailing communications@dunwoodyga.gov. Notecards will also be available during the meeting for people to submit questions. Shortal announced in April at the 10th State of City that he was...

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How Dunwoody’s ‘blue wave’ helped elect an independent mayor

Dunwoody’s next mayor will be Lynn Deutsch, who acknowledges she benefited from the Democratic “blue wave” sweeping the traditionally Republican suburbs in her Nov. 5 election. But, she said, she is an independent, not a Democrat as many people perceive her to be. And winning a City Council seat was Joe Seconder, who came out publicly as a Democrat in the wake of Donald Trump’s presidential victory and helped found the now defunct group Perimeter Progressives. The winning candidates said national politics had no direct impact on their victories. They say they focused on local issues, kept their campaigns...

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