FREEPRESS

the DeKalb FRIDAY, JUNE 9, 2017 • VOL. 20, NO. 10 • FREE

Serving East Atlanta, Avondale Estates, Brookhaven, Chamblee, Clarkston, Decatur, Doraville, Dunwoody, Lithonia, Pine Lake, Stone Mountain, Stonecrest and Tucker • A PUBLICATION OF ACE III COMMUNICATIONS

From washing dogs
to selling dogs
Eleven-year-old establishes hot dog business in DeKalb
by Horace Holloman tough stains that you need to get out. I’m
horace@dekalbchamp.com happy that part is over.”
  Mason’s Super Hot Dogs can be found
While some 11 year olds are worried at different events throughout DeKalb
about getting the latest gaming system County such as birthday parties and
or the latest fashion, 11-year-old Mason various venues.
Wright, a resident of Stonecrest, has  In the Wright household, age is just a Eleven-year-old Stonecrest resident Mason Wright owns a hotdog
his eyes set on continuing to grow his number. Wright’s sister, Mary Pat Hector, stand and sells his product across DeKalb County.
business.   made national headlines by becoming one
Wright, owner of Mason’s Super Hot of the youngest candidates in Georgia to
Dogs, has established himself as a young qualify for a city council race.
business owner in DeKalb County and his  Kathy Wright said it’s difficult managing
hot dog stand is quickly catching on. the schedules of two active children, but
 Mason’s Super Hot Dogs features hot wants them to not get discouraged if they
dogs of Wright’s own creation. Wright said hear the word “no.”
he’s proud of what he’s done and takes  “I have been truly blessed with two
pride in owning his hot dog stand. extraordinary children. At an early age they
 “I was surprised at first, being so young both knew what they wanted to do,” Kathy
and owning a business. After a few weeks, Wright said. “I tell them all the time that ‘yes
I felt that this is what I was supposed to do,” they can.’ I believe in them and I tell them
Wright said. “I just felt it. It felt good.”  that they can do anything they want to do.
Wright said he decided to go into I think when older people tell young people
business because, like some others his that they can’t, young people don’t develop
age, he wanted his own money. However, like they should.”
his parents said if he wanted money, he  Mason Wright’s father recently
would have to get a job. purchased Mason a sausage stuffer so he
 According to his mother, Kathy Wright, can create his own hot dogs without buying
her son would go into different stores and them from a store.
ask for an application, only to be told he’s  Mason’s Super Hot Dogs has inspired
too young to get a job. That’s when he other young people in the area to become
decided to create his own revenue stream, entrepreneurs, Kathy Wright said. Mason
she said. Wright’s friends have frequently asked if
 “He was like, ‘ya know, I’m going to they can help with his cart and sometimes
start my own business.’ He started out he will hire college students to help.  
washing cars and walking dogs and then  The Atlanta YMCA contacted Mason
he decided the manual labor wasn’t for Wright and asked him to develop a
him,” Kathy Wright said.   program to teach young people about
The idea of Mason’s Super Hot Dogs entrepreneurship with Mason’s Super Hot
came about when the family took a trip Dogs as the pilot.
to New York City. His family was looking  “While cities are not being able to
for something to eat one night, Mason expand their youth job programs, this is
Wright said, but his family couldn’t find a something that they can really do. Maybe
restaurant that wasn’t crowded. Eventually they should call Mason,” Kathy Wright said,
they stopped at a hot dog stand. laughing.
 Mason Wright thought why not bring a  Being a business owner can be tough
New York-style hot dog cart to the Peach at times, especially during the summer
state. He first had to save up his own months when school is out. Mason Wright
money to buy the cart by washing cars and said his hotdog stand is “taking away his
washing dogs.   summer.”
“It was very challenging,” Mason Wright  Nonetheless, it has its benefits. During
said. “When you’re washing dogs, they an interview with The Champion Mason
like to run around and get dirty again. Also, Wright sported his new shoes—purchased Mason Wright stands with his mother Kathy Wright in their home
when you’re washing cars, people have with his own money. in Stonecrest. Kathy Wright said she often helps her son run his
business.

Visit www.championnewspaper.com for local, real DeKalb County news. @DeKalbChampNews
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 2

Firefighters urge residents to get involved, advocate for pay increases
they listened to our problems,”
by Horace Holloman Owens said. “The county can’t
horace@dekalbchamp.com afford to lose this experience
walking out the door.”
Former DeKalb County
 In a YouTube video titled
firefighter Payton Owens
“DeKalb County Firefighter
said he fell in love with and
Struggles,” the video gives
“married” his job. However,
examples of what tenured or
the marriage turned one-sided,
longterm fighters go through
resulting in Owens’ departure
with respect to pay.
from the department.
 According to the video,
 Leaving the DeKalb
firefighters have not seen
County Fire and Rescue
annual merit raises since
Department was one of the
2008. In 2014, DeKalb
hardest decisions in Owens’
County firefighters received a
life, he said.
3-percent cost-of-living raise.
 The 10-year veteran
The video states that the raise
of DCFR, making roughly
could not keep up with cost of
$40,000 a year, said a recent
health and retirement plans,
pay scale study paid for by
which increased to more than 4
the county would allow a
percent.
firefighter who has been on the
 The video also shows
job less than a year to make
copies of firefighter paychecks
within $2,000 of what he was
and how much they make. One
making. That was the final
paycheck labeled “captain”
straw. Owens said he knew it
shows a firefighter who started
was time for a divorce.   A Youtube video called “DeKalb county Firefighters Struggle” urges DeKalb County residents to contact their local officials out making $1,092 per pay
“It was like a punch in and demand pay increases for firefighters.
period in 2008 and now makes
the face and a kick in the
$1,083 in 2017—$10 less per
[expletive],” Owens said. “It’s
I didn’t see a future for gym in Watkinsville called commissioners also fueled his pay period.
like being married and your
myself [in DeKalb County] Crossfit Oconee, left the decision.    According to the video,
wife starts paying attention
financially.”  department in May of this “I just didn’t feel like the a fire medic making $3,407
to some guy that she’s only
Owens, who is now the year. A lack of support county supported the fire per pay period who became a
known for a few minutes.
business owner of a crossfit from DeKalb County department. I don’t feel like
See Firefighter on Page 17A
2017 Mobile Market Stops
June - September

FRESH ON DEK
Cash, Credit, SNAP/EBT Cards Accepted
DEKALB COUNTY

Tuesday 9 a.m. - 11 a.m. Clifton Springs Health Center, 3110 Clifton Springs Rd., Decatur 12 p.m. - 2 p.m.
Lou Walker Senior Center, 2538 Panola Rd., Lithonia
5 p.m. - 7 p.m. Tadda’s Fitness Center, 2615 Park Central Blvd., Decatur

Wednesday 9 a.m. - 11 a.m. Watershed Management, 1580 Roadhaven Dr., Stone Mountain
12 p.m. - 2 p.m. Austin Drive Community at Bethesda Cathedral, 1989 Austin Dr., Decatur
5 p.m. - 7 p.m. Mainstreet Community Association, 5001 Mainstreet Park Dr., Stone Mountain

Thursday 9 a.m. - 11 a.m. DeKalb County Division of Family and Children Services, 178 Sams St., Decatur
12 p.m. - 2 p.m. Scott Candler Library, 1917 Candler Rd., Decatur (Alternating Thursdays starting June 8, 2017)
12 p.m. - 2 p.m. Redan-Trotti Library, 1569 Wellborn Rd., Lithonia (Alternating Thursdays starting June 15, 2017)
5 p.m. - 7 p.m. Redan High School, 5247 Redan Rd., Stone Mountain

Friday 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. DeKalb County Extension, 4380 Memorial Dr., Ste. 200, Decatur

For more info, call (404) 298-4080 or go to www.dekalbmobilemarket.com.
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 3

AROUNDDEKALB Milam Park’s aquatics and pool area offers
COUNTYWIDE
BROOKHAVEN guests four 75-foot lap lanes, a wading pool
and several fountains for children.
Admission is free for children aged one
Dive-in movie night scheduled and younger. Admission for Clarkson resident
DeKalb to host CASA informational
children ages 2 to 17 is $2 and $3 for non-
session
Brookhaven will host a “dive-in” movie residents. Admission for resident adults ages
night June 16 at Murphey Candler Park at 8 DeKalb County’s Court Appointed Special
18 to 59 is $3 and $5 for non-residents. No
p.m. “Star Wars Rogue 1” will be played at the Advocates (CASA) volunteers will be hosting
admission fee is required for adults ages 60
event. The park is located at 1551 West Nancy an information session on June 13 from 6:30
and older.
Creek Drive NE. For more information, visit to 7:30 p.m.at the Gregory A. Adams Juvenile
Pool hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. from May
www.brookhavenga.gov. Justice Center, located at 4309 Memorial
26 to Aug. 7 on Monday, Wednesday and
Drive in Decatur.
Friday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesdays,
‘Parent’s night out’ announced Thursdays and Saturdays. Milam Park Pool is
CASA volunteers are trained individuals
who advocate in the best interests of abused
open 1 to 6 p.m. on Sundays.
Brookhaven will host Parent’s Night Out and neglected children appointed by the
During this timeframe, adults 40 and older
June 16, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at Lynwood Chief Judge of DeKalb County Juvenile Court.
may also participate in free lap swims from 6
Community Center. The event allows parents CASA volunteers make sure all necessary
to 8 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
to drop off their children on a Friday and have information is collected and presented to
After Aug. 8, the pool will retain only its
time to themselves. The event will include court, including the Division of Family and
Saturday and Sunday hours until Sept. 3.
dinner, games, activities and options to Children Services and county juvenile courts.
For more information, visit clarkstonga.gov/
keep children entertained. Pre-registration is These documents allow the judge to
parks-recreation/milam-park-pool.html.
required by the preceding Wednesday and make an educated decision regarding child
pickup is promptly at 9.p.m. Cost is $15 per placement in a home, foster home or state-run
child; ages: 5-12. facility.
“The DeKalb County CASA program is

DECATUR
designed to give abused and neglected
children in foster care a powerful voice,” states
CHAMBLEE VBS to feature Noah’s Ark lessons
a release.
Additional information will be provided
upon admittance into the volunteer program.
Summer camp sessions offered Vacation Bible School at Gresham Park For more information on the upcoming
Christian Church, 2819 Flat Shoals Road, information session, contact Justine
The city of Chamblee will be offering Ferreira or Heather Mount at (404) 378-
Decatur, will be held June 12-16, 6:30-8:30
several sessions of summer camp from June 0038 or justine.ferreira@dekalbcasa.org and
p.m. each day. The theme, Ocean Commotion,
12 to July 30. heathermount@dekalbcasa.org.
features Noah’s Ark lessons with classes for
Campers ages 6 to 12 will have the
all ages. There also will be music, crafts and
opportunity to participate in arts, crafts games,
swimming, field trips and similar programs.
refreshments. All activities are free and open Career center schedule announced
to the public. For more information, call (404)
Camp hours are 7 a.m. until 6 p.m. with camp-
241-4511. WorkSource DeKalb has announced its
specific activities taking place 9:30 a.m. until 4
p.m. Mobile Career Center schedule for June.
According to camp officials, the purpose The center will be stationed at locations
of Camp Chamblee is to provide recreational throughout DeKalb County to help put
DeKalb County residents back to work.
STONE
activities in a wholesome and supervised
setting while providing an opportunity to The mobile unit brings job assistance to
learn new skills and improve old skills. residents of DeKalb by traveling throughout

MOUNTAIN
Camp Chamblee offers weeklong sessions the county. Residents have access to services
June 12-16, 19-23, 26-30, July 10-14, 17-21, such as job search assistance, workshops,
24-28, and July 30 to Aug. 4. The cost is $100 training, resume writing and interviewing
for residents and $125 for non-residents. tips. Businesses may also use the mobile unit
Group to host book sale for interviewing, training, pre-employment
Space for each week is limited and
registration is mandatory. Camp takes place at screenings or recruiting.
The Friends of Sue Kellogg/Stone The Mobile Career Center is also aiding
Keswick Park, located at 3496 Keswick Drive in Mountain Library will have a used book sale
Chamblee. residents interested in applying for the
June 16-17. The sale is from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. DeKalb year-round internship program. The
For more information, contact Kevin each day. Paperback books are 50 cents,
Farrow at (770) 986-5016 or kfarrow@ program provides short-term internship
hardback books are $1, coffee table books opportunities for low-income young adults,
chambleega.gov. To register, visit https:// will sell for $3 to $5 and DVD’s, CD’s, and
chambleega.myrec.com/info/activities/ ages 16-24, who are seeking employment and
videos are $1. New this year is a “Fill Your Bag” not enrolled in school. Two staff members in
program_details.aspx?ProgramID=29838. sale on June 19 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. People the unit can assist in the application process.
can bring a bag, fill with remaining books and To look at the updated schedule go to
pay $5.
CLARKSTON
dekalbcountyga.gov.
All proceeds of the sale go to fund adult
and children’s programs at the library and to
buy supplies for the library. The Friends also
Milam Park Pool opens will give a $1,000 scholarship each year to a
person doing graduate work in media and
Milam Park Pool—located at 3867 Norman library Science. The library is located at 952
Road—is now open to the public. Leon Street.
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 4

MAKING PETS A PRIORITY
Clarkston city officials discuss pet regulations with advocates DeKalb County commissioners
by R. Scott Belzer
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com

Following a successful Pet
Awareness Day on April 29, city
officials in Clarkston are hoping
to continue educating the
public on proper pet care and
develop legislation to benefit
furry family members.
Clarkston’s urban
development committee met on
May 30 to discuss pet education
opportunities and review its
current ordinances relating to
pets.
The committee—made up Clarkston is promoting positive health practices with several information-based Jen Wagner and Lila Hunter of Animal Alliance of Georgia spoke to Clarkston’s
urban development committee regarding pet safety and best practices within
of council members Beverly and community gatherings involving pets. Photo by R. Scott Belzer
city limits. Photo by R. Scott Belzer
Burks, Jamie Carroll and
resident Debbie Gathmann— provide resources and partners or a nearby neighborhood.
kept outside and puppy mills policies that would enhance
engaged with Animal to help our community.” Wagner and Hunter said
without having an animal the ability for pet owners to
Alliance of Georgia outreach Mayor Ted Terry said his Clarkston’s adoption of DeKalb
control unit. take proper care?” Burks asked.
coordinator Jen Wagner and NextDoor account often bears County’s ordinance is great in
“From a policy perspective, “From a child’s perspective,
co-chairperson Lila Hunter to at least one message involving a
are there things we can do as how can we provide education
learn how to address problems stray or “vicious” dog running
a city to enhance our current to address and deal with pets?
involving stray dogs, dogs
ordinances or make certain We need to see how we can through downtown Clarkston
See Pets on Page 15A

The DeKalb County Board of Education does hereby announce that the millage rate will be set at a meeting to be held at the
DeKalb County School District Administrative & Instructional Complex, 1701 Mountain Industrial Boulevard, Stone Mountain, Georgia
on Tuesday, June 27, 2017 at 7:00 p.m., and pursuant to the requirements of O.C.G.A. 48-5-32, does hereby publish
the following presentation of the current year's tax digest and levy, along with the history of the tax digest and levy
for the past five years.

CURRENT 2017 TAX DIGEST AND 5 YEAR HISTORY OF LEVY

DEKALB COUNTY SCHOOL 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017

Real & Personal 17,578,034,324 17,512,942,085 18,945,661,424 21,114,929,747 22,708,465,405 24,330,418,024
Motor Vehicles 1,265,293,750 1,359,311,440 1,135,212,830 781,124,040 568,562,240 501,760,240
Mobile Homes 440,056 396,572 355,333 358,733 769,100 1,255,335
Timber - 100% 0 0 0 0 0 0
Heavy Duty Equipment 77,829 34,308 57,864 2,208 76,000 157,886
Gross Digest 18,843,845,959 18,872,684,405 20,081,287,451 21,896,414,728 23,277,872,745 24,833,591,485
Less M& O Exemptions 2,847,239,428 2,826,254,552 2,923,178,437 3,144,309,260 3,295,536,890 3,224,983,327
Net M & O Digest 15,996,606,531 16,046,429,853 17,158,109,014 18,752,105,468 19,982,335,855 21,608,608,158
State Forest Land Assistance
Grant Value 0 0 0 0 0 0
Adjusted Net M&O Digest 15,996,606,531 16,046,429,853 17,158,109,014 18,752,105,468 19,982,335,855 21,608,608,158

Gross M&O Millage 23.98 23.98 23.98 23.98 23.73 23.38
Less Rollbacks 0.00 0.00 0.00 -0.25 -0.35 0.00
Net M&O Millage 23.98 23.98 23.98 23.73 23.38 23.38

Total School Taxes Levied $383,598,625 $384,793,388 $411,451,454 $444,987,463 $467,187,012 $505,209,259

Net Taxes $ Increase ($21,384,338) $1,194,763 $26,658,066 $33,536,009 $22,199,550 $38,022,246
Net Taxes % Increase -5.28% 0.31% 6.93% 8.15% 4.99% 8.14%

NOTES:
1. THE NET LEVY DOES NOT REFLECT ACTUAL REVENUE RECEIVED OR AVAILABLE DUE TO VALUE ADJUSTMENTS RESULTING FROM APPEALS, DELINQUENT TAXES,
COLLECTIONS FROM PRIOR YEARS, AND A FEE OF 1.25% PAID TO THE COUNTY FOR BILLING AND COLLECTIONS.
2. THE 2017 MILLAGE RATE IS THE PROPOSED RATE. THE PROPOSED SCHOOL OPERATIONS MILLAGE IS 23.38 MILLS.
3. 2017 DIGEST FIGURES ARE AN ESTIMATE.
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 5

Photos by Arthur Ratliff

Caribbean-American culture comes to DeKalb
libraries during month-long event
by Kathy Mitchell event is to introduce people photographer and Decatur- her heart is My Jamaican
to the richness, influence and based insurance agent Arthur Journey: A Caribbean American
Designing programs is part diversity of Caribbean-American Ratliff will be on display at Explores Her Roots, scheduled
of every librarian’s job. Monica culture. After one showing of the Wesley Chapel-William C. for June 13, at the Wesley
Foderingham, currently a film made in the Dominican Brown branch. Chapel-William C. Brown
manager of the DeKalb County Republic, audience members Among the original programs branch. According to the
Library’s Wesley Chapel-William were stunned. They told me Foderingham is bringing to the library description, “A young
C. Brown branch, said she they had no idea about many of event is a spelling bee focused Ivy League graduate leaves
wanted to create a program the things they learned from the on Caribbean culture. Now a comfortable life and resigns
that would be interesting, film.” in its fourth year, the spelling from an enviable job as a
educational and tied to her “We are so much more bee this year will be held in New York City management
passion—Caribbean culture. than sun, sea and sand,” DeKalb County for the first consultant to spend 10
When she was with Foderingham commented. time. “I just woke up one day months living on one-third
the Atlanta-Fulton County “There are so many languages, and thought, ‘Why not hold a of her salary and conducting
Library system, she created a accents, foods and traditions. spelling bee?’ I have a geek-like research overseas. As a U.S.
Caribbean film festival. In its I want to open people’s eyes love of spelling bees and felt it State Department Fulbright
10th year, the event has moved to all they might not have been could be educational and fun. Scholar, Jacqui Brown had
to DeKalb and includes not aware of even if they have Sponsors have been generous a choice of many countries in
only films but a photo exhibit, visited. I want to provide a with their prizes,” she said. the world. She chose Jamaica,
storytelling, island foods and window into the multifaceted, First-, second- and third-place her ancestral home. This is her
other samplings of Caribbean multidimensional world that winners will receive $100, $50 story.”
cultures. The programs will be approximately four million and $25 bookstore gift cards, “That young woman
at the Wesley Chapel-William immigrants to the United States respectively, along with trophies happens to be my daughter,”
C. Brown and Decatur branches call home. Food is also a part of and other recognitions. Foderingham explained. “She
throughout June, which is a people’s culture, so attendees Another event that started was born in the United States
National Caribbean American will have an opportunity to in Fulton County and this and she could have gone
Heritage Month. sample Caribbean refreshments year moves to DeKalb is a anywhere in the world with her
“The Caribbean is more to round out their sensory foray storytelling festival featuring Fulbright Scholarship. I am
than one island, one language, into the Caribbean experience.” traditional Anansi stories. proud that she wanted to learn
one culture. It is a diverse This year’s movie lineup Occurring concurrently with about her Jamaican heritage.”
region with English, Spanish, includes films from Grenada, Anansi storytelling festivals in Foderingham said she
French and Dutch-speaking French Guiana, Antigua Florida, Jamaica, New York and hopes to make Caribbean
countries; and the people are and Barbuda, Jamaica and other places, this year’s event American Heritage Month an
Black, White, Indian, Chinese, Barbados. “I have been will feature young performers annual celebration at the library,
Lebanese and Aboriginal,” said fortunate to partner with the from the Kuumba Storytellers, adding, “I’m already planning for
Foderingham, who is a native of Bronze Lens Film Festival and in addition to adult storytellers, next year.”
Jamaica. have been able to get some who will bring traditional A complete list of
“Many Americans only know excellent films,” Foderingham Anansi stories that, according programs, times and locations
about the English-speaking said. to the library, “are popular in is available at any DeKalb
countries in the Caribbean,” Throughout the month-long Caribbean culture but originated County Library branch or
she continued. “There is so celebration a photography in West Africa.” online at dekalblibrary.org/
much more. One of the things exhibit depicting Caribbean One event Foderingham events/?series=138.
I hope to accomplish with this culture in Atlanta by said is especially close to
OPINION DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 6

Freelance protections should be nationwide
The impression that many fairly earned. The law establishes penalties
people have of the professional Often the folks who were for violations of these rights,
lives of freelancers is that we so accessible and responsible including statutory damages,
have a lackadaisical approach throughout the life of the project double damages, injunctive
to working and those of us who suddenly cannot be reached and relief, and attorney’s fees. Where
work from home spend our day in Gale Horton Gay take forever to return calls and there is evidence of a pattern or
pajamas. gale@dekalbchamp.com emails. One time when I was practice of violations, civil action
While pj’s and casual wear doing freelance public relations can be taken to recover a civil
may be part of the workstyle work I had to hire a collection penalty of $25,000 and less.
for many of us, I believe that for newspapers, magazines and agency to get my client (a well- The law also requires a system
most people who earn their other establishments for about known celebrity) to cough up the to receive complaints, create a
living through freelance work six years and I’ve had plenty cash. (And the agency took 25 court navigation program, and
are serious about the work they of times when my earnings on percent of my earnings as their gather data and report on the
undertake and seek to deliver paper looked good but my bank payment.) effectiveness of the law.
quality goods and services to account didn’t. Work was agreed I’m glad to see that one This is clearly a step in the
clients. upon and completed but when city has taken the plight of right direction.
While freelancing has payment was requested, I had freelancers seriously. The only issue I have with this
tremendous benefits (freedom to to play the wait-and-see game On May 15, New York new law is that it only pertains to
set one’s schedule, the freedom followed by calls to the clients City’s Freelance Isn’t Free Act those working in New York City.
of choosing clients and projects, and often sending of additional went into effect, establishing Freelancers nationwide deserve
etc.), there’s a downside that invoices and additional follow- and enhancing protections for these protections and more. I
is frustrating and can seriously up calls. The back and forth can freelance workers, specifically hope other municipalities and
undermine freelancers’ stability— stretch out for months, leaving the right to a written contract, states follow suit and that one
payment for services rendered. freelancers without the money timely and full payment and day freelancers in Georgia will be
I’ve been a freelancer writing they so desperately need and protection from retaliation. equally respected and protected.

Subscribe to The Champion Newspaper
To subscribe, visit TheChampionNewspaper.com or call 404.373.7779
OPINION DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 7

We’ll always have Paris
“I was elected to represent later cemented in the national The mayor of Pittsburgh, long
the citizens of Pittsburgh, not ‘One Man’s security expansions and policies America’s capital of the steel
Paris,” declared President
Donald Trump during his Opinion’ after 9/11, but the surprise
abandonment did help to cement
industry and the pollution which
that generated, has already
statement and press conference Bush’s global reputation as an announced that the Steel City
announcing U.S. withdrawal Bill Crane American cowboy operating will continue efforts there to
from the Paris Climate Accord. bill.csicrane@gmail.com unilaterally and willing to go it further reduce carbon emissions
alone. and comply with the Paris
With regard to a non-binding, Trump correctly points out Accord. The states of California
non-treaty, treaty, I am in jobs, and much of the U.S. that as the U.S. commander in and Washington, many
agreement with President Trump manufacturing job base, it was chief, his first responsibility is to major U.S cities and national
that the U.S. needed, at the very not the Paris Accord that killed the citizens of this nation, but as employers have made similar
least, to re-visit its own voluntary jobs, it was again capitalism, with the in-the-face criticism of pronouncements, and again, all
emission reduction goals set market forces and labor costs— our NATO allies about increasing voluntarily.
by President Barack Obama in all at play in our global macro- their defense payments and Bush does not regret
2005 as our nation joined the economy. expenditures during a meeting leading U.S. withdrawal from
Paris Climate Accord.  And while in this instance I of the G-7, Trump should the Kyoto Protocol, but he does
The U.S. commitment was support and agree with Trump know from business that you regret the way that he handled
to reduce carbon emissions by that distancing or withdrawal seldom close a deal with a hand the matter. Smart men and
25-28 percent, as well as join a from the Paris agreement and that slaps. Trump may be a women typically learn from their
host of other developed nations resetting our emission standards germaphobe, and a bit wary of mistakes.
in contributing $100 billion is the proper path, I strongly handshakes, but he does know  
over a 10-year period to less disagree with his path to that that business gets done more
developed nations—also parties goal. And, we have been here with relationships and trust built Bill Crane also serves as a
to the accord—to help them before.  over time, than with posturing, political analyst and commentator
reduce their own emissions, as Early in the presidency of threatening and bullying. for Channel 2’s Action News, WSB-
well as make reparations for George W. Bush, the president And again, listen to this echo AM News/Talk 750 and now 95.5
environmental damage caused similarly inherited an agreement from the recent past, “The way FM, as well as a columnist for The
by the more-developed Western from his predecessor, in that they did it was just flipping the Champion, DeKalb Free Press and
economies. case a full-fledged treaty, the bird to the rest of the world,” said Georgia Trend. Crane is a DeKalb
The Paris Accord was too Kyoto Protocol, which imposed then Bush Administration E.P.A. native and business owner, living
much feel-good and not enough binding limits on emissions Administrator (and former New in Scottdale. You can reach him
substance. That said, protecting by the United States and the Jersey governor), Christine or comment on a column at bill.
our environment remains a European Union. The protocol Todd Whitman. csicrane@gmail.com.
priority, and since Obama did not include some of the
committed to the accord, U.S. world’s largest polluters, and still
carbon emissions have dropped developing economies in China
by 13-15 percent. Though and India. Less than two months
Obama-era air emission into Bush’s first term, Vice
standards did drive many utilities President Dick Cheney, armed
away from coal and toward other with a letter to Congress, critical
energy sources, they were as of the protocol, engineered an
much, if not more, influenced end-around and the subsequent
by innovations in fracking and abandonment of the protocol.
access to cheap, domestically Many of Bush’s closest
produced natural gas. advisors such as then Secretary
Trump campaigned on pulling of State Colin Powell and
the U.S. out of bad treaties, National Security Advisor
including the Paris Accord, as Condaleeza Rice were
well as bringing coal mining jobs blindsided and remain very
back to Kentucky and the Rust critical of the move, as well as
Belt. The former may cost the its timing. Bush failed to give a
U.S. in terms of reputation and heads up to our global allies in
global standing among other Europe or to his own team. The
nations, but will actually save us move was not a major departure
money. As for the coal-mining from “the Bush Doctrine,”

FREEPRESS
the DeKalb
Publisher: Photographer: STATEMENT FROM THE
John Hewitt Travis Hudgons
PUBLISHER
Chief Financial Officer: Staff Reporters: We sincerely appreciate the
discussion surrounding this and any
Let Us Know What You Think! Dr. Earl D. Glenn Carla Parker issue of interest to DeKalb County.
SEND LETTERS TO EDITOR, R. Scott Belzer The Champion was founded in 1991
THE DEKALB FREE PRESS encourages opinions from Production Manager: Horace Holloman expressly to provide a forum for
The DeKalb Free Press, discourse for all community residents
its readers. Please write to us and express your views. P. O. Box 1347, Decatur, GA 30031-1347; Kemesha Wadley on all sides of an issue. We have no
Letters should be brief, typewritten and contain the Send email to Johnh@dekalbchamp.com desire to make the news only to
FAX To: (404) 370-3903; Phone: (404) 373-7779. The DeKalb Free Press is published each Friday report news and opinions to effect
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LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 8

County officials announced plans to replace the county’s nearly 102,000
outdated or faulty meters.

County works to replace outdated,
defective water meters
A Fulton County judge denied DeKalb County Sheriff Jeffrey Mann’s request to halt Gov. Nathan Deal’s executive order to
investigate Mann. by Horace Holloman
horace@dekalbchamp.com

Judge upholds governor’s DeKalb County officials are working to replace nearly 55
percent of the county’s small water meters that may contribute to

investigation into Sheriff Mann inaccurate water bills.  
DeKalb CEO Michael Thurmond announced that the county
has developed a plan to replace more than 100,000 water meters
that are at risk of failure.
by Horace Holloman compared his violations to investigation,” Dunaway said.  “Implementing a large-scale meter replacement program
walking a dog without a leash. “The statute doesn’t mention will take time, but this is a substantial step to restore faith in the
horace@dekalbchamp.com Pines also argued in court it being a public trial and any accuracy of meter readings and water bills,” Thurmond said in a
that at the time of Mann’s arrest charges that this committee statement.
DeKalb County Sheriff he was not in the capacity of is looking at...they will give a  Thurmond said he plans to replace roughly 62,000 small
Jeffrey Mann made his first DeKalb County sheriff.   recommendation, but it’s not meters that are outside of their 15-year life cycle and 40,000
court appearance after allegedly “The governor has no binding upon the governor. iPerl meters manufactured before 2014 that have potential
exposing himself to an officer authority in this matter. He They will be making a non- factory defects.
in Atlanta’s Piedmont Park on doesn’t have any power unless binding recommendation. It’s in  According to Reginald Wells, deputy director of operations
May 6.   it’s granted in this statue,” Pines the nature of an investigation.”
Mann and his attorney, said.  In a letter sent to employees
Noah Pines, appeared in Fulton  During the proceedings, of the DeKalb County Sheriff ’s See Water on Page 17A
County Superior Court on Dunaway asked Pines how he Office, Mann announced that he
May 31 to request halting Gov. planned to address “alleged would suspend himself for one
Nathan Deal’s executive order DEKALB COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION
misconduct” in Deal’s executive week starting May 27 and would
to investigate the sheriff under order.   give a week’s pay to charity.
Georgia statute O.C.G.A. 15-16- 2nd PUBLIC BUDGET HEARING
“The alleged misconduct  “This self-imposed FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 2018
26. wasn’t while Mann was in discipline should not be
 Fulton County Superior office,” Pines responded. “[The construed to suggest or imply
Court Judge Eric Dunaway Monday, June 12, 2017
executive order] says while in guilt of the Atlanta municipal
denied Pines’ request to stop the office.” ordinance charges alleged.  I TIME LOCATION
investigation.    The attorney general’s office will continue to vigorously 5:30 p.m. J. David Williamson Board Room
On May 16, Deal issued argued that if Mann allegedly defend myself as it relates to the Robert R. Freeman Administrative Complex
an executive order for a exposed himself in public, charges.  However, the mere fact 1701 Mountain Industrial Blvd.
committee of Attorney General that could eventually lead to of placing myself in a position to Stone Mountain, GA 30083
Christopher Carr, Newton misconduct while in office. be arrested is sufficient reason The DeKalb County Board of Education will hold a public budget
County Sheriff Ezell Brown  “If someone is exposing for this self-imposed discipline,” hearing to solicit feedback from the public regarding the 2017-
and Peach County Sheriff Terry himself in public, he has the Mann wrote in the letter. 2018 school system’s budget. The proposed FY2017–2018 General
Deese to investigate Mann for capability of exposing himself Mann pleaded not guilty to Fund Tentative Budget contains full funding for the salary
allegations of criminal charges, [at the sheriff ’s office] as the the charges at Piedmont Park increases granted by the Board during mid-year FY2017 (1.5% and
alleged misconduct in office and next likely step,” a lawyer with and is scheduled to appear in .5%).
alleged incapacity of the sheriff the attorney general’s office said.   court July 7.
to perform the functions of his Dunaway said the real issue FOR INFORMATION, CALL THE OFFICE OF THE
office.   for the court is deciding whether
CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER AT 678-676-0069.

According to Pines, the the order is a quasi-judicial
governor does not have the tribunal.
authority to investigate Mann
NOTICE OF MEETING OF THE ATLANTA CITY COUNCIL TO
 Dunaway said Deal’s ADOPT ATLANTA’S FISCAL YEAR 2018 BUDGET
under statute O.C.G.A. 15- committee will not issue
16-26 because the statute criminal charges, but will
would only apply if Mann was Notice is hereby given that the Atlanta City Council will meet on Monday, June 19,
give a recommendation to 2017 to consider and adopt the City of Atlanta’s fiscal year 2018 budget (17-O-1171).
facing criminal charges. At the the governor’s office. Because The meeting will be held at the Atlanta City Hall Complex, 55 Trinity Avenue, Atlanta,
time of his arrest, Mann was the recommendation of the Georgia in the City Council Chamber located on the second floor beginning at 1:00 p.m.
charged with two city ordinance committee is non-binding, it All concerned citizens are invited to attend. A copy of the proposed budget legislation
violations—which, by definition, does not violate Mann’s due- (17-O-1171) is on file in the Office of the Municipal Clerk, Suite 2700, City Hall 55 Trinity
are not “crimes.”  process, he said. Avenue, S.W. Atlanta, Ga. 30303 for public inspection. This document is also available
At one point during the  “My ruling is that the writ of online for public inspection at http://www.atlantaga.gov (the file can be found under the
hearing, Mann’s attorney prohibition does not lie for the Department of Finance: Office of Budget & Fiscal Policy documents).
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 9

County approves sewer
improvements, cleaning
by Horace Holloman
horace@dekalbchamp.com
DeKalb County CEO
Michael Thurmond said he’s
committed to adding capacity
to the county’s sewer lines.
According to Thurmond,
it’s been more than 50 years
since DeKalb County cleaned
its major sewer lines.
“We believe the cleaning
of these major sewer lines will
allow us to recapture capacity
and potentially reduce costs,”
he said. “This is a significant DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond said his administration is working on
moment for the taxpayers restoring sewer capacity across the county.
and residents of this county
because our government is
working to address capacity staying in his home is flow contribution and ensure
issues in our sewer system uncertain because of the adequate sewer system
and reduce sanitary sewer county’s sewer capacity. capacity, the petitioners will
overflows.” Hennessey, and four be responsible for the cost
The county’s board of neighbors are attempting associated with installing
commissioners approved to have their sewer system any such improvements to
two contracts totaling an put on the county’s public the existing sewer system
estimated $35.4 million to sewer lines. Hennessey and infrastructure.”
improve sewer capacity. A his neighbors, who live in Hennessey, who tried
$7.2 million contract will Creekwood Terrace, are to sell a lot of his land to
restore gravity sewer line currently using an outdated developers last year, said he
Workers remove a root from a sewer line. Photo provided
capacity by cleaning main septic system that could “fail lost three purchase contracts
sewers at 19 critical areas any day,” Hennessey said. from builders.
around the county. A second Hennessey and his “The builders didn’t share DEKALB COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION
contract provides $28.25 neighbors filed a petition much of their interaction with
million for sewer replacement, with the county to connect to watershed management. One 1ST PUBLIC
pipe bursting, sewer lining, the county’s sewer line, but said they were told no and the MILLAGE RATE HEARING
point repairs, manhole interior were told that the area did not other two said that DeKalb
coating or lining, manhole have proper sewer capacity to County was ‘too difficult’
height adjustment, manhole accommodate Hennessey and to deal with after consulting
his neighbors. with their own engineers,” Monday, June 12, 2017
frame and cover adjustment
or replacement, connection The Department of Hennessey said.
Watershed Management A spokesperson for the TIME LOCATION
sealing and manhole
replacement, according to (DWM) informed Hennessey county said Hennessey’s 6:15 p.m. J. David Williamson Board Room
county officials. it would cost him roughly petition process is currently Robert R. Freeman Administrative Complex
At a press conference May $17,700 to connect to the under review. 1701 Mountain Industrial Blvd.
17, Thurmond said changes county’s sewer line along with “In the future we will be Stone Mountain, GA 30083

would be coming to the a $1,811.93 sewer access fee. reviewing the policies and
“We are not affluent. This procedures and I think will Citizens interested in reviewing a detailed copy of the program
watershed department.   based budget may do so by visiting the DeKalb County School
“Contracts have been is all we have. Our homes are relieve hopefully some of
our futures and without access the pressure and frustration,” District website at www.dekalbschoolsga.org.
signed and the work schedule
is being developed. Our hope to public sewer like all our Thurmond said. FOR INFORMATION, CALL THE OFFICE OF THE

is that by cleaning the lines, neighbors in the community, CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER AT 678-676-0069.

we will immediately restore the futures are being
destroyed,” Hennessey said.
much-needed capacity,”
Thurmond said. “All issues “It’s very frustrating.” Coming to Decatur, Tucker,
related to sewer capacity and In addition, DWM said and Stone Mountian
Hennessey would not be able
policies and procedures are
under review.” to connect to the sewer line. in June!
Thurmond said he A letter to Hennessey from Register now to check the health of your arteries
has heard developers and the county said, “additional
residents complain about the flow capacity is not available 5 important screenings for only $149
county’s sewer capacity and at this time. In the event that Carotid artery screening (plaque)
understands their concerns. sewer system infrastructure Heart Rhythm Screening (A Fib)
DeKalb County resident improvements are required Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm
Joseph Hennessey said to accommodate the new Peripheral Arterial Disease Screening
Osteoporosis risk assessment
June 13 Greenforest Community Baptist Church; Decatur
REDUCE. REUSE. RECYCLE June 26 First Christian Church; Tucker
June 29 Memorial Event Center; Stone Mountain
Pre-registration is required call 1-888-653-6441 to receive a $10 discount
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 10

Childhood literacy celebrated in DeKalb
Toco Hill-Avis G. Williams and Redan-Trotti libraries kick-off 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten

by R. Scott Belzer
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com

For the second year in a
row, DeKalb County adults
and children came together to
engage in storytelling, reading,
writing and celebrating literacy
at two local libraries.
May 30 and June 3 marked
two kick-off events for the
second celebration of 1,000
Books Before Kindergarten,
a children’s literacy program
founded by the DeKalb Library
Foundation and DeKalb
County Public Library.
The kick-offs—at Toco
Hill-Avis G. Williams Library
in Decatur and Redan-Trotti
Library in Lithonia—included
storytelling by Veronica
Winley, book giveaways,
See Books on Page 11A Storyteller Veronica Winley transformed Toco Hill-Avis G. Williams Library into a young readers’ environment through imagery, enthusiasm and oration. Photo by R.
Scott Belzer

CITY OF DORAVILLE
CITY OF DORAVILLE
NOTICE NOTICE OF FIVE
OF FIVE YEAR YEAR HISTORY
HISTORY
Pursuant
Pursuant to the requirements
to the requirements of O.C.G.A.
of O.C.G.A. Sectiondoes
Section 48-5-32 48-5-32
herebydoes hereby
publish publish the
the following followingofpresentation of
presentation
the current
the current year’s year’s taxand
tax digest digest
levy,and levy,
along withalong with the
the history history
of the of theand
tax digest taxlevy
digest andpast
for the levyfive
foryears.
the past five years.
All citizens
All citizens of Doraville
of Doraville aretoinvited
are invited attend.to attend.

CURRENT 2017 TAX
CURRENT DIGEST
2017 AND FIVEAND
TAX DIGEST YEAR LEVY
FIVE YEAR LEVY
2012 2012 2013 2013 2014 20142015 20152016 2017
2016
Real &Real
Personal
& Personal 361,679,814 395,990,311
361,679,814 416,515,498416,515,498
395,990,311 582,014,025 582,014,025
586,820,583 586,820,583
669,265,983 669
Motor Vehicle 15,848,630 15,906,220 14,025,040 9,332,050 7,001,920 6,360,280
Motor Vehicle 15,848,630 15,906,220 14,025,040 9,332,050 7,001,920 6
Mobile Homes 0 0 0 0 0 0
Mobile Homes 0 0 0 0 0
Timber 100% 0 0 0 0 0 0
Timber 100% 0 0 0 0 0
Heavy Duty Equipment 4,530 4,530 0 0 2,222 2,222
Heavy Duty Equipment 4,530 4,530 0 0 2,222
Gross Tax Digest 377,532,974 411,901,061 430,540,538 591,346,075 593,824,725 675,628,485
Gross Tax Digest
Exemptions 377,532,974
35,478,708 411,901,061
35,478,708 37,551,588430,540,538
64,281,530 591,346,075
62,253,978 593,824,725
78,870,899 675
Exemptions
Net Tax Digest 35,478,708
342,054,266 376,422,35335,478,708
392,988,95037,551,588
527,064,545 64,281,530
531,570,747 62,253,978
596,757,586 78
Net Tax Digest
Net Millage 342,054,266 9.00
9.00 376,422,353 8.75392,988,9508.50 527,064,5458.371 531,570,747
8.951 596
NetLevy
Net Tax Millage
100% 3,078,488 9.00
3,387,801 9.00
3,438,653 8.75
4,480,049 8.50
4,449,779 8.371
5,341,577
Net Increase/(Decrease)
Net Tax Levy 100% 144,285 309,3133,387,801
3,078,488 50,852 3,438,653
1,041,395 30,270
4,480,049 891,798
4,449,779 5
Net Levy %
Net Increase/(Decrease) 4.92% 144,28510.05% 309,313
Increase/(Decrease) 1.50% 50,852
30.28% 1,041,395
0.68% 30,270
20.04%
Net Levy %
Increase/(Decrease) 4.92% 10.05% 1.50% 30.28% 0.68%
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 11

More than 100 DeKalb County children and adults attended events at the Toco Hill-Avis G. Williams Library and Redan-Trotti Library to celebrate 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten, an early childhood literature
initative. Photo by R. Scott Belzer

BOOKS Continued From Page 10A
snacks and more for attending children and adults. engaging children with reading and a 250-book Before Kindergarten. She said positive feedback from
Winley transformed Toco Hill-Avis G. Williams reading log as a “participation kit” to promote reading the community in 2016 led to the program’s return in
Library into a young readers environment with and develop literacy before a child reaches public 2017.
imagery, enthusiasm and oration. school. “It’s about building a love for books in children—
“Who’s ready to get silly?” Winley asked a room Joplin said kits have been distributed through all that’s really what we’re all about,” Weissinger said.
filled with children and accompanying adults. “Story DeKalb County libraries as well as the DeKalb County “This is fundamental to our mission. We’re about
time is not a spectator sport—it’s fun for everyone!” health department and DeKalb Medical Hospital, information, books and stories. There’s nothing
Event officials said the goal of the program is to resulting in more than 30 families finishing the 1,000 more important that we do than encourage the next
support parents and promote reading to children as a book challenge. generation of leaders, community members and
gateway to literacy. Joplin said early literacy can make a positive workers to read.”
“Families are told to read 1,000 books before their difference in an early learning environment. 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is independently
child reaches kindergarten,” said Jill Joplin, executive “If children are not reading on grade level by third funded through donations. To learn more about
director of the DeKalb Library Foundation. “That grade, they get way behind in school,” Joplin said. the program, including information on donating,
doesn’t necessarily mean 1,000 different books. It can “This is our attempt to close that reading gap.” visit www.dekalblibraryfoundation.org. For more
mean one book 50 times—babies like repetition. This DeKalb County Public Library director Alison information on similar events at your local DeKalb
helps build brain cells early in children.” Weissinger said the county is proud of early County library, visit www.dekalblibrary.org.
Families are given one book, instructions on childhood literacy initiatives such as 1,000 Books
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 12

Tiny houses
welcome in Clarkston
City updates cottage ordinance
to welcome smaller homes
by R. Scott Belzer square feet. Other regulations
include a minimum porch
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com area, maximum height and
proximity to a common area.
Residents of Clarkston or According to Carroll,
those interested in becoming Clarkston’s city code may allow
residents soon may have the for cottage houses but requires
option of living in 1,200 square two changes to provide
feet of space, as city officials incentives to developers and
have begun promoting the tiny homeowners.
house market. The current code allows
On May 30, Clarkston’s tiny houses to be built in
housing and infrastructure a common space or lot
committee—made up of but requires the care of a
Mayor Ted Terry and council municipal organization, such
members Jamie Carroll, Dean as a homeowner’s association.
Moore, Mario Williams, Carroll said an amendment
Beverly Burks and Awet allowing owners to maintain
Eyasu—discussed updating its their own building is more
city code to allow cottage (tiny) ideal.
housing developments. “It’s easier to finance [a
According to Terry, tiny home] if the individual is
houses—cottage homes of 250 responsible for their own
to 1,200 square feet in total— building,” Carroll said. “It’s also City officials in Clarkston are discussing an amended ordinance to allow tiny houses and tiny house developments.
follow the trend of downsizing easier for code enforcement.” Photos by Travis Hudgons.
homeowners, affordable The second amendment will
housing and starter homes for change the minimum number
millennials.
Terry said tiny homes
of units on a cottage housing
development or community
maria Clark
may be a solution to some of from eight to two. Carroll said soprano
Clarkston’s failing housing
infrastructure. He referenced a
this will allow developments
to be built on larger lots rather
June 20, 2017, 8 PM
community survey conducted than multiple lots and provide
by students from Georgia Tech cost incentives for real estate In Residence at
which revealed Clarkston’s professionals. Clarkston Campus
rental rates are at odds with Moore said a lot at the end
resident income. Terry of Vaughn Street in downtown Georgia State University
said many land owners in Clarkston is already zoned for Perimeter College
Clarkston sold their property tiny house development.
to apartment developers in the “Somebody’s looking to
1970s and, today, a majority build about eight houses at the Fyodor cherniavsky
of the apartment units are end of Vaughn Street,” Moore Music Director & conductor
unacceptable. said. “The original purpose of
“The rent is too damn the revision would allow that
high in Clarkston,” Terry and take into consideration the
said. “We have a lot of renters problems that might arise.”
in Clarkston. We have a Both amendments will need performing arias from
deteriorating multi-family to be approved by Clarkston’s Mozart: Marriage of Figaro
housing stock and a lag time planning and zoning Puccini: Tosca
in home building—not just in committee before being voted Verdi: Aido
Clarkston but metro Atlanta.” on by Clarkston City Council also on the program
City officials, developers as an official amendment. The Orchestral operatic favorites by
and residents championing committee meets June 20. Berlioz, Tchaikovsky & Verdi
tiny houses and tiny house “Clarkston is on track to be
developments often face the first city to allow tiny house
ordinances prohibiting developments in Georgia,” First Baptist Church of Decatur
anything fewer than 1,500 Terry said. “[We’re] going one 308 Clairemont Avenue
square feet for permanent step further in allowing this Decatur, Georgia 30030
residences, Terry said. new and growing trend that is
Clarkston’s current cottage not only high in demand, but a
housing ordinance allows small solution to the enormous
Free Admission
one house per 2,904 square affordable housing crisis.”
feet of lot area and requires a For additional information
minimum lot area of 11,616 please visit us online at
www.DeKalbSymphony.org
or call 678-891-3565

REDUCE. REUSE. RECYCLE
LOCAL

WEEKinPICTURES
DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 13

The board leadership of the Central DeKalb and Fulton Perimeter community improvement districts contribute a
check for $10 million to be used toward construction costs of the new I-285 and Ga-400 interchange. Pictured Staff members at Chamblee’s annual summer camp receive their first day of
from left are Bill Baker, Perimeter Mall; R.L. Brown, GDOT and 4th District Representative; GDOT Commissioner, training on June 1. Photo submitted.
Russel McMurry; Peter Dunn, Le Meridien Hotel; Diane Calloway, Fulton CID; Alex Chambers, KDC Real Estate; Bob
Voyles, Seven Oaks Company and Perimeter Business Alliance; Dean Patterson, Bridge Investment Group, Senator
Brandon Beach of the Senate Transportation Committee

Jakwai Johnson and Elijah Haynes received Certificates of Achievement for
the 2017 SECME National Student Competition for Engineering and Design for
Dunwoody Nature Center—located at 5343 Roberts Drive—held its first successful week of summer camp crafting a water rocket alongside Sheria Enahora from the Tabala of Clarkston
despite frequent rains. Photo submitted. Community Center. The students will compete at the international competition at
the University of Alabama in June. Photo submitted.

Have you created programming you’d like to air on TV?
Do you have an interest in Public Access TV in DeKalb County?
Submit your show to DeKalb County’s Public Access channel, DeKalb 25.
Drop off DVD or USB copies to the Manuel J. Maloof Center at
1300 Commerce Drive, Decatur, GA 30030, or upload your content via the internet.

(404) 371-2325 DeKalb25@outlook.com DeKalb25.com
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 14

Dunwoody High
quiz bowl team
sets local standard
DeKalb County academic team
ranks in top 100 in United States
by R. Scott Belzer
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com

It starts with a question individual questions, toss-
involving math, history, up questions and more in
English, science, current a tournament style format.
events, sports or pop culture. Teams that answer the most
It continues with two, questions correctly advance to
three or four students coming the next round until a winner
together as a team and is ultimately declared.
answering the question as This year’s winner was
quickly as possible. Hunter High School from
It ends with glory—a team New York, who finished
answers the question before with a record of 17-2, losing
Dunwoody High School’s quiz bowl team placed 97th out of 304 teams at the 2017 High School National
another and claims a range of to Detroit Catholic Central Championship Tournament on May 28th and 29th. Photo submitted.
points. (Michigan) and Liberal Arts
It’s known as quiz bowl, and and Science Academy (Texas).
it’s something Dunwoody High Dunwoody High School’s Mission San Jose (California), placed 565th (Clinch), 922nd high schools. Dunwoody
School has repeatedly excelled quiz bowl team—Patrick State College (Pennsylvania), (Lee) and 1,257th (Wirtz). qualified for the competition
in. Following the 2017 High Clinch, Matthew Desoutter, Waukee (Iowa) and Eden The only player from by placing second in its
School National Championship Nathaniel Lee and Ryan Prairie (Minnesota), the last of DeKalb County to place higher division.
Tournament—held at the Wirtz—bested Strake Jesuit which beat Dunwoody twice. than Desoutter was Ben Wise Chattahoochee High
Atlanta Marriott Marquis in (Texas), Hudson (Wisconsin), The Dunwoody team from Marist, who placed 43rd. School, which placed first in
Atlanta on May 28 and 29— Southside (Alabama), Lincoln finished with a record of 6-5 Dunwoody High ranked Dunwoody’s division, went on
Dunwoody High ranked 97 out (Florida), Community School and 2,715 points. Desoutter, higher than other DeKalb to claim fifth in the national
of 304 competing teams and of Naples (Florida) and St. a graduating senior, placed County schools, including competition.
ninth of 26 in the state. Paul Academy (Minnesota) 47th overall individually out of Decatur (147), Marist (161), For more information, visit
Quiz bowl teams are given before suffering defeats to 1,474 players. His teammates and Chamblee Charter (181) www.naqt.com.

DeKalb County School District offers NOTICE OF PROPERTY TAX INCREASE
free summer meals to students
The Governing Authority of the City of Avondale Estates has
Families with children in need will have the opportunity to tentatively adopted a 2017 millage rate which will require an
eat at three DeKalb County schools throughout the summer.
As part of a partnership with the United States Department increase in property taxes by 4.84 percent. All concerned
of Agriculture, any DeKalb County School District (DCSD) citizens are invited to the public hearings on this tax
school offering summer courses will also offer meals to
students from 8 to 9 a.m. for breakfast and 11:30 a.m. to noon
increase to be held at City Hall, 21 North Avondale
for lunch, Monday through Friday, June 1 to July 31. Plaza, Avondale Estates, Ga. 30002 on the following
Three centrally located sites—Lakeside High School (3801 dates:
Briarcliff Road NE in Brookhaven), Columbia Middle School
(3001 Columbia Drive in Decatur) and Bethune Middle School
(5200 Covington Highway in Decatur)—will also offer summer Wednesday, June 21, 2017 at 5:30 p.m.,
meals.
“We welcome the opportunity to serve nourishing meals
Monday, June 26, 2017 at 10:00 a.m., and
to the children of DeKalb County this summer. Last year, Monday, June 26, 2017 at 6:30 p.m.
we served approximately 394,524 meals and look forward
to continuing this needed service,” said Joyce Wimberly,
executive director of DCSD’s School Nutrition Services. “It is This tentative increase will result in a millage rate of 9.957 mills
our goal to provide a source of nutrition while school is out (which is the current millage rate), an increase of .46 mills. Without
and continue the ongoing process of readying students’ minds this tentative tax increase, the mill rate will be no more than 9.497
and bodies for learning during the upcoming school year.”
For more information, contact the School Nutrition mills. The proposed tax increase for a home with a fair market value
Services office at (678) 676-0162 or visit www.dekalbschoolsga. of $305,056 is approximately $56. The proposed tax increase on
org.
non-homestead property with a fair market value of $244,929 is
approximately $45.
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 15

PETS Continued From Page 4A
not allowing dogs to be tethered hybrids or one of many breeds feel in danger, Wagner and checking problematic areas of city manager and move forward
outside and requiring dogs be of dogs, including bull terriers, Hunter recommends calling the city and developing a social with a plan for the community.”
leashed when walked. Staffordshire terriers, American DeKalb County’s animal control media presence. For more information on
“It creates a significant safety bullies, the American bulldog department. “We have to educate before proper dog care, tips on pet
concern,” Hunter said. “A dog and various mastiffs. Burks said the next steps we legislate,” Burks said. “We’ll safety and more, visit www.
that is tethered or routinely “You can’t regulate will be working with DeKalb take the information, follow animalallianceofgeorgia.org.
tethered is an unnatural way for something you can’t define,” County animal control, double- up with code enforcement, the
an animal to live. If it gets loose, Wagner said. “You’re profiling
it’s five times more likely to dogs [with breed specific
bite a child, which is a statistic legislation].” CITY OF DORAVILLE
from the [Centers for Disease Hunter and Wagner PUBLIC NOTICE
Control and Prevention].” recommended Clarkston code Fiscal Year 2018 Budget
According to Wagner, enforcement identify owners
miscommunication between who may be toeing the line Notice is hereby given that the proposed budget for the City of Doraville shall be
available for public inspection beginning Friday, June 2, 2017, in the City Clerk’s
humans and canines is often on infractions or frequently office from 8:30 to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at City Hall, 3725 Park Avenue,
what makes a dog dangerous, violate ordinances. The pair Doraville, GA.
especially when it involves also recommended browsing
a dog that is not spayed or Craigslist for people frequently A Public Hearing shall be held on the 12th day of June at 6:00 p.m. at City Hall, 3725
neutered. Other factors, such as selling dogs from Clarkston Park Avenue, Doraville, GA before the Mayor and Council of the City of Doraville at
a lack of education in owners homes. which time public comment pertaining to the Fiscal Year 2018 (July 1, 2017 through
as to what to recognize as “These are the dogs that are June 30, 2018) budget shall be sounded. All citizens of Doraville are invited to attend.
aggression, also play into “bad out there, these are the dogs
dog stories,” she said. you’re going to see,” Wagner A Public Hearing shall be held on the 19th day of June at 6:00 p.m. at Doraville Civic
“In general, dogs don’t just said. “It’s a symptom of a bigger Center, 3770 Central Avenue, Doraville, GA before the Mayor and Council of the City
snap or bite,” Wagner said. situation. There are laws against of Doraville at which time public comment pertaining to the Fiscal Year 2018 (July 1,
2017 through June 30, 2018) budget shall be sounded. All citizens of Doraville are
“Owners are responsible for the both of these things.” invited to attend.
teeth at the end of the leash.” The pair also recommended
In addition, according to the city partner with a nonprofit A Regular Meeting shall be held on the 19th day of June at 6:30 p.m. at Doraville
of Decatur Georgia Ad
Wagner, “dangerous” Valorem
breeds, Tax Digest
specializing in freeHistory
fence Civic Center, 3770 Central Avenue, Doraville, GA before the Mayor and Council of the
such as pit bulls, don’t exist. building to better protect pets, City of Doraville at which time the Fiscal Year 2018 (July 1, 2017 through June 30,
atur -She said pit bulls are often
Digest dogs and owners. When people 2018) budget shall be approved and the budget ordinance adopted in accordance with
O.C.G.A. 36-81-5. All citizens of Doraville are invited to attend.
2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 20
City of Decatur Georgia Ad Valorem Tax Digest History
essment Ratio 50% 50% 50% 50% 50% 50
Decatur - Digest
al Property $ 1,137,427,809
2012 $ 1,168,516,500
2013 $ 1,326,596,200
2014 $ 1,594,612,800
2015 2016$ 1,693,241,200
2017 $ 1,835,
sonal Property $ 22,174,136 $ 23,211,680 $ 22,248,300 $ 22,322,600 $ 23,627,600 $ 25,
Assessment Ratio
lic Utilities $ 50%
14,297,200 $ 50%
14,639,953 $ 50%15,152,700 $ 50% 50%
17,209,600 $ 50%
15,658,700 $ 16,
or VehicleReal Property
$ $49,311,000
1,137,427,809
$$ 1,168,516,500
52,979,900$ 1,326,596,200
$ 47,331,600 $ 35,521,587 $ 26,623,700 $
$ 1,594,612,800 $ 1,693,241,200 $ 1,835,249,100
23,
Personal Property $ 22,174,136 $ 23,211,680 $ 22,248,300 $ 22,322,600 $ 23,627,600 $ 25,448,800
al Digest
Public Utilities $1,223,210,145
$ 14,297,200 $1,259,348,033
$ 14,639,953 $ $1,411,328,800
15,152,700 $ $1,669,666,587
17,209,600 $ $1,759,151,200
15,658,700 $ 16,521,530$1,900,
Motor Vehicle $ 49,311,000 $ 52,979,900 $ 47,331,600 $ 35,521,587 $ 26,623,700 $ 23,481,400
Operations
Total Digest $1,223,210,145 $1,259,348,033 $1,411,328,800 $1,669,666,587 $1,759,151,200 $1,900,700,830

neral Fund
City Exemptions
Operations $ 126,914,000 $ 126,332,000 $ 125,393,000 $ 130,639,000 $ 128,646,080 $ 169,

General Fund
City Operations Exemptions
Digest $ 126,914,000 $1,133,016,033
$1,096,296,145 $ 126,332,000 $ $1,285,935,800
125,393,000 $ 130,639,000 $ 128,646,080
$1,539,027,587 $ 169,825,080$1,730,
$1,630,505,120
Net City Operations Digest $1,096,296,145 $1,133,016,033 $1,285,935,800 $1,539,027,587 $1,630,505,120 $1,730,875,750
Operations Millage 11.680 11.580 11.580 11.080 10.680
City Operations Millage 11.680 11.580 11.580 11.080 10.680 10.880
Operations Levy $12,804,739 $13,120,326 $14,891,137 $17,052,426 $17,413,795 $18,
City Operations Levy $12,804,739 $13,120,326 $14,891,137 $17,052,426 $17,413,795 $18,831,928
cent Change -0.60 2.46 13.50 14.51 2.12
Percent Change -0.60 2.46 13.50 14.51 2.12 8.14
ar Amount
DollarChange
Amount Change ($76,947)
($76,947) $315,587
$315,587 $1,770,811 $2,161,289
$1,770,811 $2,161,289$361,369 $361,369
$1,418,133 $1,

The Decatur City Commission
The Decatur announces
City Commission announces that
thatthe
the 2017 tentative
2017 tentative millage
millage rate rate was adopted
was adopted at theiron
at their meeting meeting
Monday,on Monday, May
May
15, 2017. Hearings on the budget and millage rate
15, 2017. Hearings on the budget and millage rate will be held on: will be held on:
Monday, Monday,
June 12, June 12, 2017 at 6:00 p.m.
2017 at 6:00 p.m.
Monday, June 19, 2017 at 3:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Monday, AJune 19, 2017
separate hearingaton3:30 p.m. and
the budget only 7:30
will bep.m.
held Monday, June 5, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
A separate
Thehearing
hearingson willthe budget
be held only will
at Decatur City be
Hall,held
509 Monday,
N. McDonoughJuneStreet,
5, 2017 at 7:30
Decatur, GA. p.m.
Final adoption of the 2017 millage
The hearings willfiscal
rate and be held at Decatur
year 2017-2018 City is
budget Hall, 509 N.forMcDonough
scheduled Street,
consideration at Decatur,
the Decatur GA. Final meeting
City Commission adoption of the 2017 millage
on Monday,
June 19, 2017. The above table is presented pursuant to O.C.G.A. 48-5-32 showing the
rate and fiscal year 2017-2018 budget is scheduled for consideration at the Decatur City Commission meeting estimated current year's digest and
on Monday,
proposed millage rates along with a five-year history of the tax digest and millage rates.
June 19, 2017. The above table is presented pursuant to O.C.G.A. 48-5-32 showing the estimated current year's digest and
proposed millage rates along with a five-year history of the tax digest and millage rates.
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 16

Drivers have complained about illegal maneuvering at the
intersection of Fellowship Road and Lawrenceville Highway.
Photo from tuckerga.gov

Tucker, DeKalb working toward solution at busy intersection
For several months, drivers have “We can’t stop selfish drivers from (GDOT) on a long-term solution, there Another factor is a change to the
complained about illegal rush-hour doing stupid things, but we can punish has been a noticeable improvement at the timing of the stoplights along the
maneuvering at the intersection of them when they do,” Tucker Mayor intersection in recent weeks, according to Lawrenceville Highway corridor. In
Fellowship Road and Lawrenceville Frank Auman said. “And we can do the city. One factor has been the work of the wake of the I-85 bridge collapse,
Highway in Tucker. some things in the short term to reduce DeKalb County Police officers, who have GDOT extended the length of time for
Southbound drivers on Fellowship the frustrations faced by even the most written several hundred tickets at the green lights along major arteries such
Road can be seen cutting across traffic conscientious drivers. The first priority is intersection since the start of 2017. as US 29 to help the extra traffic move
from a left-turn-only lane to go straight to ensure the safety of drivers in Tucker “Eventually drivers get the message along. Cross streets such as Fellowship
across Lawrenceville Highway toward and the second is to keep traffic moving that dangerous driving isn’t worth the Road saw shorter green light cycles and,
Idlewood Road, and some can be seen at a reasonable pace while maintaining expense of a ticket,” said Lt. R.S. Smith, therefore, bigger back-ups at rush hour,
making right turns from the left turn those safe conditions.” Tucker’s police liaison. “This kind of according to the city.
lane. These moves have led to numerous While city leaders are working with ticket is costing drivers anywhere from “Those lights are now back to their
close calls and have gotten the attention DeKalb County Public Works and the $200 in fines all the way up to $1,000. It’s original timing, which is helping to
of Tucker elected officials. Georgia Department of Transportation just not worth it.”
See Intersection on Page 18A
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 17

FIREFIGHTERS
Continued From Page 2A

master firefighter in 2016 made $65 more per paycheck over a
four-year period and did not receive compensation for obtaining
additional certificates.   
“At the end of the day, we want to show what the county says
they’ve done and show the real impact is,” said Tom Burrell,
secretary for DeKalb Professional Firefighters Local 1492.
“While the county may have worked to stabilize benefit cost...at
the end of the day the effect was zero. [The video] gives a real-
life look at what firefighters are seeing in their paychecks.”  
Burrell said qualified firefighters are leaving the department.
Since 2011 more than 200 firefighters have left DeKalb County,
according to the video. The video concludes with a message
to DeKalb County residents urging them to contact the CEO’s
office and commissioners.
 “We’ve had some veteran firefighters with 10 years of
experience on the job leave. People have lost hope,” Burrell said.
“Captains are starting to leave the department, which is unheard
of.” 
County officials said they plan to address pay raises for public
safety officials in the mid-year budget.
 Owens said as much as he loved being “married” to the
DCFR, he has no plans of going back.
WATER Continued From Page 8A  “I would love to walk back in the door, but at this point it’s
kind of like a broken relationship. It’s like your wife cheated
on you and they want you back. I can’t leave my future up to
in the county’s watershed management may have been covered during construction and DeKalb and the commissioners,” Owens said.
department, the county has 184,000 residential that’s going to be an issue for us.” 
customer meters and 102,000 of those meters Thurmond said after the meters are replaced,
are at risk of failure and may contribute to the county plans to replace its meters at a rate
inaccurate water bills.   of 7 percent per year based on the age of the
Of the 62,000 small meters outside of their meter. According to Wells, a rate of 7 percent is
15-year life cycle, Wells said roughly 10,000 of the industry standard.  
those meters were installed before 1991.   “This will ensure that we never have NOTICE OF PROPERTY TAX
“What that means is that the newest of those deficient, out-of-life-cycle water meters again,” INCREASE
meters are roughly 26 years of age. I personally Thurmond said.
seen in my short time here one meter that has The replacement of old or outdated meters
been in the ground since 1979,” Wells said. should begin by the fourth quarter of 2017. The The City of Brookhaven has
“That’s close to 40 years. That 10,000 plus the defective meters will be replaced on an ongoing tentatively adopted a millage rate for
other 52,000 have the potential to under bill basis, county officials said.   the General Fund which will require
you because it’s not registering consumption.”  Thurmond publicly apologized to DeKalb an increase in property taxes by 5.63
Wells also said the county is missing some residents who have experienced problems with
of its water meters.  their water meters and water billing. Thurmond percent over the Rollback Millage
“We have approximately 3,000 small meter said DeKalb County residents would not be rate. This increase is due solely to
accounts that are suspected to be hidden, lost “punished” due to mistakes of the county. the revaluation of real property tax
or have misaligned data,” Wells said. “They assessments.
All concerned citizens are invited
CITY OF DORAVILLE to the public hearings on this tax
NOTICE OF PROPERTY TAX INCREASE increase to be held at Brookhaven
City Hall at 4362 Peachtree Road,
The City of Doraville has tentatively adopted a millage rate of Brookhaven, GA 30319. The first
8.951 which will require an increase in property taxes by 16.23 public hearing will be held at 7:00 p.m.
percent. The proposed millage rate is .58 mills more than the prior on June 15, 2017.
year millage rate of 8.371 mills. The second public and third public
hearings will be held June 29, 2017 at
All concerned citizens are invited to the public hearing on this tax 10:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. After the final
increase to be held at the Doraville City Hall located at 3725 Park public hearing, the millage rate will be
Avenue, Doraville, GA 30340 on June 12, 2017 at 6:00pm. formally adopted at the June 29, 2017
meeting at 7:00 p.m.
Times and places of additional public hearings on this tax increase The tentative increase will result in
are at the Doraville City Hall on June 12, 2017 at 11:30am and at the a millage rate of 2.74 mills, a millage
Doraville Civic Center located at 3770 Central Avenue, Doraville GA rate equivalent increase of 0.146 mills.
30340 on June 19, 2017 at 6:00pm. Without this tentative tax increase,
the millage rate will be no more than
This tentative increase will result in a millage rate of 8.951 mills, 2.594 mills. The proposed tax increase
an increase of 16.23 percent over the rollback rate. Without this for a home with a fair market value of
tentative tax increase, the millage rate will be no more than 7.701 $426,054 is approximately $20.51 and
mills. The proposed tax increase for a home with a fair market the proposed tax increase for non-
value of $150,000 is approximately $43.75 and the tax increase for homestead property with a fair market
a non-homestead property with a fair market value of $675,000 is
value of $1,003,694 is approximately
approximately $337.50. $58.62.
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 18

From left, Brookhaven Deputy Director of Public Works Andrew Thompson,
Assistant City Manager Steve Chapman, City Manager Christian Sigman, Mayor
John Ernst, and Public Works Director Hari Karikaran

Brookhaven begins
summer paving project Mayor Pro Tem Bates Mattison steamrolls fresh asphalt on Woodsdale Road.

or reconstruction planned
by Carla Parker in 2017, nearly 28 percent of
carla@dekalbchamp.com Brookhaven’s roads will be less
than four years old, according to
Several roads in Brookhaven city officials.
are getting new looks this Brookhaven’s Public Works
summer. Director Hari Karikaran
Paving contractors and city said the overall quality of
officials put down fresh asphalt Brookhaven’s roads has
on Woodsdale Road to kick improved.
off the city’s summer paving “In 2013, the average PCI
season. Brookhaven Mayor (pavement condition index)
John Ernst and Mayor Pro Tem of all roads was a 60, which is
Bates Mattison assisted with considered in the fair range,”
spreading the new asphalt on Karikaran said. “By 2016 the
Woodsdale Road to celebrate PCI improved to a 64, which
the beginning of the project. is one point below the good
The Brookhaven City range.”
Council April 12 approved a Karikaran said they want to
$4.72 million contract to pave move that average into the “very
59 roads. City officials call the good” and “excellent” ranges
road-paving project the “most across the board.
aggressive” in city history. City “As it stands now, we are Mayor John Ernst smoothing asphalt edges on Woodsdale Road.
Manager Christian Sigman only dealing with the worst
said during the council meeting roads,” Karikaran said. “After we
that after many years of neglect, clear this list, we’ll have a new NOTICE OF PROPERTY TAX INCREASE
maintaining the city’s road list of critical roads to address.”
infrastructure is a key factor for C.W. Matthews was awarded
the long-term success of the city. the road paving contract.
“It’s a quality-of-life issue for Weather permitting, the city The Decatur City Commission has tentatively adopted a combined
our residents, it’s a public safety expects all 59 streets to be paved millage rate of 10.88 mills for maintenance and operations which will
issue for first responders and it’s by September, with final repairs require an increase in property taxes of 4.06% for fiscal year 2017-
an economic development issue and punch list items complete 2018. This millage rate generates revenue necessary to fund the City
for our business community,” by November, according to city
Sigman said. of Decatur’s general operations, downtown development authority and
officials. capital improvements.
Since the city incorporated Among the 59 streets to be
in 2012, city officials said, 18.8 paved are Alden Place Drive,
percent of the city’s 120 miles Club Drive, Dunwoody Terrace, All concerned citizens are invited to the public hearings on this tax
of roads have been repaved. Haven Glen Lane, Park Avenue increase to be held at the City Commission Meeting Room, Decatur City
With an additional 10.7 miles and Wilmont Drive. Hall, 509 N. McDonough Street, Decatur, on Monday, June 19, 2017 at
of resurfacing, rehabilitation
3:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. This tentative increase will result in a millage
rate of 10.88 mills, an increase of 0.424 mills over the rollback millage
rate. Without this tentative tax increase, the millage rate will be no more
INTERSECTION Continued From Page 16A than 10.456 mills. The proposed tax increase for a home with a fair
market value of $425,000 is approximately $37.50 and the proposed
alleviate the back-ups down public works through an tax increase for a nonhomestead property with a fair market value of
Fellowship toward Lavista intergovernmental agreement $575,000 is approximately $57.50.
Road,” Tucker Assistant City with DeKalb County. The two
Manager Cindy Jenkins said. municipalities work together
“We expect to see it improve to address traffic issues such as Based on the tax digest that was received from DeKalb County after
even more now that school is the one at Fellowship Road and the adoption of the tentative millage rate, final adoption of a combined
out for the summer.” Lawrenceville Highway. millage rate of 10.68 mills, which is the same as the current millage rate,
The city of Tucker handles will be recommended.
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 19

Dunwoody selects Richard McLeod as community development director
Dunwoody has selected which requires community development department is development regulation, code
Richard McLeod as the new input, communication and responsible for managing compliance and sustainability
community development consistent customer service.” the planning and zoning programs.
director. Dunwoody’s community functions of the city as well as
McLeod comes to
Dunwoody after holding
senior level community
development positions in NOTICE OF PROPERTY TAX INCREASE
Woodstock and Alpharetta. The DeKalb County School District has tentatively adopted a millage rate
In his new position, which will require an increase in property taxes by 5.06 percent.
McLeod will help implement
the comprehensive plan
that was adopted by the city All concerned citizens are invited to the public hearing on this tax increase to
council on Oct. 12, 2015 as be held at 6:15 p.m. June 12, 2017, DeKalb County School District J. David
well as the perimeter center McLeod Williamson Board Room, 1701 Mountain Industrial Blvd., Stone Mountain,
zoning code draft that was Georgia
adopted May 22. as a planner/downtown
“Richard’s technical coordinator and then took
expertise and prodigious on the role of director of
Times and places of additional public hearings on this tax increase are at:
knowledge has shaped community development.
many successful plans While with the city of 11:30 a.m. June 27, 2017, DeKalb County School District J. David
throughout his career,” Alpharetta, McLeod worked Williamson Board Room, 1701 Mountain Industrial Blvd., Stone
City Manager Eric Linton as the director of community Mountain, Georgia
said. “Richard is passionate development and as a senior
and knowledgeable, and I planner. While with both
am confident Richard will cities McLeod’s work and 6:15 p.m. June 27, 2017, DeKalb County School District J. David
be a tremendous asset to achievements received Williamson Board Room, 1701 Mountain Industrial Blvd., Stone Mountain,
Dunwoody’s future.” numerous awards. Georgia
McLeod earned a master “I am honored to be
of public administration and chosen to work for such
This tentative increase will result in a millage rate of 23.38 mills, an increase
bachelor of science degree a wonderful city, and I
in geographic information am looking forward to of 1.127 mills. Without this tentative tax increase, the millage rate will be
sciences from Kennesaw serving Dunwoody and no more than 22.253 mills. The proposed tax increase for a home with a
State University. He began its citizens,” McLeod said. fair market value of $225,000 is approximately $87.34 and the proposed tax
his career with the city of “My approach embraces increase for non-homestead property with a fair market value of $325,000 is
Woodstock where he worked collaborative planning approximately $146.51.
EDUCATION DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 20

TURNING THE PAGE…ONLINE
DeKalb County School District
streams grad ceremonies online
by R. Scott Belzer
sbelzer@dekalbchamp.com

Individuals who missed DeKalb County School District
(DCSD) graduation ceremonies the week of May 22 can now
watch them in their entirety online.
DCSD announced June 2 that each high school graduation
ceremony in the district that took place at the Georgia World
Congress Center can now be viewed on either Facebook or
YouTube.
Towers and McNair’s graduation ceremonies have been
published on DCSD’s YouTube account, @1DeKalbSchools.
The following schools can be found on DCSD’s Facebook
page: Columbia, Cedar Grove, Redan, Lithonia, DeKalb School
of the Arts, Elizabeth Andrews, Stephenson, DeKalb Early
College Academy, Stone Mountain, Miller Grove, Destiny
Academy, Chamblee Charter, Dunwoody, Martin Luther King
Jr., Arabia Mountain, Southwest DeKalb, Druid Hills, Tucker and
Lakeside.
This is the first year DCSD held graduation ceremonies at the
Georgia World Congress Center and at one location. In recent
years, graduation ceremonies have taken place at government
buildings, arenas, and houses of worship located close to each
 
school, according to school officials.
Students, family members, teachers and faculty have spoken

See DCSD on Page 24A DCSD announced on June 2 that all graduation ceremonies that took place at the Georgia World Congress Center are now
available on the district’s Facebook and YouTube pages. Photo submitted.

NOTICE OF PROPERTY TAX INCREASE 
The Governing Authority of the City of Avondale Estates has tentatively adopted a 2017 millage rate which will require an
increase in property taxes by 4.84 percent. All concerned citizens are invited to the public hearings on this tax increase to
be held at City Hall, 21 North Avondale Plaza, Avondale Estates, Ga. 30002 on Wednesday, June 21, 2017, at 5:30 p.m.,
Monday, June 26, 2017, at 10 a.m. and Monday, June 26, 2017, at 6:30 p.m. This tentative increase will result in a millage
rate of 9.957 mills (which is the current millage rate), an increase of .46 mills. Without this tentative tax increase, the mill
rate will be no more than 9.497 mills. The proposed tax increase for a home with a fair market value of $305,056 is
approximately $56. The proposed tax increase on non-homestead property with a fair market value of $244,929 is
approximately $45.
CURRENT 2017 TAX DIGEST AND 5 YEAR HISTORY OF LEVY
CITY 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Real & Personal 133,021,745 141,146,248 148,072,403 178,050,508 191,456,685 203,036,721
Motor Vehicles 8,014,980 8,451,460 7,456,190 5,564,760 4,306,900 3,998,710
Mobile Homes
Timber - 100%
Heavy Duty Equipment
Gross Digest 141,036,725 149,597,708 155,528,593 183,615,268 195,763,585 207,035,431
Less M& O Exemptions 231,089 138,061 268,311 371,490 466,802 512,749
Net M & O Digest 140,805,636 149,459,647 155,260,282 183,243,778 195,296,783 206,522,682
State Forest Land Assistance Grant
Value 0
Adjusted Net M&O Digest 140,805,636 149,459,647 155,260,282 183,243,778 195,296,783 206,522,682
Gross M&O Millage 10.957 10.957 10.957 9.957 9.957 9.957
Less Rollback (LOST)
Net M&O Millage 10.957 10.957 10.957 9.957 9.957 9.957
Total City Taxes Levied $1,542,807 $1,637,629 $1,701,187 $1,824,558 $1,944,570 $2,056,346
Net Taxes $ Increase $94,822 $63,558 $123,371 $120,012 $111,776
Net Taxes % Increase 6.15% 3.88% 7.25% 6.58% 5.75%
CLASSIFIED DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 21

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Senior care service helps older people live at home
by Kathy Mitchell to proceed with confidence
even if you have no background
As baby boomers, those in healthcare services.”
born during the 20 years Prior to joining Always Best
following World War II, Care, Smith worked in retail
become the largest senior sales and management and his
population the nation has sister, who is joining him in the
ever had, they are boosting a business, has a background in
relatively new industry—senior accounting. Smith said he will
home health care. handle the daily operations
The need for professional of the business and maintain
help in caring for older adult contact with service providers
family members is not new, and clients.
but has expanded, according “While we have a policy of
to Doug Smith who has visiting clients at least every
recently become a franchisee 60 days to check on the quality
with Always Best Care Senor of service they are receiving, I
Doug Smith says the services offered
Services, a national service by Always Best Care help older people expect to be out in the field a
providing a range of service remain at home as long as possible, good deal and will pop in on
“which is what they usually prefer.” clients from time to time to be
designed to help older people
living at home “maintain a safe, sure they are getting what they
independent and dignified Jake Brown, president need from us,” he said.
lifestyle,” according to Always of Always Best Care, said Smith said as he hires
Best Care’s website. in a released statement he caregivers he is looking for
“I remember how difficult is “thrilled to offer Always compassionate people who
it was for my mom who was Best Care’s home health care enjoy being around seniors,
caring for her grandmother services in the Atlanta area for listen well and make older
while working full time. With the first time. We are pleased people feel comfortable.
people living longer and the to expand our brand footprint “Some will be certified nursing
baby boomer generation with individuals like Doug, assistants—and that’s always
entering their senior years, who share a passion for success a bonus—but even those with
more and more people are and providing the community no healthcare background will
Best Care offers assisted For those who don’t need
facing the challenges she with such an invaluable complete a 40-hour training
living placement services for in-person visits, Always Best
struggled with,” Smith said. service.” program,” he said, adding
clients. “We research the area Care offers Always in Touch,
“As my parents age, Smith said he and relatives that the company offers an
to find an assisted living facility which it describes as “a
investing in Always Best Care who will partner with him array of non-medical services,
that best matches the person’s telephone reassurance program
gives me the assurance that chose Always Best Care including meal preparation
needs,” Smith said, adding that provides a daily phone
I will be prepared whenever because they were impressed assistance, light housekeeping,
the company works with case call to seniors and disabled
my family is faced with that with the business model companionship and grooming.
managers, social workers, adults who are living alone and
inevitable need for quality created by the 20-year-old Smith said that while the
discharge planners, doctors have limited contact with the
care,” Smith continued. “With California-based company. company’s goal usually is to
and families to find “affordable, outside world. Always in Touch
this thought top of mind, I “They provide you with a assure the senior has what he
comprehensive solutions that is the only absolutely free
realized that a growing number detailed roadmap that allows or she needs to live at home,
can be specifically matched national telephone reassurance
of local families are in search you to build a successful sometimes the person must
to meet a client’s particular program of its kind anywhere
of reliable and affordable home company and they provide be moved to an assisted living
physical or social needs.” in the USA and Canada.”
care for their loved ones. I am quality training that allows you facility. In such cases, Always
excited to bring a nationally
recognized brand like Always NOTICE
Best Care to Atlanta and hope The City of Lithonia, Georgia does hereby announce that the millage rate will be set at a meeting to be
to help shape the future of held at the Lithonia City Hall on Monday, June 19, 2017 at 7:00 pm and pursuant to the requirements of O.C.G.A. Section
senior care in the area.” 48-5-32 does hereby publish the following presentation of the current year's tax digest and levy, along with the history of the tax
He said his franchise, which digest and levy for the past five years.
will serve primarily DeKalb
and Fulton counties, is now
staffing up and plans to employ CURRENT 2017 TAX DIGEST AND 5 YEAR HISTORY OF LEVY
40 to 50 caregivers. It is the first INCORPORATED 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Always Best Care in Georgia. Real & Personal $ 18,958,213 $ 17,690,700 $ 20,095,784 $ 22,172,872 $ 26,527,218 $ 29,294,531
“We will start serving all of Motor Vehicles $ 1,690,000 $ 1,853,380 $ 1,554,440 $ 981,640 $ 794,580 $ 765,330
DeKalb and Fulton counties Mobile Homes $ 117,094 $ 117,094 $ 93,990 $ 93,990 $ 93,990 $ 87,151
right away and parts of other Timber - 100%
metro counties,” Smith said, Heavy Duty Equipment
adding his franchise allows Gross Digest $ 20,765,307 $ 19,661,174 $ 21,744,214 $ 23,248,502 $ 27,415,788 $ 30,147,012
him to serve 10 metropolitan Less M& O Exemptions $ 561,518 $ 552,462 $ 526,915 $ 536,850 $ 550,783 $ 572,747
Atlanta counties. Net M & O Digest $ 20,203,789 $ 19,108,712 $ 21,217,299 $ 22,711,652 $ 26,865,005 $ 29,574,265
Smith anticipates that most State Forest Land Assistance
clients will be adult children Grant Value $ -
concerned about their aging Adjusted Net M&O Digest $ 20,203,789 $ 19,108,712 $ 21,217,299 $ 22,711,652 $ 26,865,005 $ 29,574,265
parents. “They may visit for
the holidays and decide their Gross M&O Millage 16.552 17.869 17.869 17.000 15.768 14.074
parent is not doing as well as Less Rollbacks (LOST)
they had thought and want to Net M&O Millage 16.552 17.869 17.869 17.000 15.768 14.074
take steps to be sure they are
safe and such matters as regular Total City Taxes Levied $ 334,413 $ 341,454 $ 379,132 $ 386,098 $ 423,607 $ 416,228
meals, taking medicines on
schedule and personal hygiene
Net Taxes $ Increase $ 10,906 $ 7,040 $ 37,678 $ 7,671 $ 37,509 $ (7,379)
are being taken care of,”
Net Taxes % Increase 3.26% 2.11% 9.94% 1.99% 8.85% -1.74%
SPORTS DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 23

Grant Walker Maurice Campbell Jadon Haselwood

Jelani Woods Head Coach Jermaine Smith. Photos by Travis Hudgons

CEDAR GROVE RECEIVES FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP RINGS
by Carla Parker rings], glad to see their families come was a little difficult to design. game and the atmosphere.
carla@dekalbchamp.com out and support them.” “It’s a nice ring, but it was hard “Just being in the dome, how hot
Wide receiver Jadon Haselwood because I had already designed two it was, how hard it was and when the
said it is a blessing to finally get his track rings before that one so I had to clock read 00:00,” Haselwood said.
The blue carpet and luxury cars ring. think of something different,” he said. Although he has a state track and
were brought out May 30 for the 2016 “I didn’t expect for all of this to just “Now I have another track ring [to field ring and another on the way,
Cedar Grove football team members happen,” Haselwood said. “It’s all the design], so I have to think of something Haselwood said he plans to wear
to celebrate receiving their state man above and I give all the glory to different. I’m not complaining but I his football ring often. Smith, who
championship rings in style. him.” want to make the guys happy and get has several high school and college
The Cedar Grove Saints received Once players and coaches got their something they like.” championship rings, said he doesn’t
their rings at 4th & 1 Sports Bar Grille rings, they walked on the blue carpet Along with the rings, the players wear them out much and keep them in
and Lounge in Ellenwood in front of and took photos in front of a banner received an envelope from Smith that a safe place.
family and friends. The Saints won that featured the ring design. included a letter telling them to cherish Now that he has this one, Smith said
the Class AAA state title after beating The top of the ring features the the ring and a warranty for the ring. he is eager to win another one.
Greater Atlanta Christian 30-19 in team’s new logo and one side of the “It’s more than just a ring,” Smith “It’s funny, people always say you
the Georgia Dome Dec. 9, 2016. Head ring features the final score of the said. “It means something; it means you want something so bad until you get
coach Jermaine Smith said getting the championship game. Smith—who did something special that no one [else] it…now that I got this championship I
rings was a long time coming. is also the coach of the boys’ track can say they did.” want another so bad,” he said. “You’re
“They really deserve it,” Smith said. and field team, which won its third Haselwood said every time he looks never satisfied.”
“I’m just glad to see them get [the consecutive state title—said the ring down at the ring he will remember the
LOCAL DEKALB FREE PRESS Friday, June 9, 2017 • Page 24

DCSD
Continued From Page 20A
out in various ways against the
decision.
According to deputy
superintendent Vasanne
Tinsley, the district faced legal
opposition of such practices
from the American Federation
of Labor and Congress of
Industrial Organizations (AF-
CIO) during the 2015-2016
school year.
The AFL-CIO challenged
the practice of holding
graduation ceremonies in
religious facilities.
As a substitute, DCSD’s
Facebook and YouTube
accounts streamed the
graduation ceremonies to
Champion management and staff attending the 2017 Georgia Press Association annual convention included: Front from left- Kathy Mitchell, Horace Holloman and
Gale Gay; back row from left-Dr. Earl Glenn, Scott Belzer, John Hewitt, Carolyn Glenn and Bill Crane better serve those who could
not attend, which cost the
district more than $200,000.
The Champion again recognized for journalistic excellence In December, DCSD
approved a $204,663 contract
At the 131st Annual Georgia Press overall; Welcome to DeKalb—the 2017 newspapers, The Champion won first- to purchase audio and video
Association Convention held June 1-3 newcomer’s guide—was recognized as place in education, news photo, sports services including an 80 by
at Jekyll Island, The Champion was the best magazine product published photograph, investigative writing, 40 foot stage, camera mounts,
recognized for the ninth consecutive year by a weekly newspaper in Georgia humorous writing, headline writing and podiums, lighting, a sound
as a newspaper of excellence with a first- and a photo published on www. page one design. Second-place awards system, video displays, cameras
place in General Excellence. thechampionnewspaper.com was were received for editorial writing, serious and staff.
Competing against all weekly recognized as the second best online photo column and photo essay. Third-place DCSD has not announced
newspaper in the state, The Champion’s published by a weekly newspaper. awards editorial writing, lifestyle and where graduation ceremonies
website was recognized as best Competing against 23 other religion coverage. for the 2017-2018 school year
will take place.

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