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Decatur City Commission delays bond vote until 2014

Annexation, new cities Decaturish updates

Decatur City Commission delays bond vote until 2014


Decatur’s City Commission wants more time to study a plan to issue $59 million in bonds for school construction.

Commissioners during their regular Monday meeting voted unanimously to postpone a public referendum until November 2014. Commissioners also want to establish a “blue ribbon committee” to study several topics related to the the growth of City of Decatur Schools.

The Decatur City Board of Education had asked the commission to place it on the ballot in the upcoming Nov. 5 municipal elections. The City Commission discussed the topic at a work session at 6:45 p.m. with some members of the school board present. Later, after the meeting was nearly over, Mayor Jim Baskett introduced the resolution to delay the vote and establish the committee.

The resolution did not appear on the agenda published before the meeting.

Here’s a copy provided to Decaturish:

ResolutionAfter the meeting, Baskett said there were grave political risks in putting the issue before voters on Nov. 5. He said many residents told him the school board’s decision felt rushed and was difficult to understand.

He said failure was, “Absolutely possible.”

“You risk that referendum failing and that puts a bad message out there, because this community has always come together and rallied around our educational needs,” Baskett said.

Baskett and other commissioners worried about the effects of Georgia’s new city movement on local schools. He said in prior years, annexation was a simple yes or no question. With new cities incorporating all around unincorporated DeKalb County, it might become a question of either/or for residents living outside city limits.

The “blue ribbon committee” would study the effects of annexation on local schools, among other topics.

So what do you think about the Decatur City Commission’s decision?