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Zoning Board member Dee Merriam running for Avondale Estates City Commission

Avondale Estates campaign coverage

Zoning Board member Dee Merriam running for Avondale Estates City Commission

Image obtained via dee4avondale.com
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Dee Merriam, a former CDC employee and a city Zoning Board member, is seeking a seat on the Avondale Estates City Commission.

Elections are Nov. 5.

“Dee’s career has focused on the development of public space,” her campaign announcement says. “She is well known within the Atlanta region having worked for every level of government: the City of Atlanta, DeKalb County, the Atlanta Regional Commission, the State of Georgia, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC.)

“In 2017, Dee retired from the CDC where she worked on development models and guidance designed to promote walking, access to nature and social encounters. She has served state commissions such as the Georgia Community Green Space Program as a technical advisor, and the Georgia Department of Transportation as member of their Pedestrian/Streetscape Guide Update Stakeholder Group. Highly respected in her field even in retirement, Dee continues to present at national conferences including the New Partners for Smart Growth and the American Public Health Association. Dee currently serves on the Avondale Estates Planning and Zoning Board.”

Merriam’s campaign announcement says change is coming to Avondale Estates and the city has an opportunity to determine what that change will look like.

“Change is happening all around Avondale Estates. Dee believes that change can happen to Avondale Estates – or be guided by Avondale Estates,” her campaign announcement says. “That is why the choice of city’s next leaders will be more important than ever. Working at the intersection of public wants and needs and developer wants and needs will be critical during the upcoming term. And Dee has spent the last 30 years doing just that, and doing it well.”

Merriam has lived Avondale Estates for 39 years with her husband Tom. They have three children together.

“They love Avondale Estates and intend to spend the rest of their lives here, so Dee’s investment in the city’s future is deeply personal,” her campaign announcement says.

Here is Merriam’s full campaign announcement:

Dee Merriam, Fellow American Society of Landscape Architects, has announced that she will run for Avondale Estates Commissioner in the November 5th election.

Visit her:

Website: Dee4Avondale.com

Instagram: instagram.com/dee4avondale/

FaceBook: facebook.com/dee4avondale/

Dee’s career has focused on the development of public space. She is well known within the Atlanta region having worked for every level of government: the City of Atlanta, DeKalb County, the Atlanta Regional Commission, the State of Georgia, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC.) In 2017, Dee retired from the CDC where she worked on development models and guidance designed to promote walking, access to nature and social encounters. She has served state commissions such as the Georgia Community Green Space Program as a technical advisor, and the Georgia Department of Transportation as member of their Pedestrian/Streetscape Guide Update Stakeholder Group. Highly respected in her field even in retirement, Dee continues to present at national conferences including the New Partners for Smart Growth and the American Public Health Association. Dee currently serves on the Avondale Estates Planning and Zoning Board.

Change is happening all around Avondale Estates. Dee believes that change can happen to Avondale Estates – or be guided by Avondale Estates. That is why the choice of city’s next leaders will be more important than ever. Working at the intersection of public wants and needs and developer wants and needs will be critical during the upcoming term. And Dee has spent the last 30 years doing just that, and doing it well.

Dee believes her experience can make a difference. That experience also leads her to believe:

– Avondale Estates can effectively balance the needs of developers and the wishes of its citizens

– Avondale Estates can be fiscally responsible and invest strategically

– Avondale Estates can improve the walkability, and beauty of the city and grow its downtown area

– Avondale Estates can move purposefully and meaningfully include community members in the decision-making process

Dee believes in informed, meaningful public input and has designed successful processes that helped make the development process a win-win for cities and developers without sacrificing time and money. She is very concerned about the tax burden carried by the city’s residents – who currently pay nearly 90 percent of Avondale Estate’s property taxes – and wants to leverage strategic investments to both create a more balanced revenue stream and improve the quality of the city’s downtown. In the residential area, issues of stormwater runoff and cut-through traffic would again benefit from a voice at the table with urban planning and landscape design experience.

Dee and her husband Tom have lived in Avondale Estates for 39 years. They arrived with a babe in arms and went on to add two more children (and several rooms to their house), raising their family in the city. They love Avondale Estates and intend to spend the rest of their lives here, so Dee’s investment in the city’s future is deeply personal.

Voter registration for the Nov. 5 municipal elections will end Oct. 7. Early voting will start on Oct. 14. To register to vote, click here.

In order to register you have to be a U.S. citizen, a legal resident of a Georgia county and at least 17 1/2 years old. You must be 18 years old to vote, according to the Secretary of State’s Office.

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