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Tucker Observer: Advocate resigns from county board; Early voting in Clarkston begins Feb. 22

Clarkston Decatur Metro ATL Tucker

Tucker Observer: Advocate resigns from county board; Early voting in Clarkston begins Feb. 22

Star McKenzie last month resigned from her role on the DeKalb County Water Advisory Board. Photo provided to the Tucker Observer.

Here’s a quick look at the latest stories from the Tucker Observer, a new website created by Decaturish.com.

DeKalb County, GA — She started a movement in DeKalb County five years ago with a Facebook group, Unbelievable DeKalb Water Bills, and now Star McKenzie is shifting roles.

McKenzie resigned last month from the DeKalb County Water Advisory Board, having served on the board since its inception in 2017. She served as board chair for the last year.

For years, McKenzie worked to help residents negotiate the process of investigating, reducing and correcting inflated water bills. She now plans to push systemic change in Dekalb by partnering with fellow advocates, neighbors and community organizations to demand affordable, clean water for all residents, she said.

“I’ve successfully helped many residents this way, but progress is slow and the fixes are band-aids on a much larger, more complicated set of problems,” she said.

On her resignation, McKenzie posted to social media: “My sole purpose of serving was resident advocacy. I realized early on that we had little leverage to push process and policy changes. Requests for Service Level Agreements and documented Customer Rights went nowhere. But, if I could help resolve residents’ ongoing disputes it was worth the time and effort. Today, the CFO [Dianne] McNabb took the ability to review individual accounts away from the Board even when the residents give us permission. In her words, ‘the customers can add you to their accounts if they want you to discuss billing details.’ I assure you I will continue to act as your water billing advocate through this group and other, more productive, means.”

To read the full story on the Tucker Observer, click here.

Clarkston, GA — Early voting in the special election to fill a vacant Clarkston City Council seat will begin on Feb. 22.

Early voting will conclude on March 12. Election Day is March 16.

The seat was previously held by Yterenickia “YT” Bell.

The candidates in this eleciton are:

– Mark W. Perkins, nonprofit consultant

– Dean Moore, campus engineer

– Shana “Tiny” McAllister, small business owner

To read the full story on the Tucker Observer, click here.

Tucker, GA — The Tucker Planning Commission at its Feb. 18 meeting will hold a public hearing and first read of a special land use permit for a new bank.

The meeting starts at 7 p.m. and is open to the public. It will be conducted virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. To view the agenda for the Feb. 18 meeting, click here. For instructions about how to attend via Zoom, click here.

The SLUP would allow a CDC Federal Credit Union Branch with drive-through lanes and canopy at 4816 Briarcliff Road NE, for applicant Consultants and Builders Inc.

To read the full story on the Tucker Observer, click here.

Tucker, GA — Just two days after City Council deferred an ordinance on urban camping, a task force on Tucker’s homeless population met virtually.

Moderated by Alexis Weaver, a Tucker resident and senior manager at Atlanta Community Food Bank, joining the Zoom call were 30 city officials and experts on food insecurity, social work and the homeless community.

David Fisher, Networks Cooperative Ministry executive director, said the goal of community leaders and city officials is to maintain a safe community and safe living conditions for all Tucker residents, whether sheltered or unsheltered, and to create an enforceable code for police officers to eliminate problems caused by people living on public property.

“This desire comes from [the City’s] responsibility to protect the citizens and businesses of our town,” said Fisher. “The community comments I have heard portray a desire for compassionate interaction with neighbors living outdoors that provides a more holistic approach to homelessness without criminalizing our neighbors living in poverty.”

The number of people experiencing homelessness in Tucker is not currently known.

To read the full story on the Tucker Observer, click here.

The Tucker Observer is a new community news website owned by Decaturish.comWe provide locally sourced news about Tucker, Clarkston and Stone Mountain.

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