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Georgia’s newest city emerges by a narrow margin
by LaTria Garnigan
lgarnigan@neighbornewspapers.com
August 07, 2012 03:53 PM | 1798 views | 0 0 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print
As the dust settles from last week’s primary election, the next step for the newly-created city of Brookhaven takes shape.

J. Max Davis, president of Brookhaven Yes — the organization who took on much responsibility for informing residents on incorporation — said they have been contacted by many residents who seek to assist with organizing the next steps.

“We’re getting a lot of requests by email and phone by how people can volunteer to help,” said Davis. “So that’s been overwhelming. We’ve been swamped by contact with people who previously had nothing involved with Brookhaven Yes.”

Davis added they have received encouraging words and offers to volunteer from those who were initially opposed to cityhood.

Besides the qualifying dates Monday through Wednesday of next week for the mayor and four city council members, up next for Brookhaven is the appointment of a five-member commission by Gov. Nathan Deal. According to Davis, this commission will be tasked with finding office space for the city to run, gathering resumes for city positions like city manager, city clerk, police chief and city attorney.

That commission could be appointed within the week or so, according to Davis.

“And they will start searching or bidding out for some of the services the city will provide to the companies that will provide city services,” said Davis. “The volunteer committee we setup a few months ago have already worked dealing with parks, police, roads, zoning and code enforcement long before the election.”

Now, said Davis, is time for the rubber to hit the road as far as getting the city together.

Parks were a major issue for many Brookhaven residents during the campaign, as far as their upkeep and the desires that many residents had of what they would like to see.

Last Friday, Lauren Campbell, of Dunwoody, was out with her son, 18-month-old Will at Ashford Park in Brookhaven and added since Dunwoody incorporated they have seen plenty of improvements.

“When you’re a mom and you’re looking for a nice park, its nice to hit up different ones in the area,” said Campbell, who frequents many parks in Dunwoody and Brookhaven.

Campbell added overall she thinks the incorporation of Brookhaven was a good thing.

District 80 State Rep. Mike Jacobs, R-Atlanta, said now the time has come to unite the city and move forward.

“The campaign of cityhood was a spirited one, but now is the time for both sides to come together to build something great,” said Jacobs. “I’m pleased the citizens sought to pass the city with a solid 55 percent majority.”

Davis reiterated those same sentiments and stated they are not holding any bitterness from those who initially opposed cityhood, but are ready to move forward and whoever wants to get on board is welcome to get on board.

“This is about our community and about our citizens and we would be petty if we held any grudges or anything like that,” he said. “So the past is last week and the last few months but from this point forward and this week forward we’re all hands on deck that means everybody opposed or not.”

What's next?
 Gov. Nathan Deal’s five-member commission will be appointed within the next week. The commission will be charged with scouting office space to lease for city business, reviewing resumes for city clerk, city manager, police chief, city attorney and more.
The commission will also set out to train those council members and mayor who will be elected in the Nov. 6 special election.
They will also be charged with figuring out which services the city of Brookhaven will take on, as well as plans for privatizing many of those services as recent newly-incorporated cities have done.
 Also, qualifying dates for the mayor and four-member city council will be Monday through Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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