If you listened to the January Georgia Political Podcast, you heard me mention Neighborhood Improvement Districts, sometimes referred to as Business Improvement Districts. NIDs allow unincorporated areas to avoid the onerous task of incorporating, but, through contracts with private entities, control services such water and sewer. In a metro area such as Atlanta, racked with separatists movements and bitter fights over resources and revenue, returning some control to local areas without permanently balkanizing an already divided region is a Gordion's Knot few polticians are willing to ponder.
Senator David Adelman from Decatur has more courage than most. He is not willing to implement something as radical as NIDs but he has submitted legislation to allow the creation of Townships. These entities would allow unincorporated areas to control land use and zoning. It is a small step but an encouraging one. More encouraging is the attitude of Sen. Dan Weber, a member from across the aisle who just happens to represent one of the separatists areas.
[He] has been pushing Dunwoody incorporation for several years. He said this week that the community might have chosen to become a township had the option been available two years ago...."We do need a reasonable middle step," Weber said.
Last Thursday, I wondered if there were any true leaders left in Atlanta. Looks like Decatur has had one all along.