White Atlanta suburbs push for secession

Really? Really.

Money quotes:

For the new (old) Milton County:

“The only way to fix Fulton County is to dismantle Fulton County,” said state Rep. Jan Jones, the plan’s chief sponsor. “It’s too large, and certainly too dysfunctional, to truly be considered local government.”


“If it gets to the floor, there will be blood on the walls,” warned state Sen. Vincent Fort, an Atlanta Democrat and member of the Legislative Black Caucus who bitterly opposes the plan. Fort added: “As much as you would like to think it’s not racial, it’s difficult to draw any other conclusion.”

I’m not a Fulton County resident (yet), but here’s my one thought, via Wikipedia:

Georgia has 159 counties, the most of any state except Texas (with 254). Before 1932, there were 161, with Milton and Campbell being merged into Fulton at the end of 1931.

Clearly, Georgia needs more counties, especially to stay on top of the whole “counties per capita” contest that no other state acknowledges but us.

And I lied earlier, I think I have another thought, one that agrees with Sen. Fort:


[Via Rusty]

UPDATE: Especially interesting local opinion here.

13 Comments so far

  1. George Burdell (unregistered) on January 24th, 2007 @ 3:58 pm

    Well, it would make it easier to tell the OTP Fulton county drivers from the ITP ones. Although, the generally poor driving of soccer moms makes that easy enough.

    Racism and Sexism, all in one post!

  2. james (unregistered) on January 24th, 2007 @ 4:05 pm

    damn, i wish sandy springs would unincorporate again…thie attitude toward speed limit enforcement on georgia 400 is really pissing me off.

  3. Dayna (unregistered) on January 24th, 2007 @ 4:27 pm

    Is that why there were so many cops on 400 today? I was among the many who got speeding tickets. Which sucks!

  4. james (unregistered) on January 24th, 2007 @ 4:38 pm

    yes, dayna it is. i have posted about it before and will be posting an open letter to the government of sandy springs in the near future.

  5. Greg Mohler (unregistered) on January 24th, 2007 @ 4:59 pm

    My sympathies are with Fort and the anti-splitters, but I suspect they’ll have their work cut out for them. When I moved down here, I was baffled by Fulton’s weird shape, as well as the fact I could drive from downtown to way the hell out in Alpharetta and still be in the same county. One thing I haven’t seen in these news reports and articles is why they merged in the first place. My cynical guess: Milton needed to latch onto Fulton to get better infrastructure and civil services.

  6. Annie (unregistered) on January 24th, 2007 @ 5:58 pm

    I know I’m going to get run out of town for this one, but I have to disagree about this being a race issue. I am guessing there are a few blacks in N. Fulton who are not too happy about their exorbitant property taxes. Seems to me that those who are in jeopardy of losing money are calling this racism, but this really boils down to one thing. Money. The people in N. Fulton have it and don’t like footing a disproportionate share of the bill for the people who don’t have it. The people who don’t have money want the people who have money to foot the bill for them. When they hear that money might be taken away from them, they say it’s racism.

    I don’t know what the answer is, but i don’t think the answer is to shout “racism” every time someone questions their taxation. I also think that it is an unfortunate fact that when affluent people in Atlanta question their local governing bodies, it inevitably turns into a race issue that will jeopardize the almighty tourist and convention business, which is – you guessed it – just fear of losing more money. This is about money, not race.

    But I live in Dekalb County, so what do i really care?

  7. Amber (unregistered) on January 24th, 2007 @ 7:16 pm

    Milton County merged with Fulton during the Great Depression because otherwise it would’ve gone bankrupt. Campbell County (now south Fulton) had already gone bankrupt and was subsumed by Fulton around the same time.

  8. Bill Paxton (unregistered) on January 24th, 2007 @ 11:48 pm

    Who is John Galt?

  9. james (unregistered) on January 25th, 2007 @ 9:52 am

    uh oh…its another one of the wascly wibertarians….

  10. Rashid Z. Muhammad (unregistered) on January 25th, 2007 @ 10:06 am

    To hear the people who have been around here a lot longer than me tell it, much of North Fulton’s development over the last 30 years was subsidized by South Fulton’s taxpayers.

    Even still, don’t the the door hit you where the good Lord split you (no pun intended).

  11. abby (unregistered) on January 25th, 2007 @ 10:52 am

    “Georgia lawmakers on Wednesday stalled the growing drive to create new cities such as Dunwoody and made it clear they weren’t considering a new Milton County this session.”


    so it won’t happen this year. but it’s interesting how demographics change over a short period of time. I wonder about how this debate will change as as people continue to move into the city.

    As of now the north-south split means 29% of Fulton’s residents pay 42% of the taxes . . . but I wonder how much that has changed in the last 5-10 years, and how much it will change in the coming decade.

  12. Seth (unregistered) on January 25th, 2007 @ 10:56 am

    Thanks for the link/update, Abby.

    Good point too.

  13. JB (unregistered) on January 27th, 2007 @ 3:32 am

    I’m pretty sure that the Georgia Constitution says that there is a maximum of 159 counties?

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