Thursday, June 23, 2016

Mizz Dunwoody Bitch Slaps Mista DHA


The relationship between Mizz Dunwoody and her Mista has always been publicly pleasant if at times unseemly or downright incestuous. Recently an earth shattering breakup has Mizz Dunwoody kicking Mista DHA outa da house and to the curb. The abruptness leads some observers to believe Mizz Dunwoody has gone a bit crazy or might be over-reacting to some minor cock-up, like Mista DHA leaving the toilet seat up. Again. But somehow this has a burning bed quality about it.

Reaction in DaVille was immediate and in some cases pre-emptive. Some with an eye for Mista DHA as well as a slightly catty attitude towards Mizz Dunwoody are already slinging mud on Mista's behalf. Fact is they've been making catty remarks only slightly under their breath for some time and now that a crack has opened they are driving a wedge hard and fast all the while batting an eye at Mista DHA. The heart wants what the heart wants.

In reality even the batty-eyed flirts don't know what really happened. Mizz Dunwoody didn't just bitch slap the Mista, she lawyered up and laid a gag order on his stunned face. His initial compliance may be a simple delay tactic until he finds the better lawyers or it may be that Mizz Dunwoody has something that not only constitutes irreconcilable differences but might point to something significantly more serious and embarrassing than a brief indiscretion. And if Mista's courtesan's don't know how are the poor disengaged denizens of this burg to know?

Perhaps the better question is "why would we want to and what good would it do?" It's pretty obvious this split is for real and for good. The lawyers alone indicate that makeup sex is not in this couple's future and while his flirts may service Mista DHA, Mizz Dunwoody seems hellbent on standing tall. And alone.

But what now for Mista DHA? The sting is fresh and there is a risk of anger overruling reason. He may seek to vanquish Mizz Dunwoody on a field of legal battle but he would only win a pyrrhic victory. With significant collateral damage. Us.

Maybe Mista DHA can turn his attention to Miss Schoolhouse. They could be DaVille's next power couple. Or perhaps he can leverage his remaining wealth to invest in real estate. There are some nearby properties, notably a failed restaurant that he could save from becoming a successful bank. So many options. Only one of them bad.

Mizz Dunwoody and Mista DHA were, in their day, such an admirable couple. Let's hope bickering and acrimony don't permanently tarnish the image. 

Monday, June 20, 2016

Deltagate

Qatar Air came to town with an A380 which can only be handled at one gate at The World's Busiest Airport. No one ever said it was the most capable.

Problem is Delta pretty much owns that gate, hell, the pretty much own the airport, and while Delta does not fly any A380s to ATL they denied Qatar Air access forcing the Qatar passengers to deplane on the tarmac and bus to the station. Like being in Frankfurt or Amsterdam except the weather is worse.

Delta has been pissy of late having thrown its weight around just a bit too much transforming itself from hometown favorite to biggest bully on the block. They lost their state tax exemption on fuel when they meddled just a bit too much with local ground transportation policy--not their forte. Accustomed to using their money to curry favour they pulled funding for the Fox when a welcome party for Qatar was held at that venue. Accustomed to slinging politicians around like Duncan with his yo-yos they are really pissed off that ATL is expanding any flights with any airline but Delta.

How can you be sure? Fly a little. Helps if its Delta if only because it will impact you. You'll need to listen carefully to the announcements.Want to know why? Because Delta announces gate changes all the time. So when it suites their needs Delta has no problem re-assigning gates at the drop of a hat.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

TAD: Not Worth The Trouble

The wanna-be Doraville Developer is refusing to answer DCSD's questions regarding the Developer's insistence that our school system participate in a TAD thereby blocking the DCSD Staff's efforts at due diligence. Wonder what the Developer has to hide? You should.

Developer is insisting on a public presentation replete with Power Points, promises and political grandstanding. Yet thru a mouthpiece Developer is already hedging claiming Developer "(has) requested, on multiple occasions, the opportunity to make a formal, public presentation to the district, in which virtually all the questions you asked in your letter would be answered." As it turns out virtually separates itself cleanly from real and over time becomes totally ditched from actuality. And in business, when a company makes similar requests a refusal to answer questions is called non-responsive. When you're non-responsive you do not get to the next step.

So if this effort, this TAD, is not worth Developer's time to answer DCSD question then it really is not that important, is it?

Monday, June 13, 2016

Bitch Slappin' Mizz Dunwoody

In a recent encounter with Greedy Developer Mizz Dunwoody got one right across the face. Out of the blue. Bitch slapped.

Greedy Developer arrived on the scene with DeKalb-granted zoning in hand to build his building between the Mall and MARTA. But he wants more. He always wants more. And he is accustomed to getting it. He wants a tax abatement, paying almost no property taxes to the city, the county or schools for what is probably a ten year period. Greedy Developer wants the milk but he ain't gonna pay for the cow.

Perhaps his experience with Mizz DeKalb left him confused and angry when he encountered someone playing hard to get. But Mizz Dunwoody should play hard to get. Not because favouring one Greedy Developer is "unfair" to the other Greedy Developers nor because Mizz Dunwoody should be looking to what is "fair" to our local residents. Well not exactly. As long as there is a real prospect of Dunwoody getting their own school system Mizz Dunwoody should not commit to underfunding them. That is only recommended for Mizz Doraville.

Greedy Developer has his DeKalb-conferred zoning, a zoning that found no support in pre-City Dunwoody. Let him build his building under those rules--Mizz Dunwoody cannot really stop him. Mizz Dunwoody needn't demand impact fees. That would be dancing with the devil. But Mizz Dunwoody has been told by someone who knows that Tax Abatements are a bad idea and are a non-starter.

Many think it a knee-jerk reaction but Mizz Dunwoody should kick Greedy Developer in the balls. Nothing says "No Means No" like staggering around with a couple of cracked stones. 

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Self Identifying

Can "patrons of our judicial system" select housing at a facility serving the "gender they identify with" or will they continue to be forced into housing where the plumbing matches their plumbing?

Monday, June 6, 2016

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Certain Expectations

A recent AJC business blog dropped this nugget:
The developers pulled the Crown Towers proposal under uncertainty over what the council would decide.
Ponder that a bit. Read it again. Let it roll over and over in your head.

Mind. Blown. Right?

The zoning is known. The limits and restrictions are no secret. What the developers want is their rules to prevail and before they detail their rules in full view of the public they want concrete assurances that they will get their way.

What kind of contact and between what individuals could possibly dispel all uncertainty?

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Property Tax Silly Season

Property digests are out and cities, including Dunwoody are posting their Notice Of Property Tax Increase. Why can that be? Well the short answer is because they are required to by law and rest assured were they not required you would never get that memo. Apparently the practice of back-door tax increases had become such a prevalent practice annoying so many voters that the State was compelled to step in mandating these fleeting notices.

What you will see and hear for some time is "We didn't raise the Tax Rate, ignoring the fact that your tax bill did indeed go up. More aggressive and egregious propagandists will simply say "We didn't raise taxes" with the assumption that you believe "tax rate" is implied or that your tax lies unnoticed buried in some escrow account or that you're just plain stupid.

In DaVille it gets better. We don't have a lot of greenfield left to develop, limiting inventory, creating scarcity and inherently driving up property values. That Econ 101 stuff you slept thru really works. You kinda knew that when you bought--you expected your home value to rise and at least be a hedge against inflation. Here's a news flash: the folks running this city know this and they're using it to their advantage. Hence the State disclosure law.

A knock-on effect of this inherent limitation on traditional development (setting aside for the moment high density residential -- apartments -- and high density office) is that the service demand you, as a traditional suburbanite, place on City operations is not increasing. But your tax bill sure as hell will. So think back to the days of Dunwoody Yes! who loudly complained about our tax monies being funneled down south and how at shift change cops headed straight down to Buford Highway. Are you deja vu-ing yet? Fast forward to citihood and our tax increases are being thrown to the growing service demands of Perimeter Center where unrestrained growth is the order of the day.

Even still a fundamental question remains: is tax revenue a direct derivative of needs? Of course not. These backdoor increases are viewed as revenue windfalls and every penny will be spent.  It seems inherent in government budgeting to fund existing programs with year over year increases and add new programs whenever the opportunity arises.  No politician is going to openly justify OPM spending each and every year, no more than they will annually review portions of City operations to determine if they are needed going forward. And no one is going to even suggest zero based budgeting as this was merely a Fool's Tool that was used pre-city to beat up on DeKalb.

In an election cycle that saw the prominent politician who drove us towards citihood demand a more accurate accounting of eSPLOST-V spending maybe it is not so unreasonable to demand a similar accounting from the City regarding this tax increase.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Thursday, May 26, 2016

It Is Called Discrimination

Discrimination is using the brain god gave you to discern the best option or action to take. In and of itself discrimination is not inherently bad. But when used, particularly by governments, to control or even just influence what folks can do or where they can live based on colour, culture, ethnicity or even socio-economic status there is an evil taint.

But that is exactly the kind of discrimination underpinning the "these apartments are good, but those, back then were bad."

To really grok this you must remember Dunwoody's first assault on undesirables hoped to use a Parks Bond Referendum to capitalize our own little Pogrom. This forced expulsion was rationalized as a way to improve our schools and therein lies the big clue. So what about these most-favoured apartments? How can they possibly be better than the ones the City so wanted to bulldoze? How are they even different?

Turns out the problem is not with apartments per se, but with the specific kind of folks that live therein. In both cases they're immigrants. But over by PIB they're hispanic, poor, with more than few suspected to be undocumented. Down Ashford Dunwoody, they're asian, mostly Indian (dot not feather), sporting H1B visas and IT jobs with more than decent salaries. And they speak english--kinda.

More importantly the PCID apartment dwellers are educated and fully intend that their children will not just succeed in school--they will excel. These apartment dwellers are all right by us not least because their children, who primarily attend Austin and Dunwoody Elementary are part of the reason that each of these schools ranked above the much ballyhooed Vanderlyn on the most recent CCPRI rankings. Austin even ranked well against special charter and magnet schools.

In short, it is simple discrimination and socio-economic segregation that determines whether an apartment is good or bad.