Should East Cobb Become a City?
The time has come to ask yourself this question. HB-841 is a bill to allow the residents in the proposed City of East Cobb to vote in a referendum to decide whether we should incorporate. Since 2018, a group of concerned East Cobb residents has been exploring this question to provide you with the information and framework needed to determine the best path forward. As part of this exploration, the group has commissioned two feasibility studies with Georgia State, benchmarked thriving new cities in the vicinity, and engaged the community to understand the needs and benefits. The conclusion is that the time has come to vote Yes for East Cobb to become a city.
Representatives living closer to the residents means more responsive, engaged leadership and accountability. East Cobbers currently vote for 2 of 5 of the Cobb County representatives making all the decisions for East Cobb (approx. 1 rep/180K residents). Cityhood would give residents representative government and local control, voting for 100% of the councilors and mayor, who must live within the city (approx. 1 rep/10k residents).
Cityhood will bring representation closer to the community for services that most affect the daily quality of life. Zoning created and approved by East Cobbers preserves suburban neighborhoods. Doing nothing means it is just a matter of time before you see mid-rises popping up through East Cobb’s tree canopy. The service of Local Ordinance addresses short-term rentals, like Airbnb, and treetops/canopy, to name a few. We believe applicable revenue from fees and permits should stay in the neighborhoods to benefit the residents.
What will the redevelopment of East Cobb look like in the future?
Redevelopment is coming to East Cobb one way or another. A locally elected council can and will maximize the benefit to the community with plans to reflect the needs of the people who live here. Redevelopment can happen in East Cobb without increasing density and urbanizing single-family home neighborhoods. A locally elected council of East Cobbers is the most reliable insurance to make sure our interests are best served.
A City of East Cobb will offer our own Public Safety services that can be maximized to meet the needs of our community of interest. East Cobb does not have excessive violent crimes, gang activities, or frequent bomb threats. However, we have a troubling increase in street racing, fatal motor vehicle crashes, and theft. Cityhood means we can introduce community policing to address these types of concerns and issues most prevalent in East Cobb.
Fire services will continue to be delivered to the community with the same fire stations, equipment, and possibly personnel that serve East Cobb with excellence today. East Cobb does not have an Interstate, airport, high-rises, or industrial areas like other parts of Cobb that need a different type of fire protection. We have an aging population; seniors make up over 17% of the population. East Cobb can benefit from an increased focus on EMT services and improving ambulance transport times. A City of East Cobb can redirect resources and explore other efficient models for deploying resources focused on East Cobb’s needs.
Take control of our zoning, local ordinance, parks, and public safety. Cityhood allows East Cobb to serve its residents better as we enter the next chapter of our community.
By: Cindy Cooperman, East Cobb Cityhood Committee, February 24, 2022
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