Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Dunwoody City Council Special Called Meeting & Planning Retreat on Friday at W Hotel

W Atlanta Perimeter
111 Perimeter Center West
Dunwoody, GA 30346
7:00 am to 6:00 pm
Agenda and documents.

FIRST READ: Ordinance to Amend Chapter 28, Taxation, Article III re Hotel Motel Tax
Increase. (Danny Ross)

Resolution Requesting the Georgia General Assembly to Enact Local Legislation to Authorize the City of Dunwoody to Exercise Authority Under the Georgia Redevelopment Powers Law.  (Warren Hutmacher)

Roles, Responsibilities, and Expectations.

City Manager Presentation
1. Accomplishments and Review of 2010 Retreat Results
Listing and Prioritizing of Items Identified by Staff, Mayor and Council.
1. Re-write of the Zoning Code for Dunwoody
2. Accreditation - Police
3. Manpower - Police
4. Parks / Transportation bond discussion
5. Open check register
6. Service metrics of all departments
7. Economic Development strategy
8. Ordinance change to require 2 members of Council to add an Agenda item
9. Contract services discussion
10. Reserved and Unreserved Fund Balance Discussion
11. Discussion regarding the use of consultants
Discussion of Priority Issues and Goal Setting - Part 1.

WORKING LUNCH - 12:00 p.m.

Presentations by Consultants: (12:15 - 3:00 p.m.)
1. Arcadis US - Transportation Master Plan - 45 mins.
2. Lose & Associates - Parks Master Plan - 45 mins.
3. Urban Collage - Dunwoody Village Master Plan / Georgetown Master Plan - 1 hour

Discussion of Priority Issues and Goal Setting - Part 2.M. Summarize Agreements, Wrap Up, and Evaluation.

1. For the Purposes of Legal, Real Estate, and Personnel Discussions.



  1. John,
    Please tell it like it is.

    In the meeting the 1st think to the extort more money out of our hotel guest. THANK YOU DANNY. The next thing on the list is to get the city ready to issues BONDS. Did we vote to do a large project the needs BOND MONEY? Does the people of Dunwoody know that the you are is going to get a loan out in our name?

    Don't you think we should have the need for a BOND before we start selling them? Why not tell the people you and the others are setting the stage for a BOND.

  2. With the flagrantly bad spelling and as incoherent as that last comment was, I gotta feeling GaryRay isn't the only person in Dunwoody sitting around his fire pit at night taking a toke or two.

  3. Seems like just a few days ago, Councilman Ross stood in front of the council to pitch the Hall of Fame to the City and its citizens. He spoke of seeking “support. He repeated several times that he was not seeking and would not be seeking any public funds to move his vision forward.
    I spoke against the city getting involved at that time, before anyone had seen a proposal, but the city voted to support his vision. Though I disagreed, it is our process and you move on.
    I have been off the radar in Dunwoody for a while so was almost knocked over when I read the Crier that Councilman Ross will be seeking to increase the Hotel Motel Tax in an effort to save his fading bid for the Music Hall of Fame.
    I guess I missed the civics class that outlined the definition of city revenue. A tax is a TAX! I don’t care how you spin it. It requires CITY action to raise that TAX and part that new revenue is to go to bankrolling a Hall of Fame that has no track record of success, with a plan that has insufficient financing to date, that has already failed the first test by the Hall of Fame folks. I know visitors pay the tax, but how blatant of a turnaround is this.
    To hear Danny claim that he is not seeking the increase is laughable. Nothing has been done on this venture without Danny’s input or oversight.
    Does anyone outside of the Hall of Fame posse really believe that this plan has anywhere near the chance of success that Danny outlined in his formal proposal? Does anyone really believe that people are going to make a trip to Dunwoody to go to the Hall of Fame that will be inside the MALL for several years? Do we want the first TAX increase in our City to make a bid on a deal seem more attractive?
    Welcome to the world of switch and bait. The Hall got its nose under the tent with the passive city approval earlier and now seeks to do what councilman Ross said he would not do, seek City support and funding but raising a tax.
    This smacks of the same shenanigans that Vernon Jones tried to pull when he was trying to get his first DeKalb Arts Center built. Spend County money on a project that was his pet dream and that everyone but Emperor Jones knew was going to be a money loser. How did that work out?
    Shame on you Danny.

  4. Hey, hey, Aleister, be nice ya knucklehead! I believe my exact words from an earlier comment were the following -

    "...but now that I am an old hippie, I believe I might quite like having a public path through my backyard, where I could invite thirsty trailblazers to join me in a Guinness Stout round my fire pit."

    I really can't conceive of how you got "toke" outta that! Though, lord knows I'm amenable.

  5. The "retreat" is so named to make the 11 hour meeting I must attend while taking a vacation day from my full time paying gig sound a little bit more palatable.

    Dunwoody, it happens from time to time whereby a single council member proposes an item for action whereby I have not been fully vetted on the item prior to hearing about it at the first read. Bob, you may be correct in your assumptions as to the hotel tax increase but let's be willing to hear out the issue since the proposal says nothing about the Music Hall of Fame.

    Regarding the "Bond item" I am told that this item if approved asks Rep. Taylor to drop a bill this session that would enable the City to have a referendum (either in 2011 or 2012) to let the voters decide if the city can utilize certain parts of state law that deal with redevelopment. The key part of the state law is the ability to create tax allocation districts.

    Nothing in this bill either requires us to have a referendum or requires us to create tax allocation districts. However, without the passage of a state bill, neither can occur.

    A tax allocation district (TAD) (e.g. - Atlantic Station, Centennial Park) is created by the City and can be worked on cooperatively with the County and School Board if they consent to their participation. The TAD is set up as a boundary around an economically depressed area or an area that requires redevelopment as a mechanism to pay for infrastructure or land acquisition
    costs either by a city or a private developer.

    The TAD is NOT A TAX INCREASE. A TAD takes in a base amount of property taxes and sends those to the City. Anything above the base amount that is frozen is put into a special account that can only be spent in a limited geographic area on specific costs related to redevelopment.

    I am still learning more on the item and as with most things the devil will be in the details of the future TAD proposal, whatever that may be. Here are a few links on TADS.


    Atlanta Development Authority - TADS

    The meeting agenda for the retreat was modified to split the day into two meetings (a formal meeting and then a work session).

    Revised Voting Meeting

    Revised Work Session (Retreat) Meeting

  6. Ah, I was just 'bout ready to pour me-self a wee dram to ward off the wet winter chill, when I read the deeply perceptive words in the preceding comments written by my councilman "The Honorable John Heneghan".

    So inspiring and sobering were they - they gave me cause to put down the bottle and strive to be as clearheaded and wise as he.

    We are so very lucky to have this good man serving Dunwoody - ain't we?

  7. Thanks for the comment John, but I was responding to the article in the crier and Danny's comments of where the intended tax increase will be spent.
    Buildthe HOF but the city sould not spend 1 penny or tax 1 penny to fund it.

  8. Bob, this evening returned from a business trip and just read the front page of the Crier therefore your comment makes more sense to me now. I actually read the Crier "from cover to cover" last night on line but that article has not been posted.

    I had an e-mail from a resident asking if I was going to stream the retreat meeting and unfortunately the answer is no. City Hall has internet capabilities and the Hotel hasn't been tested. Even if I had internet available, the free service I use to post the meetings couldn't handle the 11 hour affair.

    That being said, the entire meeting (except for exec session) is open to the public and we encourage all to attend.