Free-For-All Friday 4/11/14

Feel free to use this post to make comments and ask questions about local issues not discussed here over the past week.

Comments close on Monday

114 thoughts on “Free-For-All Friday 4/11/14”


  1. Uh oh, that dastardly Republican rascal of a Governor wants to permit medical marijuana through executive order! I imagine you all will give him some love this morning, right?

    1. I’m very glad he’s finally putting effort towards this issue- though it would have been better if he could have shown some leadership on this during the legislative session, as maybe we could then have a law instead of an executive order.

      1. Yeah, I’m not a fan or this executive order business myself. Not sure his leadership would have made much of a difference in the legislature though…

        1. It’s an election year and Deal’s trying to divert attention away from the ethics scandal again. It’s funny, despite criticizing Alabama while living there, at least their state legislature unanimously approved cannabinoid oil use via a UAB study this year. To me, their government seems more progressive than Georgia’s lately.

          I bet full legalization will occur once Big Pharma has trademarked different strains and can control the market.

          Politics aside, why only children? My wife suffers from epileptic seizures; first hand, I can tell you the medicine doesn’t always work, that she’d really prefer using something natural, and that yesterday was rough.

          1. “Politics aside, why only children?”

            Sadly, the politics can’t be set aside. Sick children make for better politics than sick adults.

            And while we’re giving Deal some credit, let’s not let certain others off the hook for blame. Though their influence may thankfully be waning, the Georgia Christian Coalition is opposed to this measure in any form and undoubtedly played a key role in keeping this bill from getting through the legislature. Cause, you know, as Jesus said, “Let the children suffer.”

            1. Yeah, they are a special group. They are probably just scared god will flood us out again….

    2. Funny how we feel the need to applaud the GOP for making a decent, obvious decision every once in a while. Let me know when the Gov decides to expand Medicaid. Evil is not too strong a word to describe his character when it comes to that issue.

        1. I disagree–I think “evil” is just about a perfect term for those who would deny the most vulnerable among us a chance at proper healthcare, just so they can say that they were able to keep those moochers from getting more “free stuff”.

          1. I think “evil” is just about a perfect term for those who would advocate the confiscation of hard earned income. See, this kind of talk does no good, as we can just call everything we don’t agree with as “evil.”

            Furthermore, it’s not black and white. Just because one doesn’t agree with YOUR way of providing health care, does not mean they don’t want people to have it.

              1. Here’s what will eventually happen: Democrats will retake the House in Clinton-led 2016 elections and the ACA will simply be modified to include low-income people in states that didn’t expand Medicaid.
                I’m not a fan of the ACA, but in one form or another it’s here to stay, and under the present conditions it’s just stupid for Georgia not to expand Medicaid.

                1. What I’m confused about is why not accept the federal funds for Medicaid expansion? For the first 3 years, it’s totally federally funded, right? That’s federal funds into which all Georgia taxpayers paid so why shouldn’t Georgia get its fair share? After that, it’s 90% federally funded and the State of Georgia is free to opt out then. It seems to make business sense to do the Medicaid expansion for at least the next 3 years.

            1. I see I’m not being clear. I don’t think those with whom I merely disagree are evil–I think the Governor’s decision to reject the Medicaid expansion is evil. I think it’s evil because it’s based on sheer greed and a false premise. That false premise is that doing so is taking your hard-earned money away from you & “giving it away” to “the takers” (a right-wing populist euphemism for the least fortunate and the most vulnerable amonst us). This false premise is espoused by the very people who think nothing of taking your hard-earned money & giving it to billionaires & corporations in the form of huge tax breaks (and getting very little return in the way of job creation for it, which is ostensibly why they’re getting those breaks in the first place); but you & others who share your philosophy don’t seem to mind that overmuch. I don’t know if you’re an evil person, Walrus, because I don’t know you–but I think allowing the poor and the vulnerable in our society to go hungry or to go without medical care is evil, period. I’m not taking your bait, because I’m not out to persuade your or change your mind–I’m just clarifying where I stand.

            2. The problem is that this is all words to you. You’d probably (at least I hope you would) have a different opinion if you had to deny health care to someone who needed it. Could you really look someone in the eye and turn them away if they needed medical attention?

  2. Does anyone know a good roofing company/contractor? We’re buying our first home, and the first order of business is throwing a new roof on top. Thanks!

    1. We used Findlay Roofing (770) 516-5806, last year for a new roof and gutters and were happy with the overall experience, quality, and price.

    2. I used Chad Peck with Intown Roofers on two homes. He was great! 404-373-8817 and bonus is that he lives in Oakhurst.

    3. Echols Roofing did a great job on installing my new roof 7 years ago. Have never had a problem and have found them very professional. Everybody who sees my roof loves my roof.

      1. +1. We used Echols 14 years ago on a previous house. Punctual, cleaned up their mess, competitive price. I was initially taken aback when the appraiser came out and appeared to be an 18yo kid, but he knew his stuff (family business). Of course, he’s a lot older now 🙂

  3. I’ll throw some love Deal’s way, but even more love for Republicans Mike Jacobs and Brandon Beach for their legislative support of MARTA, which is a refreshing change (and with all due respect for those who might benefit from medical marijuana, a more far-reaching-if modest-change in policy.)

  4. I need to repair or replace by basement Sewage Ejector Pump, any advice would be greatly appropriated. These pumps do not last long before they break again and again. This time I elected to do the job myself, to try to figure out if it’s the quality of the pump or the plumber taking advantage of the situation. Thank you in advance and I hope you have a great weekend.

    1. My experience has been it’s the quality of the pump. I had mine replaced once with one I got at Home Depot and it only lasted a couple of years. Then I had M. Cary and Daughters replace it with a much higher quality one (I think it’s a Zoeller) and it has lasted for years.

  5. Here’s my take on the revised tree ordinance-
    If you were just worried about being able to remove a tree that you thought was unsafe without hiring and/or arguing with an arborist, or wanted to remove a few trees to be able to garden, the revisions enable that.
    However, if you had concerns regarding the equity of the application of the tree ordinance, the revisions actually make equity issues WORSE. The concept of “No Net Loss” for residential property will be much more burdensome for many lots than the originally proposed ordinance. If you have 80% canopy coverage to start out with before your renovation, then at a minimum residents will have to preserve 40% of the canopy- and if that is the case, then also pay into the tree bank the equivalent of 40% canopy coverage to hit no net loss of 80% of canopy coverage. For lots with large canopy coverage, this is near twice the burden of the initial tree ordinance proposal! Commercial properties get no let loss applied to any canopy up to 45%, but not beyond– why can’t we have the same standard for residential properties? Residents who have high canopy lots and want to do some renovations will be doing almost all the paying for the preservation of what the ordinance identifies as a community resource. What about tree preservation contributions from the rest of the residents?

    Also, the application of No Net Loss for residential is different than I heard some of the Commissioners discussing during the work session, which I attended. I got the impression that some Commissioners thought the net loss benchmark was the community canopy mark, not the individual lot canopy measurement. I would like clarification from each Commissioner that they are on board with no net loss of per actual lot canopy coverage…

    1. You make excellent points. Just because they’re proposing to slap us with an open hand instead of a chain-mail glove doesn’t mean we won’t get hit.

    2. macarolina, please also copy your comment over onto the tree ordinance thread so that it gets preserved in the archives.

  6. Not wanting to step into the whole tree ordinance hullabaloo, but we are looking for a good arborist to do a walk around of our property and assess the health of our trees. Pretty sure what needs to come down has already come down, but there are some smaller things we might like to transplant (if possible) and some we’re not sure if they’re healthy or not.

    1. Is there someone from the City who can come out and inspect trees? We had an arborist out yesterday and I’m unsure if the profit motive influences their judgment on how much longer a big tall tree will safely stay up. I wonder who is most likely to be objective here.

      1. That’s what I liked about Art. We were worried about a tree, and he explained to us that it was indeed healthy, safe, and would probably be too expensive to take down to justify what little risk was there.

    2. In my pre-condo days, I used Pete Jenkins, aka Treeman. Local to intown Dekalb, gives honest assessments. I’d say he has a “pro-tree” bias – if it can be saved or kept, even with a chance, he’ll tell you.

      treeinspection DOT com

    1. Saw that too and immediately wondered if the Oakhurst location was on the chopping block. Cannot locate the list anywhere, though.

      1. If it does close, then that strip will be empty again since Eastside Church just moved to East Atlanta.

        1. If that’s the case, we should hope our location is among those on the chopping block. Once empty, we could organize a neighborhood army to sneak by in the middle of the night and painstakingly disassemble the building, stacking all the pieces neatly in the parking lot. With no building to hawk, the owner might finally have sufficient incentive to redevelop in a way that solves some of the problems ’round here. Affordable apartments over small, fee-simple office and retail spaces would be a nice start.

    2. Aren’t they just building a brand new one on the old Checker’s site at Memorial and Maynard Terrace?

  7. Looking to donate a used Graco travel system to a local charitable organization, one that gives the car seat/stroller to a person in need, not one that sells. Suggestions please.

    1. I don’t know if they will accept a used car seat / travel system but you can try http://rrisa.org/
      Refugee Resettlement and Immigration Services of Atlanta. They accept all kinds of donations to help set up apartments for refugees who arrive here with nothing.

      1. Thank you Helen – got a call back this morning and I’m on my way to the Northlake Mall area to make the stroller donation.

    2. You could also contact DeKalb Co. DFCS (Dept of Family & Children Services). Ask for their volunteer coordinator.

  8. Looking for some part time daycare/half day summer camp recommendations for a soon-to-be-kindergartner. We are relocating back to Decatur in early June and I’m not sure we would have any full-time daycare options available for a few months so the ideal would be to find a 1/2 day play environment with a nanny in the afternoon. Any thoughts (or opinions) on this idea are welcome!

      1. They also take take florescent tubes for a dollar or so fee. They’re the only place I know of that does that.

        1. Has Home Depot stopped accepting fluorescent bulbs? I dropped off the last ‘dead’ tubes I had there, for free, in the last 6 months or so. The store on L’ville Hwy had a bin near the entrance for recycling bulbs.

  9. I am wondering if anyone knows of a talented seamstress who can make roman blinds in the greater Atlanta/Decatur area?? We redid our kitchen window treatments with Home Depot last year and found them to be over-priced, lacking selection, and that the quality was just “eh” for what we paid. Any help/suggestions would be greatly appreciated! We’d love to benefit someone local.

    1. I would inquire over at Hancock Fabrics in Suburban Plaza. I’ll bet they can refer you to someone.

      If you don’t find a local source, consider ordering from blinds.com. I bought custom Bali shades from them last fall for hardly more than half what they would have cost through HD or Lowe’s. Good quality, perfect fit (they held my hand through all measuring), easy install. Pretty sure they sell Roman shades.

  10. Anyone here with the library system? Do they accept vcr movies or is that just too old technology? I hate throwing them away.

    1. Call the Clarkston branch of DCPL to see if they are still interested in putting them on their sale table. (A lot of refugee households still only have VCRs, so they buy the tapes for under a dollar and use them to help learn English.)

  11. Wow…. just went to YDFM. I haven’t been paying attention to the discussion. It seems like such a brash and complete clear-cutting. I felt the bright, hot sun in that parking lot like never before.

      1. Such an idiotic reply. Did the little old ladies of GGD personally wield the chainsaws? I think not. How about blaming YDFM and the cretins of DeKalb Planning?

        1. Leave DeKalb Planning out of it. Until Robert Blazer files a set of plans for permitting, there’s not a damn thing the County can do to stop his @^#%@**#@. Apparently, the archaic rules on the books will allow a commercial property owner to do whatever the hell they feel like doing when “prepping”– never mind the long term negative consequences. The County (and GDOT and ARC) are just as sick over what’s going on as the rest of us are.

          Next comes scraping the land level and hauling out tons of dirt.

          1. Can you clarify this, Diane? Typically (though not always), when development rules are failing to deliver what’s desired, it’s a champion within the planning department who recognizes the problem and then does the necessary internal advocacy to push for change. Yes, it ultimately becomes a political process in the hands of elected officials but, except in the most progressive municipalities, it typically doesn’t start there.

            Is DeKalb Planning currently pushing to overhaul these rules that are making legal things like Blazer’s “pre-development” clear cutting (I honestly don’t know)? If not, why do you think they should get a pass?

            1. (BTW, still going by Deanne.)

              Just as we wouldn’t stand for anyone calling our City’s planning folks cretins for some of the fails that have happened due to out-of-date ordinances, it’s not cool to do it to the County planning folks. I don’t know if it’s been tackled in their ordinance overhaul (I did a quick check to try to match existing to proposed, but didn’t come up with anything). I’ve emailed someone to ask the question. I’ll let you know if I hear back.

              You could also try asking the GGD leader who’s weighing in. She did show up at the last BOC meeting to stand up in protest with GGD. (Not sure how much value she’s brought to the zoning overhaul process otherwise.).

              1. Even though I’ve rechristened you Diane? I thought you’d embrace it, like a new summer wardrobe! 😉

                No disagreement on calling public servants “cretins.” It just seemed as though you were suggesting they were powerless and distraught, which seemed odd, given they’re the ones entrusted to best understand what’s happening on the ground, what would be better for the community, and what needs to be done to effect change in that direction.

                So my real question, of which you seem to be chasing after an answer, is whether there’s efforts in the works to stop or limit such rampant clear cutting and why they weren’t in place in time for Blazer’s expansion. And I understand that sometimes the answer to why something’s not happening is that it’s just politics. In fact, that’s the usual answer.

      2. You need a new line, this one is beyond worn out; but, I would love to know why you think GGD is responsible for ensuring the appropriateness of every large-scale development.

        1. Because they announced at the beginning that was their cause – to try to promote smart growth in DeKalb, but you have to look behind their real face. GGD should have been named “No Growth WalMart”.
          They never said anything about the proposed gas station across from the QT, very little about the Scott Blvd development and were totally silent when Blazer announced his major YDFM project. Unlike the YDFM project, WM did not involve clear-cutting and land stripping. Which is smarter and more environmentally friendly?
          Their real cause was to try to stop WM, which I and many others said from the beginning was going to fail and in the end it will.
          I just enjoy digging on their hypocrisy whenever I can.

          1. “They never said anything about the proposed gas station across from the QT,”

            Missed this somehow. Do you mean the QT across from the horse park? Is it still in the works?

            1. That’s simply not true. It was a Racetrak and GGD was involved; helping to get the project killed. In addition, GGD has been working with the county and a large coalition of resident organizations from north and south DeKalb to redo the zoning code to prevent companies like YDFM from being able to do what they did ever again; working on the Medline redevelopment planning; serving on community councils and other county-wide service groups; working with PEDS, Emory U, Atlanta Bike Coalition and others on N Decatur Road safety improvements; working with Fuqua on the Scott Blvd Baptist Church redevelopment and much more. Stop depending on one or two loud people on this blog to paint a picture for you. If you were involved in working with the county on rewriting the zoning codes, which is the best chance the county has to encourage good development, or any of the other things going on in the county, you would know what you’re saying is incorrect.

              1. If you’re going to weigh in, being that you’re a GGD leader, you need to identify yourself. If not, I will do it for you. And while you’re deciding about that, please also realize that you need to be able to prove up what you say. Merely asserting that GGD adds value to situations doesn’t make it so.

                  1. AMB, I’ve always been quick to stand up for folks’ right to use an alias for weighing in online. However, there’s also an understood code in real life and on blogs that you don’t set out to deceive folks about what your role is when you are actively involved (or have been) on what’s being discussed. It’s Ethics 101. On here, most of us who use our real first or full name usually add a mention of our role or connection to what’s being discussed when it would be misleading not to do it. While there’s been a few times that we’ve had commenters (regulars, even) think it’s alright to weigh in without revealing his or her ties to a project or effort, it should go without saying that that kind of personal dishonesty is contrary to the community focus of this particular blog.

                    1. AMB, true dat. Usually we rely on community policing on to keep folks in check, but of course it ultimately falls to DM to decide just what this blog’s all about.

                      For the record, it’s worth noting that Grrrr has switched her identity 2-3 times (including once when she slipped up and confused her accounts, and posted on this one using her real name). Also, when she used to be comfortable with what she was adding to a discussion, she posted on here as herself.

                  2. My preference would be for DM to arbitrate behind the scenes, maybe even shut down a thread if necessary, rather than us starting to out one another. I really don’t want to know if one of my favorite posters is really a local elected official that I hate or that one of the posters that I detest is really my favorite neighbor. I think that once outing started, it would get out of hand quickly.

                1. This has to be one of the worst posts I’ve ever read by you. Feel free to contradict the assertion GGD adds value, but I’m not a fan of your threat of outing someone.

                  1. Oh no. There’s been worse. Of course you may have forgotten about it because I fully owned that I was wrong and sincerely apologized for what I said. (And uh.. rating my comments?…weird.)

                  1. How do you intend to handle it then? You’re saying you’re cool with when folks have a direct role in something, yet post as if they don’t??

  12. “why you think GGD is responsible for ensuring the appropriateness of every large-scale development.”

    Every? How about just one that doesn’t involve Walmart?

    1. Do not hold your breath. GGD can’t even plan a yard sale and their monthly meeting in the same time frame.

      1. What is the point of the nastiness? It gets really old to see FFAF randomly get hijacked by back and forth insults about GGD.

        1. Direct from their website:

          UPDATE: NO MEETING IN APRIL!
          Our April meeting has been canceled so we can focus on the yard sale.

    2. Seems like you’re not doing your homework. Maybe you could call the county — or attend the county’s zoning meetings — before you make these statements. What it shows is that YOU are not involved with development issues, relying on others to do the work while you spout off on a blog.

    1. Give Master Piano a call. I think a woman named Joanne will answer and I also believe it’s her husband who will come tune the piano but I’m spacing out on his name right now. They moved our piano when we changed homes and he comes once a year to tune the piano. Very nice guy, but be prepared for some stories cuz he has some and likes to tell them. Good thing I like to hear them!! 770-939-8093.

  13. Can anyone recommend a good stone/tile person or company? We need to have the tile in our master bath/shower redone. Thank you for any suggestions.

  14. Gwaaaahhhh! La Perla is no more. Space now occupied by Mama’s Cocina Latina. Not just a name change, all new ownership and all new menu. No more veggie taco and they were out of barbacoa mid-aft today. Not hugely impressed w/ carnitas or bean & cheese tacos. Above average but not up to La Perla standards. May give them another try when I have time to go inside.

    Anybody know what became of the La Perla folks? That was the best taco in town IMO.

  15. Anyone know how much longer the green pollen powder coating goes on? My car looks like it’s been in a Shake ‘N Bake bag. Only with green flour. Ditto for house siding, patio, wrought iron furniture. Don’t want to bother to rinse everything off until the green season is done. I loved the heavy rains last week because everything was rinsed thoroughly, but within a day, the car looked like green slime again.

    1. I think we’ve still got a few more weeks — many oaks (and other trees I’m sure) haven’t even started yet.

    2. The evil greenish yellow pollen is specifically pine sperm. It’s usually all released within a week or two. Other stuff, which is too small to see but actually causes allergic reactions (pine is too big) will be with us longer.

    3. You can check the daily pollen count, along with what is contributing, at atlanta allergy dot com.

  16. if we lose the right to remain anonymous, i’m outta here.
    what kind of idiot wants to put his/her real name next to the expression of their opinions?

    1. Don’t want to be an American idiot.
      One nation controlled by the media.
      Information age of hysteria.
      It’s calling out to idiot America.

      “American Idiot”

      -Green Day

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