What’s the Story on Mediation?

There have been some comments on the Patch about mediation between the city groups which may or may not have occurred; and may or may not have been supported by the different groups. In most cases the comments have been made by people who were not involved.

I thought I’d give my recollection of the events to try to clarify the “he said/she said” aspect of the comments.


The context is that there had been a general expectation that without some agreement among the three city proposals, it would be difficult to get anything through the House. That’s of course not absolutely true, since the House is Republican, and there is a Republican bill out there.

Representative Mary Margaret Oliver sent emails to the leaders of the three groups, with a proposal to select a professional mediator to meet with the three groups. She was hoping to come to a set of proposals that would make the issue clear to the groups; and would result in a legislative proposal that would satisfy most of the desires.

In her email she requested a response by a specific date, including a list of proposed mediators.

The COBI group immediately met and came up with a list, including anyone in the Atlanta Bar Association’s recommended list, or anyone from the Carter Center.  

The Tucker 2014 group responded that they were willing to have mediation, and offered a suggested mediator; but were unwilling to pay for it. Rep. Oliver, who is an experienced attorney and legislator, immediately interpreted that as a “no”. (I’ll take you out to dinner; but only if the restaurant will give the food for free.)

The Lakeside group responded by saying that Rep Oliver had used the wrong email address, and they didn't get the email until after the requested date. They didn't say they wanted mediation, and didn't offer any proposed mediators.

So Rep. Oliver reported that mediation was not going to happen because no one but us said "yes".


Because of inaccurate public comments about the proposal, the COBI group decided to issue a press release.  The release stated that we were willing to negotiate; but the other groups were not. That is an absolutely accurate statement.

After that, supporters of the Tucker 2014 group (although as far as I know, not the group members themselves) have posted comments that their group had agreed to mediation.  But the fact is that they only agreed in a hypothetical sense, and refused the actual process. 

A person can say “I’ll clear the snow off the driveway, but only if you buy a snow blower”.  That’s not an agreement to clear the snow. That’s a “no”.

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Ralph February 18, 2014 at 09:37 PM
My idea for a city would be the city of Northlake with the center as Northlake with a radius of 1.5 miles from the center of the mall.
Tom Doolittle February 18, 2014 at 09:51 PM
Longer--your comment about voting in OTP brings up something that may be huge for post-referendum analysis. Precinct voting within the "referendum city" limits. When the precinct results came in for Brookhaven, they were heavily bifurcated. South of Peachtree demonstrably anti-city--wealthy areas north to I-285 heavy for. It remains a symbol of city discontent. "Precinctizing" was a dirty trick which the referendum campaign infused energy where they new the votes were and ignored the areas where they weren't--less energy was the result.
Rhea A Johnson Jr February 19, 2014 at 07:47 AM
Sorry….. No update from DeKalb Delegation meeting tomorrow…Lee May proposed a 24M County spending increase in revised 2014 County budget yesterday afternoon and a 40M(4 Mill) increase in 2015 budget partly to offset city-hood and annexation concerns. Key budget meetings Thursday 10:00AM and 1:00PM.
Keith Hanks February 20, 2014 at 11:26 AM
2/20/14 statement from COBI: http://www.prlog.org/12285345-briarcliff-statement-on-hb-665-cityhood-map.html
Keith Hanks February 20, 2014 at 02:18 PM
The press release statement is also posted to NDH/Briarcliff Patch.com site for additional viewing / comment. Here's the URL: http://northdruidhills.patch.com/groups/opinion/p/briarcliff-statement-on-hb-665-cityhood-map


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