'The Georgia Gang' panelists weigh in on failure of Buckhead City bill

The top topic on this week's episode of "The Georgia Gang" will be the failure of a bill to create "Buckhead City" in the state Senate.

"We've got to give Mayor [Andre] Dickens a huge amount of credit for this," said panelist Tharon Johnson, who is CEO of Paramount Consulting Group.

Johnson said Mayor Dickens met with lawmakers at the state Capitol ahead of the vote and has focused heavily on public safety in the Buckhead community since taking office.

Martha Zoller pointed out that the senators who represent the impacted area were against the measure.

"In general, when you have a movement like this the legislators that represent the area like Sandy Springs, Brookhaven are in favor of it," Zoller explained.

The panelists agreed the final "nail in the coffin" was a leaked memo from Gov. Brian Kemp's legal counsel that outlined several questions about financial obligations, transfer of public properties and where the children who live in the proposed city would attend school.

"This has never been done before and there's a real good reason it's never been done before and it's because it would impact bond ratings for the entire state, not just the City of Atlanta and any new city," said Melita Easters.

While the Buckhead movement appears to be dead for this session, Phil Kent said it will likely be back in 2024.

"I think next year will be the time for the proponents to come back again, do a PR campaign and answer some of these serious questions that deserve answers," said Kent. 

"The Georgia Gang" airs Sundays at 8:30 a.m. on FOX 5 Atlanta.