Metro Atlanta needs tools to rethink itself

Unemployment in metro Atlanta fell by almost a full point between February 2011 and February 2012, declining from 9.9 to 9 percent. In more human terms, more than 60,000 of our friends, neighbors and relatives are now back to work.

That’s a welcome sign of progress, as was Thursday’s announcement of 1,500 jobs coming to a new medical-products plant to be built near Social Circle. After a difficult lag, metro Atlanta finally appears to be benefiting from the nation’s slow, awkward recovery, even if we still have a long way to go.

In fact, Atlanta has a lot farther to travel than many metro regions that we might think of as competitors. Almost every region got hit hard by the recession; as an economy highly dependent on home construction, Atlanta got hit worse than most. But if you look closely, this region’s economy had begun to stumble and falter long before the recession hit. The housing bubble merely made those problems harder to recognize.

Through the ’90s, for example, per capita income in metro Atlanta was increasing fast, more quickly than in most other metro areas. That was a sign of a vibrant regional economy attracting and creating wealth.

But around the turn of the century, that increase simply stopped. While per capita income continued to grow elsewhere, it simply flat-lined in metro Atlanta, and when the recession hit that number collapsed. In fact, when you look at what per capita income has done in the last 20 years, the performance of the 28-county metro Atlanta area closely mirrors that of metro Detroit.

The Brookings Institution, a Washington-based think tank, recently released its assessment of the economic performance of the top 200 metro areas in the world from 2010 to 2011. Metro Atlanta ranked 189th of 200, behind New Orleans, Memphis, Birmingham and other U.S. cities, and well behind Detroit. We even ranked one notch below Cairo, Egypt.

Those numbers suggest that merely riding the crest of a slowly improving national economy will not be enough for metro Atlanta. They also demonstrate the foolishness of trying to recreate the prosperity of a past that wasn’t as prosperous as we thought.

That prosperity had been driven by Atlanta’s success in reproducing the auto-centric, sprawling, decentralized development pattern that had characterized American cities for the prior half century. And while those auto-dependent suburbs will continue to be a great place to live and raise families for many, economic indicators, growth markers, investment patterns and social trends all tell us that’s not how future growth will occur.

A new survey by the National Association of Realtors, for example, found that “nearly six in ten adults would prefer to live in a neighborhood with a mix of houses and stores and other businesses within an easy walk” than in a more auto-dependent suburb. Even more telling, young people are not as enthralled with the automobile as their parents and grandparents had been. In 1983, 69 percent of American 17-year-olds had a driver’s license. By 2008, that had dropped to 50 percent, and I bet it has fallen still further since then.

The country is changing. The market is changing. And while a number of business and civic leaders in the metro Atlanta region understand that reality, I don’t believe that our political leaders at the state level, particularly at the Legislature, fully grasp the necessity of reinventing ourselves and reinvesting in ourselves, and of giving us the transit, planning and governance tools to make those changes.

– Jay Bookman

atlanta

detroit

Source: Brookings Institution

349 comments Add your comment

Normal, Plain and Simple

April 23rd, 2012
7:04 am

Maybe we should just have a re-enactment of Sherman burning down Atlanta and start all over… :)

Rightwing Troll

April 23rd, 2012
7:04 am

Of course they don’t, they’re republicans, by definition that means they’re stuck on stupid and dedicated to moving backwards.

James Thomas

April 23rd, 2012
7:17 am

Troll must not realize the City of Atlanta; which the article is about; is run by democrats.

Jay

April 23rd, 2012
7:31 am

James must not realize the article is about the 28-county metro Atlanta area.

ByteMe - Political thug for sale

April 23rd, 2012
7:33 am

And while a number of business and civic leaders in the metro Atlanta region understand that reality, I don’t believe that our political leaders at the state level, particularly at the Legislature, fully grasp the necessity of reinventing ourselves and reinvesting in ourselves, and of giving us the transit, planning and governance tools to make those changes.

It’s hard for farmers from Albany to give a crap about a big city like Atlanta. Until we get over this top-down plantation mentality that’s enforced in our state constitution, whereby all tax and major infrastructure decisions are left to the state to implement, we — as a metro region — are screwed.

stands for decibels

April 23rd, 2012
7:34 am

I don’t believe that our political leaders at the state level, particularly at the Legislature, fully grasp the necessity of reinventing ourselves and reinvesting in ourselves, and of giving us the transit, planning and governance tools to make those changes.

Nor do I.

stands for decibels

April 23rd, 2012
7:37 am

the City of Atlanta; which the article is about

snort. Love me some crash-and-burning for breakfast.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

April 23rd, 2012
7:44 am

“tools to rethink”….. I thought you said “fools to rethink” which makes sense with this state legislature. :D

arnold

April 23rd, 2012
7:44 am

Conservatives have a difficult time accepting change. Until we have a more balanced government there will be no meaningful change. This country is changing in more ways than many of us can understand and we need to accept and take advantage of that change.

Dogteam18

April 23rd, 2012
7:44 am

The author says “metro Atlanta” at least 8 times, even in the title of the article. There is a difference between “City of Atlanta” and “metro Atlanta”.

Fly-on-the-Wall

April 23rd, 2012
7:49 am

Nothing will change until the attitude of ‘me in my castle’ changes and we can truly come together as a region

Joel Edge

April 23rd, 2012
7:50 am

“nearly six in ten adults would prefer to live in a neighborhood with a mix of houses and stores and other businesses within an easy walk”
Wonder where they took that survey.

ByteMe - Political thug for sale

April 23rd, 2012
7:50 am

Over/Under on “but… but… but… Obama!” is 25 for this thread. Place your bets!

Mary Elizabeth

April 23rd, 2012
7:52 am

“But around the turn of the century, that increase simply stopped. . . .I don’t believe that our political leaders at the state level, particularly at the Legislature, fully grasp the necessity of reinventing ourselves and reinvesting in ourselves. . .”
=========================================================

Very well said. It is past time for Georgia’s Legislature to stop following ALEC’s ideological agenda of “starving the beast of government” and to start thinking for themselves and for all Georgians. Our legislative leaders need a larger, and more progressive, vision for Georgia. That was how Atlanta, and thus Georgia, became the “Capital of the South” to begin with.

Legislators, “keep your eye on the prize” – and I don’t mean for yourselves, personally, but for the future growth of this state and its capital.

Gale

April 23rd, 2012
7:55 am

I would say the problem does go back to our grandparents. As a child of the 50s, I could ride my bike to school, but most activities were too far away for anything but car transport. Buses did not serve “lower suburbia” well. A six block walk would get me to a bus, which could take me downtown, With the cost of owning a car, it does not surprise me that many teens do not drive.

Georgia =Republican Controlled State

April 23rd, 2012
7:56 am

As long as this state is ruled by “one” Republican party, we will continue to grow at a slow pace. Most said that they wanted to send a message in 2010 and our politicians have not delivered on their promises of JOBS!! After all, everything starts at the top (State Legislature) and rolls down hill to the (Local Governments).

ByteMe - Political thug for sale

April 23rd, 2012
7:58 am

A six block walk would get me to a bus, which could take me downtown

That was what I could do as well. Or bike it, but that was about 10 miles across many busy streets. But starting when I was 15, I was allowed to take the bus wherever I needed to go, including a job that was two bus rides away. Now such a scenario would be considered inconceivable by some parents and a reason to buy their “baby” a car.

Of course, I now live in a part of Fulton not served by any bus service… not even to bring in The Help.

ty webb

April 23rd, 2012
7:59 am

“Metro Atlanta needs tools…”

looks like they’ll get one at least…Cynthia Mckinney plans to run for her old seat.

ByteMe - Political thug for sale

April 23rd, 2012
8:01 am

Cynthia Mckinney plans to run for her old seat.

Saw that. Can’t imagine how she thinks she’ll beat Hank without her late Dad’s political infrastructure.

stands for decibels

April 23rd, 2012
8:02 am

A new survey by the National Association of Realtors, for example, found that “nearly six in ten adults would prefer to live in a neighborhood with a mix of houses and stores and other businesses within an easy walk” than in a more auto-dependent suburb.

Jay, a link to this survey would be helpful–I couldn’t find it at the realtor.org website.

Georgia on my mind..

April 23rd, 2012
8:02 am

barking frog

April 23rd, 2012
8:03 am

Georgia is controlled by
the people chosen by the
people of Georgia who
voted.

JohnnyReb

April 23rd, 2012
8:05 am

The Moonbats read like a bunch of damn yankees this morning.

For those who might not understand, a yankee enjoys our warm weather, freienly people, hospitality and then returns North. A damn yankee arrives; never goes back home, and bitches about everything.

Joel Edge

April 23rd, 2012
8:07 am

ty webb@7:59
Love it.

Normal, Plain and Simple

April 23rd, 2012
8:09 am

JohnnyReb

April 23rd, 2012
8:05 am

Johnny,
Had a bumper sticker a while back that said “Yankee, welcome to the South…now go home!”

Mary Elizabeth

April 23rd, 2012
8:09 am

“A damn yankee arrives; never goes back home, and bitches about everything.”
—————————————————————————

Time to stop fighting the Civil War. Time to start focusing on the future.

JKL2

April 23rd, 2012
8:11 am

I think we should all go camp out/destroy Woodruff Park. I’ve heard that does wonders for the economy…

Test

April 23rd, 2012
8:12 am

“The Moonbats read like a bunch of damn yankees this morning”

From the party of “personal responsibililty”: blame someone else

jconservative

April 23rd, 2012
8:15 am

Why don’t we cut taxes, that fixes everything.

JohnnyReb

April 23rd, 2012
8:19 am

Some here need to face the reality you live within a State where the majority do not share your opinions. Their and your vision of the future are quite different.

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 23rd, 2012
8:20 am

Heaven forbid we admit that as citizens of Georgia this is our own damn fault.

Shame on all of us.

Soothsayer

April 23rd, 2012
8:20 am

Jay, if we just built enough Wal-Marts, McDonalds, Wendys, & Burger Kings everyone could have a job. Oh, I almost forgot, car washes, too!

Wes

April 23rd, 2012
8:22 am

Jay,

Aren’t the income gains in the rest of the country driven by the gains of the upper echelon of earners? I thought we were supposed to be against that kind of thing.

Soothsayer

April 23rd, 2012
8:24 am

rightwing troll

April 23rd, 2012
8:27 am

Last paragraph of article:
“The country is changing. The market is changing. And while a number of business and civic leaders in the metro Atlanta region understand that reality, I don’t believe that our political leaders at the state level, particularly at the Legislature, fully grasp the necessity of reinventing ourselves and reinvesting in ourselves, and of giving us the transit, planning and governance tools to make those changes.”

Troll replies:
“Of course they don’t, they’re republicans, by definition that means they’re stuck on stupid and dedicated to moving backwards.”

To which James replies:
“Troll must not realize the City of Atlanta; which the article is about; is run by democrats.”

Thanks to James for proving my point.

Doggone/GA

April 23rd, 2012
8:27 am

“Aren’t the income gains in the rest of the country driven by the gains of the upper echelon of earners”

Actually…it’s the other way around.

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 23rd, 2012
8:27 am

“Aren’t the income gains in the rest of the country driven by the gains of the upper echelon of earners?”

Ah, Nope.

trickle trickle trickle

stands for decibels

April 23rd, 2012
8:30 am

While at the realtors.org site, I came across this–they’re planning a rally in DC next month.

http://www.realtoractioncenter.com/realtor-rally/policy.html

Far as I can tell, they want to make sure that the same measures that have inflated the real estate bubble—unlimited mortgage interest deductability, breaks for capital gain income, etc.—remain firmly in place.

(not sure how/if this ties in to the surveying they’ve done about walkable neighborhoods–maybe it doesn’t–just found it interesting.)

Jay

April 23rd, 2012
8:30 am

This notion that modern ideas are “Yankee” ideas and thus ought to be rejected just by virtue of their origins — that’s a truly self-destructive approach, and reflects a degree of self-loathing as well. Git over it, boys.

Doggone/GA

April 23rd, 2012
8:33 am

“ought to be rejected just by virtue of their origins — that’s a truly self-destructive approach, and reflects a degree of self-loathing as well”

Sounds like the definition of the “modern American conservative”

Wes

April 23rd, 2012
8:33 am

Granny and Doggone,

I wasn’t suggesting trickle down. I was suggesting that the top quintile is increasing the average while the other groups are essentially staying flat.

godless heathen©

April 23rd, 2012
8:34 am

The kids don’t want to drive cars these days because it is difficult (and illegal) to text and drive and that activity seems to occupy 95% of their awake minutes.

Mary Elizabeth

April 23rd, 2012
8:35 am

Even Georgians are starting to move into the 21st Century in their thinking, with 46% of them voting in 2008 for Obama’s vision of the future. Nothing remains the same, even in Georgia. My father used to say, “We will progress or we will regress, but we will not stay the same.” And, he was a “Southern gentleman,” who was also forward thinking. It’s possible. Give it a try! :-)

ragnar danneskjold

April 23rd, 2012
8:35 am

Without more information on the realtors’s survey, I cannot offer an informed argument – their surveys usually call for taxpayer subsidy of real estate development. Knowing that Brookings normally slants left, I assume their research suggests replicating rust belt policies would best serve all.

Government usually does best when it does least – create a business-friendly environment, without subsidies, and step out of the way. Like Texas or Florida or Tennessee. Even Wisconsin is becoming a proof of the benefits of a business-friendly environment. So long as we do not follow the direction of basket-cases like California or Illinois…..

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 23rd, 2012
8:38 am

Wes

Aren’t the income gains in the rest of the country driven by the gains of the upper echelon of earners?”

OR

I was suggesting that the top quintile is increasing the average while the other groups are essentially staying flat.

Not quite the same statement.

Matti

April 23rd, 2012
8:39 am

JohnnyReb @ 8:19,

The problem is not their “vision,” but the lack of it. BTW, agree with you on the dadgum yankees. So many came down here from their economic northern wastelands, to discover in wide-eyed amazement how much house a little money could buy. They dove into their techie jobs, bought homes overlooking a hastily-constructed golf courses, and started living the good life they only dreamed about up North. Then one morning, they decided they’d gotten all that on their own accord, with no help from anybody, (never mind the cheap labor and land) and turned their noses up at those who were still struggling. Just a matter of time until the old Dixiecrat-turned-Republican-plutocrat-wannabe mentality replaced the hard-working-union-man values they grew up with, and they arrived on a board like this questioning our morals and good sense.

Mostly I just ignore them now.

ty webb

April 23rd, 2012
8:40 am

Kids want to drive, it’s just that being required to get a license “disenfranchises” them from doing so.

stands for decibels

April 23rd, 2012
8:40 am

Wes and others, just FYI, to quote from the report:

Income: per capita GDP for an economy. It is not personal income or household income, and does not reflect the distribution of income distribution, but proxies the average standard of living in an area.

Y’all can drill down some more here if you want to:

http://www.brookings.edu/~/media/Files/rc/reports/2012/0118_global_metro_monitor/0118_global_metro_monitor.pdf

(ir)Rational

April 23rd, 2012
8:41 am

And there lies the problem. We have people, that “know” better than us, telling us what we should think. We’re not allowed to dislike a proposal simply because of its origins, even if we know the root of those origins, simply because that must mean we are self-destructive. Did you ever consider the reasons behind why those attitudes come about?

To Jay’s point, Yankees typically treat the South as if it were the bastard child of the nation. Not for any legitimate reason anymore, but for past perceptions. Because many of us, especially those that were raised in the country, have thick accents, we’re portrayed as ignorant, stupid, slow, not capable and any other number of things. For some of us, we’re able to spin that to our advantage and gain advantages in careers and life that they we’re not thought to be capable of because we’re too “stupid.” Where is the rational basis for this thought? You can say it doesn’t exist, but it is easy to find these attitudes if you just look. This attitude is also easily found in the Upper Mid-West, but I chalk that up to bitterness that a lot of their jobs are moving south.

To Doggone’s point. Yeah, you could say that, but you could also say the same about “modern American liberalism.” But would you want to consider the reasons behind that? Maybe that people have had the opportunity to look at what one side or the other is offering, and don’t see them proposing things that would be considered to be in my best interest? If 99 out of 100 things you propose go directly against my values and what I see as my best interest, why should I accept that you’ve suddenly had a change of heart for that 1? Something to consider. Also, I’m not limiting it to one side or the other, I’m saying it for both sides.

kayaker 71

April 23rd, 2012
8:41 am

The last Republican mayor, and the only one, as far as I can find out, served Atlanta in 1877. Since that time, the city has been run by Democrats, including Bill Campbell, who served 30mos for tax evasion. Perhaps we could get McKinney to junk her plans for the 4th District and run for mayor of Atlanta. We can’t afford to lose someone like Hank Johnson and Cynthia is known for her level head, her leadership ability and oh, yes, her non-racial bias. She is a natural for Atlanta mayor. She can shuffle around those minority based firm’s contractual negotiations with the city like a pro. And who knows, when she saves the city of Atlanta and is responsible for our rising past Cairo, Egypt, we might be able to construct a monument for her right in the middle of the city to commemorate her success. That is, if she doesn’t get convicted of something in the meantime.

Cosby

April 23rd, 2012
8:41 am

Well, kiss my grits..we actually agree on something…not the wonderful spin you put on unemployment as it is still very grim considering the almost trillion dollars spent by DC, but Atlanta reinventing itself… You are correct that the younger population is now loking to getting “Closer to Home”. That is, work, shop, live within walking distance. Gone is the idea for a large lot. grass, plants, trees to take care of but less time working in the yard and more time to do other things. The shift is now towards a small town atmosphere in a large city. The burbs are becoming a thing of the past. Gee Jay, we agree on something. But me personally, well just put in my garden, have cut two acres, and love having to load up the old buckboard with a weekley list to go to town on Saturday!!

Wes

April 23rd, 2012
8:42 am

Granny,

Averages are driven by the the people in them. If the top group goes up while the remaining groups stay flat we see income gains. How am I being inconsistent?

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 23rd, 2012
8:43 am

Rags

“Even Wisconsin is becoming a proof of the benefits of a business-friendly environment.”

What Wisconsin are YOU talking about?

From Express Milwaukee:

The first-year effects of Walker’s policies on public employees—as well as their ripple effects on the state’s economy—have been analyzed in a new study from the Institute for Wisconsin’s Future (IWF), which found:

The average public employee has taken a pay cut of almost $3,000, or about $60 per week, thanks to Walker’s requirement that they contribute more toward their health care and pensions.
The pay cut given to 260,000 full-time public employees amounts to $700 million taken out of the state’s economy each year, which means less money to be spent at Wisconsin’s small businesses.
The shrinkage of the state’s economy due to public employees’ pay cuts will lead to a loss of about 6,900 full-time jobs in the first year of Walker’s budget.
Walker’s rejection of $553 million in federal funds—including $390 million for high-speed rail and $130 million for Medicaid in just the first year—will cause the loss of about 4,700 private-sector jobs.
Walker’s $975 million in cuts to state and local programs—including education funding, recycling and transportation—will cause about 5,400 full-time private sector jobs to be lost.
The average pay cut to the 47,210 public sector employees in Milwaukee County is $2,620, reducing the local economy by $123.7 million.

.

Geez Rags check out GOP talking points before you post ‘em.

Jay

April 23rd, 2012
8:43 am

Government usually does best when it does least – create a business-friendly environment, without subsidies, and step out of the way. Like Texas or Florida or Tennessee. Even Wisconsin is becoming a proof of the benefits of a business-friendly environment. So long as we do not follow the direction of basket-cases like California or Illinois…..

What Ragnar and others will not acknowledge is that the suburban model of development has been driven largely through government intervention and subsidies in the marketplace and by government regulation and intrusion onto property rights.

For example, it is largely a creation of zoning laws that require minimum lot sizes and ban density. Back in my county-government reporting days, I never saw a developer come to a zoning commission and request LESS density. The developer wanted more density, because there were more profits in it. The market wanted more density, because it offered cheaper housing to both buyers and renters. But government regulation — zoning — was used to block what the market wanted and impose low-density sprawl.

Likewise, government subsidized sprawl by extending roads and other services into sparsely populated areas, at a net cost to taxpayers. Development was never expected to pay for itself; it was a heavily subsidized industry.

stands for decibels

April 23rd, 2012
8:44 am

the city has been run by Democrats

Kayaker, are you and “James Thomas” suffering from the same reading comprehension issues?

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 23rd, 2012
8:45 am

Wes

Your two statements are not the same, don’t mean the same thing.

Ain’t brain surgery.

Jay

April 23rd, 2012
8:47 am

Yawn....

April 23rd, 2012
8:47 am

This is just too rich…..now Bookman is suggesting Cairo is a better place to live than ATL!!! Too funny!!

I think l’ll start a fundraiser for all the lefties who want a one way ticket there….especially for the women since they’re so well treated there…..any takers?

AmVet

April 23rd, 2012
8:48 am

Reb,

The Yankees came to Dixie to claim what is rightfully their’s.

You shouldn’t have lost!

Finn McCool (Class Warfare === Stopping Rich People from TAKING MORE of OUR MONEY)

April 23rd, 2012
8:49 am

Get those Republicans out of office – they have no useful ideas.

stands for decibels

April 23rd, 2012
8:51 am

The developer wanted more density, because there were more profits in it. The market wanted more density, because it offered cheaper housing to both buyers and renters.

…which is pre-zackly why I’d like to see the specifics of the realtors’ survey you cited, Jay, because it seems to represent a grudging, official acknowledgement that the rape-em-and-scrape-em, scorched-earth development policies of the past are unsustainable.

(and yes, I realize “realtors” is not equal to “developers + the market” but their interests tend to coincide.)

Jay

April 23rd, 2012
8:51 am

kayaker, you somehow manage to turn every discussion into a diatribe about race, and then feign innocence and shock when others point out that well, you seem to be obsessed about race.

stands for decibels

April 23rd, 2012
8:51 am

Oops. Thanks, Jay, for the study link.

Doggone/GA

April 23rd, 2012
8:51 am

“This is just too rich…..now Bookman is suggesting Cairo is a better place to live than ATL!!! Too funny!!”

When you can’t refute the data, attack the messenger

Finn McCool (Class Warfare === Stopping Rich People from TAKING MORE of OUR MONEY)

April 23rd, 2012
8:52 am

create a business-friendly environment, without subsidies, and step out of the way

and when those businesses complain that the road asphalt is deteriorating into gravel and the sanitation system is broken, they can pony up and get all that fixed. Is that how it works?

barking frog

April 23rd, 2012
8:53 am

Many georgians are
descendents of Yankees
who followed Sherman
and many good old boys
have a Union soldier on
their family tree.

Normal, Plain and Simple

April 23rd, 2012
9:03 am

Jay,
Seriously what you say is well and good, but what can the average Georgian do to change the situation?

UNCLE SAMANTHA

April 23rd, 2012
9:04 am

if Metro Atlanta is such a poor growth area to live…. then why do so many dang people keep coming to live and work here………….

Jack

April 23rd, 2012
9:04 am

The cause for unemployment is simple: employers need people with technical skills. We have students graduating from high school that can’t read and basic math is beyond them. College grads need engineering degrees.

Soothsayer

April 23rd, 2012
9:05 am

Jay, as far as density is concerned, if an area is not served by sewer, then the minimum lot size is ~1/2 acre. This is the minimum for a septic tank system.

In Forsyth, there was simply no density in subdivisions until the treatment plant was finished. Then, the norm was what I call “the California model.” When houses are crammed in so close together that you literally could not get another house on the piece of land.

For me, I just couldn’t live like that. I mean, you can reach out the window and borrow a cup of sugar from your neighbor.

UNCLE SAMANTHA

April 23rd, 2012
9:06 am

why don’t we build another airport on the NORTH or NORTHEAST side of Metro Atlanta to alleviate commercial air freight?

Normal, Plain and Simple

April 23rd, 2012
9:06 am

JamVet

April 23rd, 2012
9:06 am

Uh oh!

Very bad news for Republicans:

After peaking at $3.87 a gallon earlier this month, metro Atlanta’s average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline has dropped 15 cents.

Monday morning’s average of $3.72 a gallon is 9.5 cents cheaper than one week ago, according to atlantagasprices.com, a website that tracks how much Atlantans pay for gas.

The price has been steadily dropping since peaking on April 8.

Your heroes in the free market had better come up with some ways to stop this!

godless heathen©

April 23rd, 2012
9:07 am

“Kids want to drive, it’s just that being required to get a license “disenfranchises” them from doing so.”

Speaking of that, have you seen what it’s going to take to get your Georgia Driver’s license renewed after July 1? The community is not going to be happy.

http://www.dds.ga.gov/secureid/index.aspx

Soothsayer

April 23rd, 2012
9:07 am

“why don’t we build another airport on the NORTH or NORTHEAST side of Metro Atlanta to alleviate commercial air freight?”

For the same reason we don’t build an interstate highway through your neighborhood.

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 23rd, 2012
9:09 am

JamVet

Somebodies arms must have gotten tired of beating the “Iran” war drums….

atler8

April 23rd, 2012
9:14 am

Ragnar..
A little fact checking here on your earlier post:
Check out the stats for the past year on job growth in Wisconsin (or lack thereof!)
versus the growth in jobs that has been experienced in Illinois.
I believe that Wisconsin is the only state in the country that has lost jobs in the last year & it still continues to do so in the March monthly jobs report.
Meanwhile Illinois, it’s southern neighbor who you named a “basketcase”, has been experiencing steady job growth numbers that are on an even faster uptick more recently thus leaving the Badger State behind in it’s dust.
Don’t take my word for it though & go look up the stats yourself.

Rising Cost of an Education

April 23rd, 2012
9:14 am

Jack says,
The cause for unemployment is simple: employers need people with technical skills. We have students graduating from high school that can’t read and basic math is beyond them. College grads need engineering degrees.

President Obama says,

. Obama proposed supersizing a loan program for lower-income students and withholding financial aid from colleges that fail to put the brakes on tuition increases.

The two proposals represent a tug-of-war over the funding of higher education.

On the one hand, tuition has soared because states have cut funding during the economic downturn and universities want to maintain budgets to preserve quality.

Read more: http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/news/articles/2012/01/27/20120127obama-takes-aim-rising-college-tab.html#ixzz1srw3NEG0

Is the state legislature concerned about the rising cost of education in the state of Georgia?

JamVet

April 23rd, 2012
9:15 am

The cause for unemployment is simple:

Nonsense. It is anything but.

It is very complicated and involves many factors, not just your favorite bogeyman.

Unemployment rates are elevated across virtually all industries and all education levels.

And in spite of record profits in the trillions of dollars annually, there simply aren’t enough jobs to go around.

The consequences of businesses are not hiring.

The consequences of middle America not spending.

The consequences of flat-lined middle class incomes and rising poverty.

The consequences of capitalism gone very bad…

Jay

April 23rd, 2012
9:16 am

“if Metro Atlanta is such a poor growth area to live…. then why do so many dang people keep coming to live and work here………….

The answer from the Atlanta Regional Commission, Uncle Sam, is that they don’t:

“ARC estimated that the 10-county Atlanta region added 34,550 new residents between April 1, 2010, and April 1, 2011. This growth is dramatically slower than what metro Atlanta region is accustomed to as the anemic national economy continues to take its toll on the region’s growth.
Over the last three years, essentially since the recession began, the 10-county region has added approximately 91,000 people. To put this into perspective, during the fast-growing 1990s and the 2000 decade, the Atlanta region routinely added 100,000 new residents each year.”

Road Scholar

April 23rd, 2012
9:20 am

“Rethink”? I had to laugh since many of our politicians hadn’t had a coherent thought, especially about planning for the future…ever!

For those who feel compelled to criticize the Democrats for the COA, do you realize the beginning of lost income began at the turn of the century….when the Repubs took over the statehouse and governorship? And , at the same time the majority of the counties around Atlanta in the METRO area are run by Repubs? Now, let’s get back to the issue of planning Atlanta’s growth and revenue.

Many states and cities (Maryland, Portland, etc.) have laid out development boundaries where state and federal monies would be used in the more urban areas and not in the rural areas. This includes schools, development and zonings, transportation improvements, etc. to concentrate development making the use of transit more cost effective by allowing more mixed use and densities. Maryland has also added a cross county connector toll road (aka Outer Perimeter type facility north of DC, showing that they are proposing a mixed mode transportation system.They have over the past 20 years converted major arterials from a driveway every 50 ft to controlled access arterials and expressways, like P’tree Ind Blvd north of I 285.

Our economic model is based on growth not standing still or digressing. Wishing people that have come here to live to go away is pure frustration/whining, let alone not going to happen. Others are coming. Other than possibly giving prospective new residents a driving test before they are allowed to take up residence here, the likelihood of stopping the migration is nil.

Recon 0311 2533

April 23rd, 2012
9:27 am

28 county metro Atlanta. Most of those counties and the residents living within them don’t consider themselves part of Atlanta. The liberal Democrat dream is to have a 28 county or more metropolitan government presided over by liberal Democrats.

atler8

April 23rd, 2012
9:30 am

Jay,
Thanks for your post of 9:16 that saves me from having to look up recent stats that rebut UNCLE SAMANTHA who assumes that metro Atlanta is still growing like gangbusters in population. Those days are done for, at least for now.
If Atlanta & the state don’t turn it around soon in population growth, this current decade may well be the first one in my lifetime memory where Georgia will fail to grow fast enough to gain an extra congressional seat after the next census.
A look around us reveals that we are not the only southeastern state that is stumbling along with drastically slower population in-migration. So, it would appear that perhaps the entire region may need to re-evaluate & reinvent itself on some levels.

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 23rd, 2012
9:30 am

Ok Recon….

Lets remove all the benefits to those metro counties that don’t want to
consider themselves part of Atlanta.

Starting with fees for Atlanta emplyment for none-Atlanta residents….

Road usage fees, highers ticket prices at the High….stuff like that.

Mighty Righty

April 23rd, 2012
9:33 am

I don’t understand the point in the graphs if the argument is Detroit is doing better than Atlanta because the graphs clearly dispute that. Atlanta has done better in income and employment since 2000. I guess Jay is trying to make a point but the point escapes me.

atler8

April 23rd, 2012
9:35 am

Recon,
Dream on yourself as if you know anything about what liberals want.
If a person from Paulding County, for example, is on a flight between let’s say London to New York and their seat mate asks them where they live, are they going to say Dallas, Ga. or Atlanta? It’s a no-brainer answer.

Road Scholar

April 23rd, 2012
9:36 am

Normal: People could get involved in the planning of their communities, cities, and counties. Planning meetings and hearings aren’t that “sexy” because it takes some imagination to “see” the future or what is proposed impacts to their area.Change will happen. Stopping it is useless. Molding it to what is beneficial to the community is where efforts should be placed.

Most people come out when there is a roadway project already drawn out on paper, and then they say we weren’t consulted to what we want, or you didn’t ask my permission to do this, or what impact will that have directly on me and my property. Planning only has nebulous answers to those questions, except permission, so earlier contact is required with those who would use and be nearby to the project. This was done on the Johnson Ferry/ Abernathy project and, after 40 years, it is under construction with community support. ( I will not get into why it is taking so long to construct!)

Soothsayer: In the metro area stop allowing the use of septic tanks. Water used in a septic system is used once…it goes back into the ground, where water used in a sewer system is used about 7 times before being dumped. Not to gross ya’ll out but each time it is used, except during watering your yards, it is treated and reused in the metro areas with sewer/water systems.

Recon 0311 2533

April 23rd, 2012
9:37 am

Detroit is not doing better than Atlanta, however, the city of Atlanta is headed in same direction as Detroit.

Are YOU registered to vote?

April 23rd, 2012
9:37 am

Jefferson

April 23rd, 2012
9:38 am

The road tax would get things started, eh ?

Road Scholar

April 23rd, 2012
9:39 am

Recon: Atlanta is the engine that drives the economy of the state of Georgia. Why would their be growth in the outlying counties and cities if Atlanta didn’t exist?

In other news

April 23rd, 2012
9:40 am

“Metro Atlanta needs tools to rethink itself”

Atlanta already has tools. Tools like Reed, Franklin etc.

Recon 0311 2533

April 23rd, 2012
9:42 am

atler8, as a point of reference for someone not familiar with the area maybe but that would be about as far as it goes for most who live outside of Atlanta.

bob

April 23rd, 2012
9:43 am

rightwing troll, why are companies like Baxter and Caterpiller moving from a dem run state, Obo’s IL into a state run by strupid repubs ? If dems were so much smarter wouldn’t companies be moving to dem states from repub states ?

Recon 0311 2533

April 23rd, 2012
9:47 am

Road, Private sector business is what drives the economy, any economy. Government does not drive the economy it can either help facilitate growth or it can be an impediment to growth.

kayaker 71

April 23rd, 2012
9:47 am

Bookman 8:41,

Not obsessed, just a realist.

Don't Tread

April 23rd, 2012
9:49 am

There are plenty of tools for Atlanta to “rethink itself” right here on the blog.

Normal, Plain and Simple

April 23rd, 2012
9:51 am

bob

April 23rd, 2012
9:43 am

Probably because Georgia’s Republicans are willing to give away the bank so they can say they brought in jobs. Jobs don’t count so much if the state is going to have less revenue to work with.

stands for decibels

April 23rd, 2012
9:53 am

looks like they’ll get one at least…Cynthia Mckinney plans to run for her old seat.

[...]

Atlanta already has tools. Tools like Reed, Franklin etc.

[...]

There are plenty of tools for Atlanta to “rethink itself” right here on the blog.

so that’s three with the same lame joke.

hmm.

Is Neal on the radio crying about this piece, perchance?

USinUK

April 23rd, 2012
9:56 am

Hi Normal!!!

long time no see – hope you had a FAB vacation with Mrs. Normal!!!