Author Archives: MATTHEW CHARLES CARDINALE

Atlanta Council Knowingly Approves Illegal Voucher Ordinance (UPDATE 1)

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  (APN) ATLANTA — Requiring residential lessors to accept housing authority vouchers from tenants as a form of rental payment is a national best practice.  Unfortunately, the Georgia Legislature does not allow cities to adopt such an ordinance.   So, when the Council voted on Monday, February 17, 2020 to approve an ordinance purporting to require the acceptance of vouchers […]

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Lawsuit Documents Nineteen Open Records Violations by City of Atlanta

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  Image of Robert Ashe used pursuant to fair use doctrine.   (APN) ATLANTA — In an amended complaint filed on yesterday, Friday, February 21, 2020, citizen advocate Adrian Paulette Coleman provided Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney with evidence of a total of at least nineteen known violations of the Georgia Open Records Act by the City of […]

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Atlanta Abuses Executive Session to Discuss Illegal Ordinance (UPDATE 1)

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(APN) ATLANTA — The City Council of Atlanta continues to operate in a cloak of secrecy and abuse public trust, this time holding two closed-door meetings to discuss their illegal ordinance, 20-O-1155, despite having no eligible exception that would allow the meeting to be closed under the Georgia Open Meetings Act.   APPARENTLY ILLEGAL CLOSED MEETING   On Tuesday, February […]

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Atlanta Ordinance to Require Voucher Acceptance, Preempted by State Law

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  (APN) ATLANTA — The City of Atlanta is currently considering an ordinance by Councilman Antonio Brown (District 3) that would ban rental discrimination in Atlanta on the basis of form of payment – essentially requiring residential lessors (“landlords”) to accept vouchers issued by a housing authority.   Councilman Antonio Brown (District 3) introduced the ordinance as a personal paper […]

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City of Atlanta Lawyers Up in Coleman Open Records Case

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  Image used pursuant to fair use doctrine. (APN) ATLANTA — The City of Atlanta has retained attorney Robert L. Ashe III (commonly called “Robbie Ashe”), at a rate of 450 dollars per hour, to defend the City in a lawsuit filed by Adrian Coleman regarding the City’s violations of the Georgia Open Records Act.   The City of Atlanta has […]

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Atlanta Council Approves Rent Control Resolution to State of Georgia

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  (APN) ATLANTA — A resolution asking the State of Georgia to remove the statewide prohibition on rent control, or rent stabilization, passed the City Council of Atlanta at the Full Council Meeting on Tuesday, January 21, 2020.   http://atlantaprogressivenews.com/2020/01/07/atlanta-resolution-would-ask-georgia-to-allow-rent-control/   The resolution, introduced by Councilman Antonio Brown (District 3), passed in a vote of fourteen to one.   J.P. […]

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Westmoreland Cuts Public Comment on Community Development, Human Services

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(APN) ATLANTA — Atlanta City Councilman Matt Westmoreland (Post 2-at-large) has used his discretion as the new Chairperson of the Community Development/Human Services Committee (CD/HS) to make cuts to public comment time.   Westmoreland has cut the total amount of public comment time from five minutes to three minutes per person, Atlanta Progressive News has learned.   Since 2010, members […]

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State Sen. James Seeks Georgia Apology for Slavery

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(APN) ATLANTA — State Sen. Donzella James (D-Atlanta) has introduced a Senate Resolution, SR 537, seeking that the State of Georgia formally apologize for slavery and Jim Crow.   http://www.legis.ga.gov/Legislation/en-US/display/20192020/SR/537   On January 15, 2020, the Senate referred the resolution to the Rules Committee.   The co-sponsors on the resolution are State Sens. Gail Davenport (D-Atlanta), Nan Orrock (D-Atlanta), Sally […]

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Atlanta Resolution Would Ask Georgia to Allow Rent Control

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  (APN) ATLANTA — Atlanta City Councilman Antonio Brown (District 3) introduced a resolution encouraging the State of Georgia to allow cities like Atlanta to adopt rent stabilization, or rent control, laws.   Currently, Georgia law, O.C.G.A. 44-7-19 prohibits cities and counties from regulating how much a residential lessor can charge a tenant for rent.   “A RESOLUTION ENCOURAGING THE […]

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Atlanta City Attorney Misled Council on Comcast Reports

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  (APN) ATLANTA — City Attorney Nina R. Hickson for the City of Atlanta admitted in an email response to an inquiry from Atlanta Progressive News that her statement to City Utilities Committee on November 26, 2019, regarding the availability of Comcast reports was “incomplete.”   Hickson admitted her misleading statements, after it was revealed through an open records request […]

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U.S. Supreme Court Homeless Ruling Suggests Atlanta Laws Unconstitutional

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  (APN) ATLANTA — A recent ruling by the Supreme Court of the U.S. calls into question the constitutionality of several Atlanta laws that criminalize homeless people.   Atlanta’s laws criminalizing urban camping (106-12), public urination (106-30), and monetary solicitation (106-85) each raise issues under the Eighth Amendment, which is the Federal Constitution’s prohibition on “cruel and unusual punishment.”   […]

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Lawsuit Seeks Civil Penalties for Atlanta for Records Violations

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  Photograph of Fulton County Superior Court Judge C.I. McBurney.   (APN) ATLANTA — Atlanta resident and public access advocate Adrian Coleman has filed a lawsuit against the City of Atlanta on yesterday, Thursday, December 13, 2019, for violating the Georgia Open Records Act.   The City’s Law Department failed to respond to her open records request within three business […]

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Atlanta Council Cuts Former Officials to Two Minutes of Public Comment

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  (APN) ATLANTA — After months of debate, the City Council of Atlanta moved forward on an ordinance to limit former elected officials to two minutes of public speaking time to address the Council.  Councilwoman Jennifer Ide (District 6) had been the proponent of the ordinance.   That means former Mayor Andrew Young, who on occasion addresses the Council, will […]

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Atlanta Council Bullied by Comcast, Ignores $216,000 in Overbilling

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  (APN) ATLANTA — Comcast Cable got their way, with a unanimous vote of the City Utilities Committee of the Atlanta City Council on November 26, 2019; and by the Full Council on December 02, 2019, in support of 19-O-1598, approving a seven year Franchise Agreement with the City of Atlanta.   Numerous advocates, as well as the Atlanta Planning […]

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Atlanta Council Passes Buck on Single-Use Plastics in City Facilities

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  (APN) ATLANTA — The City Council of Atlanta wimped out this week on a proposal to ban single-use plastics, by gutting the legislation of any minimum requirements and delegating to the City’s executive branch the authority to decide which single-use plastics, if any, would be banned in city facilities like City Hall and the airport.   Rather than hold […]

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