Discussion on Atlanta's economy, schools, transportation, leadership, quality of life

Atlanta’s repeat offenders

4:21 pm Jun. 26, 2014

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Crime is down overall, but my column today focuses on Atlanta’s big problem with repeat offenders. Police Chief George Turner said recently that the average individual on the city’s list of top repeat offenders has 15 convictions. Mayor Kasim Reed has created a commission to deal with the problem. A local think tank chief says the city is going in the right direction, but should copy the

Help kids live healthier

10:24 am Jun. 26, 2014

Moderated by Rick Badie

Hey Georgia parents: Think you can outrun your 10-year-old? You just might be able to, given the fitness level of young people. Our nation’s kids are weak and unfit, and their cardiovascular fitness is on the decline. Call it exercise or playtime, but we need more of both, writes a local pediatrician who specializes in child wellness. Meanwhile, an Atlanta chef and food services executive encourages smarter

Affordable Care Act: Will it cost Georgians more?

10:03 am Jun. 25, 2014

Moderated by Rick Badie

Does the Affordable Care Act help hold down health care costs? Today, we offer two polar views. A Phoenix surgeon and Cato Institute scholar says Georgians will pay more for health care because Obamacare expanded health insurance without reigning in spiraling costs. An economist, meanwhile, credits the plan with stemming the rise in consumer insurance costs.

Affordable Care Act costs to spiral

By Jeffrey Singer

How much does the average

Broken sidewalk policy

3:02 pm Jun. 23, 2014

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

With Atlanta leaping into the top 10 walkable cities in the U.S. last week, according to one report, our attention turns to pedestrians. A local advocate criticizes the Atlanta sidewalk ordinance for unfairly putting the onus of sidewalk repairs on property owners. Separately, we asked the city to write about what it’s doing to create a more pedestrian-friendly environment.

Commenting is open.

Sidewalk repair policy busted

By Sally Flocks

If you’re

A good problem to have

11:08 am Jun. 23, 2014

Growth along the top end of I-285 is a good sign of recovery. It also raises questions of how well prepared we are to handle it. Now’s the time to begin talking about best practices going forward.

There are some problems that are actually nice to have. This certainly holds true when it comes to challenges caused by growth and economic development.

When jobs and prosperity are being created, that makes

Hospital infections, HIV rates rise

3:53 pm Jun. 19, 2014

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

As the AJC’s Carrie Teegardin reported Sunday, 18 hospitals across Georgia — including some of the most highly regarded health care facilities — rank among the worst in the nation for rates of life-threatening bloodstream infections, surgical site infections, dangerous diarrhea or other serious conditions that patients can pick up while hospitalized. Today, a CDC doctor writes about positive steps Georgia has taken on the issue. Our

No-knock warrants: Valuable tool in need of reform?

10:19 am Jun. 19, 2014

Moderated by Rick Badie

No-knock warrants in Georgia have come under intense scrutiny in light of a Habersham County incident in which a 19-month-old toddler was severely injured in a botched drug raid. Today, a Middle Georgia law enforcement veteran writes that such warrants serve a purpose in the apprehension of bad guys, while a state legislator says he plans to draft a bill that limits their use. The other guest

Immigration Reform: No “de facto” amnesty

12:32 pm Jun. 18, 2014

Moderated by Rick Badie

Chances of an overhaul of the nation’s immigration policy grew dimmer with the defeat of House majority leader Eric Cantor. Business coalitions such as the Georgia Agribusiness Council have called for an immigration reform vote in the House. In June 2013, the Senate passed an immigration overhaul that would include a path to citizenship; it’ s stalled in the House. Today, an agribusiness executive calls the current

A long history of lending hands

11:41 am Jun. 17, 2014

By Sandy Schwartz
It was April 15, 1945, and British and Canadian soldiers arrived at Bergen-Belsen, a Nazi concentration camp. The soldiers discovered about 60,000 prisoners inside, most half-starved and many seriously ill. Another 13,000 corpses were lying in the camp unburied.
According to first-hand reports, the soldiers undertook heroic efforts to nurse the mostly Jewish prisoners to health. Alongside the soldiers, helping to save lives, were members of the Red Cross.

Columbus on the move

2:00 pm Jun. 16, 2014

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

We look south to Columbus today to see how transportation options are viewed in the state’s second largest city. In her first column for us, Mayor Teresa Tomlinson endorses adding Georgia’s first high-speed passenger rail line between her city and Atlanta. In our second column, Columbus’ city manager writes about the road improvements the area is reaping by being one of the three regions in the state