Atlanta Forward Blog 

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

Cobb County government missteps

  • 12:42 pm Saturday, October 18th, 2014 by andrejacksonajc

Open the blinds

The Editorial Board’s Opinion
When it comes to Cobb County’s tarnished governance machine, the plot continues to thicken. Unnecessarily so, in our opinion.
For about all it would take to begin dialing back the destructiveness, evasiveness, chicanery, squabbling and sleuthing about in Cobb would be for County Commission Chairman Tim Lee to begin acting like he actually respects the concept of elected, representative government. Act like he works for the people and their best interest, in other words.
That’s not what we’ve seen in recent months. And Cobb, once viewed as a model of competent, lean government, is the worse for [More]

Georgia hospitals and Ebola

  • 4:00 pm Thursday, October 16th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Another Ebola patient arrived for treatment this week at Emory University Hospital. Today, the Georgia Hospital Association writes about how other hospitals are preparing for any possible outbreaks. Local and National nurse organizations also weigh in with their concerns about treating the disease, and one urges the CDC to “fully share” the findings around the care of Thomas Eric Duncan, the patient who came from Liberia with Ebola and died in a Dallas hospital. Finally, an Atlanta nonprofit leader writes about the desperate need for medical supplies in West Africa where Ebola has killed thousands.

Commenting is open.

Preparing [More]

Union blasts MARTA

  • 2:35 pm Monday, October 13th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Amalgamated Transit Union workers at MARTA are protesting stalled contract negotiations with the transit agency and MARTA’s move to privatize certain operations such as paratransit. Today, the local union president says MARTA is following a faulty road map on its way to ourtsourcing jobs and its well-paid leaders are betraying thousands of middle-class workers who deserve better. In turn, MARTA’s board of directors lay out their plans to achieve financial solvency while insisting that they have no intention of leaving their workers behind.

Commenting is open.

MARTA betraying workers

By Curtis Howard

Early next month, Atlanta may wake up to shocking [More]

Same-sex marriage in Georgia

  • 2:00 pm Thursday, October 9th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

The Supreme Court’s decision to not deliberate on same-sex marriage was a big victory for gay rights and should allow allow same-sex marriages to move forward in 30 states. But not in Georgia, where it remains legally banned. Today, we hear from an Emory University law professor who writes about the court’s surprising non-decision, and a Baptist pastor who criticizes it. Also, a Georgia State University professor tells why she believes the state’s ban harms children.

Commenting is open.

Court’s surprising no-decision

By Tim Holbrook

On Monday, the Supreme Court did something no one expected: It refused to hear any of [More]


  • 2:07 pm Saturday, September 27th, 2014 by andrejacksonajc

Watching like a Hawk

The rolling thunderstorm  over the unveiled racial sentiments expressed within the Atlanta Hawks’ ownership and management ranks provides an opportunity to break the national stalemate over discussing race.
The blowback against the Hawks over an email and a meeting conversation are but one recent event proving that we aren’t yet at the promised land foreseen by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. We’ve come an admirably long way. But the reality  that there are still two increasingly hardened, broadly divergent views on whether we’ve already crossed the finish line proves there’s work left to do. Cries of “race-baiting” [More]


  • 2:06 pm Saturday, September 20th, 2014 by andrejacksonajc

The Editorial Board’s Opinion

What Atlanta was versus what we became. And how that came to be?
Fully analyzing that journey requires consideration of the Civil War’s lingering impact today — 150 years after Union forces seized control of this city.
We suggest here that it’s important still to undertake the risky, painful journey of unpacking and reassessing history’s baggage in a contemporary light. Doing so can help make better sense of where we stand today. Most importantly, it can tease out who we really are — a people sharing a common heritage, whether we want to, or not. That commonality holds even [More]

Sunday Issue: DeKalb County government

  • 2:58 pm Saturday, September 13th, 2014 by andrejacksonajc

Working toward better governance

Even the wildest of free falls eventually stops, suddenly or otherwise. We hope that’s the case for the woes bedeviling DeKalb County government.
A county of DeKalb’s size and economic influence deserves better. What residents have gotten instead are too many leaders who could’ve landed starring roles in those bad ’70s fast-car-and-moonshine movies. The ones that lampooned the South and its public officials as being backward — and corrupt. That must change.
To be fair, DeKalb’s far from alone. The last decade’s unearthed a rogue’s gallery of corrupt public officials outside of DeKalb. Combined, their sorry behavior has shoved [More]

Clayton’s march to MARTA

  • 2:01 pm Monday, August 25th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Clayton County’s chairman remains steadfast in his optimism that voters in November will approve a sales-tax increase to bring MARTA service south, in what would be a historic expansion for the transit agency. I talked with him about the opposition he still anticipates as we get closer to election day. In our second column, a conservative commentator writes about the “expensive and generally useless over-regulation of transit” that federal and state authorities apply.

Moderating is open.

Chairman confident MARTA coming

By Tom Sabulis

Jeffrey Turner expects opposition to MARTA’s expansion into Clayton County to surface in the months before November’s sales-tax [More]

Sunday Issue: A tale of two cities

  • 12:28 pm Saturday, August 23rd, 2014 by andrejacksonajc

What Ferguson tells us

By Andre Jackson
My Opinion

In early 2008, I wrestled with whether to move 500 miles south. A journalistic mentor told me, simply: “Atlanta became the city that St. Louis once was.”
Her observation clinched the decision to leave my hometown and hire on at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
This month’s tragic events in Ferguson, Mo., reconfirms that I made the correct choice. Call me an Atlantan now. Here’s why.
I grew up barely six miles from Ferguson — on the same, sepia side of the bright line that’s historically divided white from black in St. Louis. I come from a family of [More]

Transportation trouble

  • 2:18 pm Monday, August 18th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Ranking near the bottom of per capita spending on transportation and overly dependent on federal handouts, Georgia is desperate to raise new revenue to fix its roads and bridges. Today, we hear about this crucial issue from a citizen member of the General Assembly’s Joint Study Committee on Critical Transportation Infrastructure Funding. In our second column, a former U.S. Transportation Department secretary writes that Congress needs to stop kicking the can down the road and take the lead to help states.

Commenting is open

Find a fix, or Georgia loses

By Edward Lindsey

Transportation has been at the heart of Atlanta’s [More]