WSA to purchase more flood-damaged properties

Oct 15, 2010 Full story: Times Georgian 19

The Douglasville-Douglas County Water and Sewer Authority will receive about $2.41 million in federal and state emergency funds to buy 17 flood damaged properties.

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Since: Jun 07

D'ville, GA

#1 Oct 15, 2010
$2.41 million to buy 17 properties....Wish my house would flood so that the government would give me $141,000.
former resident

Decatur, GA

#2 Oct 15, 2010
Thank God the WSA and county have organized to do this. It will improve Douglasville, and protect home owners.
They wouldn't be purchasing them if it wasn't necessary. Hopefully this will help improve the infrastructure in this county that desperately needs help!

Since: Jun 07

D'ville, GA

#3 Oct 15, 2010
former resident wrote:
Thank God the WSA and county have organized to do this. It will improve Douglasville, and protect home owners.
They wouldn't be purchasing them if it wasn't necessary. Hopefully this will help improve the infrastructure in this county that desperately needs help!
How does it help homeowners and improve the county? They're buying homes that were damaged in the floods and they won't let the property owners rebuild in those locations. So to avoid litigation they're buying the properties. It improves nothing other than letting the demolition begin. Keep in mind, these properties were paying into the tax digest over a year ago, now they'll be government property that'll need tax dollars thrown at them.
former resident

Decatur, GA

#4 Oct 16, 2010
Homes should not be built in the flood plain. I don't know when the homeowners purchased the home if they knew it was in a flood plain or not, but even if they did know, the obvious damage from last years storm is why they should not exist in this flood plain.

How much do you think it will cost Douglasville taxpayers in litigation because these homes exist there? I bet its cheaper than just taking the homes down and giving homeowners a new start.

Also it would be nice to see more parks, and green space where these homes existed. Do you know that there are many places for the government to tap into federal money for developing green space? I would be willing to bet that the government can get more money in grants for parks and green space, then tax dollars. I think its a win for the government, and an out for the homeowners. I applaud the WSA for taking this stand.

Since: Jun 07

D'ville, GA

#5 Oct 16, 2010
Flood plains aren't static, they change year to year as the the creek or river changes. When the sediment load in a stream builds up, which has been a major problem in the Atlanta area due to all the construction (and uncontrolled runoff from these sites due to lack of erosion control regs and enforcement) the ability of the creek to handle water changes. People on the otherhand want a house near a nice stream just like they want a house on the beach. But you want it, you pay for it when the water rises.

As far as green space, I'm all for it. I just hate the idea that the only way to get it is for the government to supply it. Government property takes tax money to buy and maintain while private property has taxes paid to the government.
former resident

Decatur, GA

#6 Oct 17, 2010
I agree that purchasing property on a stream presents problems but here is the question. Does this water originate from God, or from structures on higher ground that run their water through the property? If its the latter, the homeowner can't do anything to change that. Even involvement in planning and permitting doesn't matter, because the powers that be( money/developers) rules. The government is short sighted in this regards and the homeowners are often stuck. How can they be rid of the developers? They really can't.

As for money to replace tax dollars lost- there is so much money that has been allocated for green infrastructure improvements. Whether you agree or not with money being given in grants for infrastructure, you have to admit, that the counties that tap into this money will be ahead of those that don't.
One day search, identified 12 possible grant sources that the government can tap into for infrastructure water improvements. When I can stomach it again, I will show up once again at WSA board meeting and present my findings, but I have to get my mind in the frame to do this again. While my intent is to be helpful I don't think the government sees me this way.
formerresident

Decatur, GA

#7 Feb 20, 2011
spitfire2 wrote:
<quoted text>
How does it help homeowners and improve the county? They're buying homes that were damaged in the floods and they won't let the property owners rebuild in those locations. So to avoid litigation they're buying the properties. It improves nothing other than letting the demolition begin. Keep in mind, these properties were paying into the tax digest over a year ago, now they'll be government property that'll need tax dollars thrown at them.
How does it help homeowners and improve the county?
1. Its hard to remember after the 2009 storm, but just a few years ago, our governor was praying to the rain God's for water! We need to focus on harvesting and conserving water.
2. Ignorance is bliss but it is also expensive
3. Tapping into money for infrastructure improvements will provide jobs and save money.
4. "Water is water, is water". I love that phrase. Its so simple, and so true.
5. Water is a precious commodity. If we don't start looking for ways to conserve water, the community will pay.
6. Isn't it time that government begins to look at ways to integrate residential and commercial. If developers win over the residents, then everybody will eventually lose.
7. Douglasville has one of the highest foreclosure rates in the county. Should it accept this, or find ways to fix this problem, and add value to property?
8. Traffic is bottlenecked at points in this community. We need to find ways to reduce this without adding more lanes. Infrastructure improvements are movements towards solutions.
9. We are getting Fat! Find ways to walk, so we all get a bit healthier, and rely less on fuel.
10.The money lost from taxes paid in is far less than money allocated for going green. It was one of the first money decisions made by Obama just a few days after entering office.
paul

Carrollton, GA

#8 Feb 20, 2011
how about this????BUY SOME FLOOD INSURANCE.TAKE SOME RESPONSIBILITY
former resident

Decatur, GA

#9 Feb 21, 2011
paul wrote:
how about this????BUY SOME FLOOD INSURANCE.TAKE SOME RESPONSIBILITY
Flood insurance

I was sold a home in a flood plain, but the maps were altered, as was the land, and I was sold a house not in a flood plain that was. Homeowners rely on the documents we are given from experts, when we make the largest purchase of our lives.

It was the last home that you would ever think was in a flood plain.
I had to walk up 10,000 steps to front door. I am exaggerating about steps but you get the point.

Flood insurance may work if you know its in a flood plain, and buy it, but why would the government allow a home to be built in a flood plain?

500 out of 900 employees in this town work on public safety. Allowing homes to be built in flood plains isn't safe!
Not to mention it is stupid.
formerresident

Decatur, GA

#10 Jul 19, 2012
Have they all been purchased?
formerresident

Decatur, GA

#11 Aug 28, 2012
The end of month work session meeting at WSA tonight. Should we have yogurt or a full breakfast? When can you meet? Stormwater meeting will be 30 minutes, in September. Ok meeting adjourned. Helen, your notes easy today. Remedy?

How much do you guys get paid for that meeting?

WATER is WATER is WATER.

It is still at the center of your community.

My three minutes are up!
formerresident

Decatur, GA

#12 Feb 13, 2013
paul wrote:
how about this????BUY SOME FLOOD INSURANCE.TAKE SOME RESPONSIBILITY
Paul, what responsibility do you take for the businesses permitting water through our backyards, counting on our ignorance to continue? I spent significant money, to prove what should have been very simple to prove. It was rural when we bought our home.

It is way past time for others to hold our elected officials accountable. We do still live in a place where it is "we the people", don't we? At least that is what I heard our president say on inauguration day.
Pay Up

New York, NY

#13 Feb 14, 2013
Tammy:

There is no way anyone would consider Arbor Station rural in 1986.

You say you spent money to prove something - did you spend it on a lawyer or on drugs? Your ramblings her on Topix indicate the latter - living up to your last name maybe?

The WSA just spent almost $80k buying a house off of Bright Star Road because of surface water runoff issues.

So it seems that something is wrong with your story.

Regardless, if you do not pay your property taxes your house will belong to someone else soon.
formerresident

Decatur, GA

#14 Feb 14, 2013
Payup- Chapel Hill road and Stewart Mill road were rural in 1986, and here is where you flow the water from there, illegally into my backyard.

Money spent on pulling records, and engineering, and lawyers.

When you take land to zero, after taxing it for 23 years, where is that money?
Why when we purchased a brand new home in 1986, and it was permitted as brand new, why is YOUR BOARD of EQUALIZATION stating that the land is worth zero, as no home was ever allowed to even be? We trusted our documents and forms wouldn't you? We bought brand new.

How do you tax a home on a land with no value? How can you tax this way

Why did DC deny due process and change the land from zero, to one dollar disputing your own board? Why did you tax it for 23 years at full value, if it wasn't allowed to even be? Why did you reduce it, because a citizen brought a problem to you? There are cars crashing on Creekwood Drive in water that you are permitting through.

Why is Kohls with no permits to exist? Where are downstream impact studies? Why does Stewart Mill Road Halls Crossing have no retention? Why is my backyard the retention? Why are you mixing stormwater and wastewater in my backyard, and polluting our water supply? Why are you charging stormwater fees and destroying the city and county with water from businesses that are not operating properly, according to lawyers and engineers!

Why is the Public drainage easement in the final plat, and signed by the city, but the city isn't claiming it, but collecting fees from it and relying upon it?

Which group is on drugs? The county tax office or the homeowner?

Why are you sending a tax bill to somebody deceased, after name was removed by the court, two years ago, according to your judge?

If you are collecting fees using my land, why are you ignoring downstream impact studies required by law?

I am quite capable of paying tax, I would like to know where did my money go? Why has the land been reduced of all value?

You cannot foreclose without giving me due process? Unless you continue to make up your own constitution, as you seem to do

Why are you stating my name on a public message board? This isn't your privacy that it violated, it is mine? Not that I am trying to hide it, but it is my right to reveal or not reveal it, not yours.

Do you skip the going to court part before you take it back? I own this home free and clear. I want to know why I am being told my land is worthless, and why are you so eager to get it back?

Happy Valentines Day!
You Go Girl

Douglasville, GA

#15 Feb 14, 2013
formerresident wrote:
Why are you stating my name on a public message board? This isn't your privacy that it violated, it is mine? Not that I am trying to hide it, but it is my right to reveal or not reveal it, not yours.
Sweetie, you are the one who put your name on the internet - you post using your name and this sad sack story about your water issues on Douglasville Patch with and your personal blog as well.

Besides, taking the info you post here on Topix it would only take about 15 minutes with Google/internet to know more bout you than your neighbors probably know. Like your actual address in Decatur, your businesses & professions and that according to the Tax Commissioner's website the taxes on your Arbor Station house have not been paid in two years.

For all of your troubles with this house, you would have thought that a Real Estate pro with over 20 years buying and selling houses you would have had better luck here in Douglasville.

See, the internet is a place without privacy - especially if you keep posting your personal info on it.

You really should look into what Pay Up is talking about though - the Sentinel had an article about how the WSA is getting metal detectors & armed guards (so leave that AR15 at home) yesterday. In that same article there is a paragraph about a house that the WSA is buying from the owner on Millwright Street - because it will be "a solution to storm-water buildup on the street and drainage under (the) house."

Sounds like your problem exactly - or is it?
Pay Up

New York, NY

#16 Feb 15, 2013
Tammy:

Off your meds yesterday?

Why why why ...

Chapel Hill/Stewart Road was NOT rural in 1986. It was not as commercially developed and there were some old farm houses. It may have appeared rural to someone from an urban area, but it was as suburban as suburban can be. Highway 166 - now that is (mostly) rural, even today.

If, as you say, there is an easement for stormwater through your property, it is legal for stormwater to flow through your property.

If stormwater flow damaged your property to the point of unusability and you have spent money on engineers & lawyers and got nothing from the WSA then you need to get better lawyers because the WSA has been spending money on buying flooded/damaged property all over DC.

Your land appears to have a value of $1, but there is still value associated with your house. So it gets taxed like everything else.

Cars crashing on Creekwood because of water? When? During a 1000 year rain event?

Kohls built without permits? Highly unlikely because of the fees the County would have been able to charge. Heck, WSA lived on tap fees when that was built. With that much money at stake there is no way that property was built without permits. Even the City charged the County a pretty hefty fee for a permit to build the Jail.

The City/County/WSA cannot take 2013 building codes/stormwater regulations and apply them to structures that were built before the codes/regs came into existence. When Halls Crossing was built water runoff was an afterthought.

You said that stormwater and wastewater are mixing in your yard. How is there surface wastewater in your yard? Broken sewer?

As far as who is on drugs - some of your ramblings on Topix and Patch (that is where I learned your name) make it appear that you are on drugs. Sorry, they just do.

Georgia is a non-judicial foreclosure state, so your house can be sold to pay back taxes without ever going to court. Certainly not very pro-citizen but that is the law here in Georgia. If you were in Real Estate you should know that (learned something new about you today).

So if you do not get the taxes caught up on your property it could go to auction - pay up or risk losing it completely.

Have a nice day!
formerresident

Decatur, GA

#17 Feb 15, 2013
Where is your paperwork? The final plat. It was maintained. It is a steam channel, and all of it has been maintained. Why are you abandoning water?

I can pay my taxes. I want to know where all land value went. I want my day in court.

I assume you have to give due process and court before you take property back, at least notice. I highly doubt that Topix is where you give notice.

You guys make up all the rules, so I am sure you win, and America loses. Oh well, don't invest in DC, they make up their own rules. Lesson learned.

I have funds to pay the tax. I want my day in court!

Heritage valley is septic. My land is city. You mix them together and pollute our public water supply. You count on our ignorance to destroy us. Oh well.

City, County and WSA make up their own rules, so they can do whatever they please. I get it.

Where is the paperwork for Kohls? This is what the hydrology found. Not me. I am going by the expert report. I was too stupid to know that Kohls was using my backyard for stormwater management.

A long time friend/acquaintance said it best- "If I was at the end of my career, this would be a great case, and I would help, but right now I need to work" He was a judge.

So you see this how you take away our rights to private property. You make up your own rules, you get the entire gang, you stuff all your pockets with cash, and then you blame the homeowner for trusting the documents and forms, when buying brand new. I get it.

You have all the power. You make the rules. We are just the stupid citizens who trust you, when we buy brand new.

I still want my day in court.
Marko From Tropoja

New York, NY

#18 Feb 15, 2013
formerresident wrote:
I still want my day in court.
Good luck.
formerresident

Decatur, GA

#19 Feb 15, 2013
Regarding water at the street. Multiple accidents have happened before and after the flood, at the street. It took the extreme flood for me to get the clarity that the back and front were related. Obvious now, but not then.

Chapel Hill Stewart Mill was lined with a few dotted homes and a convenience store named Grands, with a gas station there. That was the only commercial business. Today it is very busy and very paved. Stormwater travels fast over pavement and it picks up materials. The oil from cars and pavement enters our water supply, and pollutes it.

The water in the streets, is from permitting this area up above without consideration to downstream land and homes. Not only are we wiping us out, we are wasting a tremendous amount of water. We are not being good stewards.
We are literally sending water down the drain. And we are paying quite a bit of money unnecessarily this way.
This isn't just a pipe.This is a culvert requiring structural and civil engineers. It should not be under a driveway. I didn't put it there, and never doubted everything was just as it is supposed to be. It took me 25 years to learn all that. It is at the center of where city and county meet, and it is handling water for 1986, not today.

I have tried to be a leader and help with a better way, but what I have learned is too out of the box for my core values. I was just a concerned homeowner who came forward, and was fed up in the process. I had no idea what I would find. It was personal. It was my home. My land.

I have not had safe access into my home for three years.
There are serious gaps in services for homeowners in the USA. They threaten our liberty. Addressing them is basic to our freedom, as Americans.

All of us need to come together and begin looking at our water, as water is the key to our economic recovery.

And I just want my day in court.

The end.

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