Above-average temperatures often occur when people don’t notice or care, such as at night or in the winter months. Add in the fact that the year ended with colder-than-average weather and it’s easy to overlook the warmth of 2017.
We’re still waiting on a decision in the Florida v. Georgia waters wars case and it will finally arrive on Wednesday morning after the Supreme Court added two additional days to issue opinions. Back in January when Florida and Georgia made their arguments to the Court, several justices appeared sympathetic to Florida. Meanwhile, in a brief on the matter, Atlanta asserted that the Supreme Court shouldn’t even attempt to help Florida because the benefits of the environment are often too vague to be valued.
The Georgia Supreme Court recently seemed to endorse the idea that sidewalks are necessary to promote the health and safety of residents. Well, kind of. At the very least, the Court’s ruling highlights the necessity of adopting urban planning policies that are focused less on cars and more on the well-being of residents.
Pro-helmet and anti-helmet advocates both make compelling arguments in the quest to make cycling safer. While better urban design principles would fundamentally solve the safety problem, courts may find that cyclists have a duty to wear a helmet.
Cities are in love with small coffee shops, artisan burger shops, and boutique clothing stores. The only thing they like more is taking people’s property and converting it to those types of businesses. This is, of course, a bit of hyperbole, though many would make that statement with much more sincerity. A bill passed by the Georgia Legislature would allow local governments to condemn blighted property and sell it to developers. It’s not a bad idea.
A bill in the Georgia Legislature would allow property owners to swap “No Trespassing” signs for purple lines to ward off trespassing. Without a widespread campaign to educate the public, the use of such an arbitrary symbol could make criminals out of innocent hikers and outdoorsmen.
Congress looks to overturn an Obama-era rule designed to track racial discrepancies in access to affordable housing by gutting federal funding for critical GIS data. The American Association of Geographers has taken a strong stance saying these actions “…could have far-reaching consequences on federally-sponsored research on racial discrimination, including on federal human health programs; census issues; education programs, including services for children; Department of Justice programs; and other critical programs.”
Sewer and water drainage systems, the unsung heroes of our communities, are tasked with managing stormwater runoff; yet cities and counties often struggle to convince citizens that such systems are worth the investment. Several Georgia Senators had a grand plan to undermine the system by cutting fees for larger developers at the expense of the average homeowner.