Friday, January 29, 2016

Fulton County to Open 24 Early Voting Locations for the 2016 Presidential Preference Primary and City of Atlanta Special Election

In an effort to provide residents with more choices and convenience, the Fulton County Department of Registration will open 24 early voting locations for registered voters to cast their ballots for the 2016 Presidential Preference Primary and City of Atlanta Special Election. Election Day will be Tuesday, March 1, 2016.
“After reviewing past voter patterns, we have developed a strategic plan to provide our residents with more choices on when and where to cast their votes,” stated Richard Barron, Director of Fulton County Registration and Elections.   “We strongly encourage residents to take advantage of the early voting period that includes polls being opened on two Saturdays and two Sundays.”

Click here for early voting locations will be open here.


Friday, January 22, 2016

Fulton County Government Offices - Will Close at 1:30 p.m. Friday, January 22

Fulton County Government offices will close at 1:30 p.m. today, Friday, January 22, in response to a Winter Weather Advisory taking effect this afternoon. The Fulton County Courthouse and Annexes will close in accordance with the announced closure time.

The 1:30 p.m. closure time will allow a staggered dismissal for Fulton County and other employers in the downtown Atlanta area where the majority of the County’s workforce is located.  

Fulton County facilities including libraries and parks will remain closed on Saturday, January 23. Events and activities scheduled for Saturday will be cancelled.

Mission essential personnel will remain on duty to provide services to the public during this weather event.

Fulton County residents and employees should continue to monitor media reports regarding the weather and closures.  Fulton County will notify the public of closures through the following channels:

• Local media outlet closure information
• Fulton County website at
• Fulton County Government Social Media accounts -- @FultonInfo on Twitter and Facebook

Residents may also monitor Twitter updates from the Atlanta-Fulton County Emergency Management Agency @AFCEMA.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Fulton County Commissioners Approve Final 2016 Budget Key investments include Justice Reinvestment, Roads, Police Body Cameras, and More

At their January 20, 2016 meeting, the Fulton County Board of Commissioners approved a final 2016 budget. The $669 million General Fund budget will fund a range of services for citizens in six key priority areas.  

“Today was a great example of what can be accomplished when we set the right priorities. Budgets are never perfect and they are never easy,” said Fulton County Board of Commissioners Chairman John H. Eaves. “But what we achieved today ensures that our vital services will continue and the overall quality of life for Fulton residents will be enriched.”

The General Fund budget aligns budget priorities with the recently adopted Strategic Plan, as well as innovation and efficiency measures. Among these is   $5 million Justice Re-Investment Initiative which seeks to reduce the jail population, and to develop an integrated court system through a series of new programs. These funds represent approximately 2.5% of the total investment in the Fulton County Justice System. The Justice System as a whole equates to approximately 40% of the General Fund budget.

The 2016 budget also includes a number of investments to improve key infrastructure areas. These include allocations of $20 million dollars to capital improvements at Fulton County government offices and facilities; $6 million for IT Infrastructure, and $5 million for transportation projects in unincorporated Fulton County. In addition, the Budget allocates funding for evaluation and development of a plan to address a minimum “living wage” salary for permanent, full-time employees.

Commissioners also allocated funds to law enforcement in the unincorporated Fulton County through the South Fulton Tax District budget.   These dollars will pay for the salaries of 9 additional Fulton County Police officers and fund body cameras and police vehicle dash cameras.   In addition, the budget allocates funds for a new Parks Security program within the Parks and Recreation Department.

“We are pleased to present a budget that emphasizes outcomes for citizens instead of simply funding expenses,” says County Manager Dick Anderson.   “Our Board of Commissioners has demonstrated great vision in establishing a budget that will maximize impact in our six priority areas.”

For more information, visit Fulton County’s website at or connect with Fulton County government on Twitter at @FultonInfo or Facebook at /FultonInfo.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Fulton County Commissioners Participating in Martin Luther King Day Observances

Throughout the weekend celebrating the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., members of the Fulton County Board of Commissioners will be participating in area events honoring the civil rights icon.

On Friday, January 15, 2016, District 4 Commissioner Joan Garner participated in the 13th Annual King Holiday Human Rights Prayer Breakfast at the Hyatt Regency Downtown. This event was coordinated by The Atlanta North Georgia Labor Council AFL/CIO.  The commissioner joined religious, human rights, civil rights, labor, business, political and community leaders at this tribute to Dr. King's legacy. 
On Saturday, January 16, 2016 at 12 p.m., District 5 Commissioner Marvin S. Arrington, Jr. will give remarks and, along with Fulton County Board of Commissioners Chairman John H. Eaves, will present a proclamation honoring the Black Pilots of America at their annual winter meeting at the Holiday Inn Express and Suites, 3833 Princeton Lakes Court, SW, Atlanta GA 30331. That morning, as part of the King Memorial Day of Service, Commissioner Arrington will be among those participating in a service project at the Maynard Jackson High School Rooftop Garden at 801 Glenwood Ave SE, Atlanta, Georgia 30312.
On Monday, January 18, 2016 at 10:00 a.m. Chairman Eaves, will provide the keynote address during the MLK Day Community Celebration hosted by the City of Sandy Springs. This will be the tenth year the City of Sandy Springs hosts a celebration of the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  The commemoration will be at the Sandy Springs Council Chambers, Sandy Springs City Hall, 7840 Roswell Road, Building 500, Sandy Springs, Georgia 30350.  District 2 Commissioner Bob Ellis will also be participating in the same commemoration.
Also at 10 a.m., Commissioner Garner plans to attend Monday’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Annual Commemorative Service at the Horizon Sanctuary of Ebenezer Baptist Church at 407 Auburn Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30312.
District 6 Commissioner Emma I. Darnell plans to attend commemorative events recognizing Dr. King’s Birthday throughout District 6.

Fulton County Southwest Arts Center Gallery Presents Windows to the Soul: The Human Eye & Our Health Visual Art Exhibition

Art and medicine come together in a dynamic, 3-D photography exhibit titled Windows to the Soul: The Human Eye and Our Health  at the Southwest Arts Center, 915 New Hope Road SW,  Atlanta, 30311.   The exhibit highlights the human eye and features highly-detailed images that are captured through state-of-the art medical photography equipment.

The show opens with a reception on January 29, 2016, 7:00pm – 9:00pm, featuring words from artist Kenneth Thompson and a health education presentation by the Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness.  The 3-D photo exhibit runs Tuesday – Friday, Feb. 2 –26.   9:00am – 5:00pm.  Stereoscopic 3-D glasses provided.

Windows to the Soul features the “eye-popping” photography of Kenneth Thompson, an Atlanta-based, award-winning ophthalmic photographer who has photographed more than 100,000 patients throughout his 35-year career.   Considered as one of the most experienced ophthalmic photographers in Georgia, Thompson is a three-time winner of the Ophthalmology Times magazine "Photo of the Month"  contest.  According to Thompson, the eyes are often referred to as the windows to the soul.  The health of the eyes can indicate a person’s level of health. Early signs of eye diseases such as glaucoma or macular degeneration and underlying diseases such as diabetes, high cholesterol and hypertension can also be detected with ophthalmic photography during a comprehensive eye exam.

Wishing to “shock” people into taking better care of their health, Thompson has selected some of his “scariest images” to draw dramatic attention to the importance of eye health and its connection to overall health.  “I want to inspire people to get proactive about their health and encourage them to get a comprehensive eye exam. Often times we don’t discover these diseases until it’s too late,” explains Thompson.

Art and Medicine Spark Insightful Health Presentation

During the opening reception, Fulton County Health Promoter Patricia Jackson will give a brief presentation on eye health and chronic diseases. Atlanta ranks high in many chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC.)  In light of the high rates of these chronic diseases prevalent in metro Atlanta, Fulton County Health Department acknowledges the public health merit of the exhibit.  “Window to the Soul" is a timely exhibit to help educate the public and a creative partnership between Fulton County Health and Wellness and Fulton County Arts and Culture,” Jackson explains.

About the Exhibit:

The exhibit consists of 50 photographs of retinal images used by ophthamologists.  The images are mounted in art glass and clip frames and are accompanied by brief explanations of the disease featured in the photograph.  There are 20, 11x14-inch images and 30, 16x20-inch, parallel-view or stereoscopic  3D images.  Visual artist and Fulton County Arts Education Coordinator Brian Hebert is the co-curator of the show, working alongside Thompson.

Viewers can get a 3-D look at the internal structure of the eyes and gain insight on how signs of eye diseases such as glaucoma and macular degeneration appear in eyes and how chronic diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure damage the eyes.

“This is an outstanding exhibit for educators and their students. It is scientific, visual and engaging and therefore educational.  The 3-D pictures will open kids’ eyes to another world of existence…the rare career opportunity of ophthalmic photography and medical illustration,” Thompson explains.

About the Artist:

Kenneth Thompson is a photographer and medical illustrator who works in the highly specialized filed of ophthalmic photography.  He uses high tech equipment to document the inner workings of the human eyes.  These images help inform the ophthalmologist of the health condition of the patient’s eyes. Thompson is considered by his peers to be an “eye imaging expert.”  He earned a B.S. in medical illustration from Clark College and is a member of the Ophthalmic Photographers’ Society.

Fulton County and City of Atlanta Parks and Recreation Departments Partner with the Atlanta Hawks to Bring the 2016 Jr. Hawks MLK Classic Presented by Georgia Power to Area Youth

The Jr. Hawks MLK Classic is part of the Hawks’ True Comes in All Colors: Celebrating Black History events and recognizes young basketball players for their academic and athletic success 

On Sunday, January 17, and Monday, January 18, 2016, nearly 100 student-athletes from Fulton County and City of Atlanta Parks and Recreation leagues will participate in the
Jr. Hawks MLK Classic basketball exhibition and tour the Center for Civil and Human Rights.

The youth, 5th through 8th graders,  were selected to participate in this two-day celebration of Black History based on their academic accomplishments, community involvement and their performance on the basketball court.

Events begin Sunday with Hawks Players Mike Muscala and Justin Holiday leading the group on a tour of the Center for Civil and Human Rights in downtown Atlanta.  The following day,
Hawks Alumni will coach the games at Adamsville Recreation Center for both girls and boys. Participants will receive customized Jr. Hawks jerseys, shorts and bags.  Additionally, each
student will receive tickets to the Atlanta Hawks game on Monday at 5 p.m. when the Hawks take on the Orlando Magic.

True Comes In All Colors is the Atlanta Hawks diversity and inclusion campaign that spotlights the cultural contributions of various ethnicities throughout the city. 

“The Atlanta Hawks are thrilled to be reprising our partnership with Fulton County and the City of Atlanta for this annual MLK game.  The addition of Georgia Power as presenting
sponsor makes it even more exciting.  The collaboration is a testament to our commitment to help foster the leaders of tomorrow on and off the court,” said David Lee, Senior Vice President
of Hawks External Affairs & Executive Director of the Atlanta Hawks Foundation.  “Dr. King’s legacy lives in all Jr. Hawks scholar-athletes, and providing these types of unique opportunities serves to broaden their horizons and make them better world citizens."

Georgia Power agrees these types of  partnerships are needed to strengthen communities for the success of our children.

"The legacy of Dr. King resonates every day in Atlanta and we're proud to support the local students selected for the MLK Classic in collaboration with the Hawks, Fulton County and the
City of Atlanta," said Pedro Cherry, Metro Atlanta senior vice president for Georgia Power." At Georgia Power, strengthening our local communities through education-related efforts such
as this tournament is part of our commitment to being a citizen wherever we serve."

Tony Phillips, the Director of Fulton County Parks and Recreation said, “ The partnership between the Atlanta Hawks and Fulton County Parks and Recreation has provided this unique opportunity for youth in our community to have an inspiring experience during the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday weekend, learn about civil rights and their history, and participate in the sport they love. We look forward to future opportunities this invaluable partnership will provide.     

The All-Stars schedule of events is listed below:

Sunday, January 17
11:00 a.m.       Center for Civil and Human Rights Tour
12:00 p.m.       Luncheon
12:30 p.m.       Speak Up, Speak Out Workshop

Monday, January 18
9:00 a.m.         5th & 6th grade girls all-star game
10:15 a.m.       5th & 6th grade boys all-star game
11:30 a.m.       7th & 8th grade girls all-star game
12:45 p.m.       7th & 8th grade boys all-star game

Fulton County Parks and Recreation formed a working partnership with the Atlanta Hawks through a memorandum of understanding approved by the Fulton County Board of
Commissioners in 2015. This partnership has proved to be invaluable for the youth of South Fulton as well as the community at large. 

For additional information about the event contact Fulton County Parks and Recreation at (404) 612- PARK (7275) or visit us a or visit the hawks at Follow Fulton County on Twitter @FultonInfo and the Hawks @ATLHawks

Friday, January 8, 2016

Residents Invited to Participate in Public Hearing on Self-Pay for Developmental Disability Services on January 20, 2016

Proposal Will Allow Citizens to Pay for Services at County’s Three Training Centers

The Fulton County Board of Commissioners is seeking public attendance and comment at a hearing on a proposal to adopt the option of self-pay for services for adults with developmental disabilities in the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities. 

The proposed fees for the behavioral health and developmental disability services cover the cost of Community Access Group and Pre-Vocational services offered at the North, Central and South Training Centers.  The proposal would extend these services to residents whose family “would prefer to pay out of pocket” by establishing a fee structure for those who wish to self-pay for the service.  Residents who currently utilize “Medicaid Waivers” will continue to receive the services for adults with developmental disabilities at no charge.

The public hearing will be held at the Board’s January 20, 2016 meeting in the Assembly Hall of the Fulton County Government Center, 141 Pryor Street, SW. Atlanta, Georgia  30303. Residents wishing to comment on the proposed fee structure should attend the meeting. 

The proposed rates are as follows:

· An annual fee of $17,856 covers services for 5 days per week at 6 hours per day; 
· Monthly fees for the above are $1562.  Citizens may pay by the week, day or hourly at 
these rates:
· Weekly $372.00
· Daily $74.40
· Hourly $12.40

For additional information, please contact Interim BHDD Director of Clinical Services LaTrina Foster by email,, or by phone, 404-612-1687.

If you need reasonable modifications due to a disability, including communications in an alternate format, please contact Dr. Kim Turner, Fulton County Dept. of Health and Wellness, 404-613-1242.  For TDD/TTY or Georgia Relay Service Access dial 711.

Announcement of Public Hearing on Self-Pay Fees for
Behavioral Health & Developmental Disability Services
WHO: Fulton County Board of Commissioners
WHEN: Wednesday, January 20, 2016, 10:00 am

2-acre Oak Hill Child, Adolescent & Family Center

WHERE: Fulton County Government Center Assembly Hall
141 Pryor Street, SW
Atlanta, GA  30303

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Fulton Board Adopts New Strategic Plan

Plan sets bold strategies for success in six priority areas

At its January 6 meeting, the Fulton County Board of Commissioners adopted a Strategic Plan, which lays out Fulton County's strategies for success over the next three years.
The plan was developed with input from Fulton County employees and residents, as well as the Board of Commissioners, with targets in six key priority areas:

* All People are Safe.
* All People are Healthy.
* All People are Self-Sufficient.
* All People have Economic Opportunities.
* All People's Lives are Culturally & Recreationally Enriched.
* All People Trust Government is Efficient, Effective and Fiscally Sound. 

"This plan provides a framework to move forward with the work that Fulton County constituents seek now and in the future," says Fulton County Board of Commissioners Chairman John H. Eaves. "After talking to constituents, we took a long hard look at what issues and concerns they wanted and needed to see addressed."

County Manager Dick Anderson said, "The new Strategic Plan will serve as our "playbook" in guiding Fulton County's delivery of efficient, high-impact service to every resident and visitor of Fulton County. Importantly, this plan documents Fulton County's role as a catalyst for regional success, in addition to our role as a service provider."

Chief Strategy Officer Anna Roach led the strategy teams that developed innovative, high impact strategies in the six priority areas . "The adoption of the strategic plan is a very exciting development for Fulton County. Our team looks most forward to the performance management work that will flow from the adoption of the strategic plan, because the result will be greater accountability and transparency for citizens."

In implementing the plan, Fulton County will launch a citizen-facing performance management system, providing regular updates about progress in the key strategy areas. In coming months, residents will be able to monitor progress through web-based dash boards. Residents will also have opportunities to remain engaged in implementing the strategies.

Note: Please find the adopted Fulton County strategic plan here. 

Patrise Perkins-Hooker Confirmed as Fulton County Attorney

By a unanimous vote, the Fulton County Board of Commissioners confirmed Patrise Perkins-Hooker as Fulton County Attorney. On December 16, 2015, Ms. Perkins-Hooker was named the sole finalist for the post. Ms. Perkins-Hooker has served as Vice President and General Counsel for Atlanta BeltLine, Inc. (ABI) for the last 6 years.

"I want to thank the Commissioners for appointing me to this position and I am humbled by their confidence in me," said Patrise Perkins-Hooker, the new Fulton County Attorney. "I am excited about the opportunity to work with the team at Fulton County and to continue the tradition of delivering quality legal services of behalf of its residents."

"When we were looking to fill the vital position of County Attorney, the Board of Commissioners was looking for a legal mind who understands the unique concerns of a governmental entity," says Fulton County Board of Commissioners Chairman John H. Eaves. "Ms. Perkins-Hooker's work with the Atlanta BeltLine and much of her prior experience demonstrates that unique understanding of many of the legal issues facing Fulton County."

Patrise Perkins-Hooker has worked as a practicing attorney for more than 2 decades and is the Immediate Past President of the State Bar of Georgia. Prior to joining the Atlanta Beltline, Ms. Perkins-Hooker was a partner with the law firm of Hollowell, Foster & Gepp, PC and the owner of her own law firm, Patrise Perkins-Hooker and Associates, PC. Ms. Perkins-Hooker is an honors graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology and earned both a Juris Doctor and a Master of Business Administration degree from Emory Law and Business Schools respectively. She is admitted to the Georgia, Federal District and Tax Courts. She has served as a Past President of both the Emory Business School Alumni Association and the Gate City Bar Association. The latter organization also inducted Ms. Perkins-Hooker into its Hall of Fame.

Ms. Perkins-Hooker is a former Trustee of the Georgia Institute of Technology's Alumni Association and was selected as its Outstanding Young Alumnus for 1988. She has served her community in various capacities for civic and community organizations including Hosea Feed the Hungry. She has received numerous honors for her service to the legal profession and the community, including receiving the Leah Ward Sears Award for Distinguished Service to the Profession and the Eleonore Raoul Greene Trailblazer Award from Emory University Law School.

Patrise Perkins-Hooker is married to Douglas R. Hooker and they have two children and eight grandchildren. She is scheduled to assume her new duties on January 14, 2016. For more information, visit Fulton County's website at or connect with Fulton County Government on Twitter at @FultonInfo or Facebook at Fulton County Government.

Commissioner Hausmann Voted Fulton County Board of Commissioners' Vice-Chairman

For the second year in a row, Fulton County District 1 Commissioner Liz Hausmann was elected the Board of Commissioners' Vice-Chairman. Commissioner Hausmann is the first Commissioner from North Fulton to hold that post.

"I consider it a great honor to be selected by my colleagues to hold this post for a second time," says Commissioner Hausmann. "I truly appreciate their support in allowing me to hold this leadership position once again."
Commissioner Hausmann was first elected to the Board of Commissioners in 2012. Ms. Hausmann was elected in 2006 to serve on the initial City Council for the newly established City of Johns Creek, Georgia. Commissioner Hausmann is also a former member of the Fulton County Board of Education.

For more information, visit Fulton County's website at

Monday, January 4, 2016

Fulton County Launches New $20 Million Public Safety Radio System

Fulton County is launching a new Public Safety Radio system this week, providing state-of-the art communications for public safety personnel.  Chairman John H. Eaves and the Fulton County Emergency Communications Department will host a brief preview of the system on Monday, January 4, 2016 at 10 a.m. in the Fulton County 911 Center. 

Fulton County’s new public safety radio system represents an investment of approximately $20 million in public safety telecommunications.  More than 3,500 personnel from more than 20 public safety agencies throughout Fulton County will use the system to allow them to communicate effectively with other public safety personnel, including dispatchers and first responders.  Fulton County’s public safety radio system represents the largest in the state of Georgia. The new system significantly expands coverage from 9 radio sites to 15. 

“Safety of our residents and first responders is our first priority,” said Chairman John H. Eaves.  “The new Fulton County Public Safety radio system offers state-of-the-art communication that will benefit public safety personnel and  Fulton County residents.  This new system highlights Fulton County’s ongoing commitment to public safety.”

“Fulton County’s investment in the new public safety radio system represents a significant step forward in our public safety infrastructure,” said Fulton County Emergency Services Director 911 Joseph Barasoain. “With the expanded coverage, public safety personnel will have seamless access to critical information in the field.”

Using Motorola Solutions ASTRO® 25 network, Fulton County first responders will be able to communicate with other agencies throughout Fulton County and in counties throughout the Metro Atlanta area. The new standards-based digital network replaces an existing analog radio system.