Atlanta City Council Approves Legislation Setting Penalties for Street Racing, Adopts Ordinance for Peace Museum Complex at Rodney Cook Sr. ParkATLANTA — The Atlanta City Council approved legislation during Monday’s remote meeting to amend the City’s code of ordinances to regulate and set penalties for violations for non-driver participation in street racing and reckless driving exhibitions (Legislative Reference No. 20-O-1361). According to the legislation, violations will be punished by a minimum fine of $1,000 and court costs or imprisonment for not more than six months, or by any one or more of these punishments subject to all limitations contained in the charter of the city or applicable state law. The Council also adopted an ordinance authorizing the mayor to negotiate and enter into a lease agreement with the National Monuments Foundation for property within Rodney Cook Sr. Park whereby the terms of the lease include the foundation’s development of the Peace Museum Complex at no cost to the City and to accept a donation of an artwork installation dedicated to Congressman John Lewis (Legislative Reference No. 20-O-1334). Additionally, the Council approved legislation to add the Atlanta Citizen Review Board as a charter-mandated board (Legislative Reference No. 20-O-1477). Monday’s vote was the second of three readings required for a charter amendment. Created in 2007, the Citizen Review Board was formed to provide citizen oversight of misconduct accusations against sworn members of the City’s police and corrections departments. The legislation is aimed at further strengthening the board’s role. Other items adopted Monday include: • An ordinance to extend the concessions agreements at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport for a period not to exceed 36 months in response to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic (Legislative Reference No. 20-O-1479). • An ordinance authorizing a memorandum of understanding with the Fulton County Board of Health to administer certain public health services in an amount not to exceed $7.7 million for COVID-19 testing and tracing services (Legislative Reference No. 20-O-1481). • A resolution requesting the Atlanta Police Department explore alternative non-lethal methods of crowd control and consider utilizing a malodorant chemical compound (stink bomb), wrapping apparatus, laser dazzler, or other methods available (Legislative Reference No. 20-R-4122). • An ordinance ratifying the mayor’s executive order calling on the Atlanta Housing Authority, Atlanta Beltline Inc., Fulton County/City of Atlanta Land Bank Authority, Invest Atlanta, Partners for Home and the City of Atlanta’s Department of Grants and Community Development to institute a temporary moratorium on residential evictions and filings and declare that the moratorium shall remain in effect for a period of 60 days through Aug. 31 (Legislative Reference No. 20-O-1484). The Council adopted legislation on May 4 (Legislative Reference No. 20-O-1297) issuing the same moratorium pursuant to a previous executive order by the mayor that expired July 10. The Council also immediately adopted the following items: • A resolution requesting that the Atlanta Police Department adopt the “8 Can’t Wait” principles and pursue amendments to the department’s standard operating procedures related to use of force. • A resolution authorizing the City of Atlanta to accept the donation of an artwork installation dedicated to Congressman John Lewis in Rodney Cook Sr. Park for a value not to exceed $350,000. Several items were also introduced to be considered in committee next week, including: • A resolution urging the Georgia General Assembly to review and revise state statutes related to search warrants and update it to ban the use of no-knock warrants.
About Atlanta City CouncilThe Atlanta City Council is the chief policy-making body for the City of Atlanta. It acts by considering and enacting all laws that govern the City. The council also approves the operating and capital budgets for the City as recommended by the mayor, and it continually monitors revenues and expenditures for local government operations. The Atlanta City Council reviews and has final say on many land-use and zoning matters. Major economic development projects for the City also fall under the council’s consideration.
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