Declining Property Value

Issues

Our great city Lithonia is being destroyed by blighted properties owned by irresponsible investors and unsympathetic banks. Our local business and gas stations parking lots are littered with trash and over flowing garbage dumpsters. The property values of our homes is the lowest in the state of Georgia. According to a 2014 survey the average property value in the state of Georgia is $159,300. In Lithonia the average property value is $86,881. That is a 45% decrease compared to the average property value in the State of Georgia.

Economic Development
Issues
1. Need for a Downtown Development Authority to promote business development.
2. Need for more shops and restaurants to complement existing Main Street businesses.
3. Need for a stronger collection of high-quality businesses to reinforce the downtown area.
4. City’s tax base is small and needs to be expanded.
5. Need for small business assistance and entrepreneur training.
6. Need for more high-wage jobs within the city.
7. Need for workforce training and continuing education opportunities.
8. Need for enhanced collaboration with area educational institutions such as DeKalb
Technical College.
Opportunities
1. Research the appropriate type of Development Authority to assist in the redevelopment of the Lithonia Plaza and the attraction of additional shops and restaurants to Main Street and the commercial core to increase the city’s tax base.
2. Expand city’s tax base by pursuing annexation options.
3. Develop partnership with DeKalb County Workforce Development and other entities to
provide job-training opportunities.
4. Develop partnership with appropriate entities to provide entrepreneurship training and small business development.
5. Develop partnership with local businesses and business associations to expand
employment opportunities.
6. Explore development of Business Improvement District (BID) and/or Community
Improvement District (CID).
Housing
Issues
1. Displacement of existing residents if a housing policy is not pursued that recognizes the various levels of affordability.
2. Majority of the houses are renter-occupied rather than owner-occupied.
3. More housing choices are needed in the downtown area that includes lofts, townhomes, and single family.
4. There is a perception that an over concentration of public housing exists in the city.
5. Lack of code enforcement to address abandoned and vacant properties.
6. Limited data on the special housing needs of the homeless, disabled, persons recovering
from substance abuse, persons living with HIV/AIDS, etc.
7. Limited data on jobs-housing balance in the city