Out of Control Policy Blog

Privatized Georgia City Dunwoody Off to a Good Fiscal Start

Georgia's latest new privately-run city, the five month old Dunwoody, has just released its first quarterly report, and I'd wager that other cities are envious thus far—revenues are up, and costs are down from what was originally projected.

One quarter into its existence as Georgia’s newest city and it appears Dunwoody will reach its lofty goal of offering more services for the same price tag, but only if it keeps cutting costs. Revenues were up $120,000 for the first quarter, while the city held expenses down nearly $700,000, as compared with projections, according to a quarterly report released last week.

Not to mention that citizens are now getting enhanced services relative to what Dekalb County was providing before the city's December 2008 incorporation. In all, I'd say that citizens appear to be getting far better value for money thus far, which has been the case in each of the privatized Georgia cities.

In other Dunwoody news, the new city council is currently debating whether to go public or private with the establishment of their new Convention and Visitors Bureau:

Dunwoody officials know that they will start their own taxpayer-subsidized group to promote tourism sometime this summer, but they’re still debating the question of how. Will the Convention and Visitors Bureau be an arm of government, or will private interests oversee the hundreds of thousands of dollars that the hotel tax generates every year? [...]

The Dunwoody Chamber of Commerce feels so strongly that the dollars be funneled to a private group that it has set up a nonprofit organization to do the work. "In areas where you have the private sector ready, willing and able to fill this role, it really should not be considered as a function of government," said chamber President Joe DeVita. "Otherwise, that’s socialism."

See Reason's Annual Privatization Report 2008 for an update on this new wave of privatized cities in Georgia.

» Reason's Privatization Research and Commentary

Leonard Gilroy is Director of Government Reform


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