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Congressman Calls Residents with Changed Zip Code Descriptions "Victims" - New Cities Blamed

Since the very beginning of our efforts to "Save Tucker!," members of this group have spoken to elected officials, city advocates, at public meetings and in various forms of social media about the need to protect our Tucker zip code before anything else. 

For at least the past 40 or more years, Tucker, at the very least, has been identified by its own unique zip code, 30084.  The zip code 30085 is also called "Tucker" but contains only the P.O. Boxes at our Tucker Post Office.  The 30084 zip code has identified and unified the community because whenever anyone signed a lease or mortgage for property, they knew they were buying something that's located in Tucker.  

This is the shape of the Tucker zip code and its original CDP (which were one and the same):  



In fact, it was the zip code that was the first known "Census Designated Place" boundary set for Tucker in 2000.  Then, in 2010, that boundary changed a little based on shifts in where the residents lived.  Inside the perimeter, in the Tucker zip code,  no longer contained enough residential to be considered part of any "Census Designated Place" because the census does not study commercial areas.  The census has a sole purpose of counting people in our country and identifying various aspects of  their demographic and social  makeup.  So, it is focused on people and where they live, not business locations.  The change in the use of the area inside the perimeter didn't mean it was no longer something considered Tucker.  It only shows how the commercial area was growing.

And, the residential area of Tucker was growing as well.  So much that the Census, in 2010 attributed the Evansdale area to the Tucker CDP.   That's when the CDP looked more like this:


We sent numerous letters, emails and made phone calls to those elected to represent us, but Tucker was so gerrymandered that it was next to impossible to find one person who cared enough to go to bat for Tucker.

We have held on to our belief that, if incorporated purely based on its zip code, Tucker would be a great success.  Even if we were allowed to become a township, Tucker residents would be happy knowing they kept the community together and big government at bay.   But, time and again, we were attacked online and ridiculed by the pro-Lakeside supporters who wanted everyone to believe that zip codes are not important.

Well, tell that now to Brookhaven and Atlanta, where both cities are involved in sorting out the problem with drawing lines on a map without regard to where you actually are and who else might be impacted by what you are doing. 

Bottom line:  Zip codes matter.  A lot.  And, we hope everyone joins us in asking the first elected city council and mayor to go out there and annex the land that is currently called Tucker by zip code and get it into our map.  That is the area that has always been known as Tucker and was only taken away when we were forced to a compromise that never should have been necessary.

If your address says Tucker, you live in Tucker.   That used to be the way things worked.   And everyone was happy with most everything EXCEPT the school system - the one thing you all agree about when it comes to what will NOT be impacted by new cities.   Well, guess you were wrong ... AGAIN! 


NEW CITIES IN GEORGIA CAUSING PROBLMES WITH ZIP CODES

CBS46 News Brookhaven, GA, February 26, 2016 – by Trey Benton – Dexter Chambers, Council Communications Director for the City of Atlanta, wrote in a news release that Atlanta City Councilman, Howard Shook, is investigating why an unknown number of his City of Atlanta constituents are receiving mail post-marked ‘City of Brookhaven.’

“The new city, carved out of what had been unincorporated DeKalb County, had successfully lobbied members of Congress to prevail upon the United States Postal Service to make the changes necessary to have Brookhaven residents recognized as such on their mail,” writes Chambers.

Shook represents Atlanta’s District Seven, which abuts Brookhaven’s western border on a line splitting areas such as the Historic Brookhaven and Pine Hills neighborhoods. Like the City of Brookhaven, the City of Atlanta also shares the 30319 zip code, and that’s where Shook says the problem starts.

“The problem is,” said Councilman Shook, “I’m hearing reports of Atlanta residents in the 30319 zip code receiving DeKalb County jury summonses, and having problems with credit card transactions and drivers licenses. Life is hard enough without having to put up with such headaches.”

A letter from the US Postal Service dated October 7, 2014, shows that Congressman Tom Price, who represents Georgia’s Sixth District, requested the Postal Service code their AMS database to allow for addresses that fall within 30319 and 30329, to come up in searches as Brookhaven. Judging by the USPS letter, the request was only intended to effect Brookhaven 30319 specific addresses, not the zip code at-large.

“All addresses in the city limits of Brookhaven have been identified and appropriate approvals have been procured,” US Postal Service District Manager Scott Raymond wrote in the Letter. “Brookhaven has been coded as the Preferred Last Line for the block ranges containing the addresses residing in the city limits of Brookhaven. Using the same query tool as above and same entry scenarios, the Preferred Last Line coded to the block ranges will be the standardized last line returned Brookhaven but will also return Atlanta if the city name is entered in the field as such.” (Emphasis added)

Shook says it is unclear if the requested change of address was meant only for Brookhaven residents or the entire 30319 zip code, which includes thousands of residents in the cities of Atlanta and Sandy Springs.

The City of Brookhaven has issued a statement about the issue. 

“This postal change occurred under the previous administration, and we were under the impression that it meant the use of “Brookhaven” in mailings was merely an option for those in our city limits,” Brookhaven Communications Manager Ann Marie Quill said in a statement. “The city of Brookhaven will work to understand exactly where the problem lies and what the city can do to lessen the impact to our great neighbors in the city of Atlanta.”

Shook urges Atlantans who have been victimized by the change to contact him at hshook@atlantaga.gov

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