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03 February 2016

Donzella James Rejects Community's Call for Town Hall Meeting on Proposed Creflo Dollar Highway

This is stubbornness on display, for all to see.

Despite growing protests against the bill to rename a state highway in honor of controversial pastor Creflo Dollar, state Senator Donzella James (D - Atlanta) refuses to back down.

James says those complaining about her Dollar bill are "misinformed."

Now, business owners and community activists along the proposed Creflo Dollar Highway are making their voices heard.

WSB-TV spoke with a few of them, and this is what they had to say:

“Once the sun goes down, Old National is a different place. Once bible study and Sunday service is over, it’s a different place,” said Marcus Coleman, the founder of Save Ourselves.
Coleman, a community activist, grew up off of Old National Highway. He and business owners are upset with state Sen. Donzella James’ proposal to dedicate a portion of the highway between Highway 138 and Interstate 285 Creflo Dollar Highway.

“It’s asinine to think about dedicating a street where the blood is still flowing on the street,” Coleman said.

Lucie, Craig (1 February 2016). Business owners upset over proposal for Creflo Dollar Highway. WSB-TV. Retrieved on 3 February 2016.

Citizens living within the Old National community have longed raised concerns about the main thoroughfare's crime problem.

According to incidents reported to by the Fulton County Police Department, 92 crimes took place in the greater Old National Hwy community between 21 January and 3 February 2016 -- including several armed robberies and numerous assaults. In addition, there have been several prostitution stings along Old National, netting 10 arrests in 2013 and 17 arrests in 2011.

All this occurred within the shadow of Creflo Dollar's World Changers Church International, which tax records say is worth $29,369,800.

“I think they have their own island on Old National, and there’s the rest of Old National and the rest of Old National is not indicative of what’s going on around his place,” Greg Brown, who is affiliated with the business 112 Mega-Plex, told WSB-TV.

Marcus Coleman says he asked Senator James for a town hall meeting on the controversial street renaming, and was flatly rejected.

"As an elected official, knowing that this has caused a lot of conflict in the community, let's organize a town hall and hear from the residents in the area," Coleman says he proposed to Senator James. "Very foolishly, she stated that there's nothing to talk about and she doesn't have to listen to folks."