The residents of the community sandwiched between Chamblee and the proposed city of Brookhaven will now have the opportunity to join Chamblee if they choose.

House Bill 1006 allows Chamblee to annex the neighborhoods and businesses around Plaza Fiesta should a majority of residents vote for it in the November election.

Chamblee Mayor Eric Clarkson said he is happy that the people in that area will have the opportunity to vote on joining Chamblee.

“I personally think it will benefit the city in that it will give a larger sense of community to the people that don’t live in the limits of Chamblee,” he said.

The bill, which made it smoothly through the legislature and recently was signed by Gov. Nathan Deal, is a success story of local government, Clarkson said.

“I believe this is very organically driven from folks that live in those neighborhoods,” Clarkson said. “They approached their state representative and our City Council.”

Rep. Elena Parent, D-DeKalb, listened to their concerns about being stranded in an unincorporated island and sponsored the bill in the Legislature that would allow them to join Chamblee.

“They at least get the option to show up and vote and have a very local form or government,” Clarkson said.

Parent said the bill also was drafted in reaction to the bill to create the city of Brookhaven.

Early maps of the city boundaries included the nearby businesses, but not the neighborhoods in the Dresden East Civic Association.

“Those neighborhoods were rightfully dismayed and saw they could end up in a position where commercial areas near them were removed and would limit their options in the future to annex into a city,” Parent said. “They were very vocal and requested Brookhaven proponents drop certain commercial properties from their proposed city.”

Parent said if Brookhaven does become a city, she thinks the DECA residents would benefit from joining Chamblee instead of remaining in a small, unincorporated area of DeKalb.

“I was pleased it was a smooth process to get it passed and signed,” Parent said. “I think my colleagues saw the wisdom of the bill and saw it fit to let these folks vote.”

Jordan Fox, a resident of the Wakefield Forest neighborhood, said he would like for his community to be annexed by Chamblee.

“It gives our neighborhoods the chance to control our own destiny and not have others do it for us,” Fox said.

Fox said if Brookhaven becomes a city, he believes it will be hard for DeKalb County to continue to fund the level of service they are currently providing to his neighborhood.

“The city of Chamblee has a record of providing high quality of services,” Fox said. “I think our neighbors would be very happy with what we could get from city of Chamblee.”

If approved, the annexation would be Chamblee’s second in two years. The city would grow by about 11,000 residents and five square miles, Clarkson said.

“Our staff has already started to prepare and is briefing the council every month on what they would do to prepare,” Clarkson said. “It’s almost identical to the size of the area the city annexed two years ago.”

Currently, the city has a population of about 15,800, Clarkson said.

If approved, the Chamblee will annex the area by December. Clarkson said the city will hire additional staff and equipment to be able to provide services to the new residents.

“I believe our staff will be fully 100 percent prepared in November,” Clarkson said.