Concerned Citizens for Effective Government speaks out against MARTA Board
Photo provided by Ed Williams

Ed Williams preferred photo
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Photo provided by Ed Williams

Ed Williams, who heads Concerned Citizens for Effective Government, was one of several DeKalb County residents who spoke at the MARTA Board meeting on Sept. 6. The board unanimously approved a proposed contract with Gwinnett County to bring MARTA to Gwinnett, pending voter approval in March 2019. The board’s action angered several DeKalb leaders including Williams. 

Williams had this to say regarding the board’s decision:

“Most of the people here are DeKalb County residents and City of Atlanta.   Now, The City of Atlanta, DeKalb County and Fulton County were the founding members of this board. We should not be standing in the back of the line asking you for anything,In fact today, I am here to demand that the next train station that you all build should be in South DeKalb.”

If we do not get train stations in DeKalb County,we should use the same approach that was used in Montgomery, in the Civil Rights Movement.We should boycott MARTA. It is that simple.”


 Williams said he is awaiting a decision regarding a complaint he filed on Aug. 7 with the Georgia Attorney General’s Office concerning the MARTA Board’s action on June 22. Williams contends that MARTA violated Open Meetings law (O.C.G.A. 50-18-70, et.) when the board voted on four items that were added to the agenda without notification to the public.      


On Common Ground News


  • Jerry Jackson Admin at REFORM DeKalb

    September 8, 2018 at 10:56 am

    Ed Williams, Viola Davis, Vincent Forte, Melvin, Big John Evans and others are to be Thanked and Congratulated for their Actions in attending this meeting.

    MARTA continues to Short Change DeKalb County in all manner of services and has for DECADES. That blame begins with The DeKalb CEO and The DeKalb Board of Commissioners for bowing down to MARTA and also being non involved in The MARTA process. All you have to do is look at MARTA Stations in DeKalb County and South Atlanta and compare them to North Atlanta MARTA Stations and the difference is nothing short of MARTA’s Racism and disrespect for those less fortunate and those of Color.

    AND YOU CAN BLAME THE ELECTED IN THE ENTIRE METRO ATLANTA FOR IT ALL …and that sure does involve Every Congressman. The greatest racism in the world is Black Elected Officials selling out the very black people that elected them and this Our Elected have surely done with MARTA. MARTA locks all Rest Rooms in the System at 7PM except Five Points which is open till 10PM. Trains run till 1AM. NO WAY TO TREAT THE RIDING PUBLIC!!!

    I was a Transportation Specialist serving in both the USMCR and USA from 1969-1975. My Army Unit was the 1188th US Army Reserve Transportation Unit now based here in DeKalb County. I have two Certificates of Training in Transportation. My Commanding Officer was also the Head of Georgia DOT. We assisted the State with many projects. I also drove a MARTA bus from 1980-1990. I was a Ten Year Safe Driver. If MARTA is too Lazy to clean the fans in the Train Stations and get Garbage and Dangerous Trash off the Train Tracks, My God what else are they Neglecting?

    There was a time when City of Atlanta and Fulton County showed some Oversight of MARTA but those days are long gone. Andre Dickens on the Atlanta City Council is pretty much the only Elected asking MARTA the tough questions. Liz Houseman, Ellis and Morris on the Fulton County Commission are now just led around by MARTA and told what to do. DeKalb has not been respected by MARTA since Manuel Maloof was CEO. … Long time ago.

    Just recently MARTA changed EVERY Bus Route in East and South DeKalb except the # 186 Lithonia. This bus is the only bus now out of East and South DeKalb going into Five Points in Downtown Atlanta??? … I ride each of these buses monthly, some every other day. Calls to DeKalb Commissioner’s Gannon and Larry Johnson went unanswered. … So in a three year span MARTA has successfully moved 80% of all Residents of east and South DeKalb out of Downtown Atlanta? GO FIGURE?

    Our fellow citizens are so courageous and bold to attend these meetings and speak out. Gwinnett will get Gold Plated and DeKalb will get the Crumbs as this rolls on down the road. The Great News out of all of this is that : Viola Davis will soon have a Seat Down at the State Capitol and it’s a good one, Our Newly Elected State Rep from DeKalb. … We are thrilled. Her service begins in January.

    Be Concerned my friends with everything that this State does with MARTA … Big Bucks involved ….


  • Cranston L Mitchell

    September 11, 2018 at 6:17 pm

    Tax paying residents of South Dekalb should stop begging the Georgia legislature for expanded rail service. South Dekalb elected officials should legally seek to withhold taxes paid to MARTA. If necessary, take the matter to the federal court level in seeking equity from MARTA for services paid and given to other counties. The focus should be on seeking to divert their tax dollars into a private and public partnership to expand light rail to South Dekalb.


  • Waymon Norwood

    September 13, 2018 at 7:15 pm

    It was great having newly elected Rep.Viola Davis attend both the news conference and MARTA Board meeting and also speak out.She has done before being sworn in what we could not get most of those who was suppose to be representing for years have not would not do, keep it up.I am speaking from being a part of this fight for years, only a few of us have, that is part of our lack of success.Anyone who pay for something for over forty five years and is unwilling to fight is a fool


    • Waymon Norwood

      September 13, 2018 at 10:22 pm

      Why should I moderate my comments, when what you say is true, it should stand.Little or no representation, and a community unwilling to stand up in numbers and say we refuse to continue to accept being shafted.



    October 22, 2018 at 11:41 am

    These are valid and interesting points. With our state being so divided it is easy to debate and bring left and right concerns. However, it only wages losses for both sides. The economic issue alone is enough to bring this matter to the front for resolution. I see no reason to do both, expand MARTA in two counties at the same time. With Mr. Jackson having the talents needed to implement a cohesive project, would the citizens be allowed to observe and support an administration that would be able to devise such a project? As a citizen of Gwinnett County, I see a whole lot of obstacles that can be avoided if we just look to the people who have already been there done that.


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