Peachtree-Pine Update 10/20/2011

October 20, 2011 · Posted in Eye on Midtown 

The Peachtree-Pine monster has wrought havoc upon the community for far too long...

[Updated 10/21, 4pm, with copy of Judge Schwall's order linked deep below. ]

Some interesting developments surrounding the fate of the Peachtree-Pine “shelter” have taken place in recent weeks. A federal judge recently rejected claims by the Metro Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless, which operates this “homeless service”, that the city conspired to push out Peachtree-Pine. Then last week the Task Force filed a lawsuit against Emory Hospital and its parent organization Emory University, based upon a similar conspiracy theory. The Task Force has managed to bring Occupy Atlanta under its influence, as reflected by their website, and last Friday they stormed the hospital with help from OA.

According to the latest Creative Loafing article on the subject, the city has demanded that Peachtree-Pine’s outstanding water bill be paid by the end of the month, to the tune of $237,000 (accumulating over the last several years), or they can expect the termination of water service into the facility. Once the city shuts off the water any continued occupancy of the building would constitute a violation of health codes, and the Health Department would likely order that the building be vacated immediately.

This week, in a court case in Fulton Superior Court, Judge Schwall ruled in no uncertain terms against the Task Force, and even granted Manny Fialkow, the owner of the building, an eviction notice against the “shelter” effective the 27th of this month. In his ruling Judge Schwall described the facility as being in “deplorable condition” and therefore not fit to serve the homeless citizens of Atlanta, and that the Task Force cannot “operate the property in a productive way with the current management in place.” Atlanta Progressive News quoted Anita Beaty, the executive director of the “shelter,” as threatening to occupy the building should Fialkow move forward with the eviction process, and her husband’s blog seems to confirm this intention. A very dramatic situation may be in the works…

It is with great hope that we will soon be writing the final debriefing for this dreadful phenomenon that has afflicted our community for many years, though experience has shown us that they always find a way to temporarily halt proceedings against them. From the very start Peachtree-Pine has generated tremendous problems for the surrounding community, and at every step of the way they have balked at community feedback with the attitude that they could never go wrong with their cause. Many homeless services, ranging from temporary shelters to meal programs, call Atlanta home, and none of them drags the community down like Peachtree-Pine.

For example, one can drive by Peachtree-Pine at almost any given moment and find plenty of drug and nuisance activity taking place in the immediate vicinity, and then at the same time drive by Union Mission and find a very orderly situation taking place there. Union Mission has never been known to generate complaints from many people who have a clear view of the facility from their homes. Comparing the “shelter” with any other homeless service in this city clearly reveals that something fundamentally wrong lies at the core of how Anita Beaty & Co. runs Peachtree-Pine.

Businesses surrounding the “shelter” report that staff and patrons are routinely assaulted and accosted by those present because of the “shelter”. Homeless people we have talked to insist that Peachtree-Pine resembles more a high-volume crackhouse, and not as any kind of homeless service – we believe this kind of statement to be only slightly exaggerated at most. The effects of the activity going on in that building radiate out to several intown neighborhoods – Central Park, Midtown, Virginia-Highland, Old Fourth Ward, Poncey Highland, just to name a few.

Representatives for the Atlanta Gateway Center have repeatedly assured the community that, when that big day comes, they have a plan in place to relocate those staying regularly at the Peachtree-Pine facility. This monster has oppressed the greater community for far too long, and now appears to be moribund at long last. For now, we can only anxiously await October 27th…

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