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City of Atlanta v. Atlanta Independent School System

Court: Georgia Supreme Court
Case Number: 300 Ga. 213
Decision Date: November 21, 2016
Case Type: Annexation
The Georgia Supreme Court held that there was not a justiciable controversy presented in a case involving a declaratory judgment action filed by the City of Atlanta concerning questions as to whether the city could annex into Fulton County without having to also expand the boundaries of the Atlanta Public Schools. A 1950 Local Constitutional Amendment provided that whenever the City of Atlanta expanded in Fulton County the new territory would be required to become part of the school system as well. In 1973, however, the city and the school system were separated. In 1986 legislation was enacted to continue the 1950 requirement. 

Atlanta filed a declaratory judgment action to see if it would be required to have annexed territory in Fulton County become part of the APS system. The trial court held that the declaratory judgment action was not barred by sovereign immunity and that the 1986 legislation did properly continue the 1950 amendment. The Supreme Court held that the action was not ripe for consideration because there was no actual annexation of properties occuring in Fulton County at the time. The Court held that the Delcaratory Judgment Act had no provision for advisory opinions and because of the lack of annexations, that is precisely what Atlanta was seeking. 

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