Axios Atlanta

Picture of the Atlanta skyline.

Well, hello, Thursday.

🌅 Today's weather: That sun is waiting. High of 83.

💵 Situational awareness: Gov. Brian Kemp plans to sign the state's $30.2 billion budget today for the fiscal year beginning this summer.

Today's newsletter is 865 words — a 3-minute read.

1 big thing: 🛠️ Building issues haunt another DeKalb school

Illustration of a school bus with a money band-aid on it
Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

A month after Druid Hills High School students made a video revealing critical infrastructure issues at their 100-year-old facility, their peers in north DeKalb County are sounding a similar alarm.

Driving the news: On Monday, Lakeside High School students posted a video of some of the issues at their facility on Briarcliff Road, including sewage backups, mold, rainwater seeping into the building, missing ceiling tiles, filthy toilets, mold, roaches and rodents.

  • A student on the swim and dive team said the school’s pool is in “horrible condition” and that its water is filled with rust that’s leaked from pipes. He also said the pool’s boiler is broken.

Why it matters: Parents and students clamoring for the DeKalb County School District to address the problems say children should not be forced to attend classes in buildings riddled with mold and other issues that can affect their health and safety.

What they’re saying: The students say they aren’t the only school in DeKalb suffering from maintenance and infrastructure issues.

  • “We hope that this video helps raise awareness about the things that are going on not just at Lakeside High School, but at other schools in DeKalb County,” one student said in the video.

The other side: Lakeside is 56 years old. A 2021 Facility Condition Assessment identified more than $10 million in needed improvements, DeKalb schools spokesperson Donald Porter tells Axios.

  • Porter says that over the past few years, the district has worked with Board of Education members to address immediate needs and come up with a plan for longer-term projects for its schools.

Catch up quick: Earlier this week, students and parents from Cross Keys High School in Brookhaven issued a news release calling on the district to fix problems at their 64-year-old facility.

  • The issues there include mold on floor tiles, malfunctioning air conditioning systems, cracks in school walls, “dilapidated” portable classrooms with no internet connections and drainage issues.

Tell us: Are you a parent, student or staff member at a metro Atlanta school with mounting infrastructure problems? We want to know what you're seeing. Email us at [email protected].

Read the full story.

2. 💰 Exclusive: Big boost for McBath

side-by-side images of Lucy McBath and Carolyn Bourdeaux, both in mid-sentence
Reps. Lucy McBath (left) and Carolyn Bourdeaux are racing toward the May 24 primary. Photos: Greg Nash-Pool, Chip Somodevilla via Getty

Mike Bloomberg’s gun-control group Everytown for Gun Safety is spending $1 million on a new TV ad through its super PAC to boost Rep. Lucy McBath. She is in the final weeks of her campaign against Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux.

Why it matters: The two suburban Atlanta Democrats are locked in an intra-party battle for a single congressional seat after Republican-led redistricting pushed McBath to run in Bourdeaux's district.

State of play: In the most recent disclosures, McBath reported about $1 million more in donations than Bourdeaux. Plus, McBath is seeing far more outside support, including a $2 million ad buy from Protect Our Future PAC and other support from the Asian American Advocacy Fund.

  • State Rep. Donna McLeod, the only candidate to live within the district’s new boundaries, is also in the primary.
  • If no candidate gets more than 50% of the vote, the top two will head to a June runoff.

Catch up quick: Everytown has long backed McBath, who's well-known as a gun control advocate after her son died of gun violence. The group had already committed about a million dollars in radio, digital and mail ads to McBath's 2022 campaign.

  • John Feinblatt, head of the Everytown for Gun Safety Victory Fund said, “Lucy has always gone all out for the gun safety movement, so we’re going all out to get her re-elected.” 

The other side: Bourdeaux has been promised a six-figure ad buy from the Democrats Serve PAC, but her campaign does not expect any additional outside support.

  • In a past interview with Axios, Bourdeaux characterized herself as "very grounded in this community. And I think for me, that is the key difference, versus somebody who is more focused on national issues and comes with a lot of outside money into this race."

New jobs to check out

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3. 📸 Pic du jour: Where in Atlanta are we?

Dog park and trees
Photo: Emma Hurt/Axios

Hint: It's likely a place you've seen, but maybe not from this angle.

4. 📅 Today in Georgia History

George Washington
Georgia on his mind? Photo: GraphicaArtis/Getty Images

On this day in 1791, George Washington made his first and only trip to Georgia, according to the Georgia Historical Society.

The big picture: After Washington's inauguration he took a grand tour of the new states, including Georgia where he was "greeted as a conquering hero."

Details: Washington's first stop was Mulberry Grove, the plantation of Gen. Nathanael Greene’s widow Catharine in present-day Chatham County. After a few days in Savannah he visited Waynesboro and Georgia's then-capital, Augusta.

  • No visits to Atlanta, we see. But we won't take it personally, President Washington, since Atlanta wasn't founded until 1837.

The more you know!

5. 🚍 Five-ish Points: Bus rapid transit on I-285?

Illustration of a soccer player wearing a striped shirt with an Axios logo for a crest and an advertisement reading 5-ish Points.
Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

🏆 Axios — hey, it's us — was named one of Inc. magazine's best workplaces for 2022. (Inc.)

🏦 Special income tax refunds go out this week, but it may take until early August for all of them to be issued. (AJC)

👀 Republican governors are lining up to campaign for Kemp. (CNN)

🏫 City Schools of Decatur renames school to honor Beacon Hill community. (Decaturish)

🚌 Metro Atlanta leaders have agreed to study whether bus rapid transit is viable on the top half of I-285. (AJC)

🌭 Charlotte-based restaurant offering homemade bratwurst plans to open in Buckhead. (Tomorrow's News Today)

🙄 Kristal wishes her calatheas liked tap water.

🎶 Emma still has this song stuck in her head after the HAIM concert last night. This one also brought the house down.