After a thorough auditing of facilities within the city, the Justice Department informed Atlanta City Council members that the city will need to cough up a whopping $13 million due to violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The ADA, set forth by President George H. W. Bush in 1990, is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on disability. My FOX Atlanta reports that a variety of Atlanta amenities, from City Hall elevators to Chastain Amphitheater seating, did not properly cater to the disabled.
Despite the ADA’s nineteen-year existence, this was Atlanta’s very first Justice Department-auditing. Now, at a time when its financial future and security is in serious question, the city must find a speedy solution to the hefty costs. Council members will vote today on a proposed 6-year, $2-million-a-year plan.
City Council Finance Chair Howard Shook is trying to address both the seriousness of the defects and the financial burden with which he is confronted.
“We have to remedy this lists of defects. Period. Some of these defects go back before this current administration,” remarked Shook.
He went on to say that “It could not come at a worse time. We’re scraping for nickels and dimes under the sofa cushion to make sure we have cops on the streets and the lights are turned on.”