PointOne Holdings Buys Atlanta-Area Apartments for Nearly $18M

Stockbridge, Ga.—PointOne Holdings has acquired the 240-unit Southwinds Stockbridge Apartments in Stockbridge, Ga., for $17.8 million. The property was built in 1993 and substantially renovated in 2007; it’s currently 96 percent occupied.

The buyer, an investment group with offices in Hollywood, Fla., and Atlanta, plans to rebrand the community as Southwinds Point. As part of the rebranding, it will invest $1.25 million for improvements to the property. The renovations will include upgrades to unit interiors, as well as to the leasing and resident centers.

PointOne also plans to modernize and add more amenities, including a new dog park, outdoor kitchens and fireplaces, new signage and a gazebo with picnic tables and outdoor grilling stations. “The property has tremendous potential,” PointOne managing member Craig Sternberg pointed out.

PointOne obtained a $13.75 million non-recourse loan at a fixed rate with a 10-year term from Starwood Mortgage Capital to complete the acquisition. The company was advised in the deal by Charles Foschini and Jason Hochman of CBRE Capital Markets.

Stockbridge is in Henry County, and part of the Atlanta MSA. Demand for apartments in greater Atalnta has been brisk in recent years as the area has seen employment expansion greater than the national average.

Multifamily development is brisk as well. According to investment specialist Marcus & Millichap, developers will add 9,750 units to the market in 2015, up modestly from last year. Mostly, however, they won’t be in places like Henry County. Rather, new rentals will focus on high-rent areas in the Downtown, Midtown and Buckhead submarkets.

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Sandy Hook families sue Infowars’ Alex Jones over hoax claims

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — Family members of six victims of the deadly 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, and an FBI agent have filed a defamation lawsuit against Infowars’ Alex Jones over his claims that the massacre was a hoax.

>> Sandy Hook parents accuse Alex Jones, Infowars of defamation, seek damages

According to The Associated Press, the suit, filed Wednesday in Bridgeport Superior Court, says the plaintiffs were harassed and threatened because of his claims. They seek "monetary and punitive damages, attorney fees and other costs," the AP reported.

This is just the latest legal action against the conspiracy theorist over his Sandy Hook statements. He is facing two similar lawsuits filed last month in Texas.

Jones has not publicly commented on the most recent lawsuit, but said last month that even though he initially "questioned the PR and the talking points that surrounded the Sandy Hook massacre," he soon "began to believe that the massacre happened, despite the fact that the public doubted it."

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Governor faces deadline to sign or veto legislation

ATLANTA — Georgia’s governor has only a few days left to decide whether to veto or sign the remaining bills sent to him by the state legislature.

By law, Republican Gov. Nathan Deal has 40 days to veto a bill or sign it into law, a deadline that ends Tuesday. The governor can also decline to do either and let a bill automatically become law without his name attached.

The state budget, a transit expansion plan and a measure that bans drivers from holding a cellphone are major pieces of legislation Deal has already signed into law. But the governor has yet to weigh in on a number of controversial bills, including one that would carve a new city of Eagles Landing, in part from the existing city of Stockbridge, and another that would criminalize unauthorized computer access.

The term-limited Deal, who is likely considering his final round of legislation as governor, also has yet to make a determination on bills that expand access to medical marijuana oil, allow victims of domestic violence to break a housing lease and keep lottery winners anonymous.

Here is a look at some of the legislation Deal still has to consider:

SPLITTING UP STOCKBRIDGE

Deal’s pen is one of the last remaining hurtles standing in the way of the city of Stockbridge being carved in two.

A proposal before Deal would incorporate the new city of Eagles Landing, including some land that’s currently in Stockbridge.

Residents pushing for the new city say they are driven to get better city services, increase property values and attract high-end businesses.

But opponents, including several Stockbridge officials, say that the move is racially motivated and point to language about “demographics” used to justify the split.

Stockbridge, approximately 20 miles (30 kilometers) southeast of Atlanta, is predominantly black, while Eagles Landing would have a greater proportion of white residents.

If Deal signs the legislation, voters in the area that would become Eagles Landing would need to approve the idea before the new city is formed.

ONLINE SNOOPING

Deal is considering a bill that would criminalize unauthorized computer access, a bill opposed by Google and Microsoft that also has received strong condemnation from Georgia’s booming cybersecurity industry.

The 1½-page bill would make intentionally accessing a computer or network without authorization a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in prison.

Deal’s office said he was reviewing the legislation as he does with all other bills, and he has not publicly indicated a stance on the issue.

Proponents say the bill is designed to give law enforcement the ability to prosecute “online snoopers” — hackers who probe computer systems for vulnerabilities but don’t disrupt or steal data.

The legislation follows the recent discovery by unauthorized independent cybersecurity experts of a vulnerability in the computer network where Georgia’s elections are managed.

A group of more than 50 cybersecurity experts wrote Deal recently urging him to veto the bill. They say it creates new liabilities for security researchers who identify and disclose weaknesses to improve cybersecurity.

Georgia has become an important cybersecurity industry hub, ranking third in the nation in information security business and generating more than $4.7 billion in annual revenue, according to the Georgia Department of Economic Development.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA

Georgia could widen access to medical marijuana oil if Deal signs a bill adding post-traumatic stress disorder and intractable pain to the list of ailments it can be used to treat.

The bill would also create a study commission to look at access to the low-potency medical marijuana oil that can be prescribed in Georgia.

A legal limbo currently exists in the state where patients can legally possess the drug, but it cannot be manufactured here.

Proponents say that adding PTSD and intractable pain to the list will help steer veterans and others away from addictive opioid painkillers.

Deal last year approved an expansion of the state’s medical marijuana program to include autism, AIDS, Tourette’s syndrome and Alzheimer’s disease.

ESCAPING ABUSERS

Deal has yet to take final action on a bill that advocates say would help victims of domestic violence escape their abusers.

Under the proposal, anyone who has received a domestic violence order in criminal or civil court proceedings would be eligible to terminate a residential lease without penalty.

Proponents say victims who are trying to escape a dangerous home should not have to worry about such fees.

A tenant would still need to provide a landlord with a written notice at least 30 days before breaking the lease.

ANONYMOUS WINNERS

Those who win a big lottery jackpot could soon be able to remain anonymous under a bill awaiting Gov. Nathan Deal’s signature.

Under the measure, those who win at least $250,000 and submit a written request can prevent their name from being publicly released. Proponents say the law is needed to protect people’s privacy because lottery winners can be prime targets for everything from scams to violence.

The proposal has been criticized by open-government advocacy groups, who say it is a bad idea to allow the government to hand out millions to private citizens without a public record.

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Stockbridge celebrates Martin Luther King Sr. as world mourns his son

As the nation mourns civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. on the 50th anniversary of his slaying, Stockbridge officials have installed a small memorial to his father.

Photos and replicas of glasses and writings of Stockbridge native Martin Luther King Sr. have been put on display at the Henry County town’s City Hall.

Daddy King was the person who influenced King Jr. to become a civil rights activist and to become a minister,” said, Kira Harris-Braggs, Stockbridge Main Street director. “We take pride in not only the Daddy King heritage here but also the heritage as it connects to King Jr. as well.”

The elder King, whose birth name was Michael King, lived in Stockbridge until 1918, when he left to follow his dream of a career in the ministry. In 2016, Stockbridge named a bridge on a portion of Ga. Highway 42 in King Sr.’s honor.

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