Thursday, April 15, 2021

GRIFFIN NATIVE HANK HUCKABY FORMER CHANCELLOR PASSES AWAY

Former University System of Georgia Chancellor Hank Huckaby died Wednesday at age 79 after suffering a stroke last week.

Huckaby served a brief stint in the state House of Representatives representing a Watkinsville-based district and before that spent years as an administrator at the University of Georgia.

He was named chancellor of the university system in 2011 and served in that role until retiring in early 2017

GAIL HAMMOCK HONORED DURING ARBOR DAY CEREMONY


THOMASTON MAYOR J.D. STALLINGS DECLARED WEDNESDAY, APRIL 14TH "GAIL HAMMOCK APPRECIATION DAY" AS SHE WAS HONORED FOR HER UPCOMING RETIREMENT AFTER 42 YEARS WITH CITY HALL, DURING THE ANNUAL ARBOR DAY CEREMONY. 

 TWO MAPLES WERE RECENTLY PLANTED TO HONOR GAIL AT THE NORTH ISLAND NEAR THE SILVERTOWN TRAFFIC LIGHT.

THE GEORGIA FORESTRY COMMISSION CONGRATULATED THE CITY OF THOMASTON FOR ITS LONG STANDING DESIGNATION AS A TREE CITY.

UPDATE ON GRIFFIN JUVENILE WHO DIED IN PIKE CO.

Pike County Sheriff’s Office investigators have continued to gather information and evidence in regards to the death of a juvenile earlier this month at 14777 Highway 19. 

The facts of the case have shown that three juveniles entered a commercial property without permission from the property owner. While inside the facility, the juveniles attached a chain hoist to the bumper of a truck, in order to lift the front of the truck off of the ground. The chain was hooked to the bumper of the truck, and it was during this time that the metal bumper gave way to the weight that was placed on it. The truck then fell striking the juvenile. 

The Medical Examiner’s Office, at the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, has advised investigators that the manner of the juvenile’s death is consistent with the aforementioned sequence of events and evidence currently obtained.

Investigators have been in contact with the District Attorney’s Office as to the progress of the investigation and the findings as they are developed. On Wednesday, April 15, the criminal charges were upgraded by investigators with the Department of Juvenile Justice to involuntary manslaughter for the 12 and 14 year old juveniles.

This case remains open and under investigation any further developments will be relayed when appropriate.

GRIFFIN-SPALDING BOE PASSES RESOLUTION IN SUPPORT OF BLACK LIVES MATTER

AT TUESDAY'S REGULAR MEETING THE GRIFFIN-SPALDING COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION UNANIMOUSLY PASSED A RESOLUTION IN SUPPORT OF THE BLACK LIVES MATTER MOVEMENT--A RESOLUTION INTRODUCED BY BOARD MEMBER SYNTEL BROWN.

THE RESOLUTION MENTIONS A PEACHFUL PROTEST IN GRIFFIN MAY 31ST 2020 TO BRING AWARENESS TO BLACK LIVES MATTER, GOES ON TO MENTION THE GEORGE FLOYD CASE, AND ADDS ALL LIVES MATTER IN OUR SCHOOL DISTRICT AND SYSTEMIC RACISM AND SOCIAL INJUSTICE MUST BE ERADICATED AND THE SCHOOL SYSTEM HAS A CRITICAL ROLE TO PLAY.

ARRESTS IN SPALDING COUNTY TRUCK FIRE WITH TWO BODIES

Erik Eduardo Cabrealopez
On Tuesday April 13th at approximately 12:30pm, the Spalding County Sheriff’s Office along with Spalding County Fire responded to a fire call on Jackson Road near the Spalding County Butts County line. 

When units arrived, they found a Chevrolet Z71 pickup truck parked just inside a wood line fully engulfed in flames. As the fire was being extinguished Fire Fighters located 2 bodies in the bed of the truck. 

Spalding County Sheriff’s Office Investigators, Crime Scene Investigators, Spalding County Coroner Michael Pryor, along with Griffin Judicial Circuit District Attorney Marie Broder responded to the scene. 

Sheriff Darrell Dix, “We immediately began contacting other local agencies to see if they had reports of any missing persons or stolen vehicles matching the description of the truck. Due to the extreme heat generated by the fire we had to wait more than 2 hours before we could begin processing the scene. Once the scene was safe our Crime Scene Investigators went to work processing the truck for evidence while our Criminal Investigators began working on identifying the victims and tracking down the owner of the truck. 

The fire was so intense that it completely destroyed the VIN plates, and the truck had no tag. Spalding County Coroner Michael Pryor contacted the GBI Crime Lab and both bodies were transported for autopsy and possible identification.” 

While speaking to other agencies, Henry County Investigators told us that 2 persons had been reported missing on April 11, 2021 by their families. According to Investigators the males had gone to meet a Hispanic male to discuss a joint business venture and had not been seen or heard from since. The information provided to us included race, sex, height, weight, and distinguishing marks such as tattoos. 

Based on this information we were able to identify the victims as Joshua Wyatt B/M ,29 years of age and Carlos Benford B/M 36 years of age, who had both been reported missing from Henry County. 

We also found that Henry County had teamed with Clayton County in their attempts to find the victims based on information they had received that led them to an address located in Clayton County. The leads and information continued to come in especially after the initial story was covered by both local and Atlanta media. We followed up on every tip we received, and those tips eventually led us to a residence located at 375 Dutchman Road in Griffin. 

On April 14th the Spalding County SWAT, the Spalding County CAGE Unit executed a search warrant at the residence. After the scene was secured our Crime Scene Investigators began processing and gathering evidence. The residence had been vacated by the occupants. The furniture and other items from the house had been burned in a large pile in the back yard, and the interior of the house had been sprayed with bleach in an effort to destroy evidence. 

“Their attempts to cover up their crime failed. Our Crime Scene Investigators located the actual spot in the house where the murders took place, and they were able to recover evidence. Also located in the search were items that directly linked the victims to the house.” 

This morning, Spalding County Investigators obtained arrest warrants for Erik Eduardo Cabrealopez charging him with 2 counts of murder, 2 counts of felony murder, 2 counts of malice murder, 2 counts of aggravated assault, 2 counts of kidnapping, 2 counts of concealing a death, and 2 counts of tampering with evidence. 

This afternoon at approximately 12:30 pm, Erik Eduardo Cabrealopez was taken into custody in Fulton County by the GBI Gang Task Force, Georgia State Patrol, GBI West Metro Narcotics Unit, and Spalding County Investigators after a short vehicle pursuit that was ended with a PIT maneuver by GSP. 

“This investigation was brought this far due to the hard work and inter-agency cooperation between the Spalding County Sheriff’s Office and all of the agencies and Offices involved. Griffin Judicial Circuit District Attorney Marie Broder, Spalding County Coroner Michael Pryor, the Henry County Police Department, the Clayton County Police Department, the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office and Sheriff Victor Hill, the Haralson County Sheriff’s Office and Sheriff Eddie Mixon, the GBI Gang Task Force, GBI West Metro Narcotics Unit, and the Georgia State Patrol.” 

“We are all praying for the families of these two young men whose lives were taken in such as violent and senseless way. We are going to do all we can to make sure that their killer and anyone else that we learn was involved as the investigation continues never sees the light of day as a free man again until the day they die.”

UPDATE ON SPALDING CO HOUSE FIRE WITH TEEN DEATH

ACCORDING TO THE SPALDING COUNTY FIRE DEPARTMENT, A HOUSE FIRE ON WOODCREST DRIVE, EARLY WEDNESDAY, RESULTED IN THE DEATH OF A 7TH GRADE STUDENT AT COWAN ROAD MIDDLE SCHOOL--13 YEAR OLD TAYLOR BUREL WHO DIED AT THE HOSPITAL SHORTLY AFTER BEING TRANSPORTED. HIS FATHER JOHN BUREL WAS TREATED AND RELEASED AT THE E.R. THE HOUSE WAS A TOTAL LOSS.

THE TEEN'S BODY HAS BEEN SENT TO THE GBI CRIME LAB FOR AUTOPSY TO DETERMINE CAUSE OF DEATH. THE GRIFFIN-SPALDING SCHOOL SYSTEM DISPATCHED COUNSELORS TO COWAN ROAD MIDDLE SCHOOL TO SUPPORT STUDENTS AND STAFF.

MEANWHILE SPALDING COUNTY S.O. AND FIRE DEPARTMENT AND THE STATE INSURANCE AND FIRE SAFETY COMMISSIONER'S OFFICE ARE INVESTIGATING THE CAUSE.

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

UPSON S.O. FREE FOOD

The Upson County Sheriff’s Office is hosting a food distribution event on Friday, April 23, 2021 at 10:30am. We are partnering with F.A.T. Ministries of Bolingbroke Ga., the Farmer’s to Families Food Box Program and the Society of St. Andrew (endhunger.org) of Macon Georgia as well as our local church partners.

We will distribute 1100 boxes of food, weighing 25-30 pounds per box, on a first come first served basis. The boxes will contain meat, vegetables and dairy.

Distribution will begin at 10:30 at the Thomaston-Upson Soccer Complex located behind the Civic Center in Thomaston. The address is 101 Civic Center Drive. Participants should drive to the rear of the civic center and follow the signs to the distribution point located at the soccer field concession stand.

Volunteers from local churches will load the boxes into your vehicle in a drive-thru format.
 
This is a "Rain or Shine Event"

Update On Bodies Found In Burning Truck

Two bodies were found inside a burning vehicle just off of a rural Spalding County road on Tuesday afternoon.

Emergency crews were called to a turnoff into a wooded area just a few dozen yards off of Jackson Road in between Wallace and Bailey Jester Roads around 12:30 p.m. for a report of a brush fire, according to Spalding County Sheriff Darrell Dix. Neighbors had spotted smoke in the area and called 911. Firefighters arrived to find an extended cab pickup truck on fire.

"They started to put the fire out and they noticed two bodies in the bed of the pickup truck," Sheriff Dix said.

"We had to wait for some time after because the metal of the truck was still so hot that we couldn't start processing anything," the sheriff said.

"It's a very calm area. A very quiet area. It does have pretty quick access to I-75 from where it's at, so I don't know if that plays a part in what happened or not, but this is very unusual for this area," Sheriff Dix said.

Investigators spent the afternoon combing over the vehicle and surrounding area for clues on what sparked the fire.

"We are treating this as a homicide. All indications are that that what this is," the sheriff said, adding that they will see where that investigation takes them.

The identities of the two found dead inside the vehicle have not been released and the sheriff said investigators were not sure what gender the victims were.

The bodies will be transported to the GBI Crime Lab for an autopsy. There, forensic experts will work to identify the bodies as well as determine the cause and manner of death.

"We are asking for the public's help...If anyone saw anything or heard anything in this area," the sheriff said.

The incident remains under investigation.

COVID-19 VACCINATION AVAILABLE THURSDAY!

FIRE DEATH IN SPALDING COUNTY

Spalding County Fire Department responded to 116 Woodcrest Drive in response to a report of a structure fire at that location. 

Upon arrival, personnel observed heavy smoke and flames coming from the rear of the building. After making entry, fire crews located and removed one resident who was then transported to WellStar Spalding Regional Emergency Department and later succumbed to injuries sustained during the fire. During the incident, another resident was also transported to Wellstar for unspecified injuries. 

The cause of the fire is still currently under investigation and the Georgia Office of Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner has been contacted for assistance.

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

SPALDING CO. SENIOR CENTER TO OPEN

Spalding County is pleased to announce it is ready to open its Senior Center doors, for phased 2 program participation, on Monday, May 3rd! 

A variety of classes for adults age 50+ will be scheduled on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays during the hours of 9 am - 3 pm. 

The instructor led activities include: Wellness Classes, Arts & Crafts, Tai Chi, Aerobics, Line dancing, Bingo, Ceramics, Creative Clay, and Painting. 

Pre-Registration opens April 19 and is required for all activities at www.spaldingcounty.com or 770-467-4385 

All attendees to the center must be pre-registered for a specifically scheduled activity. The CafĂ© will not be open for meals during this phase. The activities schedule is being finalized and will be available on the Spalding County Senior Center Facebook page. 

Safety protocols will be in place to reduce the risk or spread of COVID19 including: Mandatory masks, Temperature checks and screening questionnaire upon entry, 6’ physical distancing, and Scheduled cleaning. The Senior Center Reopening Guidelines is available upon request. 

For information, call the Spalding County Senior Center at 770-467-4385.

URMC HAS NOW ADMINISTERED 15,000 COVID-19 VACCINES!!! AND COUNTING

 

THOMASTON'S CARMEN JOHNSTON ON HGTV

When you tune in to the HGTV Smart Home 2021 special on April 21, you’ll see a familiar Middle Georgia face, Carmen Johnston, owner of Carmen Johnston Gardens in Thomaston, who served as the Tech and Wellness Expert for the cutting-edge home located in Naples, Florida.

With passion for home and garden innovation and technology, Johnston has helped the popular, national network create a smarter, more innovative home which viewers can register for a chance to win.

“We’ve all spent so much more time in our homes over the past year and the desire for a smarter, more innovative and enjoyable space is at an all time high. The April HGTV Smart Home premiere will definitely inspire you to weave clever products and design into your home as it features big and small, adaptable ideas,” Johnston said.

Now more than ever, HGTV knows how truly important home is. It’s not just a place where we eat and sleep. For many of us, home is our family hub, our office, our place to learn, and our haven. So, this year’s HGTV Smart Home is designed to help consumers lead a life well-lived - mind, body and soul. From the latest tech innovations, to smart organization solutions, to rooms created with health and wellness in mind, join HGTV as they redefine what it means to “live smart.”

On the special, you’ll see Johnston working with the interior designer Tiffany Brooks, on innovative spaces for the family’s work and play while featuring wellness products to make your home a healthier and safer place. Johnston also takes to the water with home improvement veteran Ty Pennington.

“I had actually not kayaked before and had to buy one to practice on our family pond with my husband, Tommy! We now love it. The Smart Home features a garage lift for a kayak and we are giving one away via my social media and website,” Johnston said.

Carmen Johnston Gardens is giving away three tech and wellness products from the home beginning with a Rise Garden which she added to the home’s kitchen pantry.

“Who doesn’t want fresh herbs, greens and produce year-round. This hydroponic garden with smart grow lighting makes it easy and we are now giving one away. The winner will be announced April 21 immediately following the special and announced on my social media channels,” Johnston said.

Beginning April 21, you’ll be able to enter online for a chance to win the HGTV Smart Home 2021. The grand prize is worth over $1.1 million and includes the home and all furnishings, a 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet and $100,000 from LendingTree.

The one-hour special airs Wednesday, April 21 at 7 p.m. EDT. There will be special encores on Tuesday, May 4 at 8 a.m., Thursday, May 13 at 1 p.m., Wednesday, May 26 at 11 a.m., Monday, May 31 at 8 a.m. and Friday, June 11 at 1 p.m. All times are Eastern and be sure and check your television guide for any changes.

For more information, visit CarmenJohnstonGardens.com.

A BROAD DISCUSSION OF BROADBAND IN UPSON CO

UPSON COUNTY COMMISSION CHAIRMAN NORMAN ALLEN LEAD A DISCUSSION ON BROADBAND AT LAST WEEK'S WORK SESSION, SOMETHING HE SAID IS NEEDED COUNTY WIDE TO KEEP PACE WITH THE U.S. ECONOMY. 

 UPSON EMC CEO NEAL TRICE NOTED SOME FUNDING IS BEING OFFERED BY THE STATE AND BY THE FEDS RECENT COVID-19 STIMULUS BILL AND HIS BOARD IS CONDUCTING A FEASIBILITY STUDY ON IT.

ANOTHER BIG BOOSTER OF BROADBAND, STATE REPRESENTATIVE BETH CAMP ATTENDED THE MEETING.

BREAKING NEWS FROM GRIFFIN TWO BODIES FOUND

The Spalding County Sheriff’s Office is on an active scene on Jackson Road where 2 bodies have been found in a burning vehicle. 

Spalding Fire has extinguished the fire and investigators are working the scene. No identities or information about the deceased, including manner of death, has been determined as of now. 

Further information will be disseminated as it is gathered.

VALDOSTA HIGH FINED BY GHSA

A STORY WE FIRST BROKE ON FUN 101 FM REMAINS A NATIONAL STORY ON ESPN. THE THOMASTON BASED GEORGIA HIGH SCHOOL ASSOCIATION HAS LEVIED A $7500 FINE AGAINST VALDOSTA HIGH SCHOOL, ORDERED THE TEAM TO FORFIT 7 WINS FROM THE 2020 FOOTBLL SEASON, BANNED THE TEAM FROM THE PLAY-OFFS IN 2021, AND DECLARED AT LEAST TWO PLAYERS INELIGIBLE NEXT SEASON.

GHSA EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR DR. ROBIN HINES CONFIRMED THE SANCTIONS ON ESPN, TUESDAY MORNING. VALDOSTA HIGH SCHOOL HAS FILED AN APPEAL.

THE GHSA PROBE WAS BASED ON COMMENTS MADE BY VALDOSTA HEAD COACH RUSH PROPST ON A SECRETLY RECORDED CONVERSATION WITH THE EX-DIRECTOR OF THE TOUCHDOWN CLUB ASKING FOR WHAT HE CALLED "FUNNY" MONEY TO PAY PLAYERS. FUN 101 FM WAS THE FIRST MEDIA OUTLET TO OBTAIN A COPY OF THE TAPE. COACH PROPST WAS PLACED ON ADMINISTRATIVE LEAVE LAST MONTH

BLACK MILITIA WAS TRAINING ON PENNYMAN PROPERTY

THE BLACK MILITA GROUP TRAINING IN UPSON COUNTY LAST MONTH WAS ON PROPERTY OF THE BESSIE PENNYMAN ESTATE ON KENDALL ROAD. 

THE MILITA GROUP WAS UNDERGOING FIREARMS TRAINING BUT WAS ORDERED OFF THE PROPERTY BECAUSE THEY DID NOT HAVE PERMISSION TO BE THERE AND THE GROUP COMPLIED. NEIGHBORS TALKED TO MEMBERS OF THE GROUP AND SAID THEY WERE FRIENDLY, AND THE GROUP SHOWED CONCERN FOR NEAR-BY CATTLE AND MADE SURE THEY FIRED AWAY FROM THE HERD.

THEIR LEADER JOHN FITZERALD JOHNSON, KNOWN AS GRAND MASTER J. REPORTEDLY IS UNDER FEDERAL INDICTMENT FOR AIMING A RIFLE AT THE SECRET SERVICE. HE SAID THE GROUP IS AN ALTERNATIVE TO WHITE MILITIA GROUPS, BUT ITS AIM IS TO BE PEACEFUL.

THE PENNYMAN FAMILY IS RELATED TO ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAMER, LITTLE RICHARD PENNYMAN OF MACON WHOSE HIT SONG "RIP IT UP" WAS REMIXED AS THE THEME FOR "MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL" THIS PAST SEASON.

MCINTOSH TRAIL EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR EARLY HEAD START, HEAD START, AND PRE-K PROGRAMS FOR THE 2021-2022 SCHOOL YEAR.

As we continue to go through the COVID-19 pandemic, please know that health and safety comes 1st when serving low-income children and families (Since COVID began children are virtual learning).

Our Early Head Start program is for expectant mothers and children ages 8 weeks to 3 years old. Expectant mothers and pregnant teens are highly encouraged to apply. The Head Start program is for children who have or will turn 3 or 4 years of age by September 1, 2021. Pre-K is for children who have turned 4 by September 1, 2021. 

CHILDREN WITH DISABILITIES, FOSTER CHILDREN, AND HOMELESS FAMILIES ARE GIVEN PRIORITY.

Head Start and Early Head Start are free programs and require everyone to meet Federal Guidelines. Our program offers a variety of services which include Nutrition, Health, Mental Health, Education, Social Services, and Parent Engagement. Pre-Kindergarten is a free program with no income guidelines.

Applications may be completed online at www.MTECDC2020.org. We offer Head Start and Early Head Start in Butts, Henry, Lamar, Newton, Pike, Spalding, and Upson Counties. Pre-K is available only in Henry, Spalding, and Newton Counties.

Applications are required to have the following information included when completed and turned in:

*Income verification (1040, paystub, W2, etc.) *Immunization Certificate (form 3231)

*Birth Certificate *Medical Card (Medicaid, Peachcare, or Private Insurance)

You may contact Andrea Brownlee or Tonya Blackmon at 706-648-4391 at the Upson county Early Head Start/Head Start/Pre-K program.

McIntosh Trail ECDC, Inc. does not discriminate against race, creed, sex, color, natural origin or religious preference.

Serving: Butts, Henry, Lamar, Newton, Pike, Spalding, and Upson Counties

Friday, April 9, 2021

ROCK SPRINGS CHURCH EXPANDING REC COMPLEX

Rock Springs Church will be expanding its existing recreational complex to include 40 acres recently purchased on the corner of Chappell Mill Road and High Falls Road. Phase 2 of the recreational complex will include a baseball field, softball field, cross country course, among other developments. This second phase update comes as part of the church’s multi-phased effort to create a space that church members, Rock Springs Christian Academy athletic department, and the community can enjoy.

“I believe this will be a tremendous asset to our community as we continue to grow,” said Senior Pastor Benny Tate. “We are so grateful to those who have so graciously donated to make this exciting development possible.”

Phase one of the recreational complex project was completed March 2020 and phase two is expected to be completed by fall 2021.

In addition to the current developments, Rock Springs Church is projected to add other features to phase 2 of the recreational complex including indoor batting cages/training facilities, tennis courts, pickleball courts, outdoor basketball court, playgrounds and concessions facilities. There also may be the potential to build a state-of-the-art building for Rock Springs Christian Academy high school.

For more information about Rock Springs Church, visit www.rockspringsonline.com.

For more information about Rock Springs Christian Academy, visit www.rsca.info.

MEMORIAL SERVICE FOR COACH PHIL JONES

A CELEBRATION OF LIFE SERVICE FOR COACH PHIL JONES, RE LEE CLASS OF 1964 WILL BE HELD SUNDAY, APRIL 18TH AT 2 PM AT THE WINDER-BARROW HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL STADIUM IN WINDER, GA. DRESS IS INFORMAL AND IN CASE OF RAIN THE SERVICE WILL BE HELD AT THE FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH OF WINDER. COACH JONES PASSED AWAY DECEMBER 26TH, 2020.

PHIL COACHED FOOTBALL FOR 47 YEARS AT SEVERAL HIGH SCHOOLS AND COLLEGES INCLUDING UGA UNDER COACH JIM DONNAN AND WAS HEAD COACH AT SHORTER COLLEGE IN ROME.

CONGRESSMAN DREW FERGUSON ON GEORGIA'S ELECTION LAW

Having free and fair elections is the foundation of our nation’s democracy, and we, as Americans, should no longer accept the false choice between voter access and voter integrity. We must demand and achieve both. Georgia’s new election integrity law goes a long way toward accomplishing just that.

Governor Kemp, Attorney General Carr, and our state legislators worked hard this legislative session to pass reforms to address issues arising from the 2020 election, secure each and every ballot, and provide broader access to voters while still securing the integrity of the ballot.

Unfortunately, what Delta Air Lines, Major League Baseball, other corporate CEOs in the Peach State, and even our own Senators Warnock and Ossoff are saying about the new Georgia law is shockingly inaccurate and downright irresponsible. It is a blatant disinformation campaign, and they ought to be ashamed. Continuing to push dishonest and intentionally misleading statements are only driving division and hurting Georgians and the American public.

Let’s lay out the facts. The new election law established a 17-day early voting period, including two Saturdays and two optional Sundays, for each locality in Georgia. Drop boxes will be available in every county at early voting sites to ensure widespread availability. Voters will also be able to receive an absentee ballot without having to provide an excuse. The same cannot be said about blue states like Connecticut and New York, none of which have no-excuse absentee ballot requirements.

Voter ID, which 35 other states require, is included in the new law. This simply calls for folks to present either a driver’s license or free state ID number. The state of Georgia has mechanisms in place to assist individuals in obtaining a voter identification to make it as simple, easy, and straightforward as possible to get an ID.

Drinking water and food is not banned in voter lines. These items - along with campaign materials - simply cannot be provided by advocacy groups soliciting votes. Statements made by Senator Warnock that exaggerate and mislead voters about the intent and actual language of the bill are nothing more than attempts to induce hysteria and outrage among the Democrat base.

Looking at the bigger picture, this whole charade to demonize Georgia’s law is being used by progressives and outside groups to build a narrative of fear and outrage in order to justify the federal takeover of state election laws. I will continue fighting against these unconstitutional attempts at every turn because at the end of the day, this is about making sure that every single Georgian —and every American — has the right to have their voice heard and their vote matter.

As we fight back against this coordinated disinformation campaign on our state’s election law, we won’t back down and we won’t cave to woke corporate CEO’s. Rest assured, this debate will be won on the facts, not on the phony narrative being perpetrated by the far Left.

UL STAR TYE FAGAN TO OLE MISS

AS EXPECTED FORMER UL STAR, TYE FAGAN HAS TRANSFERRED FROM UGA TO OLE MISS TO BE REUNITED WITH COACH KERMIT DAVIS WHO WAS COACH AT MIDDLE TENNESSEE THE TEAM TYE COMMITTED-TO BEFORE GEORGIA'S NEW COACH TOM CREAN CHANGED HIS MIND.

TYE HAS TOLD FRIENDS IN THOMASTON, HE WAS DISSATISFIED WITH PLAYING TIME FOR THE BULLDOGS. THIS PAST SEASON HE RANKED 2ND ON THE TEAM IN REBOUNDS AVERAGING 4.4 PER GAME BUT HE STRUGGLED WITH HIS SHOOTING AT TIMES, 27 % FOR 3'S 55.6% FROM THE FOUL LINE, 40 TURNOVERS AND 29 ASSISTS.

TYE STARTED 24 OF 25 GAMES AND RANKED 5TH IN MINUTES PLAYED LAST SEASON. THE DAWGS BEAT OLE MISS BOTH GAMES AND TYE HAD 19 POINTS IN THE FIRST GAME AT OXFORD AND 13 POINTS IN ATHENS.

NEW BRIDGE PROJECT SPALDING CO

The Georgia Department of Transportation has approved the location and design of Project #0013928 for Spalding County, a project that would replace the bridge on Georgia 16 at the Flint River, eight miles west of Griffin. 

The design and location were approved on Mar. 24, 2021.The proposed project is located 100% in Spalding County, on Land District 1. The total length of the project is approximately 0.919 mile, with the termini located approximately 1,420 feet west of the existing bridge abutment and approximately 3,040 feet east of the existing abutment. 

The proposed bridge would replace the existing bridge over Flint River utilizing a roadway on new alignment, parallel and offset to the north of the existing Georgia 16 alignment. The existing Georgia 16 alignment would be used as the through route to maintain traffic during the anticipated 18 months of construction.

In each direction, the proposed typical section would consist of a 12-foot travel lane and a 10-foot shoulder that includes four feet paved and six feet unpaved.

Drawings, maps or plats of the proposed project as approved are available at the area Georgia Department of Transportation office for public inspection. The contact information for the engineer at the District 3/Area 1 office:

Kraig Collins, District 3/Area 1 Engineer
krcollins@dot.ga.gov
101 Transportation Boulevard
Thomaston, GA 30286
706-646-7631

Any interested party may obtain a copy of the drawings, maps or plats or portions thereof by paying a nominal fee and requesting in writing to:

Kimberly W. Nesbitt
Office of Program Delivery
Attn. Ken Wicks, Project Manager
kewicks@dot.ga.gov
600 West Peachtree St. NW, 25th Floor
Atlanta, GA 30308
404-631-1575

Thursday, April 8, 2021

5 INJURIES IN THOMASTON WRECK TUES.

POST 26 GA. STATE PATROL-THOMASTON HAS RELEASED THE REPORT ON A TWO VEHICLE ACCIDENT WITH 5 INJURIES, TUESDAY EVENING ON HIGHWAY 19 NORTH AT THE ENTRANCE TO CHICK-FIL-A.

ONE MOTORIST SUSTAINED SERIOUS INJURIES AND WAS LIFE-FLIGHTED BY COMMUNITY AIR TO THE MACON MEDICAL CENTER, 50 YEAR OLD USHABEN PATEL WHO LOST THREE FINGERS ON HER LEFT HAND. TWO PASSENGERS IN HER 2010 TOYOTA VENZA WERE INJURED AND TRANSPORTED TO URMC BY VETERANS EMS, 47 YEAR OLD NITA PATEL AND 21 YEAR OLD TRISHA PATEL, ALL THREE OF THE SAME ADDRESS, 1833 19 NORTH, THOMASTON.

ACCORDING TO GSP TROOPER OLIVER, THE MOTORIST AT FAULT, DAKOTA JACOB KLAUSS, AGE 22 OF 797 HAGAN'S MOUNTAIN ROAD, MEANSVILLE, DRIVING A 2007 DODGE CHARGER AND A PASSENGER, 28- YEAR OLD ALLISON BURBEE OF THE SAME ADDRESS, WERE TRANSPORTED TO UPSON REGIONAL BY COMMUNITY EMS.

THE REPORT SAID KLAUSS WAS MAKING A LEFT TURN INTO THE CHICK-FIL-A ENTRANCE FROM U.S. 19 AND THE PATEL VEHICLE WAS TRAVELING NORTH. THE CHARGER FAILED TO YIELD AND CRASHED INTO THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE TOYOTA, CAUSING IT TO OVERTURN.

KLAUSS WAS ISSUED A CITATION BY TROOPER OLIVER FOR FAILURE TO YIELD WHLE TURNING LEFT.

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

NEW DISTRICT ENG GA-DOT WEST CENTRAL GA.

The Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT) has selected Tyler Peek of Barnesville to be the new District 3/West Central Georgia district engineer, effective Tuesday, March 16th. Peek replaces Michael Presley, who retired on March 1st.

Peek, who has spent his professional career at the Georgia DOT, most recently served as the district traffic engineer for District 3. He has also worked as District 3's traffic operations manager, assistant utilities engineer, and as a project manager for the Georgia DOT's Office of Program Delivery.

"Tyler possesses the leadership qualities that will continue to provide for success in District 3," said Mike Dover, deputy commissioner.

Peek is a registered Professional Engineer (P.E.) in the State of Georgia. He also successfully completed the Georgia DOT's Management Development Program. He earned his bachelor's degree in civil engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Peek is a lifelong resident of the West Central Georgia region, having grown up in LaGrange and Thomaston before settling down in Barnesville with his family.

Advisory: Motorists are advised to expect delays, exercise caution, and reduce their speed while traveling through work zones. Before heading out, get real-time information on work status and traffic conditions. Call 511, visit 511ga.org, or download the Georgia 511 app. Our maintenance team members who repair roads and bridges and our project teams who oversee construction projects are continuing their essential work, while following sanitary work practices prescribed by health agencies to protect themselves and the public from the coronavirus, as are most state DOTs in the U.S.

THOMASTON MAYOR AND COUNCIL REOPENING MEETINGS TO THE PUBLIC

AT TUESDAY'S MEETING, THOMASTON MAYOR J.D. STALLINGS ANNOUNCED CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS ARE REOPENING FOR IN-PERSON ATTENDANCE, FIRST COME, FIRST SERVE, AS SOCIAL DISTANCING WILL BE OBSERVED-- MASKS RECOMMENDED , EFFECTIVE THIS WEEK. GOVERNOR KEMP'S LATEST ORDER ALLOWS IT.

PUBLIC COMMENT WILL ALSO RESUME. ANYONE WHO WISHES TO MAKE IN-PERSON PUBLIC COMMENT SHOULD CONTACT CITY CLERK OASIS NICHOLS FOR A FORM TO FILL OUT, A FORM THAT MUST BE SUBMITTED TO CITY HALL BY THURSDAY NOON PRIOR TO THE NEXT TUESDAY MEETING.

Griffin Man Arrested In Phone Scam Investigation

Kuldip Patel
Tuesday afternoon investigators with the Spalding County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division and CAGE Unit executed simultaneous search warrants at 3110 Macon Road Apt. C and the Orchard Hill Food Mart located at 3016 Macon Road. The search warrants were the culmination of an investigation into a scam that targeted an elderly victim. Twenty three year old Kuldip Patel was arrested and charged with Theft by Taking and Theft by Deception, both felonies.

After communicating with Investigators in Germantown Wisconsin, Spalding County Investigators determined that the victim had mailed $20,000.00 in cash to the residence located at 3110 Macon Road Apt. C after she fell victim to a phone scam. 

Sheriff Darrell Dix, “During the course of the investigation we were able to recover all of the cash and the packaging material that it was contained in when mailed to the suspect by the victim. We are in the process of returning the cash to her. 

This was great work on behalf of our Investigators and CAGE Unit and a great example of teamwork and communication between the Spalding County Sheriff’s Office and Wisconsin investigators. Everyone involved from both agencies worked hard to do all they could to help this victim and their hard work paid off. 

This victim was very lucky because most scams do not end well for them. It’s pathetic that people intentionally target the elderly like this and just view them as easy prey that they can take advantage of. Please speak to your loved ones about steps they can take steps to not be victimized by scams."

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

UPSON CO COVID TESTING UPDATE

District 4 Public Health reports that the COVID-19 testing at Upson Regional’s drive-through location has been rapidly declining since December. 

A total of 652 specimens were collected in December. The total for the month of March was only 56. Due to this huge decline, the drive-through testing will no longer be offered every Wednesday, but will just be scheduled once a month. This change will allow District 4 to devote more of their staffing and resources to their vaccine sites. 

The next scheduled date for COVID-19 testing at Upson Regional is Wednesday, April 21st from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. in the lower level of the parking deck. District 4 assures the public that the frequency of testing will be increased if the need arises.

Monday, April 5, 2021

Bad Wreck In Upson County Sunday

ACCORDING TO UPSON COUNTY SHERIFF DAN KILGORE, TWO MOTORISTS WERE LIFE-FLIGHTED AFTER A HEAD-ON CRASH ON EAST COUNTY ROAD, SUNDAY AFTERNOON.

REPORTEDLY, A MALE PICK-UP TRUCK DRIVER CROSSED THE CENTER LINE AND HIT A 19 YEAR OLD FEMALE FROM BARNESVILLE.

THE SHERIFF SAID THE ACCIDENT WAS TURNED OVER TO POST 26 GA. STATE PATROL FOR INVESTIGATION.

Update On House Fire

ACCORDING TO THOMASTON POLICE A RESIDENT AT A HOUSE FIRE LAST WEDNESDAY AT NORTH CHURCH AND WALKER, SUFFERED BURNS TO HER FEET, AND WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE E.R. BY EMS. JESSICA O'NEAL TOLD OFFICERS SHE WAS ASLEEP WHEN SHE WAS ALERTED THE HOUSE WAS ON FIRE AND GOT OUT.

THE TWO OTHER RESIDENTS, CODY ROGERS AND MICHAEL GARRISH WERE NOT AT HOME. GARRISH SAID ALL HIS MILITARY UNIFORMS AND GEAR WAS INSIDE AND WAS LOST. A POWER SOURCE IN THE REAR OF THE HOUSE COULD BE THE CAUSE OF THE FIRE..POLICE SAID.

YATESVILLE CHICKEN Q

YATESVILLE SENIOR CITIZENS AND COMMUNITY CLUB SPONSORING A BBQ CHECKEN PLATE EVENT, SATURDAY, APRIL 17TH 11 AM TO 2 PM AT THE COMMUNITY BUILDING.

TAKE OUT ONLY, $10 PER PLATE UNTIL SOLD OUT.

COVID-19 UPDATE FOR MARCH 2021

 From the Georgia Department of Public Health (https://dph.georgia.gov)

It has been a year since Upson County reported its first COVID-19 cases on March 27, 2020. Over the past year Upson has seen a total of 1,765 confirmed cases and 103 deaths. Three waves of the virus have hit Upson, one in April 2020, one in August 2020, and the worst by far in January 2021.

 

February began a downward trend in cases and deaths, and that downward trend has continued through March. Cases have declined from 112 in February to 60 in March, and deaths are down from 10 to 7; however, the March numbers still don’t beat Upson’s all-time lows, which occurred for cases in October 2020, and for deaths in November 2020. The death rate per 100,000 population remains high and ranks Upson at #9 among Georgia’s 159 counties.

 

Upson’s new hospitalizations are down from 22 in February to in March. The percentage of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in Region F, which includes Upson County, averaged 21% in February, and is down to 14% in March, which is quite a bit higher than the State’s average of 9%.

 

Average 2-week test positivity has declined from 10.8% in February to 6.7% in March, which is slightly higher than the State’s average test positivity of 5.7%. All of the counties in this area have moved out of the Red Zone for test positivity. Most are still in the Yellow Zone but 3 counties, MonroeTaylor and Talbot, have moved up to the Green Zone.


Upson County

New Cases

New Deaths

New Hosp.

Avg 2-wk
Test Pos

March 2020

5

0

 

 

April 2020

211

18 (hi)

 

 

May 2020

65

16

 

 

June 2020

74

9

1 (lo)

 

July 2020

116

2

9

 

Aug 2020

190

10

14

 

Sept 2020

138

7

14

 

Oct 2020

45 (lo)

9

17

5.4%

Nov 2020

98

0 (lo)

7

8.4%

Dec 2020

246

1

12

13.7%

Jan 2021

405 (hi)

14

24 (hi)

21%

Feb 2021

112

10

22

10.8%

Mar 2021

60

7

7

6.7%

Source: Daily Reports from GA Department of Public Health

Sunday, April 4, 2021

Counterfeit Money Seized In Pike County Arrest

Pike County deputies responded to a local Dollar General store Saturday in reference to a female, Shannon Williamson, 42, trying to use counterfeit money at the store. 

Deputies confirmed the money as being fraudulent and arrested Williamson. Investigators conducted a search of her residence at 51 First street in Concord. 

Inside the residence a male suspect was encountered by the name of Charles West ,53, from McDonough. West had more counterfeit money on his person. 

A room inside the house was found to have two printers with counterfeit money still on the printer. Varying denominations of U.S. currency were also discovered during the search.

Both suspects are currently incarcerated and facing 109 counts of forgery. Williamson is currently on felony probation for a prior conviction.

Saturday, April 3, 2021

SPALDING COUNTY YOUTH KILLED IN PIKE COUNTY

According to Major David Neal of the Pike County Sheriff Office, Friday at 4:16 p.m. deputies and EMS responded to 14777 Highway 19 North, the Waller Well Company building owned by Middle Georgia Water Systems. 

A 14-year-old Spalding County male died after being trapped beneath a vehicle inside the business. Major Neal told 101 News the deceased and two other male juveniles, a 13-year-old from Pike County and a 14-year-old from Spalding County broke into the business, which is used to repair company vehicles.

The two juveniles indicated they were inside the business working on vehicles. It was determined that they had committed a burglary to enter the premises. These two juveniles have been charged with burglary, criminal damage to property, entering auto, and reckless conduct.

Names of the juveniles have been withheld.

This case remains under investigation; further details will be released when possible. The business was closed because it was Good Friday.

Thursday, April 1, 2021

THOMASTON MAYOR & COUNCIL AGENDA

CITY OF THOMASTON MEETING OF THE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL

AGENDA APRIL 6, 2021 – 7:00 P.M. 

CITY-COUNTY MEETING ROOM
MAIN FLOOR 

THOMASTON-UPSON GOVERNMENT COMPLEX 

VIRTUAL MEETING VIA CITY OF THOMASTON YOUTUBE PAGE LINK:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCR1F8V1o6j-67nNYbOysNwg 

A. Call Meeting to Order / Invocation / Pledge of Allegiance. 

B. Approval of Minutes of March 16, 2021. 

C. Adoption of Agenda. 

D. City Attorney’s Report. 

E. City Clerk’s Report. 

F. City Engineer’s Report. 

G. City Manager’s Report.
     1. Discussion and Approval of Acceptance of Donation of Property from B. F. Goodrich (Raytheon Technologies).
     2. Approval of a Joint Use Attachment Audit between the City and TRC (utility poles).
     3. Appointment to Thomaston-Upson Library Board
     4. Approval of Amendment to the Sign Ordinance.
     5. Discussion of Animal Control Ordinance. 

I. Other Business. 

J. Executive Session / Discussion/Potential Action

CONGRESSMAN FERGUSON FIRES BACK AT DELTA CEO

U.S. Representative Drew Ferguson (R-GA) sent a letter to Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian following his comments on Georgia’s new election law.

Ed Bastian
Delta Air Lines, Inc.
1030 Delta Blvd.
Atlanta, GA, 3032O

Dear Mr. Bastian,

As CEO of Delta Air Lines, one of Georgia's largest employers, you took to the airwaves to denounce the state's election reform law and in the process offered a shockingly inaccurate and irresponsible assessment of the law.

In your internal memo and throughout the entirety of your interview, it became increasingly clear you have been misinformed — or are simply uninformed — about what the bill actually accomplishes. To be clear, the Georgia bill will not make it harder to gain access to the polls, despite your claims to the contrary.

Following your misinterpretation of the new election law, I wanted to outline a few facts:

Voters will be able to vote by absentee ballot with no excuse, unlike in New York where Delta has invested billions of dollars in airport infrastructure upgrades.
Large precincts will be required to add voting machines and election personnel to shorten voting lines.
Early voting days are increased to include two mandatory Saturdays instead of one and the option of two Sundays for all localities, unlike Delaware where there are zero mandated days of early voting.
Voter ID requirements — supported by 74% of Georgia voters, including 63% of Black voters — simply call for either a driver’s license or free state ID number.
Drop boxes, never utilized before the pandemic, are preserved and will be available in every county at early voting sites to ensure the integrity of the process.
Drinking water is not banned in voter lines as has been reported, it just can’t be distributed at the polls by groups advocating for votes.

People with hidden agendas suggesting these reforms are targeted to suppress the votes of African Americans so Republicans can win elections do so incorrectly and irresponsibly. According to a 2019 paper for the National Bureau of Economic Research, a nonpartisan research organization, “strict ID laws have no significant negative effect on registration or turnout, overall or for any subgroup.”

This suggestion also wrongly and stereotypically assumes that all African Americans are Democrats. Since Republicans have gained higher numbers of African American voters, suppressing these votes should not and cannot be assumed to benefit only Republicans. Republicans want to protect and restore the rights of all of our citizens to vote. Such efforts are quite the opposite of suppressing the votes of political opponents.

Without question, free and fair elections are the foundation of our democracy, and the security of our electoral system is vital to preserving its integrity. We should no longer accept the false choice between voter access and voter integrity. We should demand and achieve both.

Georgia’s law does just that. I represent a large number of Delta employees, and on their behalf, I request that you provide a detailed list of your issues with the new election law in writing. Establishing trust with your customers, employees, and our constituents starts with telling the entire truth in an open and transparent manner.

To this point, you have not been truthful, and it’s time to change the tact.

Sincerely,

A. Drew Ferguson IV, DMD
Member of Congress

WORK SESSION UPSON BOC

 UPSON COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

9:00 P.M.

Commission Work Session 

Thomaston-Upson County Airport

Wednesday, April 7, 2021 

1. Call to Order 

2. Discussion Regarding Countywide Broadband Projects 

3. Discussion Items with County Manager
     A. Presentation by Wood Environment & Infrastructure Solutions Inc.
     B. Purchasing update:
          i. Civic Center Flooring
          ii. Civic Center Mowers
          iii. Other purchasing items with Finance Department
     C. Training Education and Development Policy
     D. Discussion of SPLOST 2022 

4. Discussion Items with EMC Engineering
     E. Update on TSPLOST Phase II
     F. Update on 2021 LMIG Project
     G. Update on Sprewell Bluff Projects
     H. Other Items 

5. Discussion Items with Commissioners
     I. Other Items 

6. Discussion Items with Attorney
     J. Pobiddy Road Property transfer from Office Building Authority and City of Thomaston
     K. Lien filings for demolition of bighted property
     L. Other items 

7. Executive Session – Discuss Real Estate Acquisitions 

8. Adjournment

POWER OUTAGE IN THOMASTON

THOMASTON CITY MANAGER RUSSELL THOMPSON SAID A TREE FELL ON POWER LINES AT CHEROKEE ROAD AND WEST MAIN SHORTLY AFTER 9AM THURSDAY AND KNOCKED POWER OUT TO THAT AREA, DOWNTOWN, FUN 101 FM RADIO, AND THE CITY-COUNTY GOVERNMENT COMPLEX.

POWER WAS OFF FOR ABOUT AN HOUR AND TWENTY MINUTES.

GRIFFIN BUSINESSMAN DIES IN CALIFORNIA

THE GRIFFIN DAILY NEWS IS REPORTING, SPALDING COUNTY BUSINESSMAN, JOHN CARLISLE, A FORMER MEMBER OF THE GA. HOUSE, DIED TUESDAY WHEN HE FELL OFF A CLIFF INTO THE OCEAN WHILE HUNTING WITH HIS SON-IN-LAW IN CALIFORNIA.

CARLISLE DEVELOPED THE OLD COCA-COLA BUILDING AND ALSO THE DAIRY SUBDIVISION IN GRIFFIN. HIS WIFE CAROLE AND TWO DAUGHTERS ALSO LIVE IN GRIFFIN.

TIDAL WAVE AUTO SPA EXPANDS

Tidal Wave Auto Spa is expanding its footprint in downtown Thomaston with the acquisition of an additional building, 206 N Church St (formerly Colony Bank). 

Tidal Wave Auto Spa’s Home Office is located at 115 E Main Street. The refurbished two-story building currently houses over 40 employees who manage all aspects of our car wash business, starting with concept, permitting, and construction, to operations, human resources, payroll, quality control, marketing, supply distribution, accounting, and customer service. The additional building will provide more space to expand the support team. 

“Being able to build this business right here in Thomaston and Upson County has always been so important to both Hope and myself,” said Mr. Scott Blackstock. “We are honored to be able to expand and add to local economic growth. The level of talent right here in our hometown is phenomenal. Thomaston is truly the best small town in the best state for business!” 

Founded in 1999 by Scott and Hope Blackstock, Tidal Wave has opened over 60 locations in eleven states in the Southeast and Midwestern United States with a growing list under construction. Tidal Wave is a recognized leader in the car wash industry with its innovative use of technology and unwavering dedication to an excellent customer experience. 

Tidal Wave Auto Spa was ranked #6 in the 2020 Top 50 List of Conveyor Carwashes published annually by Professional Carwashing & Detailing magazine. Tidal Wave is also listed as one of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies on Inc. 5000’s 2020 list. Tidal Wave Auto Spa was named Georgia’s Small Business of the Year in 2009.

3 VEHICLE ACCIDENT AT CENTER AND LEE

COMMUNITY AMBULANCE AND THOMASTON POLICE RESPONDED TO A THREE VEHICLE ACCIDENT AT SOUTH CENTER AND LEE, TUESDAY AFTERNOON, WITH HEAVY DAMAGE TO ALL THREE.

A PICK-UP TRUCK DRIVER SAID HIS BRAKES FAILED AND HE VEERED INTO THE REAR OF A PARKED VAN AND IT CRASHED THE BACK OF A PARKED RENTAL CAR, A LATE MODEL FORD. BOTH THE PARKED VEHICLES WERE UNOCCUPIED. NO SERIOUS INJURIES REPORTED.

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

BIG HOUSE FIRE IN THOMASTON

Photo By Lisa Ryals
THOMASTON FIRE DEPARTMENT RESPONDED TO A BIG HOUSE FIRE WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON AROUND LUNCHTIME TIME AT NORTH CHURCH AND WALKER STREETS. 

A RESIDENCE TOTALLY INVOLVED WITH FLAMES SHOOTING 40 TO 50 FEET IN THE AIR AND SMOKE BILLOWING CLOSE TO 200 FEET. A WITNESS AT THE SCENE TOLD US IT COULD NOT BE SAVED.

FIRE CHIEF RENEE HARRIS SAID DUE TO THE STRENGTH OF THE BLAZE, HER DEPARTMENT TOOK A DEFENSIVE POSITION AND DIRECTED SEVERAL FIRE HOSES AT THE FLAMES.

ONE OF THE RESIDENTS, JESSICA O'NEAL WAS INSIDE WHEN IT STARTED AND TOLD FIREFIGHTERS SHE NOTICED SMOKE AT THE REAR OF THE HOUSE AND RETREATED WITH HER DOG. OTHER OCCUPANTS INCLUDE MICHAEL GARISH AND CODY ROGERS

THE HOUSE, VALUED AT $83,000 ON THE UPSON COUNTY TAX BOOKS, APPEARS TO BE A TOTAL LOSS. OWNER LISTED AS PLEDGER D. REEMS.

101 NEWS WAS TOLD THE RESIDENCE OF ROGER PINION, NEXT DOOR, WAS INTACT, IT HAD A SMOKEY SMELL BUT NO FIRE DAMAGE.

TRAFFIC WAS SLOWED IN THE AREA WHILE FIRE UNITS WORKED ON THE BLAZE. ONE WITNESS TOLD US HE HAD NEVER SEEN A BIGTIME HOUSE FIRE AND IT WAS QUITE A SPECTICLE. 

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

URMC COVID-19 VACCINE CLINIC IN ZEBULON

UPSON REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER  IS OFFERING  FREE  COVID-19  VACCINE IN ZEBULON AT THE URMC  MEDICAL BUILDING AT 7171 19  SOUTH BEGINNING WEDNESDAY,  APRIL 7 FROM 12-5PM / ANYONE AGED 16+.  

CALL MONDAY-FRIDAY 9AM TO 4PM  TO SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT 706-646-5727

Monday, March 29, 2021

UPSON SO BURGLARY ARREST

On March 26, 2021 Ricky Andrew Ard, 37, of 55 Rosehill Drive was arrested by investigators and charged with 2 counts of Burglary. 

Between March 22nd and March 24th , Ard burglarized a residence on North Old Alabama on two different occasions taking power tools and hand tools. Investigators recovered most of the stolen property.

Ard remains in the Upson County Jail.

CONGRESSMAN FERGUSON TOURS STORM DAMAGE IN COWETA COUNTY

U.S. Congressman Drew Ferguson (R-Ga.) recently surveyed storm damage and met with state and local officials in Coweta County after a tornado tore through Newnan on Thursday evening and Friday morning. Ferguson and members of his staff also visited the Coweta County 911 Center and donated supplies to first responders.

“The damage to the Newnan community caused by the tornado is absolutely heartbreaking, and my prayers continue to be with our all those impacted by the devastation,” Rep. Ferguson said. “In the midst of the destruction, we are seeing the fortitude that exists here in Coweta County. People are shining through. Volunteers are coming to help this community recover, and I’m confident we can and will rebuild stronger than ever. We are very fortunate as Georgians to have incredible first responders, emergency management personnel, public safety, and local leaders who will go to bat for our state.”

Representative Ferguson, Governor Brian Kemp, First Lady Marty Kemp, and Georgia Emergency Management Agency Director James Stallings receive a briefing on the tornado destruction in Newnan


Congressman Ferguson joins Coweta County Commission Chairman Bob Blackburn to learn about Newnan’s most damaged areas from Coweta County 911 Center Emergency Center Director Michael Terrell 



STATE OF SCTC 2020

Still Building Strong Students, Strong Careers and Strong Communities Even in the Pandemic State of the College Looking Back at Academic Year 2020. 

Reflecting back, it is certain that this past year has been one unlike any other we have experienced in our lifetime. Although much about this year looked very different from years past, Southern Crescent Technical College has continuously embraced change and stayed committed to our core values and our mission of workforce  development. We have proudly upheld our commitment to building strong communities by providing our citizens with the necessary skills and knowledge to enter the workforce while assisting them as they pursue their educational, career, and personal goals. 

This year more than ever, we take great pride in building strong students, strong careers, and strong communities. 

BUILDING STRONG STUDENTS 

Our commitment to student success has never been greater. Even with the pandemic, Southern Crescent Technical College has again experienced another banner year. Enrollment in Academic Year 2020 was 7,647, up 7.1% compared to the previous year and our retention rate for students was at 72.8%. Our enrollment remains strong as the sixth largest technical college. We also graduated 2,301 students making us the third largest producer of graduates in the Technical College System of Georgia. 

With the support of faculty and staff during our internal campaign, we raised $37,947 for scholarships. Moreover, the Southern Crescent Technical College Foundation raised $480,439 to support our students and programs. With this generous support we were able to award 130 scholarships to deserving students. 

BUILDING STRONG CAREERS 

As in previous years the College continued to provide cutting-edge programs that meet the workforce demands of our local business and industry partners. True to our workforce development mission the job placement rate for Academic Year 2020 rose slightly to 99% and the in-field placement rate rose to 88.2%, an increase of 0.6% over last year. We take great pride in assuring that the necessary elements are in place to serve the diverse education and training needs of our community. Whether our students are traditional credit students, dual enrollment students, or adult learners seeking their high school equivalency or continuing education opportunities, Southern Crescent Technical College delivers the knowledge and skills needed to make a successful and swift transition into the workforce. 

BUILDING STRONG COMMUNITIES 

Throughout this past academic year, our business and community partners have been more supportive than ever. Before the pandemic hit, we hosted our annual Red Carpet Gala as well as the inaugural Tech Connect event at the Henry County Center. It was during the Tech Connect event that we unveiled the new Piedmont Henry Healthcare Wing to celebrate our partnership and commitment to workforce development in this region. Responding quickly to the demand for healthcare workers, we expanded the Registered Nursing program at the Flint River Campus with help from Upson Regional Medical Center and other community partners and donors. 

The College also completed plans for the one-stop shop for students on the Griffin Campus. Although the pandemic brought many changes for the College, each of our programs and departments found new ways to thrive and give back to the community. Offering assistance and support to the local medical community and front-line workers, we donated critical medical equipment, supplies, and protective personnel to our community partners. 

Like many other colleges, we adjusted our general admissions requirements and waived the application fee to make matriculation easier for incoming students. We supported classroom instruction with new software and technology. And, to support students in online learning, we began the Laptop Loaner Program with generous support from the Southern Crescent Technical College Foundation and Technical College System of Georgia Foundation. 

I am extremely proud of the way our faculty, staff, and students responded to the many changes brought on by the pandemic. Our instructors and students quickly transitioned to virtual learning platforms and staff adjusted our delivery methods to best accommodate our students. Southern Crescent Technical College not only adapted to the challenges with which we were faced but also responded with great poise and compassion. 

Through it all, our students continued to excel both in and out of the classroom. As you can see, our efforts remain focused on building strong students, strong careers, and strong communities in everything that we do. Our considerable accomplishments over this past year have been made possible by the commitment and dedication of our students, faculty, staff, Board of Directors, Board of Trustees, and elected officials as well as our business, educational, and community partners. 

I consider it an honor and a privilege to serve alongside the Southern Crescent Technical College community. I invite you to view the following links for our latest Annual Report and State of the College address. 

Alvetta Peterman Thomas, Ed.D. President Southern Crescent Technical College