Cedartown Fire Department Chief Sammy Stephens is a firm believer that laughter serves as the best medicine. That might seem to challenge the tough guy stereotype of a man who, for three decades, has worked in public safety. But as he explains it, laughter can satisfy a hurting heart much like water douses a fire. (more…)
Georgia State Patrol, Polk County Police, Haralson County Sheriff’s Deputies, and other agencies responded to a single vehicle wreck Tuesday evening on Vinson Mountain Road near Rockmart, where a man was pronounced dead.
According to Polk County Coroner Tony Brazier, 39-year-old Christopher Robinson of Buchanan was apparently headed to work in Cartersville when he appeared to have fallen asleep at the wheel and veered off the road and down a steep embankment.
After not showing up for work, Polk County 911 officials pinged his cell phone and pinpointed his location. First responders had to climb down into a deep ravine to get to Robinson’s vehicle. Brazier pronounced Robinson dead on the scene just after 7:00 p.m. Tuesday night.
Brazier said that no foul play is suspected and that the accident was only the one vehicle. Emergency personnel were on the scene until after midnight into early Wednesday morning, processing and clearing the scene.
The Rockmart Yellow Jackets took no time in establishing dominance in Tuesday’s match up against the Gordon Central Warriors, helped in part by Jaylin Smith and Drake Benefield, whose combined effort pushed the Jackets to a 68-42 win at the Rock.
Benefield led in scoring for both teams as he provided 17 points, including 11 points in the 4th period, followed closely behind by Smith with 16 points. Devon Philpot also provided 9 points in the victory.
Rockmart basketball will return to action on Friday, December 5 as they host the Temple Tigers at the Rock.
We will have the play-by-play action of Rockmart Yellow Jackets Basketball online at www.wgaaradio.com.
WGAA will bring you the play-by-play of the boys basketball game starting at around 7:20 on 1340 AM and online at www.wgaaradio.com.
News and sports director Andrew Carter will provide the play-by-play action on the radio all season long for Rockmart High School boys basketball.
The Cedartown Bulldogs basketball teams start their seasons on Tuesday, December 2 on the road at Temple.
Employees, community leaders and others commemorated the 45th anniversary of the Hon Company coming to Cedartown. A short program was held inside the still bustling factory on Ninth Street.
County commissioner Jason Ward, Cedartown Commissioner Larry Odom, and Development Authority of Polk County Executive Director Rachel Rowell spoke during the ceremony.
ATLANTA – The Georgia Department of Labor announced today that Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for October was 7.7 percent, down two-tenths of a percentage point from 7.9 percent in September. The rate in October of last year was 7.8 percent.
“The rate fell as we had extremely strong job growth in October, which gave us the largest number of jobs in Georgia since May of 2008,” said State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler. “Our state’s private-sector employers get the credit because they created more than 91 percent of the new jobs in October and all of them since October of last year.”
There were 4,166,400 jobs in October, an increase of 33,800, or eight-tenths of a percentage point, from 4,132,600 in September. The increase is 31 percent more jobs than the average September-to-October growth for the last three years. The private sector created 30,800 of the new jobs, while state and local government education created the remainder. Job growth also came in trade, transportation and warehousing, 14,200; professional and business services, 7,900; education and health services, 4,900; construction, 1,200; leisure and hospitality, 1,100; information services, 1,000; and financial services, 500.
“Georgia employers have added 96,000 jobs since October of last year,” said Butler. “We had significant over-the-year growth in almost every sector, which shows the overall strength in our job recovery. I’m especially encouraged that the number of construction jobs grew by nearly five percent to give us the most jobs in that industry in five years.”
The over-the-year job gains were in professional and business services, 32,200; trade, transportation and warehousing, 26,400; leisure and hospitality, 14,900; manufacturing and construction, 7,400 each; education and health services, 5,400; information services, 2,200; and financial services, 1,400. Government lost 600.
In October, there were 32,899 new claims filed for unemployment insurance, an indicator of new layoffs, which rose by 2,700, or 8.9 percent, from 30,199 filed in September. Much of the increase was temporary claims filed in manufacturing and administrative services, including temporary employment agencies.
However, over the year, initial claims were down by 18 percent. There were 7,233 fewer claims filed than the 40,132 in October 2013. Most of the decline over the year came in manufacturing, professional, scientific and technical services, support services, and trade, transportation and warehousing.
The investigation into missing funds from a death scene back in August conducted by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation has been concluded and turned over to Tallapoosa Judicial Circuit District Attorney Jack Browning.
Polk County Police Chief Kenny Dodd learned of the alleged incident from one of his officers and then contacted the GBI.
Browning said that the GBI’s investigation is complete and he will be reviewing the findings in due course. He said he did not know whether or not any charges would be filed in the case.
Former Polk County Coroner Trey Litesey resigned from his post in September, citing personal reasons.
Litesey, police officers, emergency medical services personnel, and firefighters were all being investigated in the GBI probe.
Browning said he hopes to move on the case before the end of the year.
ATLANTA – Five Georgia communities have been newly selected to receive assistance with their housing needs through the Georgia Initiative for Community Housing (GICH), a public-private initiative focused on helping communities strategically grow their economies through housing-related solutions.
Cedartown, Madison, Pine Mountain, Trion and Liberty County will begin the three-year program in February. Through training and technical instruction during a series of retreats, community housing teams design and implement strategies to enhance their economies as well as the quality of life for their citizens. During these work sessions, each team will work with and receive continuous feedback from a facilitator or housing professional, as well as engage in cross-community collaboration.
“Assistance with housing works best when communities are an active part of the process,” said Gretchen Corbin, Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Community Affairs (DCA), a partner in the initiative. “This program brings together and empowers the decision-makers who can and do make a difference in their communities.”
The teams consist of about twelve members and include representatives from local government, business, nonprofit housing organizations and the public housing authority. Other groups may include faith-based organizations, churches, development authorities, chamber of commerce, school systems, major employers and law enforcement.
Since the program’s inception in 2005, 50 Georgia communities have benefited from the GICH program. The communities currently enrolled in the program are Albany, Dalton, Douglasville, Greensboro, Lithonia, Perry, Pembroke, Porterdale, Rincon and Roswell.
Some of the resulting strategies undertaken by communities include revitalizing distressed neighborhoods and subdivisions, developing multi-family apartments through tax credits, updating codes and ordinances, creating a land bank authority, writing an urban redevelopment plan, conducting a housing assessment, and launching community clean-up programs.
Up to five communities are selected through a competitive process each year to participate in the initiative. Communities are selected based on need and their demonstrated commitment to community improvement. Any city, county, or public housing authority in Georgia is eligible to apply on behalf of a community housing team. Applications are due each September.
GICH is a collaboration of partners including: the University of Georgia’s Housing and Demographics Research Center, a unit of the Department of Financial Planning, Housing and Consumer Economics in the College of Family and Consumer Sciences; UGA’s Office of the Vice President for Public Service and Outreach; the Georgia Department of Community Affairs; and the Georgia Municipal Association, a voluntary, non-profit organization based in Atlanta that provides legislative advocacy, educational, employee benefit and consulting services to its 521 member cities. The GICH program is funded by Georgia Power as well as the USDA, through a Rural Community Development Initiative grant. Additional in-kind services are provided by UGA’s Archway Partnership, and the Carl Vinson Institute of Government, both units of the UGA Office of Public Service and Outreach, and the Georgia Electric Membership Corporation.
For more information, visit the DCA website at http://www.dca.ga.gov/
ATLANTA – State Representative Trey Kelley (R-Cedartown) recently presented Cedartown High School and its principal, Dr. Darrell Wetherington, with a commemorative United States flag and state flag of Georgia. The flag was presented on Tuesday, November 11, 2014.
“It was a great honor to present both flags to Dr. Wetherington and my alma mater, Cedartown High School.” said Rep. Kelley. “Helping to spread the spirit of patriotism throughout our community is one of my greatest joys and presenting these flags on Veteran’s Day made it even more special.”
Commemorative flags of the United States and the state of Georgia are available through the Georgia Building Authority. These flags are presented in remembrance for veterans, family, friends, current members of the armed services, or to honor someone for a special accomplishment, service or retirement. Each one of these memorial flags has flown over the State Capitol and comes with a certificate of authenticity including the date on which it was flown.
Lee, a biology teacher at Cedartown High School for nearly 15 years, is involved with numerous activities at the high school, including the academic Renaissance program and homecoming planning.
The system also recognized the Teachers of the Year from each school throughout Polk School District:
- RHS – Jeff Hawkins
- CMS – Lori Shiver
- RMS – Ashley Puckett
- Cherokee – Tim Rowell
- Eastside – Durand Dean
- Northside – LeAnn Newsome
- Van Wert – Amber Fuqua
- Westside – Jill Dingler
- Youngs Grove – Elisa Prewett