Place A Classified Ad
Jackson Legal Page
Jackson Opinion Page
Jackson Obituary Page
Send A Letter
List Your Business
Jackson County Stats
Sex Offender Registry
1998 Building Permits
1999 Building Permits
1998 Property Transactions
1999 Property Transactions
Bear Creek Project
Go to Banks County
Go to Madison County
Jackson County opinion page
Anglin spending summer on diamond
Jefferson High School alumnus Brandon Anglin is spending his
summer pitching for the Danville Dans of the Central Illinois
Collegiate League (CICL). A sophomore at the University of Georgia,
Anglin got off...
County all stars set for district play
The season is done, and postseason tournaments have been won.
District play is up next for the Jackson County Parks and Recreation
Department's youth baseball and softball teams.
Investigators believe Tracy Fortson committed murder,
cover-up without help
Investigators believe Tracy Lea Fortson acted
alone in murdering her ex-boyfriend Douglas Benton in his Colbert
home, encasing him in cement in a water trough and leaving the
body in a wooded area in Oglethorpe County.
Fireworks display planned July 4
The traditional Homer 4th of July fireworks display will get
under way around 9:30 p.m. next Tuesday night.
The Jackson Herald
Telephone: (706) 367-5233
Fax: (706) 367-8056
NEWS / ADVERTISING
® Copyright 2000
MainStreet Newspapers, Inc.
All rights reserved.
Terms / Privacy
Drought may hurt
Bear Creek project
If the Bear Creek Reservoir project in southwest Jackson County
were completed, would the four counties be able to withdraw water
from the Middle Oconee River to fill it? The answer, given Georgia's
three-year drought, is probably not.
Jackson County Commissioner Pat Bell raised the question during
the Upper Oconee Basin Authority's June meeting last Thursday.
On the other hand, the reservoir is designed to provide adequate
water in times of drought.
The countdown toward completion of the project crossed under
the one-year mark this week. The $64 million project, which includes
a 505-acre lake and a 21 million gallon per day water plant,
is due to send water to Athens-Clarke, Barrow, Jackson and Oconee
counties on July 1, 2001.
Jim Wrona, senior project engineer for Jordan, Jones and Golding,
who oversees construction, reported that most of the contractors
are ahead of schedule. The most important exception is the contractor
building the dam, who is one to two weeks behind schedule, although
Wrona predicted that work would be caught up shortly.
The bad news for the morning was that the emergency spillway
is going to cost $300,000 more than budgeted. The authority voted
unanimously to ratify a decision made by chairman Wendell Dawson
earlier to grant a $314,043 change order to Specialized Services,
Inc., builder of the dam and spillway.
Dawson had authorized the change, only the second made in the
project, after consulting with several authority members and
engineers. The change became necessary, Byrd explained, when
excavation for the spillway revealed that the rock was not as
high as expected in the "energy disseminator" area.
The energy disseminator slows down the rush of water as it comes
over the emergency spillway as in a 100-year flood
reducing its power.
During the design period, Goulder And Associates did sample borings
to determine the location of the rock, but when the earth was
removed, Byrd said, the rock was not as close to the surface
as expected. The authority was left with a choice of redesigning
the spillway, a process that could take six months including
state approval, or build up the rock with concrete. The latter
choice, which the authority took, can be accomplished without
affecting the completion date, Byrd said.
The cost is covered in the authority's contingency fund.
The need to have the project "substantially completed"
by March 31 was a critical factor in granting the change order,
because the authority must begin filling the lake by that time
if it is to meet its July 1, 2001 deadline for having water.
See next week's Jackson Herald for the complete story.
this year at nursing home
What a difference (almost) a year makes.
It was in July of last year when the state Office of Regulatory
Services conducted its annual inspection of BJC Medical Center
and issued a damning report that ripped the cleanliness and care
at the facility, all but blamed the nursing home for two patient
deaths and proposed a fine of up to $3,000 per day.
This week, BJC Medical Center received verbal confirmation that
it is in full compliance following its 2000 inspection.
The 2000 report stunned the medical center, especially since
it was released to the Athens newspapers before the medical center
had an opportunity to respond. Morale plummeted, but its effects
were greater than a blemish to prestige. Staff resigned, hiring
of replacements became difficult and the facility has had to
rely on agency nurses and nursing assistants to fill the vacancies,
a problem that lingers even now. The state put a temporary moratorium
on admissions and prevented the medical center from offering
Certified Nursing Assistants training courses.
BJC officials denied most of the allegations, even as they began
changes aimed at satisfying the regulators. Eventually, the more
serious allegations were dropped, and the fine cut by 75 percent,
Nursing home administrator Charles Stills reported at Monday
night's meeting of the BJC Medical Center Authority that he had
received verbal confirmation that the final issue for the 2000
survey had been received. Stills came on as an interim administrator
in the aftermath of the report and was later given the title
The 2000 inspection came in March, which was a surprise, but
officials found little wrong, officials say. A follow-up visit
occurred Friday, resulting in the verbal confirmation that BJC
was in full compliance. Written confirmation is expected later.
to be on this
weekend in Commerce
Commerce will turn on the City Lights this week.
The City Lights Festival, that is. It grew from a 40th anniversary
celebration to an annual benefit concert and, starting Thursday,
the City Lights Festival has become a three-day event built around
the generosity of Commerce's favorite son, Bill Anderson.
The country music legend remains the heart of the event, proceeds
of which will one day build the Bill Anderson Performing Arts
Center on the campus of Commerce High School.
It will be Anderson, who headlines the "Dinner with the
Stars" Thursday night (7:30 at the Commerce Civic Center)
at which people will pay $50 a ticket to dine with him and fellow
country legends Jim Ed Brown and Helen Cornelius and to get a
close up during an acoustical set with the musicians. And while
Anderson is bringing one of country music's bright new stars,
Brad Paisley, as the top-billed talent for Friday night's concert
(7:00, Tiger Field), Anderson will still be the main draw.
Friday's concert will start with an acoustical set by Michael
Johnson, who has a syndicated radio show on 400 stations.
Paisley, expected to perform for an hour, will go last, but the
order in which Anderson and Connie Smith will perform won't be
determined until Anderson arrives. Both are expected to perform
for about 45 minutes, said Rob Jordan, WJJC station manager.
The evening will end with fireworks.
Another evolutionary twist tied to making money instead of music
is the addition this year of Hard Core wrestling, a table-bashing,
glass-smashing simulation of wrestling violence designed to ride
the wave of professional wrestling's popularity. It takes place
at 8:00 Thursday night at the high school gym, for those seeking
entertainment a little more lively than dinner and music.
Saturday, the venue changes to the downtown, where performing
artists will sing gospel, country, rock and bluegrass music,
where cloggers will clog and dancers will dance, merchants will
hold sidewalk sales and vendors will offer food, crafts, cookbooks,
jewelry, plants, dolls, quilts and anything the public seems
likely to buy.
The entertainment will take place on State Street, which will
be closed to traffic from its junctions with Central Avenue and
North Broad Street. Musicians and dancers will work half-hour
sets from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
The booths will be complemented by merchants' sidewalk sales
and will be spread through the central business district.
Go to Jackson
Public Meeting Dates
& Convenience Stores
Parks Creek project
A proposal by Jefferson to build a city reservoir on Parks Creek
will be supported by the four-county Upper Oconee Basin Water
That group, which is building the regional Bear Creek Reservoir
and water treatment plant, voted last Thursday to send a letter
to the Environmental Protection Division offering its general
support for the project.
There are conditions on that support, however. Jefferson engineer
Jerry Hood of Precision Planning said the conditions were acceptable.
Jackson County Commissioner Pat Bell stressed that the Jackson
County government supported the move. In fact, Jackson County
has an agreement with Jefferson to purchase up to a million gallons
a day from the facility.
Jefferson's plan is to build the lake on Parks Creek, but to
fill it by pumping water out of the North Oconee River. It is
permitted by the EPD for 53 million gallons per day.
The concern of the authority is that the EPD, having issued that
permit based on growth projections of the four counties, which
included those for Jefferson, might opt to reduce the Bear Creek
permit by an amount equal to what it grants Jefferson.
The motion to send the letter to EPD was made by Bobby Snipes,
deputy manager of the Athens-Clarke Unified Government and the
person who suggested the conditions, and seconded by Bell. It
See next week's Jackson Herald for the complete story.
festivities ahead this weekend
The Fourth of July will be celebrated a little bit early in Jackson
County this year, with festivities planned this weekend in both
Jefferson and Commerce.
An evening of festivities will be sponsored on the square in
downtown Jefferson Saturday by the Jefferson Area Business Association
(JABA). Activities, including children's games, will begin at
7 p.m., with fireworks planned for dusk.
A band of Banks County high schoolers will present music from
the 1950s, '60s and '70s from 8 to 11 p.m.
Homemade ice cream and other refreshments will be available.
Student Explorers and bike patrolmen will be out all evening,
Jefferson Police Chief Darren Glenn said. A new event this year
will be a baseball throw with a radar gun set up to clock throwing
speed. The police chief said funds raised from that event will
be donated to JABA.