News from Banks County...

 November 15, 2000

Banks County

Banks County
Banks County

mainstreetnews Home
Search Site
Area Sports
Place A Classified Ad
Banks Legal Page
Banks Opinion Page
Banks Obituary Page
Send A Letter
List Your Business
Banks County Stats
Election Information
July 18 Election Results

Go to Jackson County
Go to Madison County


Angie Gary
Georgia's darkest hours depicted in new book

I have been a mystery fan for many years. From Nancy Drew books as a child to John Grisham novels as an adult, I have been fascinated by mysteries. I go . . .

C.W. Crawford
Gardening is good therapy

That gardening is an enjoyable and practical pursuit is a given. However, its therapeutic values for the mind, body and soul are immeasurable. A case in point happened this past week in the waiting room of a pain clinic at a hospital in Gainesville.


Girls' and boys' basketball teams look to seniors to lead promising seasons
Talent, experience and leadership will all head up the Banks County Leopard and Lady Leopard basketball teams this year.
Combined, the two teams bring 12 seniors to the court. Senior experience coupled with the youthful aggressiveness of rising underclassman should mix for an effective season for both teams.

Neighborhood News...
Commerce Schools To Start Earlier In Fall
The Commerce City School System has joined what seems to be the trend of northeast Georgia schools by approving a calendar for 2001-2002 that starts and ends the school year early.

Florida ballot flap similar to Jackson in '84
The ballot recount controversy in Florida over the outcome of the presidential race may seem like deja vu all over again for some Jackson County citizens.

News from
Drug counseling program up in the air as Martin continues fight for credibility
The saga surrounding a proposed drug counseling program in the county continued Monday. Jess Martin and his wife Anna stood before the county commissioners trying to convince the group that Martin is a respectable man and should be allowed to run the proposed Adolescent Addiction Prevention Program and Aftercare Services (AADAPP).

DFACS workers face long hours, tough choices
Donnie Morgan spent half a day recently crawling under all the bridges along or near Hwy. 72 in Madison County on a tip that an indigent family with kids might be living under one of them.
The Banks County News
Homer, Georgia
Telephone: (706) 367-5233
Fax: (706) 367-8056


® Copyright 2000
MainStreet Newspapers, Inc.
All rights reserved.
Copyright / Terms / Privacy


Larry Sparks of the Georgia Mountains Regional Development Center is helping Alto City Council members Jerry Terrell, Susan Wade, Carol Gulley and Audrey Turner and Mayor Jack King determine the zoning districts.


Alto zoning ordinance in the works
The Alto City Council took the first steps in developing a zoning ordinance last week at its first Development Authority meeting.
Under the guidance of Larry Sparks, of the Georgia Mountains Regional Development Center, council members Jerry Terrell, Susan Wade, Carol Gulley and Audrey Turner got a glimpse of what lies ahead in determining Alto's future.
Sparks gave the council members a copy of an ordinance from another city and went over it sentence by sentence, restriction by restriction. He told them that they should use the ordinance as a sample for Alto.
He said there could be three zoning district designations - R-1, single-family dwellings, stick-built homes only, no mobile homes; R-2, duplexes, triplexes, townhomes, and mobile homes; and R-3, apartment complexes, condominiums and mobile home parks.
He asked the council about the city's needs for industrial and agricultural zones. The council did not think they would need those designations at this time.
Mobile homes were a long topic of discussion. Sparks said that there are a number of ways to limit the increase of mobile homes by restricting roof pitch and square footage. He said many property owners recognize the loss of property values when a mobile home is added to a neighborhood. He added that some counties require the mobile home to be less than seven years old. Mayor Jack King said that Alto currently has a 10-year age limit on mobile homes.
King said he did not think that restricting mobile homes was fair to residents or prospective residents.
"They are making mobile homes better and better," he said. "Many people just can't afford anything else."
Council member Susan Wade said, "I live in a mobile home, but I wouldn't want one next to me if I lived in a $200,000 home."
The group discussed how it might include small home-run businesses within the designations. City clerk Barbara Reynolds pointed out that there are more than 25 businesses operating in Alto. The council is concerned about how they fit in the districts.
Sparks said that as long as the business did not take up more square footage than the home-area, they could be allowed in all three zones. He also told them that they must come up with size limits for signs and take parking into consideration. In other cities, ordinances state that when a business has been closed for 12 months, it cannot be re-opened.
Sparks also touched on a highway business zone which would allow for shopping malls and stores and an industrial zone that includes larger business entities. He plans to bring sample ordinances of commercial districts to the next council meeting.
The council has to check with the health departments of both Banks and Habersham counties to find out the regulations on acreage size for septic systems. Alto currently has no sewer system which means that all new building and development will have to follow septic system guidelines.
Sparks also asked the council to produce up-to-date tax maps so they can determine where the districts will be. He said the current property lines and city limits have to be clearly distinguished.
The council now has to take all the information and begin the long process of hashing out what's in the best interest of Alto's future development. Another meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 28, at the Alto City Hall.

Parents air complaints about BCHS band director to BOE
A series of parental complaints were aired Monday night against Banks County High School band director Rebecca Smith. The complaints were made to the Banks County Board of Education during its monthly meeting. Smith was not in attendance.
Most of the complaints revolved around what parents said were bad interactions with band students and their perception that there had been a lack of proper oversight of band students while on bus trips.
Parent Beth Gooch said that the problems began following a dispute between Smith and the band parent organization. Smith's name was removed from the group's bank account following disagreements in how the money was being spent, said Gooch.
Since that action, however, Gooch said Smith had been demanding payment for giving students missed work, cursing at students and doing other inappropriate things.
Another parent told the board that her daughter was out of school sick for three days and when she returned, she had missed a worksheet and a piece of music. Smith reportedly told the woman's daughter that if she wanted to make up the work, she must pay a quarter.
"My daughter told her that she wasn't giving her a quarter," said the mother. "My child is not paying for work. I'm sorry. She took a zero."
Junior majorette Maggie Elrod told the board that Smith cursed at her and of other disputes with the band leader.
Gooch also said students weren't being properly supervised during band trips.
"From the time they leave that school until the time they got back, she needs to know what is going on," said Gooch. "They're your responsibility.... They're allowed to scatter like flies when they get off those buses."
Gooch said that a recent incident involving her child having purchased an over-the-counter medication on a band trip led to him and another student having to take off their uniforms and leave them on the bus. The students then had to sit in T-shirts and shorts in the stands at last week's game in Rabun County.
"They were shivering in shorts and T-shirts until two cheerleaders gave them their jackets," said Gooch.
Gooch also feels Smith was out of line when she discussed the matter with the Rabun County band director.
"Don't go to somebody else that I don't know, that doesn't know my child and discuss what happens with my child to somebody else," Gooch said. "She got on the bus and told me that she had discussed the situation with the Rabun County band director."
Gooch said the board should get a handle on the situation.
"I'm sorry, but we've got to do something about getting a rein on this," she said. "This is the kind of thing we're going to send to Daytona? I mean, kids scattered all over Daytona? I don't know what is going to have to happen before we can get a rein on this."

 Search this site

Nov 7 Election Results

See All Candidates
See July 18 Primary Results
See August 8 Runoff Results

Go to Banks
Community Pages

Public Meeting Dates

On-Going Services

Banks County
Business Listing
Education/Child Care
Financial Institutions
Food & Convenience Stores
Garden & Agriculture
Homes & Supplies
Industry & Manufacturing
Real Estate
Retail Stores/Outlets
Service Businesses

Kids' photos deadline set
The deadline for turning in photographs of children for The Banks County News' annual special Christmas kids section is set for Friday, Dec. 1.
Photographs of children ages 8 and under are featured free of charge in the special section planned for the week of Christmas. The children must live in Banks or Jackson counties. The name, age, address and parent's name must be listed on the back of each photo.
Photos may be turned in at The Banks County News office in Homer. They may also be mailed to: The Banks County News, P.O. Box 920, Homer, Ga., 30547.

Holiday recipes, memories sought for publication
The Banks County News is seeking special recipes you and your family prepare for the holiday season, as well as any stories you have about those recipes - were they handed down from a grandmother or mother? Why are they favorites? Why do you like to make them?
If you would like to share your favorite holiday season recipes in the November 22 issue of The News, contact Angie Gary at 367-2490 or mail them by Thursday, November 16, to: The Banks County News, P.O. Box 920, Homer, GA 30547, Attn. Angie Gary.