News from Madison County...

December 22, 2000


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OPINIONS
Frank Gillispie
It's time for election reform

Margie Richards
Christmas memories


SPORTS
Lady Raiders pick up wins, momentum

Riding a six game winning streak, girls' head basketball coach Tim Cook said his improving squad is on the verge of accomplishing a team goal set early in the season.


Neighborhood News...
BANKS COUNTY
Fire destroys Poole Road home Saturday night
A fire Saturday night completely destroyed a home on Poole Road.
Firefighters responded to the home of R.C. Morgan to find it almost completely involved in flames.

Woman found dead at Banks Crossing motel
A Danielsville woman was found dead in a Guest House Inn room last week and a Commerce man has been charged with her murder.


News from...
JACKSON COUNTY
Zoning standoff shuts down Nicholson gov't
There's not a "Gone Fishing" sign on the door of the Nicholson City Hall, but there might as well be. Nicholson is closed.

Maysville's 2001 Budget To Be Up By Four Percent
The Maysville City Council's budget for next year's general fund shows an increase of four percent, but the water and sewer budget is down 13 percent. Both budgets were approved at the council meeting Monday night.


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PORTRAYING THE
BIRTH OF JESUS


Several community members portrayed characters in the live Nativity on Booger Hill Road last weekend. This was the 16th year for the event. Those pictured are (L-R): Crystal Kitchens (angel), Joe Rickman, Jr. (wise man), Jordan Dean (Mary) and Jack Williams (Joseph).



Christmas celebration delayed, but not canceled
Cold, windy weather didn't stop many of the neighborhood folk along Booger Hill and Moon's Grove Roads from presenting their annual gift to the community - a live nativity and luminaria.
But for the first time since the tradition began 16 years ago, the event was rained out on the scheduled Saturday night and was held instead on Sunday night.
"This is the first time this has ever happened," Joe Rickman, whose family hosts the Live Nativity, said. "We've come close before, but we've never had to postpone it until this weekend."
Shirley Rickman said on Saturday evening that the family had received numerous calls asking if the event would take place. But with the intermittent downpours of rain and threatening weather, they felt they could not proceed.
And although there was no rain on Sunday night - there was plenty of cold, windy weather. The weather grew a little too cold for the children who were scheduled to be a part of the Nativity.
In addition, some of the volunteers were not able to participate due to prior commitments to church Christmas events which were held Sunday evening.
But there were still plenty of vehicles driving through to stop and admire the Nativity and the decorative homes along the way. Children also visited a very cold Santa and Mrs. Claus at the corner of Booger Hill and Moon's Grove Road.
"I just couldn't let the kids down," the jolly old elf said from his chair on the front porch of the home. "They're counting on me."
Just as he spoke a truck slowed down on the highway and a child yelled "Hey Santa Claus!"
Some "brave souls" also rode by on an open-air wagon pulled by a pickup truck, and when the wind didn't carry the sound away, Christmas carols could be heard.


'Teachers of the Year' named
Each of Madison County's seven schools has named a "Teacher of the Year." Those teachers honored were selected by their fellow teachers.
"Teachers of the Year" are:
·Colbert Elementary, Sally Hozey
·Comer Elementary, Liz Mosseri
·Danielsville Elementary, Tommie Beusse
·Ila Elementary, Troyce Ann Pawlowski
·Hull-Sanford Elementary, Elaine Rogers
·Madison County Middle School, Ken Mattison
·Madison County High School, Dr. Elmer Clark
Dr. Clark was the only honoree to attend the Tuesday night meeting. He told the board of education that, "These have been the six most enjoyable years of my career."
Dr. Clark received his undergraduate education in North Carolina and his doctoral degree from the University of Georgia. He has been teaching for 14 years, including several years at the college level. He teaches World History, French and other subjects.
"Let me warn you," Dr Clark said to the Board, "that we are planning to start a student newspaper in January." He asked the board for permission to send student reporters to the board meetings as part of their news coverage. Board members encouraged the effort and offered to assist in any way possible.
For the rest of the story on the BOE meeting, see this week's Madison County Journal.




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County tax rates set
Madison County tax rates were officially approved by the county commissioners Monday, with taxes for schools the most notable change from last year's rates.
The tax commissioners office plans to mail tax bills out next week.
The county school board recently voted to increase taxes 26 percent, from 12.31 mills last year to 15.54 mills in 2000. On Monday, the county commissioners gave their "rubber stamp" approval to that increase. BOC chairman Wesley Nash told the board that commissioners "don't really have the option of not passing their (the school board's) mill rate."
The commissioners also approved a county unincorporated tax rate of 8.54 mills, down 4.2 percent from last year, and a county incorporated rate of 10.38, down 4.6 percent from 1999.
Also approved Monday was a .09 mill increase in taxes for the county Industrial Authority, from .16 mills in 1999 to .25 mills this year.
The tax rates were passed by a 3-1 vote, with commissioners Bill Taylor, Melvin Drake and Bruce Scogin voting for approval and Patsy Pierce voting against the action. District 2 commissioner Nelson Nash was not at the meeting.