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Glad about the flag
Oh, my! The legislature changed the state flag and now, the whole
Give me the heat
I always hear people complaining about being pregnant in the
summer months because of the heat.
Leopards to face Coosa
The Banks County Leopards will have their work cut out for them
in the upcoming state basketball tournament. But you'd better
not tell them that.
Jefferson, Jackson school leaders upset over state
Jefferson and Jackson County school systems leaders expressed
outrage this week over state funding formulas that they said
shortchange local school construction efforts.
Authority to ask county to manage airport
The Jackson County Airport Authority plans to ask the board of
commissioners to take over the day-to-day operations of the Jackson
Flag fight not over in Madison Co.
Many Madison Countians were angered by the state legislature's
approval of a new Georgia flag. And some county residents are
vowing to continue the fight to keep the 1956 flag.
County schools $900,000 over budget
Madison County's school system overspent last year's budget by
just under $900,000, according to audit figures released by acting
superintendent Allen McCannon Tuesday night.
The Banks County News
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DANCING FOR A GOOD CAUSE
Janice Reiselt, physical education teacher at Banks County
Primary School, handed out stickers and bracelets to the students
at their celebration for the end of the "Dance for the Heart"
10th annual fund-raiser for the American Heart Association.
Lula council rejects
offer for alleged water theft
The Lula City Council voted unanimously Monday night to reject
an offer made by the owners of CMW Pipeline, a well boring company,
to pay a small amount for water allegedly stolen from the city's
hydrant on Belton Bridge Road.
The council voted unanimously to reject the offer from the company
owners to pay $5.25 for two truck loads of water, totaling around
1,500 gallons. They, then, unanimously approved sending a letter
to the firm stating that the council would accept a payment of
a $250 fine, plus the $5.25 for the 1,500 gallons the company
acknowledged stealing and warn that should a theft happen again
the company would be prosecuted.
At last month's meeting, it was revealed that a Lula resident
had come forward as an eye witness to two thefts of water in
one week in January. The resident had followed the truck in order
to identify ownership from the tag and said he would testify
to the fact.
The company owners, Payton and Shannon Crawford, of Banks County,
sent the council a letter saying that the matter had been recently
brought to their attention "that CMW has been stealing water
from hydrants." Shannon Crawford states in the letter that
her husband, Payton, has "been out of town and had no knowledge
of the situation." The letter says that notice has been
given to each employee that no water is to be taken from the
Lula water system and that "any employee found guilty of
taking water from the Lula system will be dismissed immediately."
Mayor Tim Allen explained that CMW has a meter through the city
of Gainesville and pays them for water used. The workers thought
they could use the hydrants throughout Hall County, he said.
The letter states that a translator explained to the workers
that "this could not continue."
Allen asked what the council wanted to do about accepting their
offer. Council member Mike Ostrander said, "No. We've told
them before not to get water out of our hydrants. If they have
to pay Gainesville for water, why wouldn't they think they had
to pay us for water? And why did they do it at night, so nobody
Ostrander wanted to charge the company for 800,000 gallons of
water, but was told by Allen that they only had absolute proof
of the one instance.
Council member Milton Turner reminded the council that the theft
occurred during the water ban, thus making it a $250 fine for
"I believe it would cease," said council member Perry
Bridgeman, "if we let them know that they have broken the
law and there is the possibility of prosecution for stealing
the water. This is not fair to the citizens of Lula. This is
our well water that they're stealing."
Baldwin not a speed
An inspection conducted by the Georgia State Patrol found that
the Baldwin Police Department is not setting speed traps within
city limits on Highway 365.
The request for the inspection came from the office of state
representative Ben Bridges who said in a letter written in October
to Colonel George Ellis, Commissioner of Public Safety, that
many of his constituents were complaining of a speed trap in
"It is thought that they are using this solely for revenue
rather than to protect the public from excessive speeders,"
Bridges wrote in the letter.
He requested that the matter be addressed and see whether or
not the department was using their radar properly.
The matter was turned over to G.M. Lloyd, Special Investiga-tions
Division of the DPS. Lloyd assigned Corporal Jeff Glenn to look
into the matter. Glenn rode with police chief Frank Andrews in
Glenn states in his summary that Andrews attributes the reduction
of accidents on Hwy 365 to Baldwin's use of radar detection and
his officers enforcement of the 65 mile-per-hour speed limit
on Hwy. 365.
Glenn looked into the traffic records and said that the Baldwin
police department "is operating radar within all guidelines
set forth by the Department of Public Safety and the State of
Georgia." Further that "the amount of revenue from
speeding citations for 19 miles or less over the speed limit
totaled $16,382, less than one-percent of the total budget, well
within state laws."
He also reported that all of the radar equipment is in proper
working condition, that all the officers had been properly certified,
and that the radar test logs are properly kept.
A letter from Lloyd was sent to Bridges stating "the investigation
did not reveal any evidence to sustain the complaint and it is,
Andrews said after Glenn completed his investigation, "He
couldn't believe how fast some of the drivers were going on 365.
He said we need to slow them down."
Andrews said he was not worried about the results of the inquiry
because his men "do a good job out there."
"We follow procedure," he said.
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Banks to receive
$1.7 million in state funds for school system
Banks County will receive $770,313 in state funds to go toward
the construction of new classrooms.
The money is part of a $468 million supplemental budget approved
by the governor last week to go toward public school systems.
The funds are to be used to provide additional classrooms to
meet the state's new lower student-teacher ratios required under
the governor's education reform legislation passed last year.
Banks County will also receive an additional $402,382 in entitlement
funds from the state's supplemental budget for a total of $1.7
"This money is in addition to the normal funding Banks County
schools receive from the state," said Rep. Jeanette Jamieson,
who chairs the House education committee. "I have long been
an advocate of more money for classroom construction, and this
supplemental appropriation helps us to begin replacing crowded
classrooms and trailers with new brick and mortar."
The 2001 supplemental budget includes $468 million for the construction
of nearly 7,000 new classrooms statewide to help Georgia's public
schools meet the smaller class sizes required by last year's
education reform act.
"I am delighted that we are going to be able to provide
this funding together for the children of Georgia without increasing
taxes," she said. "I am confident that generations
to come will benefit from the commitment we are making to education
Water ban continues
The water ban is still in place in Lula.
At the city council meeting Monday night, Mayor Tim Allen said
that the city's water ban was still in place. The announcement
was made to avoid confusion since Hall County has lifted its
Allen said that since Lula has a permit from the state, they
must follow state mandates. The state has not indicated a lifting
of the water ban.