News from Madison County...

November 14, 2001

Madison County

Madison County
Madison County H.S.

Tues., Nov. 6

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Frank Gillespie
Charity begins
at home

Among the wise sayings included in American culture is "Haste makes waste." The truthfulness of this statement is made evident by the aftermath of September 11th. Dozens of organizations, old and new, immediately began raising funds to help the victims of the attacks.

Ben Munro
Dogs should have gotten final yard

Let's get this debate out of the way.
Yes, Mark Richt's puzzling decision to run the ball with no time outs on the last play of Saturday's Georgia-Auburn game made about as much sense as Bobby Knight speaking at an anger management seminar.


Directions to Area Schools

Raiders to close season against winless Trojans
The Raiders are 8-1. North Hall is 0-9.
Two plus two logic says Madison County will whip the Trojans in the season finale in Gainesville at 7:30 p.m.

Neighboorhood News ..
Jefferson may OK conditional use zoning
Jefferson residents wanting conditional use of their land in ways not congruent with their zoning may soon have a route to take.
The Jefferson City Council voted unanimously Monday night to give it the right to grant conditional use permits in residential zoning. The Jackson County Planning Commission will vote on the amendment at its December meeting. Then, the city council will have to approve the planning commission's recommendation before the amendment becomes effective.

BOE pushes for JMS to open in Jan.
All the Jefferson Board of Education wants for Christmas is for its new middle school building to be ready when students and staff return in January.


Neighborhood News...
Who will move the dead?
Coroner, EMS in verbal brawl over who will transport. An argument over who was responsible for the removal of a body from a home earlier this month was the center of another heated dispute during Friday's meeting of the Banks County Board of Commissioners.

Architect chosen for jail
The architectural firm of Pieper, O'Brian, Herr has been chosen by the Banks County Board of Commissioners to do the architectural design of the county's new jail.
The Madison County Journal
Danielsville, Georgia
Telephone: (706) 367-5233
Fax: (706) 367-8056

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Max and Betty Sartain's classic 1937 Buick, which Max has owned for more than 40 years, was just one of 58 vehicles on display at the Madison County Cruisers charity car show last Saturday. The show was held in the county park in Danielsville.

Health dept. offices to combine
Madison County will soon have only one county health department office.
Under the advice of Dr. Claude Burnett, Northeast Health District Medical Director, the Board of Health voted last week to combine the staff of the Danielsville and Colbert offices.
The Colbert office will be closed as a public health facility, but the Board agreed to allow the building to be used as district health offices and for health education classes.
The Colbert branch of the health department has seen a decline in patients in recent years due to several new health facilities in the area.
No date has been set for the office closing.
Board of Health chairman Wesley Nash said a half-million-dollar Community Development Block Grant should be available next spring.
The federal funds will be used to build a new health care facility most likely on Hwy. 98 near the Madison County Service Center and the new county jail.
In other business, the board:
·swore in Madison County School Superintendent Keith Cowne as a board of health member.
·gave two service awards: a 25-year plaque to registered nurse Linda Threlkeld, and a 15-year plaque to sanitarian Malcolm West.
·heard that long-time Danielsville Health Department nurse Denise Echols resigned recently.

Tues., Nov. 6

Bioterrorism:Health official talks about need for local preparedness
The medical director of the Northeast Health District told Madison County Board of Health members that the country needs to be better prepared for bioterrorism outbreaks.
Dr. Claude Burnett said health departments across the state, and country, are working to increase their connections with public safety departments and hospitals due to the increasing threat of bioterrorism.
Burnett said recent anthrax cases were "a mild wake- up call" to what could happen in the future.
In the outbreak of a contagious disease, such as smallpox, Burnett said local boards of health would have quarantine powers.
Burnett explained that terrorists are "getting more sophisticated all the time" including developing organism "cocktails" with several diseases that could sicken those afflicted in stages from a few hours to several days.
He said smallpox, or other contagious disease, could be compared to "an atom bomb," especially if terrorists released it in an area such as an international airport, where it could spread worldwide, causing mass casualties.
It will take approximately 300 million doses of smallpox vaccine to protect people in the United States. Vaccines last for 10 years, meaning those in the general population who were vaccinated years ago will need to be vaccinated again, he added.
"We need to be more ready than we are," Burnett cautioned.

Still no approval on 2002 Madison County budget
Sheriff says his dept. shouldn't be excluded from 1% pay increase.
County officials again postponed approval of next year's budget Monday after sheriff Clayton Lowe requested that employees in his department receive the same one percent pay increase as other county employees.
The Madison County commissioners will meet Monday at 6 p.m. in the county government complex to discuss the proposed increases and the 2002 budget.
Under the current proposal, employees under the county's personnel policy will receive a one percent increase next year. Employees not under the policy will not receive the increase.
Madison County's constitutionally-elected officers - such as the sheriff, clerk of court, tax commissioner, probate and magistrate judges - don't have to adopt the county's personnel policy for their employees.
County commissioners have urged those officers to accept the county policy, primarily so that the county can have a uniform system of pay. Commissioners have said this is the only way the county can have true fairness in pay.
"We need something that everybody's on," said commissioner Bill Taylor, noting that some departments not under the county policy give raises and bonuses to employees when money is left over in their department at the end of the year, instead of turning the excess funds back to the county's general fund.
But constitutional officers have expressed reluctance to accept the policy, saying that they would give up some authority over their own employees, while endangering them to the political whims of current or future commissioners.
Also, elected officials who move to the county policy cannot reverse their decision. And that troubles Lowe.
"If you guys were going to be commissioners from now on and if I was going to be the sheriff from now on and we got along, then it might work," said Lowe of bringing his department under the county policy. "...But this affects every person who's ever a sheriff from here on out."
Lowe said that handling personnel matters is an important duty of the sheriff and that he is not ready to relinquish some of the responsibility.
Commissioner Mike Youngblood requested the meeting on Nov. 19, inviting all county employees not currently under the county's personnel policy to attend.
In a separate matter Monday, the board took no action on a request by residents of the Lake Deerfield Homeowners' Association to pave and maintain Lake Deerfield Subdivision Road. Chairman Wesley Nash told neighborhood residents that the county's funds are being tagged toward widening Neese Commerce Road and Nowhere Road.
"Then we'll solicit money for through roads," said Nash, noting that the state will only fund the most heavily-traveled roads.
For the rest of this story see the Madison County Journal

Commerce rejects Madison Co. offer on water service
The Commerce City Council issued a take-it-or-leave-it response Monday night to Madison County officials trying to negotiate for city water in areas around Blacks Creek Church Road.
On the advice of City Manager Clarence Bryant, the council rejected an offer made by the Madison County Industrial Authority that was in response to the city's initial offer of service.
Commerce had offered to build a 10,000-foot line that would serve approximately 50 households. The line was to cost $153,000 to install. The city would recoup about $35,000 in tap fees if all 50 households signed on. It would also charge Madison County $13,000 for fire hydrants plus a $100 per hydrant annual maintenance fee. After 10 years, the city would sell the line to Madison County for $120,000.
According to Bryant, Madison County's counter-offer proposed a five-year buyout at $136,000 and the city adding a $2 per customer monthly surcharge, which would be mailed to Madison County, to cover fire hydrant costs.
"We don't want to be collecting anything for Madison County," Bryant told the city council Monday night. He also said that the city's figures were based on having 50 customers, which could take 12 to 20 months, so that a five-year buyout would not give the city time to recoup its investment.
"I don't think we can go outside of the city and approve anything without being able to show the citizens of Commerce we are making money," he said.
Bryant suggested offering Madison County the option of deleting the fire hydrants, noting that meters in the county are subject to tampering, which he said is already happening on the lines out the Blacks Creek Road in Jackson County.
"I think it was a reasonable offer to begin with and it is reasonable now," argued Ward 4 Councilman Bob Sosebee, who called collecting the hydrant fees for Madison County "an administrative nightmare for no money."
Madison County still has the option of building its own line to serve the area, where wells have been failing, and buying water through a master meter from Commerce.

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Raiders to jump in class
The Madison County Raiders will make a jump in class next year - from AAA to AAAA.
The move will put Madison County in the 12-team Region 8-AAAA. Other schools included in that region include Cedar Shoals, Clarke Central, Eastside, Habersham Central, Heritage, Jackson County, Loganville, Newton, Rockdale County, Salem and Winder.
Madison County head football coach and athletic director Tom Hybl said region coaches reached no conclusion last week after a lengthy meeting on how to subdivide the region.
He said Madison County won't make a decision on whether to participate in region football or continue playing a non-region schedule until after the region breakdown is solidified.
Madison County participated in region play in each of Hybl's first two seasons at the school, finishing 2-8 both years. The Raiders have gone 18-1 over the past two seasons in non-region play.

Time for Christmas kids' section
The annual children's Christmas section will be published in The Madison County Journal December 19. The newspaper will be accepting photographs of infants up to children 8 years old through the Dec. 1 deadline.
Black and white or color photos can be used, but no Polaroids or photographs printed out from a computer onto laser paper will be accepted, as they do not reprint well.
Please submit the following information along with the child's photo: the first and last name and age of the child, as well as the parents' names, their city of residence and phone number. The photos may be dropped off at or mailed to the Journal office before the Dec. 1 deadline and may be picked up there after the publication runs in the paper.

Early deadlines given for next week
The Madison County Journal will have early deadlines next week due to the Thanksgiving holiday.
The deadline for news will be at 5 p.m. on Friday. The deadline for classified and display advertising will be 3 p.m. Friday.
The Journal will be printed a day early next week due to the holiday. The paper will go to press on Tuesday night and be mailed on Wednesday instead of Thursday. It will also be on the news stands late Tuesday night.
The Journal office will be closed Thursday, Nov. 23, for the Thanksgiving holiday. The office will also close Monday at noon.

Vacation photos put on hold
The Madison County Journal will no longer issue a free year's subscription for vacation photos effective Nov. 19. The offer will resume at a later date. The Journal will continue publishing pictures already submitted.

To read more about the local events in Madison County, including births, weddings, sports news and school news, see this week's Madison County Journal.