News from Madison County...

APRIL 17, 2002


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OPINIONS
Frank Gillespiie
Remember Confederate Memorial Day
April 26 is Confederate Memorial Day in Georgia and several other Southern states. In Georgia it is a state holiday.

Jana Adams
The art of leave-taking
“Y’all come go with us...”
“We’d better stay on here. What’s your hurry?”
“Oh, we’d better head on...”
And so it goes, the art of leave-taking.


SPORTS

Directions to Area Schools

Lady Raider win over Monroe Fri. could seal up playoff spot
One victory stands between the Lady Raiders and the region playoffs—mabye.


Neighboorhood News ..
JACKSON COUNTY
RDC study says JCCI ‘valuable and necessary’
A review of the Jackson County Correctional Institute shows that the operation is “necessary and valuable.”
Alex Simpson of the Northeast Georgia Regional Development Center spent four months studying the operation for the board of commissioners.

Nicholson To Buy 10 Acres For City Park
NICHOLSON -- Aside from drafting a new town charter, getting the wheels moving on creating a city park was at the top of the new Nicholson City Council's agenda when it took office in January, according to Mayor Ronnie Maxwell.


Neighborhood News...
BANKS COUNTY
Clermont mayor seeks fair sales tax distribution
Appeals to Lula council
The mayor of Clermont, Steve Gailey, appealed to the Lula City Council Monday night to fight for a fair disbursement of Hall County’s local option sales tax (LOST) money.

Job loss
105 to lose jobs at Mount Vernon Mills
Mount Vernon Mills will be eliminating 105 jobs at the Alto yarn facility in June.

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Susan Anglin and her sons — Zac (L) and Blane Anglin — watch her stepson play baseball in the rain Saturday — the opening day of youth baseball and softball in Madison County.

Mother charged with murder of infant son
The mother of a 16-month-old child whose death was ruled a homicide last fall has been charged with murder in connection with his death.
Hope Bertha Buie, 22, formerly of Colbert, turned herself in to the Madison County Jail Saturday, April 13.
Buie, who now lives in Tampa, Fla., became aware of a murder warrant issued by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation last week and traveled to the jail, said Madison County chief deputy Bill Strickland.
Strickland said the warrant was issued based on additional crime lab reports and other “information” obtained by law enforcement.
Buie’s 16-month-old son, Ceasar Bolton, Jr., was transported to Athens Regional Medical Center after sheriff’s deputies and emergency medical personnel responded to the Madison Boulevard address in Colbert around 11:30 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 29. The boy was found to be bruised and unresponsive.
Evidence resulting from an autopsy performed at the state crime lab led authorities to determine that the little boy’s death was a homicide.
According to a press release issued from the sheriff’s office at that time, the cause of death was said to be “peritonitis, which was the result of a severed intestine.”
Buie was later arrested on Oct. 10 by the GBI and the sheriff’s office with giving a false statement to authorities, a felony.
Buie is now being housed without bond in the Banks County jail because Madison County has no facilities for female inmates.


Looking westward
Business park committee to recommend development of western tract off Hwy. 72
Members of the Hwy. 72 Business Park Committee will recommend that development proceed on the western tract, but no action should be taken on the eastern tract until more information is available.
The western tract of the controversial 80 acres, which was recently purchased by the county industrial authority for development, contains 32.97 acres with good road access. Committee members discussed dividing the tract into five-acre lots and recruiting light industry for the area. They decided to explore rules controlling design and appearance of buildings in the development.
Two potential occupants for the park include a high tech machine shop and a research and development lab for a vitamin company.
The eastern tract has several problems. It contains the well being renovated for use by the new water system. Well head protection rules limit the kind of development that can be placed within 250 feet of the well. Three tracts have covenants prohibiting construction of any structure other than a stick-built home. Another sizeable area contains a steep slope, a ravine and a flowing creek.
Other factors that will determine development of the area include road improvement, CSX Railroad agreements concerning blockage of the crossing and the cost of preparation of the sites for commercial use.
The committee agreed to ask the Industrial Authority for an extension of their 90-day deadline for recommending plans for the sites.
The committee heard a presentation by David Mills of the University of Georgia’s Fanning Leadership Institute. He discussed methods of leadership development used by other small communities.
The committee decided to take part in a problem solving exercise at their next meeting.


MCMS gym among schools’ budget priorities
BOE looks at system needs as budget process begins
The old Madison County Middle School gym roof has weathered its share of storms and its floor has a rich history of squeaking sneakers.
Now school leaders say the old building is in dire need of a makeover.
County school board members met Thursday to start the 2002-2003 fiscal year budget process. And one aim is to include enough money in the budget to begin renovating the old building.
“We’ve got to fix the roof and fix the floors,” said superintendent Keith Cowne, also noting that the bleachers need to be replaced.
Assistant superintendent Allen McCannon estimates that replacing the gym’s roof and floor will cost around $170,000.
But the gym is far from the only needed improvement project for county schools. Cowne said the board will consider “a myriad of requests” during the budget process, sorting through what’s feasible in light of budgetary restraints. The superintendent said he is emphasizing more board involvement in the budget decision-making process than there has been in recent years.
“I want them (the BOE) to be as informed as possible,” said Cowne.
The school system’s fiscal year runs from July 1 to June 30.
Other “big ticket” items that will also be considered during the budget process include:
•renovating the drama class at the high school — an estimated $30,000.
•hiring an elementary school art teacher and an elementary school music teacher — an estimated $100,000 total cost, which includes salary and benefits for both teachers.
•technical updates such as anti-virus software upgrades, Internet filtering and basic repairs and maintenance of technical equipment — an estimated $74,000 to $75,000.
•purchasing hardware for a Student Information System — which would include student records, schedules, etc. — to accompany software provided by the state for the program — an estimated $97,000.
•upgrading one-fourth of the PCs in the school system — an estimated $177,000.
McCannon emphasized that the school system is still in the early planning stages of the budget and may not be able to accomplish all objectives during the 2002-2003 budget year, noting that the schools may, for example, have to upgrade one-fifth of the PCs instead of one-fourth, or reroof the MCMS gym and wait on reflooring the facility.


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Committee deadline extended
The Business Park Study Committee will get some additional time to develop a plan for the proposed Hwy. 72 business park.
The park committee was formed to come up with a concept plan to help determine how the controversial Hwy. 72 land recently purchased by the Industrial Development Authority should be used.
The IDA agreed Monday night to extend the deadline for the committee’s report until June 17.
Park committee chair Kenny Beck, also a member of the IDA board, briefed fellow IDA members on the group’s progress, saying they had found the western half of the park, which is nearest to Hull, “more acceptable” to business development.
For the rest of this story see this weeks Madison County Journal.





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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.