News from Banks County...

MARCH 31, 2004


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OPINIONS
Angela Gary
A love of hats and tea time
A little over 10 years ago, I bought a box of old hats at an estate sale. They came in all colors, shapes and sizes and a few even had feathers and flowers on them. They were in great shape.

Shar Porier
When angels come calling
Two weeks ago, a very special event took place at Maysville Elementary School.
150 strangers from one of the country’s better-known companies came to help spruce up the grounds at the school and an event unlike any other that ever happened in the little town of Maysville had begun.


SPORTS
Boys soccer team ties Dawson County
The Banks County boys soccer team tied Dawson County Friday at one goal, the girls team fell to the Tigers.
The boys and girls soccer teams will travel to Rabun County on April 8. The girls game will begin at 5 p.m. and the boys will follow at 6:30 p.m.


News from
JACKSON COUNTY
Arcade wants its own water, sewer service
JCWSA opposed to idea
The Jackson County Water and Sewerage Authority may be headed for another power struggle with the board of commissioners, this time over water service in the Arcade area.

Qualifying ahead week of April 26
It’s a major election year in Jackson County and most local seats are up for re-election. Three of the five seats on the Jackson County Board of Commissioners will be on the ballot. They include: District 1, held by Stacey Britt; District 2, held by Sammy Thomason; and chairman, held by Harold Fletcher.


News from
MADISON COUNTY
IDA, BOC discuss nearly $1 million contract for water services to contaminated area
The county industrial development authority (IDA) met this morning (Wednesday) to approve a deal with the petroleum company for approximately $947,000 for water service to the Colbert Grove Church Road area off Hwy. 29, which the petroleum company contaminated with oil spills.

Fortson guilty...again
Second jury finds former deputy guilty of murdering Madison Co. man
Tracy Lea Fortson took the stand in her own defense during her retrial for the murder of Doug Benton last week.

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Musical ‘legend’ performs in Homer

COUNTRY LEGEND, OTHER PERFORMERS IN HOMER
Grand Ole Opry member Gene Watson was featured for the sixth year at the Banks County High School Band Boosters concert fund-raiser Saturday in Homer. For additional photos see this weeks Banks County News.


DFACS investigated 259 child abuse cases in 2003
Pinwheels to represent cases to be placed at courthouse April 9
In 2003, the Banks County Department of Family and Children Services investigated 259 child abuse and neglect reports and substantiated 62 incidents.
Protecting abused and neglected children is one of the jobs of DFACS. That’s why all county DFACS offices statewide are undergoing restructuring to sharpen the focus on children’s well-being.
“We must put all our efforts into making sure that children are protected and that the problems in their families are resolved,” said DFACS director Renota Free. “I think the changes DFACS is making at all levels will help to ensure that.”
She said that the county DFACS office is still the entry point for other DFACS-administered programs, including Food Stamps, Medicaid and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families.
“But our primary administrative and program concentration at the county level is protecting children,” she said.
The restructuring is aimed at improving child abuse and neglect investigations, strengthening services to troubled families and reducing the number of children who are abused again after returning home from foster care.
During April, which is Child Abuse Prevention Month, DFACS is participating in Prevent Child Abuse Georgia’s “Pinwheels for Prevention” to raise awareness of the state’s abused children and encourage communities to get involved in prevention activities. There will be 62 colorful pinwheels placed on the front lawn of the Banks County courthouse on April 9 to represent the substantiated cases of abuse and or neglect cases in Banks County in 2003.


Upcoming events
Spring Fling ahead Sat. in Alto
The city of Alto is planning a “Spring Fling” to celebrate Georgia’s Cities Week from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 3.
Toni Sheridan, organizer, said a parade and a craft show will be held.
“We need antique tractors, classic cars, cyclists, skateboarders, and the like to be in the parade,” Sheridan said. “We also hope to have a little gospel singing.”
Sheridan is also looking for vendors of art, crafts and food to participate.
For more information, contact Sheridan at (706) 778-8035.

44th annual egg hunt coming up on Easter Sunday
Mack and Sandra Garrison are in the final planning stages for the country’s largest annual Easter Egg hunt.
The event will begin at 2 p.m. and is open to children of all ages. A special area is cordoned off for babies and toddlers.
Hidden with the 100,000 candy eggs the Garrisons and community volunteers hide will be 125 prize eggs. The children who find them will have the choice of a live bunny, stuffed bunny or a basket of Easter goodies.
The event will take place at the Garrison’s farm on Highway 51 South across from Banks County Primary School.

Baldwin fire dept. plans ceremony
Baldwin fire chief Joe Roy has announced the commemoration and opening of the four-story training tower at 11 a.m. on Saturday, April 17.
The schedule includes the recognition of state officials, including Rep. Jeanette Jamieson, who helped provide state funds, and appreciation to all the businesses who donated materials.
The department will also put on a demonstration of the tower’s potential to train firefighters in many aspects of their job including high angle rescue.

Plans for ‘Heritage Days’ underway
An organizational committee has been meeting recently to plan this year’s “Heritage Days” County Fair set for Saturday, September 25, and Sunday, September 26, at the county horse arena grounds.
The Banks County Chamber of Commerce needs more food and craft vendors and parade entries.
The fair will stay with the theme “A Step Back In Time,” as demonstrators known as “The Rendezvouers” exhibit handed-down techniques of life before electricity and machines. The two days will be packed with fun, games, stock shows, riding competitions and music, leaders say.
The committee hopes many of the county churches and organizations will participate. For more information about participating or volunteering to help with the event, call the chamber at 677-2108.

 


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Planners to meet Tues.
The Banks County Planning Commission will meet at 7 p.m. on Tuesday in the courthouse to consider the following requests:
•Paul Blankenship for a conditional use permit for an auto shop at 10270 Highway 441, South. This property is zoned ARR, Agricultural, Rural-Residential.
•Pauline and Joe Bielicki for a conditional use permit for a dog kennel at 572 Garrison Road. This property is zoned ARR, Agricultural, Rural-Residential.
•Pamela and Jimmy Bell for a variance for a poultry house on Hawkins Road. This property is zoned ARR, Agricultural, Rural-Residential.
•Mike Dowdy for rezoning of five acres on Highway 441, South from ARR, Agricultural Rural-Residential to C-2, General Commercial. The proposed use is a feed and seed store.
The Banks County Board of Commissioners will hold a public hearing on these matters on Tuesday, April 13, at 7 p.m. at the courthouse.


New water line project approved
The Baldwin City Council members agreed at last week’s meeting to begin a new water line project.
City engineer Fred Hawkins said the half-mile project would run an eight-inch line along L.C. Turner Road to Highway 365. It would then run south down Hwy. 365 to Charlie Davis Road up to the new Hayes dealership.
He recommended the city extend the lines on L.C. Turner and Charlie Davis to join with the line on B.C. Grant Road making a loop.
The project cost is estimated at $30,000 which could be financed through Habersham County special purpose local option sales tax funds.