Planned Shutdown of GDR Computers May 24 – 27 To Affect Sale of Tags, etc.

“For a little while, it’s going to slow us down,” Chattooga County Tax Commissioner Joy Hampton said about a planned shutdown of Georgia Department of Revenue computers.
The revenue department is switching from a “DOS” operating system to a modern Windows based variation.
This change will affect the tax office. Tags, titles and other items can’t be processed on May 24-27, Hampton said.
“Web renewals will also be unavailable during these days. If you have a May birthday, please try to renew early. Again, every tag office in Georgia will be affected during these times, but some may have varying hours for property tax payments. Please call your local office to confirm their availability before making a trip,” Hampton said.
“We appreciate your patience with us while we change systems. Continue to be patient with us as we work to learn the new system. My staff is impressively efficient with our current system, but it will take time for us to move through the new system with the same speed. As the whole state of Georgia is going live on the same day, it is best to wait until Wednesday, May 29 or later in the week to conduct your motor vehicle business so that we can give you the best service.

John Turner To Remain On Chattooga BOE

After saying that he would quit the Board of Education, Board Member John Turner made a decision to stay last week.  All of the controversy stemmed from the Board of Education refusing to talk about an item that Mr. Turner had placed on the agenda at the last meeting.  At that meeting, Mr. Turner said that he could not be effective working with the current board and announced his resignation.

In the subsequent days, Mr. Turner says that he received overwhelming support from the community, urging him to stay on.  Turner said that he would continue to serve on the Board of Education, but questions how effective he can be, since he is outnumbered four-to-one.

Turner told the Chattanooga Times-Free Press last week, “I’ll be, I’m pretty sure, just a quiet observer, but at least I’ll be there….and really, I just don’t like bullies” – referring to the way the other board members removed the discussion of a four-day school week from the agenda.  In that vote, board members Dr. Julia Houston, Sam Ballard and John Agnew voted to remove Mr. Tuner’s item from the agenda, with Mr. Turner and board member Brad Hayes abstaining.

Turner is the only four-day school week supporter, and the only Democrat on the board of education.

Death of Rome Resident After Accident on Lake Weiss

A Floyd County resident died Saturday, almost two weeks after a freak accident on Weiss Lake. Cherokee County Coroner Dr. Jeremy Deaton identified the victim as 66 year old Wendell Dean Crowe Jr. of Rome.

Dr. Deaton said that Crowe was initially hospitalized after the incident which occurred on March 10 while he was operating a boat on the lake.

Deaton did not know where on the lake the incident occurred.

The incident is being investigated by the Cherokee County Coroner’s Office. Deaton said a duck was flying low and actually struck Crowe in the head.

“While this is indeed a tragic, freak accident, area boaters should exercise extreme caution on the lake for objects both under and above the water,” Deaton said.

(The information contained in this story was officially released by the Cherokee County Coroner’s Office)

See obituary posted on obituary page.

Chattooga Roads To Be RePaved This Year

Chattooga County Sole Commissioner Jason Winters says that some roads are going to get repaved this year.

The county will use $162,000 in sales tax funds to help pay for the paving. The Georgia Department of Transportation will pay the remaining cost –$603,400. It’s part of the DOT’s Local Maintenance and Improvement Grant (LMIG) program.

The roads scheduled for repaving include:

* Farmersville Road, Subligna: It’s a 1.5 mile stretch of road from the bridge to Bethel Church Road.
* Shields Road, Gore: It’s a .8 mile stretch from the bridge to Gore-Subligna Road.
* Unity Church Road, Gore: It’s 1.1 miles of section from Packer Dairy Road to U.S. 27.
* Rowell Road, Summerville: It’s .8 miles from Hwy. 114 to the dead end.
* Oak Hill Road, Lyerly: It’s 1.6 miles of pavement from Josh Ward Road to Owens Dairy Road.
* Reservoir Road, Summerville: It’s .3 miles of road from Back Berryton Road to the dead end.
* Ridgeway Road, Trion: It’s 1.2 miles from Old Hwy. 27 to Old Justice Road.
* Dry Creek Road, Subligna: It’s three miles of paving from East Armuchee Road to the bridge.
* Back Valley Road, Lyerly: It’s 2.2 miles of paving from Oak Hill Road to Ragland Road.
* North Elizabeth Street, Summerville: It’s .2 miles of paving from Farrar Drive to the dead end.
* North Hill Street, Summerville: It’s .2 miles of paving from North Elizabeth Street to Ellen Street.
* River Road, Lyerly: It’s .2 miles of paving from Oak Hill Road to the dead end.

Ribbon Cutting for City of Refuge

On Wednesday of this week the Chattooga County Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting for a ministry located in Chattooga County.

Chamber Director Cindy Rivers said, “Great celebration today! Thanks goes to Danny Harkins (pictured) and his network of directors, staff and volunteers for hosting such a wonderful event. The Chamber of Commerce welcomes this ministry to our community.”

City of Refuge is a great resource for families in the four-county region, covering needs in Chattooga, Catoosa, Walker and Dade Counties. “God chose this location for us”, says Executive Director Danny Harkins. “We are a network of services and resources housed (nearly all) under one roof.”

“We embrace the entire family”, explains Becky Lawrence, Director of Family Hope Center, part of the First Step to Freedom ministries. Healing is not just for the one with a life crisis preventing them from functioning wholly in this world. The entire family is affected, so City of Refuge ministers to all members of the family to help make them whole again.


Several Speak at BOE Meeting March 21

A large crowd turned out for the Chattooga County Board of Education meeting on Thursday evening, with several community members speaking in the public comment portion of the meeting.  All of the public comments were in support of the four-day school week.

In what would have been a rather routine meeting for the board of education under normal circumstances, the board heard from a variety of speakers who all were expressing their displeasure with the board for changing the calendar from a four-day to a five-day school week.  Several of the speakers accused the board of refusing to hear from the community and others said that the board had not done their research before changing the calendar.

Last night’s board meeting followed a walk-out of between 150 and 200 Chattooga High School students on Thursday afternoon.  The students walked out of school briefly on Thursday to protest the Board of Education’s decision on the four-day school week

BOE Has Long List of Speakers for Meeting

The Chattooga County Board of Education has a scheduled meeting this evening, and a long list of speakers are expected in the public comment portion of the meeting.  According to an agenda released yesterday, the public participation portion of the meeting is scheduled at the beginning.  A scheduled tour of schools in the Chattooga County School system that was scheduled for today was canceled abruptly on Wednesday with Board of Education members citing a “scheduling conflict.”

At the last meeting, board member Sammy Ballard made a motion that was approved to move the public comment portion of the meeting to the end of the meeting. Those scheduled to speak at the meeting this evening include community members, a former state representative, students and former students of Chattooga High School.  Those scheduled to speak are:

Wesley Dawson, Mary Anna Bentley, Allie Barksdale, Bonnie Fletcher, Ramsey Elrod, Barbara Reece, Tammie Williams, Karsen Gilliam, David Rogers, Bode Brooks, Gracelyn Veitch, Joy Dodd, Casie Bryant, Brad Groce, Felicia Foster.

Also, the board is expected to take up Chairman John Agnew’s proposal to add a Bible course to the curriculum of the high school.  Agnew has proposed a course that would be an elective class, based on Senate Bill 83, History and Literature of the Old and New Testament Eras.  As of yesterday, the Georgia House has still not scheduled a vote on the Senate Bill.  The bill would allow Georgia high schools to offer elective courses on the Old and New Testament.  It passed through a House committee on March 7 and has yet to go up for a vote in the chamber.