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The tennis court area, surrounding island tracts, Silvertown Ball Park and other road frontage properties would be donated as part of the deal. I had many men comment on my bio. Long before local medical equipment companies were a thing in town, Robert offered durable medical equipment such as hospital beds, wheel chairs and tub seats. Surprise your potential date and make him want to know more.

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For goodness sake have a sense of humor. Thank you for all your help,. Final figures show that there will be increases in pay ranging up to 38 percent. My heart and soul goes out to them. He serves on seven Dementia Advocacy Committees and established a support group in Thomaston called the Memory Cafe for families affected by Dementia. The issue arose two weeks ago when a downtown business was hosting a private holiday sales event for its customers to showcase its retailers and distributors, and in conjuction were also going to serve samples of Georgia wine and beer. If you have something to say about your beliefs, then say it.

Upson County backed the purchase by requesting the T-U Recreation Commission handle a fund established in memory of the late George Wilson to assist with the purchase price of the park. The sale of the land in ended a long association between the community and BF Goodrich. Bids were received Friday, Dec. The property also includes Park Drive. Currently, the land is zoned R-1, low density residential and will have to be rezoned to a commercial zoning.

Efforts continue to be made by the City to work closely with private developers in creating quality commercial development within the City. The sale of the property will be contingent on closing Park Drive and rezoning of the property to either the C-1 or C-2 zoning district by the successful bidder. The City reserved the right to ensure that a complete development is provided to enhance the community and that certain infrastructure is provided to ensure the long term viability of the development.

Certain stipulations were set for in the bid packet. If, after the expiration of two years, the buyer has not completed construction on the primary building, structures, or facilities, parking areas, loading areas or landscaping, the City has the option to refund 75 percent of the purchase price and retain the land.

The City can choose to extend this time limit or waive those conditions if it is for good cause. The Development would have to have a double setback with landscape buffer along the back alley of 4th Avenue, SW. There cannot be any trash receptacles along the back alley of 4th Avenue, SW. The development cannot use the back alley of 4th Avenue, SW for commercial access to subject property, or contiguous properties tied to the development. Ingress and egress for commercial trucks will be on Hwy The development is to be all electric with the utility to be served by the City of Thomaston Electric Department.

The City reserves the right to approve the material used in connection with exterior facades of any building facing a public street or roadway. If the property is bundled with any adjoining parcels for a multi-parcel development, then certain stipulations will have to be followed.

The North Thomaston School site sits directly behind the triangle lot. Not many more details about the transaction have been released due to members of the IDA board having to sign a non-disclosure about the transaction. Announcement of the contract was made Monday, Dec. In the agreement, the IDA will allow the company to use the rail line inside the park.

In addition, any extensions made to the rail line by the company for further development, can be used by the IDA. The IDA agrees, with the execution of the contract, to not offer the property to other prospects until the deal closes or one of the entities terminates the agreement.

There is a max due-diligence period in the contract of days. The deal included the building and two tracts of land totaling 25 acres. Golden Star is based in Overland Park, Kansas. The building has never been occupied since it was built in The Board approved a tentative timeline for the search that includes a deadline of Feb. King-Cooper and Associates will be mailing vacancy announcements about the search next week. The search announcement will also be posted on various internet sites.

The board is developing a survey to receive input from employees and community members related to the qualities desired in the next superintendent. In the coming weeks, the board will also be developing a leadership profile that includes the skills and competencies desired of the next superintendent. The profile will be important as the board determines the best candidates to consider and interview for the position. Interviews are expected to begin in late February and continue through March.

The need to conduct a search for a new superintendent was created when Dr. Maggie Shook announced her upcoming retirement at the end of the current school year. Shook has been superintendent for the T-U School System since It is anticipated the search will take four to five months. Potential candidates may find additional information on the Thomaston-Upson Schools website at www. The city received one bid for the property. The city has not accepted or denied the bid.

Information submitted with the request for proposal will move forward through the city council as to accept or deny the proposal. Currently, the land is zoned R-1, low density residential, and will have to be rezoned to a commercial status. Efforts continue to be made by the city to work closely with private developers in creating quality commercial development within the city. Bids were to include at minimum: Sidewalks, drainage, signage, and fencing were also asked to be included in the bid.

The City reserves the right to ensure that a complete development is provided to enhance the community and that certain infrastructure is provided to ensure the long term viability of the development. The meeting will begin at 7 p. Our community would be the first in the state of Georgia to pilot this program. The Orton Family Foundation seeks to empower people to shape the future of their communities by improving local decision making, creating a shared sense of belonging and ultimately strengthening the social, cultural and economic vibrancy of each place.

There are four phases to the model: In my opinion, our efforts to build on positive relationships and enhance citizen participation is what helped us edge out the competition in the decision on where to bring this program into Georgia. The issue arose two weeks ago when a downtown business was hosting a private holiday sales event for its customers to showcase its retailers and distributors, and in conjuction were also going to serve samples of Georgia wine and beer.

Once City Hall received notification that alcohol was going to be provided, the event continued, just without alcohol being served.

City Manager Russell Thompson relayed the information to council members seeking direction on which way the city wants to move forward in relation to the city not having an ordinance in place to protect against those situations. The code states that distributing, possessing, or dealing in alcohol requires a license. Thompson said he spoke with the assistant director of enforcement with the Department of Revenue of Alcohol and Tobacco who relayed to him that the DOE does not require a permit when a business gives away alcohol unless there is a financial transaction.

Currently the city does not have any prohibitions in the city ordinance related to the matter. The fee is onetime fee.

A background is performed on the applicant and then alcohol can be given away as long as there is no fee. The permit automatically renews with the business license. Thompson said an amenity fee would give the city some enforcement on who is giving away alcohol in the event there was ever an issue. City Attorney Joel Bentley said the issue is more complicated than just charging a fee. He cautioned that there are state and federal alcohol regulations that have to be followed including things like providing alcohol to minors and open containers on a city street.

Having something like an amnesties fee in place which includes a sheet that includes those regulations would help protect the city, according to Bentley. Thomaston Police Chief Michael Richardson said if the fee was established he would like to see a limit on how many times the business could hold such an event where alcohol is provided.

No decision on approving the proposed ordinance was made by the council. More discussion from the council is expected over the next couple of weeks. Details of a plan to charge property owners a storm water fee for the amount of pavement, roof coverage and other hard surfaces on their land were discussed during the meeting. If implemented, both homeowners and business owners would have to pay a fee. Businesses with large parking lots and building footprints — and that shed more rainwater — would be hit harder than other landowners.

Thompson said he has been in contact with the group and building a billing model would be step one of the process. He added the city looks to hold town hall meetings as a public education piece to educate the public to understand the facts and figures associated with the fee.

Storm water runoff is the water that flows off impervious surface areas such as roofs, driveways, parking lots, streets, and other hard surfaces during rainstorms. Rather than being absorbed into the ground, it pours into ditches, culverts, catch basins, and storm sewers. GEFA funding could be used for a percentage of the projects.

Projects include bank stabilizations, pipes and culvert replacements, drainage mapping and inventory, and regional detention concepts at three of the main basins for flooding relief. The fee would be based on calculations on both the total square feet of a structures roof and square feet of pavement parcels have. Bigger box stores would see a much higher fee. Essentially, the bigger the roof and the bigger the parking lot, the higher the monthly fee would be.

It was recommended to increase the annual fee gradually over time. The contract will begin Dec. The city will retain the property and buildings, but the units will be managed by THA, including handling all lease agreements. The THA currently manages more than public housing units.

The THA will provide basic maintenance including minor repairs and vacant unit turn-around, but any major repairs would still fall to the city under the agreement. City councils members approved the agreement with a vote. Two scenarios to generate revenue include doubling its reconnect fees for utility customers and increasing the millage rate.

According to City Hall, between and customers flood the government complex on the first day of the month. The idea behind that is if they beat the meter reader to their house, then they can avoid the reconnect fee. So far that has worked. But new regulations being established by City Hall will eliminate that problem, and will see any customer that has not paid by the first of the month, being charged the reconnect fee.

On average, 50 customers have their utilities cutoff by the city. The extended period and fee the city already provides for late customers will remain the same. It is expected that there will be no increases to water and electricity rates. The budget will see a percent transfer of revenues from the utility funds to the general budget.

Increasing the millage rate for property taxes is on the table for the budget. Being proposed by City Manager Russell Thompson is an increase of at least. The vote on the property tax increase would not place until September of Property values have decreased in the city due to low valuations on mill village houses, which in turn means a lower amount of property taxes being collected.

As to which streets will get the money will fall on the council. The city has a road paving and assessment list that ranks the streets in order or priority due to poor conditions of the road. The amount would continue to decrease over the next few years until the amount is completely empty. The Yatesville girls' basketball team, coached by Paul Sheets.

Five individuals and two teams headline the class. The class to officially be inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame in February included: Lee girls' basketball team, and the Yatesville girls' basketball team. Marcus Harvey is a graduate of Upson-Lee High School where he was a four-year letterman and three-year starter for the Knights football team.

He went on to play football at Georgia Military College for two years before receiving a football scholarship to Middle Tennessee State University.

He was a two-year letterman and starter for Middle Tennessee State in and Lee Institute where he was a three-year letterman and two-year starter for the Rebels football team. Following his career at Lee, Hinson received a football scholarship to Clemson University. Pennie Parker is a graduate of R.

He then went on to be a three-year letterman and two-year starter on the West Georgia College football team. Lee Institute where he was a three-year letterman and starter on the Rebels' football team.

He received the Outstanding Lineman Award at Lee in They went on to finish 3rd in the state AAA tournament and compiled a final record.

The Yatesville girls' basketball team, coached by Paul Sheets, finished their regular season with a record and were Region 3C Champions. They went on to finish 2nd in the state Class C tournament and compiled a final record. Winning numbers from the Nov. Bishop had days from the draw date to claim the prize. Since its first year, the Georgia Lottery Corp.

The Upson County Building and Zoning Department has completed mailing out the occupation tax renewal notices to all registered businesses in the unincorporated area of the county. Anyone with a business located in unincorporated Upson County who has not previously applied for their tax certificates must come to the Building and Zoning Department to pick up the paperwork. Currently registered businesses are requested to provide updated information, where necessary. Proof of up-to-date professional licenses, permits, bonds and other regulatory documents must also be provided.

Receipts showing that the business location property taxes and equipment and inventory taxes have been paid for are required to be submitted. Every renewing business must report its E-Verify status on the declaration form included in the mailing. The office can be contacted at State of Georgia-required immigration-related affidavits must also be submitted by new businesses.

The completed and notarized affidavits and I. New business affidavits may be notarized by any Georgia-licensed Notary. Business owners are encouraged to submit their paperwork and tax payments as soon as possible by the January 1, deadline; however, no late fees or interest will be charged until after March 31, The completed Occupation Tax Certificates will be mailed by the Building and Zoning Department or may be picked up within two 2 days of filing of the completed paperwork.

The contract would be an annual agreement between the two entities. Thomaston has been in the housing business for around 35 years. The announcement of the finalization of the contract was made last week by the Thomaston City Council. Each entity provides subsidized housing to benefit low to moderate income people.

The city would retain the property and buildings, but the units would be managed by THA, including handling all lease agreements. The THA would provide basic maintenance including minor repairs and vacant unit turn-around, but any major repairs would still fall to the city under the agreement. Following an executive session in April, the council approved to authorize the city manager and city attorney to negotiate a contract with the housing authority for the management of the city owned housing so that it can be presented to body bodies city and THA for further discussion.

The agreement is expected to be approved Tuesday, Dec. City Manager Russell Thompson said his vision for the position is to bring back liveliness and enthusiasm to downtown Thomaston.

Thompson said in addition to the program there are other programs being considered through the state for funding. One example is a revitalization program through tax incentives where four to five communities will be selected this year for the program and the funding. An active Downtown Development Authority is also a priority with the implementation of the program. As of now, the Authority is inactive. The last meeting of the Authority was at least two years ago.

In order to get to the next step with funding, the Main Street Program is the crucial part in moving the pieces forward for a vibrant downtown, according to Thompson. Claus were welcomed to Thomaston by thousands of people Saturday evening as part of the annual Christmas Light Parade and Festival. This year marked year number eight for the parade and first year for the festival.

Winners for the float contest were: Everyone went above and beyond. The floats were all so beautifully decorated. The downtown businesses participated in a store front decoration contest.

We enjoy making this a tradition for your families and our community. A winner has not yet come forward. The winner has days from the draw date to claim the prize.

This award is presented to a Georgia middle school principal who demonstrates strong leadership in guiding his or her school as an effective middle school, as defined by state and national standards. Gulley, now in her fifth year as Principal of ULMS, recently led the school to its fourth re-designation as a Georgia Lighthouse School to Watch, a 3-year designation that extends through The purpose of the association is to promote the cause of middle grades education in Georgia's public schools; to advance the interests of the members of the profession; and to develop among administrators the highest level of professional practices.

The announcement was made last week by the Upson County Board of Commissioners. While Wheeless is out, discussion is under way on hiring an interim county manager. At the beginning of the meeting, BOC Chairman Norman Allen announced that he would begin voting on decisions made by the commission.

Prior to the meeting he had not voted on any of the commissions decisions. During new business, Allen told commissioners in was unsure how long Wheeless would be out on medical leave and asked that a decision be made on how the county would operate during his absence.

Allen said he reached out to ACCG Association County Commissioners of Georgia and three options could be seen for the county to contract out the duties of the manager. One option involves hiring an interim manager.

The individual has been employed as a city manager, county manager, and since retiring from the full-time positions, has been hired to serve for four different cities as manager and twice an interim manager. This would be only in such time where he can return to work or tells us otherwise. The third option would be the county hiring someone within the county government that met the requirements for the position.

Commissioner Ralph Ellington agreed that something needed to done and when the last county manager left the responsibilities were split amongst the board. Ellington said he saw that move as a conflict of interest with the board. Spraggins said he felt as though someone from the county should be appointed interim county manager.

The motion was seconded by James Ellington. Chairman Allen and Commissioner Wilder were appointed to serve on the committee with the attorneys. County Clerk Jessica Jones was given the go ahead by Allen to handle the day to day operations during the time an interim was hired with any long term decisions to be overseen by the board. A hiring freeze was approved unanimously by the board until the end of the year.

The freeze was approved by the board. He turned down the position saying he did not want the position seeing how the vote was not unanimous. The City of Thomaston went through a similar situation with hiring an interim manager in early He served through a transition period that eventually saw a permanent hire for the city of Thomaston.

Prior to being hired by Upson, the Thomaston native, was employed with Savannah Technical College as Vice President of Operations before receiving the job as county manager. Veterans with their handmade quilts they each received during a celebration last week. The program was held Friday, Nov. The quilts were pieced by quilters in Thomaston and surrounding counties and by Southern Stitches Quilt Shop in Thomaston.

I'm just proud to be able to do my part when the time came. If strict implementation of the program is enforced, it could cost local restaurants thousands of dollars. City officials and water department representatives have one goal in mind with the ordinance and that is to keep the sewer lines from grease blockages. The size of the grease trap will be determined by various options including the number of seats in each establishment, kitchen hours, and the number of sinks.

Brian Kelly with ESG said his department is cleaning hot spot areas each month due to grease blockages. Several restaurant owners voiced their concerns at the meeting.

She then asked who would regulate the traps because at this time the health inspector is not regulating them at this time. She said most of her business is through the drive thru so the formula for the size of the trap vs. Bill Singh owner of Mr. The food is already prepared and sold. Singh said he wants to see the city and business owners work together as a team. He is discouraged on the fact that he feels like the business owners are being pushed in a corner when it comes to the grease traps.

He asked that the city provide names of businesses that could provide the cleaning service. Tracy Barfield with Big Chic said the business has been at the location since They have a 30 gallon trap and it is cleaned every 10 weeks. His problem is with ESG and its representatives.

He said an ESG representative told his manager that a 2,, grease trap. The figure does not include the installation. In addition, his business would have to be closed for more than three days. He said 70 percent of his business is call-ins and his business uses all paper products. Bobby Craven with Georgia Avenue said in addition to the restaurant he is also a plumber. He said he cleans just as much grease out of a household as he does with restaurants. He said his restaurant is never crowded and he believes each situation should be looked at separately.

Malcolm Neal with The Ritz said he does not use grease and every business should be looked at separately and those in existence now should be grandfathered in. He asked that the current practices being done by current restaurants be taken into consideration and asked the question, if every restaurant were in compliance would the city see any difference based on the amount of grease that enters the system by way of a residential house.

Since then he has been told that he needs a 1, grease trap. Outside the building like there are all type of utility lines. She said if she has to put in a grease trap that is being asked of her, she would have to close her doors. Other concerns from Maddox include BBQ stands that are street corners on the weekends. Where are they putting their grease? I think you believe you can govern us better than you can govern the community.

Dirac Barbee, owner of The Pie Pizzeria, said he has a grease trap but does not use grease, and his sinks are in the middle of his kitchen. In order for him to place the size tank being recommended in the front parking lot, he would have to tear up his kitchen and front seating area.

I will lock the doors January 1. Seven pizza restaurants in a town of 10, with 70 percent government assistance Stallings and City Manager Russell Thompson thanked all the business owners for their feedback. Thomson said since ESG began the grease trap process more than 8, lbs.

Thompson said moving forward with the provisions set forth in the ordinance he will be asking that more leniencies be installed in grandfather clause of the ordinance. He said he would be proposing to the council that those businesses with current business licenses, they can operate with the size tanks they have now. New businesses will fall under a different section of the ordinance.

Thompson said any enactment of the new updated ordinance will include any modifications and improvements that the business has to make. First responders and volunteers were honored in early November by county officials for their assistance with recent storms that rocked the area. The most recent occurrence, Hurricane Irma, left a path of destruction which will not soon be forgotten. Nevertheless, we have historically been blessed with individual and group efforts in times of crisis.

These individuals again demonstrated commitment, dedication, and patriotism which impacted positively the lives of the residents of our community. Today we pay tribute to the courageous emergency responders and volunteers who rushed to the scene of our most recent disaster for their dedication to our safety, security, and way of life.

Maggie Shook made the announcement Nov. Bentley teaches social studies at Upson-Lee High School, where he also serves as assistant athletic director and head coach of the boys' varsity soccer team. The System Teacher of the Year is selected from among the individual schools' Teachers of the Year by a panel of community and school district judges. Judging is based on an application packet submitted by the teacher, a classroom observation, and a teacher interview.

According to a report obtained from the Thomaston Police Department, just prior to 5 p. TPD officers were dispatched to G Street in Thomaston, where two men entered into a domestic dispute leading to shots being fired. One of the men was hit by bullets while the second subject fled the scene. Shortly following the incident, Jimtavious Cortez Thompson, of Woodbury, was arrested and now faces multiple charges associated with the crime including aggravated assault, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, and four counts of cruelty to children.

Each carries a felony charge. Brown said he came to the residence to help Erica Terry-Butler of G Street, Tanika Terry, and an unknown man help move Butler out of the residence. Brown told officials that the unknown male subject Thompson flashed two guns, tucked into his waist band, at Atwater. Thompson then ran and jumped into a white Honda Accord and fled the scene. Atwater exited the house saying that he had been shot and drove himself to the hospital.

Three gunshots were heard from a neighbor who said he saw a black female and black male flee the scene in the same Honda. Three ullet casings were found in the front yard along.

Tanika Terry, of Molena, was arrested and charged with party to the crime of aggravated assault, hindering the apprehension of a criminal, and four counts of cruelty to children. The getaway car Terry drove from the scene contained children, according to authorities.

Atwater was treated at URMC with a gunshot wound to the chest. Thompson is being held at the Upson County Jail without bond. Results from the University of Georgia, Carl Vinson Institute of Government were relayed to county officials last month. Alex Daman, project director for the Carl Vinson Institute, presented the study which included an assessment of job descriptions and pay scales for the employees that line up with similar municipalities in the area.

Upson has different job positions and employs around people. Five key objectives were used as part of the study. Two primary sources were used for data collection including salaries. They included the Bureau of Labor Statistics and data from other governments within the state of Georgia produced by the Department of Community Affairs.

Thirty-one city and county governments were used as part of the labor market. Two classification plans were presented to the board of commissioners for implementation; a grade and step plan, and a pay band plan. The step plan includes a 1. It will be up to county officials to set the percentage of the yearly percentage increase. One knock against the plan is that everyone essentially gets the same raise each year no matter how good or bad of an employee they were during the year.

The pay band provides county government with more flexibility to determine what pay increases are based on a set scale that includes a high and low pay range scale. The figures do not include a cost of living adjustment each year. Final figures show that there will be increases in pay ranging up to 38 percent. Fifty-six county employees would get more than a 10 percent bump in their salary. According to Daman, the study will help the county in its ability to attract and retain quality employees, contain labor costs, reduce pay complaints, and increase productivity.

No official designation on which plan the county would move forward with was made by the BOC at the meeting. County officials will begin their annual budget hearings with department heads in the next couple of weeks. City of Thomaston officials took the first step toward moving city employee pay to more competitive rates earlier this year. Currently the City of Thomaston employs more than 80 individuals.

Adjustments for city employees ranged up to 34 percent. City officials approved to implement a grade and step plan. From there, the pay scale will be guided through a step system. Each step is a 1. Additional phases will be looked at for implementation next year. Garden club members placed a wreath at the Blue Star Memorial Plaque in the park. The award is the highest honor given to an individual by the Chamber of Commerce. It only took me 15 months after pharmacy school to make my way back to Thomaston.

Bowles was born in Thomaston to the late Robert and Frances Bowles. While at a young age, his mother instilled in him a servant heart, taking him and his sister, Charlotte, to visit shut-ins from their church. His father's strong work ethic also influenced him to never quit until the job was done. Bowles is a graduate of R. Robert has been a licensed Pharmacist in Thomaston for 42 years.

He owned and operated Big C Pharmacy for 38 of those years. During that time, he was a consulting pharmacist for nursing homes, assisted living facilities in Thomaston, and provided medications for local hospice agencies including compounding pain medications.

He is credited for bringing compounding to Upson County. The method saved many pregnant women from horrendous nausea by compounding phenergan gel. Long before local medical equipment companies were a thing in town, Robert offered durable medical equipment such as hospital beds, wheel chairs and tub seats. Robert and the late Mike Ellington started a home fusion business where together, they provided IV fluids, morphine drips for cancer patients, IV antibiotics and IV nutrition therapy.

Education and business propelled his eagerness to help others, but five years ago, he received a diagnosis that would change his life forever.

After suffering through numerous symptoms including hallucinations, slurred speech, cognitive decline and balance issues, he was diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia, a disease that combines elements of Parkinson's Disease and Dementia. Knowing what his own mother fought an 11 year battle with Alzheimer's and his dad suffered from Vascular Dementia, Bowles initially gave up.

He felt as though his life was over and he'd been given a death sentence. His purpose had always been to help others but now, he could not even help himself. A year passed before he came to grip with his diagnosis. A talk with God one evening redefined his purpose in life, and since then, the man who helped so many people during his career as a pharmacist, would now turn his attention to helping those dealing with dementia. Along with education himself, he sought to educate others with the disease and their caregivers that their diagnosis was not a death sentence.

He created platforms to show that drugs were not the only answer to the problem. He serves on seven Dementia Advocacy Committees and established a support group in Thomaston called the Memory Cafe for families affected by Dementia. He continues to advocate for LBD at the federal, state and local levels. His persistence and never quit attitude saw Governor Nathan Deal sign into proclamation that October would be declared Lewy Body Dementia Awareness month in the state of Georgia.

My heart and soul goes out to them. Bowles has been an active member of Thomaston First Baptist Church for 62 years, serving in numerous leadership roles; including Deacon. In , he married Judy Shaver and together they have three children: Kelli, Ashley and Alex. Their children have also blessed them as Robert and Judy are the proud grandparents to seven grandchildren. The Thomaston-Upson district average is T-U Middle School score was T-U High School score was Individual school scores are: CCRPI measures schools and districts on a comprehensive point scale.

An ISO field representative spent a full day reviewing the fire department, water department and Upson County Communications. The new grading could result in a substantial savings to area homeowners and businesses with respect to what they currently pay for fire insurance.

Chief Renee Harris encouraged all homeowners and businesses to at least contact their insurance providers to inform them of the new classification. The Thomaston-Upson Industrial Development Authority Board announced during its October meeting that a new industry will be coming to town following the purchase of the spec building located in the Central Georgia Business and Technology Park.

The amount includes the building and two tracts of land totaling 25 acres. The contract is expected to close within 30 days. Golden Star is based out of Overland Park, Kansas. He added the Thomaston facility would enable Golden Star to serve its southeast and east coast customers in a more efficient and productive manner while giving the company a strong footprint in the southeast region to obtain new prospective customers like they have accomplished with their customers with their Midwest and west coast facilities.

According to a press release from the IDA, the company manufactures industrial cleaning supplies such as wet mops, dust mops and textile cleaning systems and began its operation in It has never been occupied. The spec building is owned by the IDA along with acres in the park.

The goal of the IDA Board has been to find an industry that will be a good fit for our workforce and we feel this company is a great match. She added that the IDA is looking for momentum the last quarter of and into to further job creation and investment in Thomaston-Upson County.

The building is 77, square feet in size. The loan was for 20 years and was set to mature Sept. Funds appropriated early this year by county officials, by way of a dedicated millage in , were used to pay off one of the loans associated with the building.

A second loan will be paid off with the sale of the building, along with a loan on another portion of the park, leaving the IDA debt free. A water and sewer line will have to be extended to the building along with a gas line, according to the contract.

According to new figures, the amount to extend the gas line to the building is higher than the allocated amount in the SPLOST, so additional funding will be needed to complete the line. In preparation for that, the IDA board approved, prior to the approval of the contract, to enter into an agreement with Allen Smith Consulting in Americus as a grant consultant.

The firm specializes in preparing and obtaining federal grants like a Community Development Block Grant. Increasing federal government regulations have deemed storm water runoff a problem and because of it, the issue needs to be addressed by local governments.

If implemented, both homeowners and business owners will pay the fee, although businesses with large parking lots and building footprints — and that shed more rainwater — will get hit harder than other landowners. While funding for the program is just now gaining traction, infrastructure problems relating to storm water have been heavily discussed dating back to previous administrations. Formulating a capital improvement program for drainage would then take over after a mapping of the system was complete.

One project, referenced as a huge storm water project expense, is located at Weaver Park. Some of them have GEFA funding attached to them, but there are equally as many out there that do not have dedicated funding. So the city will have to pay for those improvements. There are several methods to pay for it; borrow the money, through a sales tax, through the general fund, or with a dedicated fee.

In addition to capital improvement needs, there are additional things associated with storm water including administration and compliances. In order to be more proactive for storm water, a two man crew dedicate specifically for storm water maintenance was recommended for the city.

The crew would be responsible for things like cleaning and mowing ditches and cleaning out catch basins. In addition, additional dedicated funds for the program were recommended to help with capital improvement plans.

Customers will have to pay it. It is used to generate money. Understand that there may be some kickback from the general public as another fee or another way to generate money.

That comfort level needs to be there with the body before we proceed or get too far into the process. One city nearby that charges a storm water utility fee includes Griffin. Fort Valley and Bryon are looking at entering the storm water utility fee program. They are collectively asking the community for help. For smaller establishments, under-the-sink grease traps could be used and pumped more frequently.

It would require existing and new restaurants to install grease traps or install larger traps based on seating, kitchen hours and the number of sinks.

The intent of the ordinance is to prevent grease buildup from being released into the sewage system causing back up. City officials passed an ordinance June 14, to meet the requirement. In it is a detailed report of what is allowed and not allowed with the FOG ordinance. The ordinance was to go into effect Jan. Thompson release the following statement Monday afternoon: Due to the response that the City has had during this process, and considering the concerns and issues noted by local businesses, the City administration is proposing modifications to the current ordinance.

It is envisioned that these modifications will become effective January 1, Until such time as the Mayor and Council enact any such revisions, the current ordinance shall be in effect. As so, the City invites any interested party to come and speak before the Mayor and Council at any scheduled meeting.

The next scheduled meeting shall be held at 7 p. With the new ordinance there was no way to keep opening on Sundays. Now they are saying something completely different.

They are asking for something unreal and telling us we have to spend a lot of money to increase the size of the trap that they approved back then. I am very angry and upset. I do not own this building and that is a very large investment. I have been here for a very long time, this is wrong.

The ordinance also includes other businesses such as butcher shops, meat packing stores, schools, daycares, and churches. And currently states that anyone not in compliance will be fined. Other comments and concerns from concerned restaurant owners include: Will they also have to have permits and be monitored? This was in Fast-forward 14 years, and the Thomaston-Upson School System is still distinguishing itself as a leader in education technology by transforming the entire school district into a 1-to-1 computing district.

During the school year, the T-U School System completed implementation of their 1-to-1 computer initiative, which provides every K teacher in the district with a class set of Google Chromebooks. Gone are the days of having to schedule class time in a school computer lab or sharing classroom computers among groups of students.

Every student in every classroom has a Chromebook computer for use as determined by the teacher. As we explored 1-to-1 computing, it became evident that this specific implementation would allow us to develop the technology fluency necessary for our students to successfully navigate post-secondary education and the modern workplace. Deputy Superintendent Gatlin knew that the success of a district-wide 1-to-1 computing program would rely on a comprehensive plan.

George Flowers began this planning process. Components of the plan included: Lack of preparation and planning in any one area could compromise the success of this initiative. This competitive grant provides funding to rural, high-need local education authorities to purchase mobile devices for instruction. We are tasked with the awesome responsibility of predicting what our students will need after they leave us.

In some cases, we are educating young people for jobs that do not exist yet. This is precisely why meaningful technology instruction and technology integration into the curriculum are essential.

I have every confidence that this 1-to-1 computing initiative will enhance student-centered learning, increase student engagement, and equip our students with the skills needed to communicate, collaborate, and compete in a global society.

Batchelor was arrested and charged Feb. Coker presented the new information in Superior Court last week that Bachelor, who has been out on bond after his February arrest for distribution of child pornography, had new screen shots of child pornography on his cell phone.

The new evidence will likely lead to additional charges. He was employed with the Georgia Department of Transportation and served as executive administrator of a local child care facility.

Coker will present that evidence to the Grand Jury Nov. Additional charges for the new photographs are still pending. The club, which was announced by the league as an expansion franchise in , is owned and operated by Home Depot co-founder and Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank.

Functioning as a control and command center for all district operations, the center specializes in customer service, low-level signal diagnostics, and manages all transportation-related incidents in District Three, which covers 31 counties in West Central Georgia.

The District Three Operations Center will also serve as a command center, allowing for laser focus and situational awareness in times of emergency. The District Three operations center is open Monday through Sunday from 6: Cadets were graded on their appearance uniform, hair, shoes shines, belt, device placements, and were asked a knowledge question.

Twenty cadets received awards for their overall appearance at the inspection. The company received the highest overall ranking of the companies. Upson-Lee High School posted a rate of We are very encouraged by the While the board agreed to the name change, in order for the new name to be official, it must be sponsored by city and county government and then pass state legislation.

State Representative Johnnie Caldwell is expected to present the name change as part of legislation later this year. Board member Frank King suggested moving forward with Development Authority. Norman Allen said he was fine with the name change, but asked it be known that the name change encompasses everything including retail, commercial, industrial, and workforce.

IDA Attorney Joel Bentley said changing the name would not affect current bonds it has with existing industries. The name change was approved with a unanimous vote by the board. So when we say that we are full steam ahead with retail and commercial development, full ahead with prospect recruitment, and working with industries that are here now. Derico mentioned several months ago about getting inundated with too much and not being effective and spreading this office too thin I want the boards support on that moving forward.

All encompassing can extend to all ends of the Earth. I just wanted to throw that in there. City officials picked up a three year dialogue of the ordinance last month. The effective date of the ordinance was Jan. Permits will be issued by the city each year. The permit will identify who does the service on the grease traps and who the contact person is for the company that cleaned the grease trap.

Thompson said there has been kickback by restaurants owners in the community. The way we mitigate that is through either interior or exterior grease interceptors grease traps. Depending on the type, there are certain maintenance schedules that must be followed.

Kelly said restaurants have been given a binder which includes the regulations through the program. The size of the grease trap can be determined by various options including the number of seats in each establishment, kitchen hours, and the number of sinks.

Kelly referenced a local restaurant with 64 seats, open 10 hours per day, three hand sinks, one pre-rinse sink, one single sink, one triple sink, a mop sink, and a gallon dish washer. Just be the number of seats, a 1, gallon grease trap would be needed, or if all the sinks were included, a 3, gallon grease trap would be needed.

If restaurants are found to be out of compliance, citations will be issued. Records showing that the traps will be cleaned and have been cleaned are the importance of the FOG ordinance. Any new restaurants will have to adhere to the new guidelines as well.

Thompson said there is no restaurant that currently has a grease trap permit pertaining to the ordinance. A permit fee has not been set as of last month.

City Attorney Joel Bentley said the burden of proving that it was a hardship would fall with the owner of the restaurant and not with the city. Thompson said every restaurant has been contacted and given a book that details the program and how to comply with the ordinance.

Councilman Ryan Tucker asked what the average cost would be for a typical restaurant to come up to code. All sewer lines would have to be connected to the trap. For smaller establishments, with only sinks, under the sink grease traps could be used Subway.

Thompson said most of the chain restaurants already have grease traps. Lift stations are being cleaned once a month due to grease build ups. Once the program is implemented, it is expected to cut the maintenance on cleaning lines from times per month to once every six months.

He also directed a legislatively mandated series of reports under the direction of the Governors Development Council GDC to outline financial challenges and opportunities associated with fragmented federal programs for delivery of rural transportation services. Fjelstul takes over for Lanier Boatwright, who retired earlier this year. Boatwright was employed with Three Rivers for over 40 years.

Robert Hiett served as interim executive director during the search for a new director. He now faces multiple charges including obstruction, trafficking methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, abandonment of dangerous drugs and possession of methamphetamine in a drug- free zone.

While on foot patrol, officers heard a verbal altercation coming from inside an upstairs apartment in the X building. Officers approached the back of the apartment, where a back door was open. At that time officers could hear a verbal altercation escalating into a physical altercation.

Officers walked up the stairs, to stop the physical altercation, and when officers approached the open back door, several individuals inside the apartment ran out the front door. Officers approaching the front door stopped several individuals from running from the location. One individual fled on foot. Officer Matthew Allen gave chase and was able to apprehend the individual after a brief foot chase. The suspect was identified as Kelcey Rockemore, a resident of Thomaston.

As result of the arrest officers discovered a clear plastic zip lock bag containing two additional clear plastic bags. The bag contained a white crystal like substance that appeared to be methamphetamine. The substance was field tested with positive results for methamphetamine. The total weight of the methamphetamine was over 34 grams.

In , Rockemore was at the center of a controversy that alleged Thomaston police investigator Phillip Tobin used excessive force, including using a taser without cause, during an incident outside a convenience store in Thomaston. Teachers of the Year are selected by certified staff within each school. School Teachers of the Year advance to the System Teacher of the Year competition, where teachers are scored on a written application packet, a personal interview, and a classroom teaching observation.

Patterson is a Special Education teacher. Coach Bentley teaches Social Studies and serves as head boys' soccer coach and assistant athletic director. Blake Ashley Hancock will now face malice murder, felony murder, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony charges in Superior Court.

Hancock was arrested Saturday, July 1 by Thomaston Police Department officers after a call was received in reference to a verbal dispute between brothers. The call was upgraded to a possible subject shot and a subject barricaded in the residence.

He was taken into custody without further incident. Upon securing the scene EMS arrived and transported Harold to URMC, where he was pronounced dead from the fatal gunshot wound by the assistant coroner.

The Grand Jury returned true bills against 34 additional defendants last week. Ferguson spoke at length on issues including workforce development, transportation, tax reform, health care, education, and broadband. About health care Ferguson said a new bill is moving through the senate that has some momentum. The number one issue being considered, according to Ferguson, is tax reform. I know job creation is front and center in this community. When you see your friends and neighbors begin to lose their jobs and houses, it is very tough and painful.

To get to that point, he said a reformed tax code can help simplify tax codes used to reduced rates with the middle class and make sure corporations are treated fairly. We have to create an environment where wealth is transferred around the world, right back to America. We are now 20 trillion in debt. It will require money being transferred from around the world back to the U.

We have to break that cycle and realize we have a tremendous number of talented young people that need different pathways to be successful. We need to be creating better pathways for student in dual enrollment. We need people going to work in this economy so that the jobs created with tax reform can be filled. The Import-Export Highway, a much needed transportation item needed in the area, according to many, was discussed. Ferguson said he is a big supporter of the highway. Momentum is building to become very serious about this highway.

You now have real partners in Atlanta, Macon, Lagrange, and Chattanooga. It helps growth of the Port of Savannah, growth in metro Atlanta; it diverts truck traffic away from Atlanta.

Wireless broadband has been discussed widely by the congressman on his tour around his area. He said it is a much needed necessity and could be a huge asset to help students connect to industries like Pinewood Studios in Fayetteville. As an example, Ferguson said having wireless broadband could be a tool that will help connect people, who can write codes and algorithms and understand animation, to the studios.

Ferguson won the 3rd District seat during a runoff in July of over Mike Crane. Did the headline of this article snag your attention? When browsing profiles, on average, 8 out of 10 girls will read your headline , but only 1 out of 10 will read your entire dating profile. This is the secret to the power of your headline. The better your headline, the more girls you have checking you out. Out of the 4 top Online Dating Websites:. I recommend you use them whenever possible….

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The idea behind that is if they beat the meter reader to their house, then they can avoid the reconnect fee. Since retiring he has served as interim manager for six municipalities, with the most recent at Effingham County.

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Multiple grams of illegal narcotics were found during traffic stops along the Highway 19 corridor. Upson Tax Commissioner Andy Chastain, now in his second year of his first term, said when he was elected he felt like he could make a difference for the citizens of the area, with the first step being to increase the collection rate.

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When they arrived, two subjects fled the house drugs dating site the woods carrying an object, and a strong chemical odor could be smelled coming from the mobile home. Thompson is being held at the Upson County Jail without bond. T-U Middle School score was Did the headline of this article snag your attention? Nine separate businesses were identified headline for dating site the investigation.