County by county news for Saturday


Austell employees may receive pay raises

Austell’s proposed 2013-14 budget has benefited from the longer, colder winter with an extra $633,000 from its natural gas system for a total of $3.55 million in franchise fees.

The city’s proposed $6.35 million budget includes a 5 percent pay raise for its 100 employees, lower health insurance costs for them and no employee layoffs or service cutbacks, Mayor Joe Jerkins said. The budget is available for public review from 8:30 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. weekdays at the Finance Department, Austell City Hall, 2716 Broad St. S.W. A final hearing and vote is at 6 p.m. Monday. Information: Finance Department, 770-944-4315. Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Powder Springs ward lines ready for comment

Powder Springs residents may review, copy and submit comments about the city’s submission to the U.S. Justice Department of its proposed line changes for three City Council wards.

Through Georgia House Bill 633, the plan seeks to equalize population numbers among the city’s wards based upon the 2010 U.S. Census in advance of the Nov. 5 elections.

The plan is available in the office of city clerk Dawn Davis, Powder Springs City Hall, 4484 Marietta St.

Information: City Hall, 770-943-1666. Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Schools provide summer meals

Marietta City Schools students 18 and under are eligible for free snacks and meals while school is out for the summer.

Locations are Girls Inc. of Greater Atlanta, 461 Manget St.; Salvation Army, 202 Waterman St.; Greater Community Church of God in Christ, 406 Roswell St.; Walton Village, 1600 Roberta Drive and Custer Park, 600 Kenneth E. Marcus Way. The program ends July 19. Information: Tucker McQueen for the AJC

Complete summer reading to win prizes

Children who want to participate in Cobb County Public Library’s summer reading program can now pick up a reading folder at any branch.

They need to record what they read, bring the completed folder back by July 31.

The library has partnered with Stevi B’s to offer free pizza to the first 5,000 children who bring their folder back to the library. Each child who completes the program will be entered to win an iPad. Information: Jaime Sarrio

Summer JAM to be July 17 at Civic Center

The Coalition of Cobb County Business Associations and Cobb Chamber of Commerce will hold Summer JAM from 5 to 8 p.m. July 17 at the Cobb Civic Center. Members of participating associations can attend for free with online registration or pay $20 at the door.

General admission: $20 online, $30 at the door. Deadline for online registration: noon July 3. Information: Jaime Sarrio

Hopkins Road to close for bridge replacement

The bridge on Hopkins Road over Wildhorse Creek in Powder Springs will be replaced, and closed for two months.

Detour routes will be provided for the construction by Powder Springs and Cobb County.

The west sidewalks will extend to the Silver Comet Trail. Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC


Cost of pet adoptions reduced in Gwinnett

For the next month, the cost of animal adoptions will be reduced at the Gwinnett County’s Animal Welfare department.

During the “Adoption Explosion” event, which runs through July 27, the department will waive adoption fees and reduce veterinarian fees.

The normal cost of $90 for adopting dogs and puppies will be cut to $40; cats and kittens will cost $30. Two cats can be adopted for $40.

Those costs include spay/neuter of each animal, a microchip and the first round of shots. Dan Klepal

Certification awarded technical ed programs

Gwinnett County Public Schools students will be able to enroll next school year in technical education programs that are now industry certified.

The existing programs at four of the district’s schools – Duluth High, Grayson High, Lanier High, and North Gwinnett High – have successfully undergone rigorous reviews by leaders from business and industry to be recognized with this distinction.

The industry-certified programs at the four schools are: Duluth High - Engineering and Technology Education; Grayson High - Marketing Education; Lanier High - Marketing Education; and North Gwinnett High - Culinary Arts.

Nancy Badertscher

Lilburn marks July 4thwith Sparkle in the Park

The city of Lilburn celebrates Independence Day with Sparkle in the Park. This family event will include music, food, and fireworks.

A1A, a Jimmy Buffett Tribute Show, will perform in Lilburn City Park. Kids’ activities and air-conditioned shuttles are provided. Concessions will be available.

Bring a lawn chair or blanket to enjoy the show.

The event takes place 4-10 p.m. July 4 at Lilburn City Park, 76 Main St.

Information: Staff

Duluth announces patriotic celebration

Duluth will hold its annual Duluth Celebrates America July 3 at Scott Hudgens Park off Peachtree Industrial Boulevard in River Green Business Park at 4545 River Green Parkway. Gates will open at 4 p.m. with the fireworks display at dark. Admission and parking are free, but donations will be accepted to help offset costs.

Festivities will start at 5 p.m. and will include inflatable rides, rock wall, train rides, carnival rides/games and face painting. Food and drink, including beer and wine, will be on sale.

Information: Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Line dance marathon this weekend

Learn the Cupid Shuffle and the Wobble, then groove to hip-hop and country music classics.

Participate in the line dance marathon 6 p.m. today at Lucky Shoals Park, 4651 Britt Road, Norcross.

Drinks will be provided, bring a dish to share. $5/person, register by calling 678-277-0860. Hannah Morgan


Woodstock hit-and-run victim returns home

After months of medical struggles, Woodstock hit-and-run victim Emily Bowman, 20, returned home Thursday. The Kennesaw State University student was critically injured by a suspected drunken driver while walking with a friend in Athens on Feb. 16. She spent months receiving treatment at the Shepherd Center and at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

The nonprofit, Sunshine on a Ranney Day, arranged for renovations to her home including building a wheelchair-accessible ramp. Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Reinhardt students win video award

A group of Reinhardt University communications students recently won a prestigious bronze 2013 Telly Award in the Non-Broadcast Productions-Student category. The group produced a 12-minute video exploring teen violence in Georgia. The international Telly competition honors the best TV commercials, online commercials and videos, and film/video productions.

Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Holly Springs seeks park name suggestions

The city of Holly Springs is asking for citizen input on the naming of a planned 33-acre park. The City Council decided recently to accept citizen input until July 31. The so-called passive park on Hickory Road is tentatively set for an early summer, 2014 completion. To make suggestions: or 770-345-5536. Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Johns Creek seeks art board members

The city of Johns Creek is seeking citizens interested in serving on the Public Art Board, a recommending body to the City Council for proposed art and landscaping projects.

Applications for appointment are at The board is expected to be appointing new members in August. Information: 678-512-3200.

Hannah Morgan

Downtown Woodstock offers free app

The Woodstock Downtown Development Authority has announced a new Visit Woodstock app for iPhone, iPad and Android users.

The free application is designed to provide information about downtown businesses, restaurants and attractions, maps, upcoming events and hotel accommodations for visitors. Information: 770-592-6056.

Mark Woolsey for the AJC

New middle school will open in August

The Cherokee County School District says that the new E.T. Booth Middle School, replacing an older facility on the same site at 6550 Putnam Ford Road, will be ready for the 2013-2014 school year.

School officials say that issues with a contractor that had placed the opening in doubt have been resolved.

The 223-thousand-dquare-foot facility is expected to open with more than 1,600 students Aug. 5. Mark Woolsey for the AJC


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