County by county news for Saturday


Austell posts Facebook comment restrictions

After the posting of recent negative comments about Mayor Joe Jerkins and the city on its Facebook page, a lengthy “Commenting and Privacy Policy” was posted Thursday night on that page.

Service requests are not allowed -- neither are many other restrictions or candidate endorsements.

Repeat violators may be prohibited from posting on the city’s Facebook page.

Information:, or City Hall, 770-944-4300.
Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Three-way runoff in Austell on Dec. 3

Three candidates in the Ward 3 race for Austell City Council will be in a runoff on Dec. 3.

Former Councilman Randy P. Green received nearly 49 percent or 94 votes on Nov. 5.

Tying were Councilman Martin Standard and Austell Board of Variance and Appeals member Ann F. Turner, both receiving 25.5 percent or 49 votes.
Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Marietta to hold veterans parade

Marietta's ninth Veterans Day parade will start 11 a.m. Monday at Roswell Street Baptist Church, ending at the Marietta Square. The parade's 30 entries will include marching bands, drill teams, floats and veterans' groups. Lt. Gen. Carol Mutter will be the parade grand marshal and keynote speaker at a ceremony noon on the Square. Information:
Tucker McQueen for the AJC

American Legion to thank Eagle Scout

American Legion Post 294 of Powder Springs at 5 p.m. Monday will rededicate its monument in front of the post home, 3282 Florence Road, Powder Springs.

Eagle Scout Matthew Powell of Boy Scout Troop 1294 will be recognized for his leadership in refurbishing the monument for veterans.

Information: Post 294 Public Relations Chairman John F. Hollner, III, 404-247-0801 or the post home after 4 p.m. at 770-439-0956.
Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Police cars selling online

Powder Springs officials are selling two 2005 Ford Crown Victoria police vehicles on through 9 p.m. Thursday.

Both have nearly new batteries, and they have mileages of around 100,000 and nearly 139,000.

Bidding registration is free.

These items may be seen by typing “Powder Springs” in the search box.

Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Smyrna to hold development meetings

Smyrna will hold three public meetings before the council considers annexing and rezoning almost 82 acres at Riverview Road and Nichols Drive for a $300 million mixed-use development on the Chattahoochee River. A Smyrna Business Association meeting will be at noon Thursday, Smyrna Community Center, 200 Village Green.

A Ward 7 town hall meeting will be 7:30 p.m. Nov. 14 at Whitefield Academy, Whitefield Road, Smyrna.

A public hearing will also be held 7:30 p.m. Nov. 18 before the council vote at City Hall, 2800 King St.

Tucker McQueen for the AJC


Gwinnett Teacher of the Year announced

Hyunjin Son, a ninth grade engineering teacher at Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology, was named the county’s teacher of the year. She received her patent for a device that produces “sterile ice slurries for medical cooling applications.

Son joined Gwinnett Public Schools in 2006 and has spent the last three years at GSMST. She received her bachelor’s degree in Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering from Tufts University and a master’s degree in Science Education from the University of Georgia. Nancy Badertscher

Final public meeting to review Norcross plan

The last of three interactive public workshops to update Norcross’s Comprehensive Plan is 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Nov. 21 at Norcross Community Center, 10 College St. Input will help shape the program and 5-year action plan. Community members are also encouraged to participate in a survey being carried out to support the Comprehensive Plan Update at An Open House to present the draft plan is tentatively scheduled for February. Information: Chris McCrary 770-421-2027 or

Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Pope named Riverside Elementary principal

At a special called meeting on Nov. 7, the Gwinnett County school board named Benjamin Pope as the new principal of Riverside Elementary, it was announced Friday. Pope fills the position currently held by Craig Barlow who is transitioning into his new job as assistant superintendent of elementary schools. Pope is currently assistant principal at Hull Middle School.

Nancy Badertscher

Duluth’s Citizen Police Academy starts Jan. 23

The Duluth Police Department is beginning a Citizen Police Academy. Citizens may attend this free academy to introduce functions of police work beginning Jan. 23 and ending May 24. Each class will be approximately three hours, meeting 7 p.m. every other Thursday at 3276 Buford Highway in Duluth.

Information:, 678-512-3705, or Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Braselton collecting for needy at tree lighting

Braselton will light the town’s holiday tree, collect gifts for area youth and view a free movie to kick off the holiday season at 5 p.m. today The movie “Monster University” will be shown. Chairs or blankets welcome. Concessions available. Free.

Information: or 770- 367-3021. Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Send nominations for 2014 Movers & Makers

Partnership Gwinnett, in collaboration with Gwinnett Tech, is accepting submissions Movers & Makers Awards. Applications due by Jan. 17 at

Information: Karen Huppertz for the AJC


Fallen Woodstock soldier to be remembered

A Woodstock soldier who died earlier this year in Afghanistan will be added to the city’s Fallen Heroes Memorial during a Veterans Day Ceremony Monday.

U.S. Army Spc. Josh Strickland,23, died Sept. 21 when an Afghan wearing a security forces uniform turned his weapon on U-S soldiers during a training exercise. Monday’s ceremony is set for 7 p.m. at The Park at City Center, 101 Arnold Mill Road.

Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Johns Creek to break ground for memorial

Groundbreaking for the Johns Creek Veterans Memorial Walk is set for 10 a.m. today at 3125 Alabama Road.

The memorial will be a meditative four-acre site within Newtown Park aimed at honoring all veterans of conflicts from World War I forward.

The guest speaker will be John Del Vecchio, a Vietnam veteran and war novelist.

Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Songwriters festival in Alpharetta

The city of Alpharetta will debut its Wire and Wood Songwriters Festival from 4-9 p.m. today at 2 S. Main St. Individual songwriters will perform on various stages from 4- 7 p.m. with the main stage hosting the Home by Dark Songwriters Show 7- 9 p.m.

Admission is free.


Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Woodstock group

sets holiday home tour

The Junior Service League of Woodstock will host its 17th annual Holiday Tour of Homes today and Sunday.

The self-guided tour will feature homes in Woodstock and Canton professionally decorated for the holiday season by local designers.

Tickets are $20 with all proceeds benefiting local charitable groups.

Tickets and more info:

Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Meeting set on college prep program

Eighth-grade parents and students are invited to an informational meeting on the International Baccalureate Program at South Forsyth High School at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the school’s performing arts center, 585 Peachtree Parkway, Cumming. The program is the only one of its type in Forsyth, and provides a rigorous curriculum aimed at preparing for university-level study.


Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Road work set on Cherokee highways

The Georgia Department of Transportation has awarded a $4.1 million contract for safety improvements to Ga. 20 and Ga. 140 in Cherokee County.

The project will include improving signage and pavement markings on both highways, guardrails and edge line/centerline rumble strip installations.

Work is set to be complete by the end of June 2014, but no start date has been set.

Mark Woolsey for the AJC


Aviation school holds open house

Aviation Career Enrichment will host its 14th annual open house 10 – 4 p.m. Saturday at Fulton County Airport “Charlie Brown” Field. Discover the thrill of aviation and the endless career opportunities that await today’s youth.

Learn more about aviation-based youth programs and career readiness designed for those 9 to 18 years old.

Information: Arlinda Smith Broady

Atlanta school board meeting delayed

The Atlanta Board of Education announced Wednesday it has postponed its monthly meeting, which was previously scheduled for Monday, the day before school board elections.

The school board meeting will instead be Monday, a week after voters pick from 26 candidates running for nine seats.

Mark Niesse

Students given books for ‘reading relay’

Volunteers read to more than 500 students at Perkerson Elementary School on Friday and gave each of them five books to take home as part of a program to combat childhood illiteracy.

The reading initiative was designed to reach children in low-income areas because students who read below grade level in fourth grade are much more likely to become high school dropouts.

The event was sponsored by professional services and accounting firm KPMG, which is hosting similar “reading relay” programs across the country.

Mark Niesse

Coalition to sponsor World Diabetes Day

The Diabetes Community Action Coalition of Fulton County will host Take One Step to Stop Diabetes, a free World Diabetes Day event, from 1 to 3:30 p.m. Thursday at the Washington Park Branch Library, 1116 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive.

Attendees will learn ways to prevent Type 2 Diabetes, including how to “dance away diabetes” with Zumba.

Information: 740-807-1054.

Veronica Fields Johnson


Candidate won’t challenge election snafu

Saying he didn’t want to “distract attention away from the big issues we have coming up,” Decatur school board candidate Mark Arnold won’t contest Tuesday’s election defeat to Lewis Jones, 773 to 680.

But there was definitely a mix-up at the Ponce precinct at Decatur’s First Christian Church, which only provided ballots for city’s non-contested District 2 races. The precinct actually should’ve had ballots for the Jones-Arnold District 1 race.

In August, 2012, Decatur changed a small portion of District 2 to District 1, including a District 1 “combo group” that votes at the Ponce precinct. But for reasons still uncertain DeKalb County, which has run Decatur’s elections for decades, didn’t assimilate the changes and was working off an old map.

H. Maxine Daniels, DeKalb’s Director of Registration and Elections, said that after reviewing “all the voter certificates and absentee applications for the Ponce precinct,” only 10 voters were incorrectly placed in District 2. Therefore, because only 10 at most would’ve voted for Arnold — not nearly enough for him to win — the county officially certified the election Friday afternoon.

Still, Daniels admitted, "there's no way of telling how many people didn't vote because they thought they were in District 2." Bill Banks for the AJC

Group loses appeal against Walmart

A community group battling to keep Walmart from opening a supercenter in Suburban Plaza just north of Decatur recently lost its court battle in DeKalb Superior Court.

The dismissal of Good Growth DeKalb’s challenge to the building permit means the 149,000 square foot project can now move forward. Work is slated to begin by year’s end.

April Hunt

Chamblee seeks input for town center

Chamblee will host a meeting 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Nov. 20 at the Chamblee Civic Center, 3540 Broad Street to gather public input for its town center and 10-year-plan. A Livable Centers Initiative grant is helping to fund the study, which will focus on development, walkability and transportation.

Information: 770-986-5010 x. 223. April Hunt

VA clinic official for DeVry site

Greenstone Properties will build a VA clinic on the old DeVry University property in Decatur. The developer told city planner Amanda Thompson Tuesday it may have development permits by the end of the year. Construction will probably begin in February with renovation of the existing 100,000 square-foot building taking eight months.

The 22-acre site, annexed in 2009, was long envisioned as a residential/retail. Bill Banks for the AJC

Engineering group to host monthly meeting

The Georgia Society of Professional Engineers monthly dinner meeting is 6 p.m. Monday at Piccadilly Cafeteria, 2000 Crescent Centre Boulevard, Tucker.

Scott M. Callan, a certified professional in supply management, will give a presentation on how a competitive procurement process can help to win contracts.

Reservations: 404-509-2399 or with GSPE in the subject line. Veronica Fields Johnson


Henry issues annual rabies report

Henry County Animal Care & Control has issued its annual rabies report. For the 12-month period ending Oct. 31, there were 208 reported animal bites, with 164 from dogs and 43 from cats and one wild animal to human attack.

Thirty-three animals were submitted for testing, including nine pets, five wild animals and 19 strays. Three animals tested positive for rabies, including two raccoons and one fox. Three, one-mile rabies quarantines were issued during the year. Information: Monroe Roark for the AJC

New memorial honors Fayette veterans

The new Veterans Memorial at Patriot Park will be officially dedicated at 11 a.m. today at the corner of Redwine Road and Old Senoia Road in Fayetteville. The memorial is inscribed with the names of Fayette County veterans starting from the Civil War to the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Jill Howard Church for the AJC

Fish fry to honor veterans today

Several southside lawmakers are hosting a fish fry in honor of military veterans 3 to 5 p.m. today at the Watkins Community Center, 511 Fayetteville Road in Jonesboro.

Veterans in Riverdale as well as Clayton, Henry and DeKalb counties are welcome.

Hosting the event are Rep. Sandra G. Scott, D-Rex; Rep. Darryl Jordan, D-Riverdale; and Sen. Gail Davenport, D-Jonesboro.

Tammy Joyner

Peachtree City to honor Vietnam vets

Peachtree City’s 2013 Veterans Day Observance will include special recognition of Vietnam War veterans.

An open house and ceremony will be held 9 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Dixie Wing museum at Falcon Field Airport.

Vintage aircraft, musical performances and guest speakers will be featured.


Jill Howard Church for the AJC

Dinner will benefit food bank

The Midwest Food Bank Dinner and Auction will be held 6 p.m. Saturday at 220 Parkade Court in Peachtree City.

Proceeds will support the food bank’s goal of “Bridging the Gap Between Prosperity and Poverty.”

Tickets are $25. Information: for details.

Jill Howard Church for the AJC

East Point middle hosts science event

Woodland Middle is inviting students to participate in science experiments and other activities 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the school, 2745 Stone Road, East Point, as part of an effort to drum up interest in engineering and related fields.

Super Science Saturday is in its first year and is scheduled for , and elementary and middle school students and parents are encouraged to attend.

Rose French