County by county news for Tuesday


Marietta lawyer disbarred by high court

Marietta lawyer Carin Astrid Burgess on Monday was disbarred from the practice of law by the Georgia Supreme Court, even though she had no prior disciplinary history. Six formal complaints had been filed against Burgess, who asked the court to give her a two-year suspension. Among those complaints included Burgess receiving a $125,000 settlement for her client in a personal injury case and failing to give him his full portion, the court said. She also had limited communication with clients in divorce cases, including not telling one client when the divorce had become final, the court said. Bill Rankin

Marietta expected to settle church dispute

Marietta is expected to settle a more than nine-year dispute with Roswell Street Baptist Church at a council meeting 5:15 p.m. Wednesday at City Hall, 205 Lawrence St. The city and the church have been in mediation since November to settle a price the city would pay for church property needed to widen Roswell Street to four lanes. Marietta is close to finishing a $24 million streetscape improvement project on Roswell Street from the Marietta Square to Cobb Parkway. Tucker McQueen for the AJC

Smyrna’s food truck season closes today

Smyrna’s Food Truck Tuesdays will close for the season today. The Campbell High School Orchestra will play and a dozen food trucks, including Happy Belly, Yum Yum Cupcakes and Bollywood Zing, will set up from 5 to 9 p.m. near the playground and amphitheatre at Taylor-Brawner Park, 3180 Atlanta Road.

Tucker McQueen for the AJC

Ask Austell questions via social media

Austell is hosting “Q & A Sessions” on Facebook and Twitter for anyone wanting information about the city.

Information: Duane R. Demeritt,

Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

West Cobb Business Association meets

The West Cobb Business Association luncheon is 11:15 a.m. to 1 p.m. today at Lost Mountain Baptist Church, 5400 Old Dallas Road, Powder Springs.

Named Georgia’s best business consultant for 2012, Andy Fried of the Georgia Small Business Development Center at Kennesaw State University will be the speaker. Cost: $15, members; $20, guests.

Information: or

Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Kennesaw to outsource its trash collection

Kennesaw’s City Council voted unanimously to outsource the city’s trash collection starting the first week of October. The council plans to finalize a contract with the new provider, Republic Services.

Of the city’s 17 sanitation workers, one will remain to handle billing services.

Public Works Director Ernie Via said 11 workers have found jobs with the new company, in vacant positions in Kennesaw or in other local cities.

He said five have not committed to outside employment.

Tucker McQueen for the AJC


Gwinnett schools to pitch in to help needy

Gwinnett Great Days of Service will take place the week of Sept. 30 through Oct. 4. Schools will collect canned food, personal items, and paper products to support 12 food pantries in Gwinnett. Corley Elementary, Norcross Elementary, Sycamore Elementary, Lilburn Middle, Richards Middle and Sweetwater Middle have applied for community projects, such as general flower bed planting and cleanup, on Oct. 4 and 5.

Information: Nancy Badertscher

Registration drive for Georgia voters today

Civic organizations including the League of Women Voters of Georgia will hold a voter registration drive today, including a 9:30 a.m. rally at the state Capitol. The drive coincides with a nationwide push to register voters for the Nov. 5 election. The deadline to register to vote in Georgia is Oct. 7. Information:

Other voter regristration locations:

Five Points MARTA station 9 a.m.-noon; and 3-7 p.m.

Norcross Public Library, 6025 Buford Highway, 5-8 p.m.

Kristina Torres

Help select Sugar Hill’s new logo

Sugar Hill will celebrate the city’s 75th anniversary next year and is choosing a new logo to mark the occasion. Vote by Friday, October 11 for one of the six final entries at

Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Amigos for Christ celebrates 15 years

The nonprofit community development organization Amigos for Christ will host its first Amigos Family Reunion 3 p.m. Oct. 5 at the new Buford Community Center, 2200 Buford Highway. The event will celebrate 15 years of service to the poor in Nicaragua. The reunion will allow volunteers to gather and raise greater awareness of this cause. Events will include free live music , an eating contest, a photo contest, etc.

Nancy Badertscher

Lower speeds along Peachtree Industrial

Gwinnett County recently lowered the speed limits along Peachtree Industrial Boulevard to 45 miles per hour from SR 141/Peachtree Parkway to SR 20/Nelson Brogdon Boulevard and 50 mph from SR 20 to the Hall County line.

Transportation staff reviewed speed studies, crash history, and drove the corridor during peak hours before recommending the speed limits be lowered to improve safety, consistency and to prevent future accidents. Information: Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Norcross to host

cleanup, recycling day

Norcross hosts a cleanup and recycling day Saturday at Norcross City Hall, 65 Lawrenceville St. American Security Shredding will collect up to five boxes per vehicle 9 a.m. to noon. Electronics Recycling will dispose of cellphones, computers, etc. 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Norcross Community Center.Information: Veronica Fields Johnson


Court disbars Roswell attorney

The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday disbarred Roswell attorney Michael David Mann from the practice of law for repeatedly abandoning his clients. He represented two criminal defendants in DeKalb but failed to appear for scheduled hearings and for trial, and a judge found he made a false statement as to whether he appeared on a certain day, the court said. Last year, another client retained Mann for $4,000, but Mann failed to appear for two court hearings and did not refund his fee even though he’d told his client he would do so, the court said. Bill Rankin

Cumming to hold crime prevention seminar

The Cumming Police Department will present the crime prevention seminar “Refuse To Be a Victim” sponsored by the National Rifle Association from 5:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Castleberry Building located behind the department’s headquarters, 301 Veteran’s Memorial Blvd., Cumming.

It’s free but registration is required.


Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Cherokee schools plan leader bus tour

The Cherokee County School District plans its first-ever bus tour for business and communty leaders Oct. 29.

Dubbed “Get On Board! With CCSD Schools”, the event is set to give 40 leaders an inside look at three high-performing schools, showcasing the district’s educational record and inviting the community to increase involvement with the schools, including establishing more partnerships. Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Drive-by flu clinic to be offered in Cherokee

The North Georgia Health District and its member health departments will begin a series of drive-by flu shot clinics in September.

The Cherokee County clinic is set for 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Oct. 1 at the Woodstock Health Center, 7545 N. Main St., Woodstock.

Cost for a regular flu shot is $22; the over-65 Fluzone high-dose shot is $50.


Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Forsyth sets electronic recycling event

Keep Forsyth County Beautiful will hold an electronics recycling event 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Oct. 26 at the Cumming Fairgrounds parking lot 3 off Castleberry Road. Laptops, CD players, cellphones and microwaves are among the items that will be accepted with a minimum donation of $5 per carload.

Information: Mark Woolsey for the AJC

AAUW book fair scheduled at mall

The American Association of University Women will hold its 54th annual AAUW book fair through Sunday at Perimeter Mall, 4400 Ashford Dunwoody Road N.E. Gently used books, educational materials, tapes, CDs and DVDs will be available.

The book fair will operate during mall hours.Proceeds from the fair sponsored by the Atlanta, Cobb County and North Fulton branches of the AAUW go to educational endeavors.

Information: 404-261-7646 or Mea Watkins


Court disbars Atlanta lawyer

The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday disbarred Atlanta lawyer Ralph Joseph Hiers from practicing law for abandoning a client.

Hiers, a Georgia lawyer since 1996, previously received a reprimand in June 2012, the court noted. In the present case, Hiers was retained by a woman in a 2011 divorce case but, after initial discussions, never contacted her again, the opinion said.

After she filed a complaint, Hiers told a State Bar panel he had been experiencing serious health issues and acknowledged he owed the client a refund, but he failed to follow up on that. Bill Rankin

Library hosts television series screening

The Friends of Peachtree Library, in partnership with Art21 will screenthe Art in the Twenty-First Century television series 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. Wednesdays at the library, 1315 Peachtree St. N.E. Information: 404-885-7830. Veronica Fields Johnson

Artists to compete in body-painting event

Artists will compete for top honors and prizes at the Living Art America, Bodies as a Work of Art live exhibition of body painting, 7 p.m. to midnight Saturday at the Atlantic Aviation Services Hangars, Peachtree-Dekalb Airport, 2040 Airport Road.

The event benefits The Chelko Foundation, whose mission is to end gender bias against women and girls. Tickets: $150, $175.

Information:, or 404-993-0306. Mea Watkins

Hospital to host Medicare seminar

Piedmont Atlanta Hospital will host a free seminar on Medicare options and facts 1 to 3:30 p.m. today at the hospital, 1968 Peachtree Road, NW, Rich Auditorium, 77 Building.

Free. Registration required.

Information: 404-605-1818 or Veronica Fields Johnson


Avondale begins new downtown master plan

Avondale Estates held its inaugural public-input meeting to begin developing a new downtown master plan, last updated in 2004.

The city has roughly 20 acres of undeveloped or under-used property in downtown, not counting several more acres in west Avondale annexed into the city last year. There remain two more meetings scheduled (Oct. 23 and Nov. 14), with hopes of having an actual plan, along with a list of priority projects, finished by February.

Total cost for funding the plan is $80,000, with $64,000 coming from a Liveable Cities Initiative grant.Bill Banks for the AJC

Lake Allatoona clean up event planned

The annual Great Lake Allatoona Clean Up will take place from 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday. The clean up is sponsored by the Yamaha Marine Group and will cover 40 different areas around the lake.

A volunteer appreciation picnic will follow the event at the Riverside Park Day Use Area, located along the Etowah River near the Allatoona Dam, 513 Allatoona Dam Rd. S.E., Cartersville.

Registration required. Information and registration:

Mea Watkins

Poker Run to help build park

HOPE (Help Other People Excel) will host its second annual Poker Run Saturday. Registration begins at 9 a.m. for the 10 a.m. run, which starts at Cycle Nation of McDonough, 755 Industrial Blvd. The run will include multiple stops with a cookout, live music, raffle and car and bike show at the final stop.

Proceeds from the run will help fund the building of phase one of HOPE Park for disabled children, wounded veterans and disabled citizens affected by accidents.

Entry is $35. Register: Mea Watkins

County speeds up license applications

Residents wanting to start a home-based business can now submit business license applications and other documents and receive a review and license in the same day.

The new process for an over-the-counter review also eliminates the need for repeat trips to county offices for businesses moving into an existing space of 3,000 square feet with no changes.

These changes and others are projected to cut the time from application to business opening from up to six weeks down to 10 days. April Hun

Run/walk to benefit Gaucher Foundation

The second annual Go for Gaucher run/walk will be held Sundayat Mason Mill Park, 1340 McConnell Dr., Decatur. Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. and the run/walk begins at 1 p.m. Early registration is $30 for the public and $25 for National Gaucher Foundation members through Sept. 19.

Registration is $35 on the day of the event.

Proceeds benefit The National Gaucher Foundation, a nonprofit organization that provides education and resources to individuals and families affected by Gaucher disease.

Information: 1-800-504-3189, 770-934-2910, or Mea Watkins


Henry deputies seize

marijuana worth $5 million

Deputies with the Henry County Sheriff’s Office seized about 2,000 pounds of marijuana with an estimated street value of $5 million from a home in Ellenwood last week.

They were serving a warrant in conjunction with “Operation Bring Them In,” during which eight teams totaling 30 deputies made 13 arrests and gathered leads on other outstanding warrants in all parts of the county. Monroe Roark for the AJC

Truck wreck blocks eastbound I-285

The eastbound lanes of I-285 on the southside reponed aroud 10:15 a.m. Monday following a truck wreck that at times shut down all lanes.

The wreck, which involved an overturned box truck and a tractor-trailer, happened about 9:30 a.m. on I-285 eastbound near Jonesboro Road.

There were no immediate reports of serious injuries.

The trucks were removed and all lanes reopened just before 10:15 a.m. Mike Morris

Fayette to consider ethics changes

Fayette County Citizens Ethics Ordinance Committee will meet at 6:15 p.m. Wednesday at the Board of Commissioners conference room, 140 Stonewall Ave. West, Suite 100, Fayetteville. The group will discuss proposed changes to the county’s ethics ordinance, which can be viewed at

Jill Howard Church for the AJC

Fairburn seeks fall festival participants

The City of Fairburn is seeking parade participants, festival vendors and volunteers for the City of Fairburn Fall Festival and Parade, 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Oct. 5 in the downtown historic district. The theme of the 2013 event is “Bridging the Past with the Future” Information:

Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Fulton County seeks volunteer tutors

Fulton County’s Kinship Care Program is seeking qualified volunteer tutors to provide weekly homework assistance for elementary, middle and high school students enrolled in the program from 3:30 to 7 p.m. on Wednesdays at the East Point Library, 2757 Main St., East Point. The targeted academic subjects will be math, science and reading and tutors can utilize library resources to provide further assistance. All volunteers must consent to a background check. Information: Velma Hooker-Green at 404-612-9034 or or Danee Williams at 404-612-0765 or Veronica Fields Johnson

Alzheimer’s Walk to be held in October

The Southern Crescent Walk to End Alzheimer’s annual walk will be 8 a.m. Oct. 5 at the Frederick Brown Jr. Amphitheater, 201 McIntosh Trail, Peachtree City. Register at Donations to the walk benefiting the Alzheimer’s Association can be mailed to Southern Crescent Walk to End Alzheimer’s, PO Box 2144, Peachtree City, GA 30269. Information: Sue Shaffer at

Veronica Fields Johnson

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