County by county news for Tuesday


Austell floodplain comment extended

Public comments are being accepted until 5 p.m. Saturday on Austell’s plan to construct a restroom facility in Legion Park, 5514 Austell-Powder Springs Road, which is in a floodplain.

Any part of a federally funded project, that is in a floodplain, must be open for public comment.

Written comments may be submitted to: Angela Johnson, Cobb County Community Development Block Grant Program Manager, 121 Haynes St., Marietta, GA 30060.

Information: 770-528-1462 or email Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Candidate forums to be today, Thursday

A public forum for candidates for governor will be 7 pm.-9 p.m. today and a forum for state school superintendent candidates will be 7 p.m.-9 p.m. Thursday April 10 in the Cobb Board of Commissioners room, 100 Cherokee St., Marietta.

There is no admission fee. The Cobb County Republican Women’s Club is sponsoring the event.

Information: Tonya Boga at Tucker McQueen for the AJC

Fire training exercise to cause detour in Marietta

Through traffic will have to make a detour for a Marietta Fire Department training exercise on Cogburn Avenue off Tower Road from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday.

Local traffic will be allowed. The department plans live attack fire training during morning hours and a complete burn of a house on the street during the afternoon.


Tucker McQueen for the AJC

Georgia House honors Mableton woman

Dr. Betty Ann Cook of Mableton was honored recently by the Georgia House of Representatives with a resolution.

Cook has coordinated projects, including developing and co-directing “Experience America in Cobb,” an immersion program with South Korea that allowed 25 teenage students from Seongdong, Gu, South Korea, to visit the Mableton and Austell areas.


Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Taste of West Cobb to be Saturday

Hillgrove High School Bands will host the seventh annual Taste of West Cobb from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the school, 4165 Luther Ward Road, Powder Springs in the band parking lot.

Food samplings from West Cobb restaurants and bakeries will be available for $10 a pack, including 10 taste tickets, which also may be used for beverages or children’s activities - bouncy houses, bungee jump or train.

Profits will support the school’s band program.

Information:, Carolyn Cunningham for the AJC

Park with art exhibit to open

A fine art exhibit will open at the Taylor-Brawner House, noon to 7 p.m. Saturday through April 13, 3180 Atlanta Road, Smyrna. An opening reception will be 6 p.m.-9 p.m. Friday. The free exhibit will feature the work of 14 regional painters. The house is on the grounds of Smyrna’s Taylor-Brawner Park. Information: Tucker McQueen for the AJC


Construction to close lanes on Jimmy Carter

Construction continues to convert the Jimmy Carter Boulevard interchange at I-85 to a Diverging Diamond. One eastbound right lane between Crescent Drive and McDonough Drive will be closed Wednesday through Friday, April 9 – 11, to pour a barrier wall for the bridge. Information: Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Buford discuss changes to historic downtown

The Buford Business Alliance will host Business After-Hours at 5:30 to 7 p.m. today at the Mall of Georgia, 3333 Buford Drive. Attendees will plan upcoming events and discuss ideas to promote and improve Historic Buford. Information: Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Raised bed gardening topic of class on Saturday

The Community Garden of Snellville will host a class outlining the basics of raised bed gardening 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday, April 26 at the community garden at T.W. Briscoe Park, 2500 Sawyer Parkway. Class will cover basics of building raised beds, preparing soil and planting techniques to grow vegetables in a small area with minimal maintenance. Free. Pre-registration required by April 24. Register: 678-377-4010 or Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Tech students headed to national event

Of 17 Gwinnett Tech students competing in the state non-profit SkillsUSA competition, 13 placed, with five earning gold medals to advance to the national competition The National SkillsUSA Championships showcase the skills of post-secondary students through competitions in leadership, health occupations, trades/industry and technical contests. Gold medal winners: William “Scott” Hillyer – Residential Carpentry, James Stephens – Computer Programming, Christina Bryant – Restaurant Service, Julian Roberts – Commercial Baking and Eljesa Haxhiu – Culinary Arts. Information: or 770-962-7580. Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Mobile food bank helping hungry this Saturday

The Overcomers House and The Atlanta Community Food Bank are hosting the Truckload Food Giveaway Mobile Pantry for families in need at 9 a.m. Saturday at Healing Place Church, 781 U.S. Highway 78 in Loganville. The Overcomers House is a Snellville-based nonprofit that works to fight hunger in Gwinnett and surrounding areas. Information: 678-575-6608. Karen Huppertz for the AJC

Suwanee seeking artists for May festival

Arts in the Park will return to Suwanee Town Center Park on May 17, with a retro theme of Peace, Love & Arts in the Parkand it is accepting applications for artists interested in exhibiting, and perhaps demonstrating, their work at the juried festival. Deadline: April 30. Information: Huppertz for the AJC


Board upholds ethics sanction against Marlow

The Georgia Board of Education sustained a local ethics sanction brought against school board member Kelly Marlow, the Cherokee district learned Monday. She had appealed her own school board’s decision to fine her $3,600 after she sent a complaint last year to AdvancED, the organization that oversees the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. SACS investigated Marlow’s accusations and found no merit. The state school board cited evidence Marlow violated the local ethics policy by acting alone rather than with the board in soliciting SACS. Ty Tagami

Lake Lanier campgrounds open this week

The U.S. Army Corps Of Engineers will open its camping areas at Lake Lanier Thursday.

The Corps says the Bald Ridge and Old Federal Campgrounds will take reservations throughout the week.

The Balding Mill, Van Pugh South, Duckett Mil and Sawnee Campgrounds will only be open from Thursday noon until Sunday at 3 p.m., except for the extended hours for major summer holidays.

Camping fees range from $12 to $32 a night.

For information about reservations: or 1-877-444-6772. Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Author to speak at library in Johns Creek

Young adult fiction writer Jackson Pearce will speak on writing and the publishing industry at 10:30 Saturday at the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library’s Northeast/Spruill Oaks Branch, 9560 Spruill Road, Johns Creek.

Pearce, of Atlanta, is the Friends of the Northeast/Spruill Oaks Library author in residence.

The event is free and open to the public, but registration is required.

Information: or 770-360-8820. Kent A. Miles for the AJC

Forsyth hearing on considering changes to code

The Forsyth County Planning Commission will hold a public hearing to consider a possible change to the county’s Unified Development Code at 6:30 p.m. April 22 at the Forsyth County Administration Building, 110 E. Main St., Cumming.

The commission seeks comment on a possible amendment to chapter 10 of the code on non-conforming lots.

The change would allow protection of a property owners non-conforming status when a lot is reduced by being condemned or sold, or dedicated to an entity with the power of condemnation. Mark Woolsey for the AJC

Golf tourney fundraiser to be April 28

Children without a Voice will hold its annual fundraising charity golf tournament beginning at 10 a.m. April 28 at the Alpharetta Athletic Club, 3430 Highway 9 N. Cost: $150 per player or $500 for a foursome, which includes golf, lunch, dinner, prizes, raffles and auction.

Children without a Voice is a registered non-profit founded in 2007 aimed at fighting crimes against children, plus child abuse and neglect. For registration and sponsorship information, visit Mark Woolsey for the AJC


Author to discuss new book on Thursday

Author Ellen Griffith Spears will discuss her latest work, “Baptized in PCBs: Race, Pollution, and Justice in an All-American Town,” at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Auburn Avenue Research Library, 101 Auburn Ave., Atlanta.

Griffith’s narrative describes the battle by the citizens of Anniston, Ala., against Monsanto over the dumping of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in the city’s historically African American and white working-class west side. The library is hosting the discussion in recognition of Earth Day.

Information: 404-730-4001. Kent A. Miles for the AJC

61 students earn Posse scholarships

Sixty-one Atlanta high school students have been chosen to receive college scholarships through the Posse Foundation.

The students, who generally come from urban backgrounds, could have been overlooked in the traditional college selection process, but instead they’ll join groups of 10 students to attend their colleges together, according to the foundation.

The Atlanta Posse started in 2007 and has sent 301 students to institutions including Bard College, Boston University, Brandeis University, The College of Wooster, Syracuse University and Texas A&M University. Mark Niesse

Health care innovators, entrepreneurs to meet

Better Walk is hosting the first Entrepreneurial Innovation in Healthcare dinner 6 p.m. Thursday at the Georgia Tech Student Center, 350 Ferst Drive. Tickets are $50, $15 for students. Proceeds go to Crutches4Kids, which donates crutches to children. Information:

Kent A. Miles for the AJC

CAU hosts young leaders program

Clark Atlanta University will be one of only 20 U.S. host schools for the Washington Fellowship For Young African Leaders Program, convening on campus June 14-July 25. This is the flagship program of President Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative. Nancy Badertscher


Disability group to hold gala April 26

The 15th anniversary gala for disABILITY LINK will take place at 5 p.m. April 26 at the Courtyard Marriott, 130 Clairemont Ave., Decatur.

The event will honor the efforts of individuals and organizations that work to improve the lives and protect the rights of people with disabilities. Individual tickets to the event are $100.

Information:,, or 404-687-8890, Ext. 113.

Kent A. Miles for the AJC

Westchester renovation to begin in May

Renovation of Westchester Elementary, which reopens as school in 2014-15 after being shuttered for 10 years, begins the third week in May according to Jason Ware, Decatur Schools’ Director of Facilities and Maintenance.

The work includes painting, re-equipping the kitchen, constructing a new media center and new playground, and knocking down temporary walls to give the mid-1950s building its original classroom configuration.

The work, which costs about $500,000, should finish in July. Bill Banks for the AJC

Center hosts dinner for older singles

The Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta is hosting its 6 on 6 Dinner Club for singles 60 and over at 6 p.m. Thursday at Carbonara Trattoria, 5499 Chamblee Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody.

The cost is $5 for the evening of dining and conversation.

Information: or 678-812-3799. Kent A. Miles for the AJC

Ride for fallen police officers on April 26

The 23rd annual ride for fallen officers will take place at 11 a.m. April 26 at Turner Field, 755 Hank Aaron Drive SE, Atlanta.

DeKalb County officers and other employees will participate in the Georgia Police Memorial Ride, organized by the Blue Knights International Law Enforcement Motorcycle Club. Four law enforcement officers statewide died in the line of duty in 2013, among them DeKalb police Officer Ivorie Klusmann.

Registration is at 8 a.m. and costs $35 per rider, $15 a passenger.

Information: Kent A. Miles for the AJC

IMH School hosts Work of Human Hands sale

Immaculate Heart of Mary School will be selling fairly traded tea, coffee, chocolate, jewelry, scarves, and other hand-crafted items from farmers and artisans living in developing regions.

The Work of Human Hands Sale is set for April 29 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. It takes place in the IHM school library, 2855 Briarcliff Road NE, Atlanta, 30329.

The sale is part of the Work of Human Hands program, a partnership between Catholic Relief Services and SERRV, nonprofit organizations dedicated to fighting poverty.

More info:

Nancy Badertscher


Water authority honors retiree for service

Mike Craig has retired from the Henry County Water Authority after 41 years of service. He was the seventh employee hired after the founding of the Authority, which today has more than 200 employees and 50,000 customers. He was honored by the Georgia Association of Water Professionals as well as the HCWA board for his service. Information: Monroe Roark for the AJC

Nunn to speak to Fayette Democrats Saturday

The Fayette County Democratic Committee will hold its monthly Pancakes and Politics meeting on Saturday at 9 a.m. at the Fayetteville IHOP, 705 North Jeff Davis Dr. in Fayetteville. Guest speaker will be U.S. Senate candidate Michelle Nunn. Other local candidates are expected to make an appearance: Pota Coston for county commissioner, District 5; Ogechi Oparah for school board District 4; and Leonard Presberg, incumbent school board member running for District 5. For information about the Fayette Democratic Committee meetings and other events, log onto Tammy Joyner

Clayton extends clinic hours for vaccinations

The Clayton County Board of Health will extend its clinic hours today to accomodate students who need vaccinations. Georgia law requires students entering 7th grade in public schools to have meningococcal and Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis, i.e. “whooping cough”) shots. The health department is urging parents to meet this new requirement during spring break this week by taking advantage of the clinic’s extended 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. hours on Tuesday. Health department nurses will be available to review children’s shot records and administer vaccinations if needed. Proof of children’s medical insurance coverage is needed. There is a $21 charge per child for the uninsured. Details: call 678-610-7199 ext. 6522. Tammy Joyner

Henry police honored with MADD award

Mothers Against Drunk Driving of Georgia presented its annual Golden Shield Honor Awards at a March 27 banquet with 600 law enforcement officers on hand. The Henry County Police Department was awarded Statewide Agency of the Year for the second year in a row, and Henry County Police Officer Timothy Williams was named Statewide Officer of the Year, an honor given to only one officer per state. All of the officers honored accounted for 22,000 DUI arrests in Georgia in 2013. Information: Monroe Roark for the AJC

College Park to inspect fire hydrants

College Park Fire Rescue will begin inspecting hydrants around the city starting April 14.The testing will be conducted Mondays through Thursdays and will take about two months to complete. The testing is part of twice-yearly maintenance to ensure that the hydrants will function properly in case of emergency.Information: Kent A. Miles for the AJC