Newton Citizen Poll 1-12-08

"I have also been treated rudely by the employees of the Newton County Probate office. I don't guess you could expect much better as Judge Baker is just as rude."

"I love the Newton Citizen and especially Darrell Huckaby and the religion section on Saturday, but I miss it on Monday. In reference to the person who wrote in about us retired people being on the road early, sure we get up and out early as we did when we worked - probably always will. We meet for breakfast and fellowship and have a good time as we did when we worked. We also run the speed limit - it is still 55, isn't it? If you are in a big hurry to get to work, maybe you should leave home earlier. You don't own the road and you can't change other people's habits."

"I would like to comment on the person who would like to see some restaurants come to the Wal-Mart area like Conyers has. Golden Corral, Mrs. Winner's and Ryans are not exactly top-of-the-line restaurants. Come on, Covington, let's shoot a little higher than that."

"I am calling about the lady who went to pay the traffic ticket for her daughter and was treated so rudely by the people behind the glass. The next time something like that happens, I suggest right there, right then, saying, let them see you do it, ask to see the supervisor and report those people right there on the front. Don't let them intimidate you like that. I have found so many people working in the work force today that are so rude they treat people as if they are nothing but trash, and I for one am sick of it. Another thing I am calling about: (when) you call a business or a doctor's office or anything like that, when that person answers the phone they should identify themselves. I get so tired of calling these different places and you have to ask with whom am I speaking and they reluctantly tell you. They really don't want you to know who you are talking to, but what I have started doing is when I am being treated badly by someone I report them right there on the spot and don't let them get by with it. Next time this happens to you, do the same thing. And again, on the telephone conversations, people please start acting like you are supposed to on a job. Identify yourself, take care of business and don't snap somebody's head off just because you are having to work. It is not my problem that you are still having to work. Hopefully, one day you will be retired like I am, but when I worked I did my job and I did it right and I was very good to the public and the people."

"I was calling about restaurants around still not using gloves preparing food. I think that should be grounds for closing a restaurant because what I am saying is I have no idea how clean their hands are. I think if they refuse to use gloves preparing food the restaurant should be closed."

"No matter what time or what day or what type of vehicle as you enter the construction zone at I-20 in Covington you will be honked at, lights flashed at, tailgated if you even attempt to do the construction speed of 55; Newton County is missing a huge revenue opportunity to issue speeding fines and, more importantly, to protect the lives of the DOT workers - The Life You Save Today, May Just Be Your Own. Why is this area not being addressed? Can we please just get one police car to sit in the area with the lights on to help this crazy, crazy world that has to get wherever they are going to pay attention. I don't even know a DOT worker, but this is just wrong for too long"

"While in the new Newton County office building to purchase new car tags, I noticed a sign above each teller's window: $10 transaction fee when you pay by VISA/MASTERCARD/OR DEBIT CARD. Someone surely had to try to justify the existence of their job in coming up with this one. And someone approved this? I wonder how many meetings occurred to get this jewel passed? Rest assured, the public did not have advance notice of this."

"In regards to the rude, arrogant 'public servants' employed by Newton County and the judicial system, maybe it's time for a change. I've always said no person, other than an elected official, should work in any county office in a permanent clerical position for more than two years. Then they should be rotated to another department. That way they don't become 'too comfortable' in that position and develop the communist attitude they have. But then people complain that retraining a new person and experience is lost. No problem: stagger the rotations to 50 percent of the staff and the experience factor is still there. It ain't rocket science folks, a high school dropout could perform these jobs. That could also be taken a step further with the elected officials these people work for, since they forget it is the taxpayer that pays their salary. A change from the good old boys that are constantly elected to office that hire these people and keep them employed. There isn't a single person serving in any elected office that should be reelected this year. If you want change, vote them out and put a new body in that seat, then in four years replace them yet again."

"Remember these words and harbor them; 'When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty.' - Thomas Jefferson. And in that respect, we should refer yet again to Mr. Jefferson; 'The multiplication of public offices, increase of expense beyond income, growth and entailment of a public debt, are indications soliciting the employment of the pruning knife.' - Thomas Jefferson. A pruning knife may not do any good in Newton County, we may need to break out that old chainsaw and cut the entire tree down. But what the heck, we gotta start somewhere. So pick up that phone and get out those pens and start calling and writing those county commissioners. They control the budgets of these offices and they do have an influence over that office. If they don't listen, vote them out in November."

"Have all our local officials lost their minds? Are they really going to shoehorn a 100-room hotel and a 1,200-seat civic center auditorium onto that space behind the new county administration building? With the 1,200-seat auditorium on the second floor? With very limited accessibility? With no convenient parking? It is already so congested in that location that they spent $2 million on a parking deck, which is apparently being used by county employees. Where will the hotel guests and employees park? Where will the 1,200 civic center guests park? And where will we park when we have business in our handsome new administration building? Any facility is only so good as its accessibility, and the accessibility there is already very poor. Why is this even getting serious consideration? I have not talked to anyone who is for it. So who is pushing it? Someone was quoted in the paper as saying this would be an 'economic engine' for prosperity in downtown Covington. Would someone please explain that to me? Do our officials really believe that this project will result in our becoming a mecca for conventions, with Atlanta and all it has to offer only 40 minutes away? Who says we even need another hotel? And if there is such a need, should we not let private investors build it? If we want to build a civic center, it should be located where it will be easily accessible to everyone, including the aged and the handicapped, with ample, convenient parking. There is such a location. How about the old Wal-Mart site on the corner of 278 and Pace Street, which is also close to downtown? Wake up, folks! Our elected officials have already committed $5 million of sales tax proceeds and over $12 million of revenue bond proceeds (which we are ultimately responsible for) to this project. This is our money. Is this the way you want it spent? If not, speak up."

"Hey everyone, are you ready for Newton County to turn into the next Clayton County? Tons of cheap starter houses, large increase in population, increase in violence, see shooting(s) in paper, schools get overwhelmed, suddenly you can't sell your house! Tons of foreclosures and vacant houses. Most of those are already true ... get ready for the rest!"

"We need a wakeup call! I am a real estate professional and I am sick of hearing about the real estate crisis. There are only two problems with the real estate market and they are as follows: First, I don't know who is more at fault, the banks writing the high-risk loans or the consumers for, knowingly, getting in too deep. The banks offer ridiculous incentives just to sell a mortgage ($1 down, buy a $300,000 home for only $500 a month, etc.). They do this knowing that the high-risk loan will not be their problem for very long (a lot of times, the bank has already sold the mortgage before closing!). The loan officers explain to the consumers that these low payments or low down payments will only benefit them for a few months and then 'reality' will set in and the interest rate will increase, resulting in higher payments. The second problem is, consumers do not read into the mortgage documents and they 'assume' that the loan officer is looking out for them. They see the low monthly payments (for the first six months) and they develop tunnel vision. They lose all common sense and they get excited. They sign the paperwork, move into the home, brag to their friends and then the 'reality' sets in. When their $500 payment turns into a $2,500 payment, they start to blame the Realtor for not telling them about this. When the Realtor reminds them that they were warned, they begin to blame the lender. It all boild down to this: If the government wants to help with this 'crisis,' they should stop these shady lending practices and stop helping these 'poor people who have fallen on hard times' by giving them tax breaks and other assistance. This tells them that it is OK to over-extend them selves financially and that the government will help them (with taxpayer money) each time they do this. If the consumer isn't smart enough to realize that their minimum wage salary is not enough for them to own a $300,000 home, then is that really the taxpayers burden to bear?"