0

Newton Citizen Poll - 2/7/2009

The Newton Citizen Poll is a compilation of opinions submitted by readers. This week's Citizen Poll was an open line:

"When is Newton County going to get an indoor pool? I am a 14-year-old currently attending Indian Creek Middle. I would like to know why this county doesn't spend a little money on an indoor pool? I like this county but I am appalled that it does not support swimming at all. Why can't this county have an indoor pool? It would be great for Newton County citizens and it would give back to the community. If we had an indoor pool it would not only be a place for competitive swimming, but a good place for people to come and exercise. An indoor pool in Newton County would also give a lot of money back to the community. At other indoor pools in other counties it costs $5 for admission to the pool, $100 for birthday parties and $250 for competitive swimmers. I know over 130 swimmers that live in this county. Do the math. That is a lot of money that this county could be making. Why doesn't this county support swimming? I hear that there is an Eastside swim team. Why not do an article in the paper about them? There is also a High School State swimming competition coming up and a couple of swimmers on the team can win first or second in the state! There is a basketball, football, or wrestling athlete of the week every week. Now I don't have anything against those sports, but why not have a swimmer as Athlete of the Week for once? Swimming is so misunderstood in this county."

----

"To the reader asking for a movie theater in Newton County. First, I think your figure for residents may be a little high - someone please correct me if I'm wrong. If Newton County reached over 100,000 residents, we probably would have seen an article about it on the front page (as that would reflect more taxpayers). Secondly, since you gave a population figure, did you also take into consideration their median income? They probably have more disposable income than we do, which is why the residents there can support two large theaters. Coweta's average median is probably much higher than Newton County's median income which could be a key reason none of the (large chain) theaters are not looking our direction. We know from a recent article that they have lower unemployment rate than Newton County. Thirdly, did you check surrounding counties to see if they had large theaters? My guess is Coweta and the surrounding counties have strategically placed theaters to support them all with ample customers. So, you are not really comparing apples to apples with Coweta County and Newton County (why Coweta anyway?)."

Editor's note: The U.S. Census Bureau lists Newton County's 2007 population at 96,019.

----

"I'm sick and tired of many complaining about what Newton County does not have or doesn't do - and who is to blame (which is never them). And then the next thing out of their mouths is what they would do to fix it! If you see a problem and have all the answers to the county's 'problems,' then how come you are all sitting in your recliner every night until your 9 p.m. bedtime? Get up off your bottom and get involved to make a change! Or are you waiting for Mr. President to do it for you? Moral of the story is - be a part of the solution instead of complaining about the problem."

----

"Attention commuters on Highway 278 between MLK and the 142 split. The property that the City Council of Covington is looking at approving for the private school is presently zoned to have 120 homes put on it. Which would you rather have, 120 new neighbors making 10 trips to and from their homes all day, every day or a small private school with parents only making two trips per day during the months that school is in session? Also, seeing how Newton has the highest unemployment rate in the state, I would rather have something that generates jobs than adding 120 more homes that the county does not need."

-----

"For the person who recently obtained a CCW permit and asked if there was another type available which would be legal in all 50 states - there is not. However, Georgia does have reciprocity agreements with several other states. A few states will not allow a person to carry a weapon in their vehicle at all. There is a booklet, 'Traveler's Guide to the Firearms Laws of the 50 States,' available for about $15 from Traveler's Guide in Covington, Ky. Tel: 859-491-6400. I have used this guide for many years to ensure that I do not run afoul of weapons laws while traveling."

----

"For Trade: One 16-year-old who knows everything. Except: How to cook. How to clean. How to manage money. How to wipe up spilled water. How to drive. How to write a check. How to answer a phone. How to do math. How to be polite. How gas is paid for. How cell phone bills are paid. How to work the can opener. How to sweep, dust or vacuum. How to make a bed. How to do laundry. How dictatorships work. How to stop talking. How to get a job. How important it is to finish high school. How the world actually works. She can text. And she can argue. What else does she 'possibly' need to know in life? I'd like to trade her in. For a puppy."

-----

"I am glad to see Mayor Carter's family is still defending her in the Poll. I do agree it is time to move on about the furniture and higher utility rates and get up a recall petition or wait and vote her out of office in the next election if she runs. Let this be an example to whomever we elect."

----

"Would someone please tell that ... president that the best stimulus package you could give anybody is to keep the price of gas low. I see it is going back up now. Who you going to blame - George Bush again?"

----

"The man from Merrill Lynch that dispensed the $1.3 million to 400 people should be immediately put in jail, each person that received the bonuses should be asked to return it and if they do not return it they should be put in jail also. The money should be returned to the rightful people, who is the government of the United States."

-----

"My comment is in regards to the Georgia firearms license comment. They can contact any officer of the Porterdale Police Department at any given time to receive gun locks and safety information as well as have any questions answered regarding where and when you can carry your firearm as well as what states also allow the Georgia permits to be peaceful pass. Normal business hours for the Porterdale Police Department are 8-4. Ask for Chief Digby or Bo Alexander."

----

"I was in Madison today and I was amazed at how their city leaders made Wal-Mart and Lowe's build all-brick stores for their town, not the painted blocks like we have on our Wal-Mart. Why can't Covington and Newton County have some kind of design stipulations that require all-brick buildings for the developers that can afford it? If we have to have a building that will be around for probably 50 or more years, why not have it built so that as it ages it won't look rundown and bring property values down as so many of the buildings on Highway 278 have. I'm not from here originally, but as my relatives come to town and visit I am embarrassed of taking them down 278. It has an outdated and rundown look to it."

----

"Let's be thankful Sam Ramsey was chosen for the mayor's office furniture. Congratulations Sam - Now if we could just understand why the sheriff got a $40,000 vehicle (paid for by taxpayers) ... Someone please investigate this decision."

Editor's note: The Board of Commissioners voted 4-1 on Jan. 20 to purchase a 2009 Chevrolet Tahoe for the Sheriff's Office at a cost of $27,390. Commissioner Tim Fleming cast the dissenting vote. The low bid was awarded to Hardy Fleet Group of Dallas, Ga. The vehicle will be funded from the Sheriff's Office budget in the county general fund.

----

"I would like to respond to the $5.3 million shortfall in Newton County. Instead of laying off or cutting the hours of the public servants in this county that already put their lives on the line every day to serve and protect us and still don't get paid nearly enough, or those people within the county that keep things running for all of us ... has anyone considered the amount of money this county would save in fuel costs alone if the BOE zoning would simply zone sensibly? I live less than half a mile from Indian Creek and our home is zoned for Cousins Middle School across town! I am less than one mile from Eastside, and yet our home is zoned for Newton High School. There are people living in the area of Salem Road and Brown Bridge Road that are zoned for Alcovy High School rather than Newton High that is right down the road. Others are right off Salem Road right at the new South Salem Elementary school and are zoned for Porterdale Elementary, while those living right at Livingston Elementary are zoned for South Salem. Surely it's not just me that is confused by this, and frustrated that talks of cutting hours and layoffs for our county employees would be the first step rather than looking at issues like this."

Editor's note: Funding for the school system is separate from funding for the county's maintenance and operations budget. Savings in school system spending could not be transferred to the county budget.

----

"Porterdale City Council members are doing such a fine job! They are focusing on immediate issues, such as setting up a speed traps on Crowell Road and getting rid of beloved family pets. They don't need to focus on long-range projects, such as getting rid of the drug dealers - after all, criminals and thugs don't pay fines or taxes ... we need to get those revenues coming in! It doesn't matter that landlords are losing first-class tenants because of drug dealings and shootings going on right under their nose in their own neighborhoods. Think ahead Porterdale ... if you lose quality residents, the future looks grim for the future of this already struggling city. I guess the Porterdale police officers spend hours sitting and talking to each other in patrol cars at the city limit sign at the abandoned store on Washington Street to make to make sure no contraband pets enter the city."