News for Saturday, January 24, 2009

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School board approves budget plans

COVINGTON - The new budget year for the Newton County School System doesn't begin until July, but school system officials already are attempting to be proactive in order to reduce the chances of a budget shortfall.

Newton-Rockdale Veterans names project director

CONYERS - Members of Newton-Rockdale Veterans Inc. announced this week that real estate agent Jo Carter-Harbin has been selected to serve as project director for the nonprofit organization. Primarily, she said Thursday, her job duties will be focused on fundraising efforts to build a $350 million mixed-use residential complex to house veterans and their families.

Newton Citizen Poll - 01/24/2009

"I am writing concerning the budget of the NCSS. As a parent of three children in schools, I am very concerned. The school system is considering cutting personnel to solve this budget crisis. This is cause for great concern. What better way to educate a child than a low teacher/student ratio? The state is allowing classrooms to have two more children in each class, and then the county wants to cut personnel? Are we asking for chaos in the classroom? Is the school board not concerned with the proper education of our children? When was the last time the board members stepped in a classroom? See what these teachers face, the personal time and money that the Newton County school personnel put forth for these children, and their thanks is a job cut? I do not think for a minute that the job of budget cuts is an easy one, but the superintendent and board need to think long and hard (lose some sleep over their decisions), what is best for the future of education in Newton County. What about pay cuts for central office personnel or administration? What about not hiring back retired teachers in part-time positions (some places call that double dipping)? What about stopping all of this unnecessary testing of our children? Have they considered just plain out great teaching? Not teaching for testing! We get report cards to monitor and assess our children, do we really need DIBELS, ITBS, CRCT, MCLASS, etc. Cut down on the testing, put personnel back into the classroom, let them do their jobs ... Teach the children of Newton County!"

Square parking now two hours

COVINGTON - The parking time limit on the Square was reduced to two hours at a special called meeting held by the Covington City Council on Tuesday.

Grimes to make fourth bid Man plans another run for Porterdale council seat

PORTERDALE - In his fourth attempt to win a seat on the Porterdale City Council, Andy Grimes said his goal is to allow citizens to have more input on how the city is run.

Sweet success Farmer raises unusual mix of mushrooms, honey

OXFORD - Honey and mushrooms are a strange combination, but it's one that helps Brady Bala make his living and be a good environmental steward.

Community Calendar - 1/24/2009

COMMUNITY CALENDAR

Eastside girls fall to Jackson County

COVINGTON - The Eastside Lady Eagles showed the meaning of a contrast between halves in their game against Jackson County on Friday night.

Government Meetings - 1/24/2009

GOVERNMENT MEETINGS

Heritage squads win in region

CONYERS - The Heritage basketball teams opened their second swing through Region 8-AAAA South play by sweeping visiting Monroe Area on Friday night.

Shorthanded Salem takes second at meet

CONYERS - The Salem swim team placed second overall followed by Heritage on Thursday night at Johnson Park.

No. 3 Rockdale pins Jackson Bulldogs come through with 47-31 home win

CONYERS - The Rockdale wrestling squad ended its final home match of the season with a 47-31 trouncing of Jackson on Friday.

Hoops roundup: Rams pull off win at buzzer

Jamon Hawkins sank three game-winning free throws with five seconds remaining against M.L. King to give the Rams a 68-67 win, their 16th of the season.