The Newton Citizen Poll is a compilation of opinions submitted by readers. This week's poll was an open line.
"OK, if all of us Georgia people are so polite and courteous, why is it usually nearly impossible to back out of a parking place on the Square? Also, I have family that lives up North, and I can tell you from frequent trips up there that Georgia - indeed the South as a whole - has the rudest drivers I've ever encountered. In case you wonder where the politest drivers are, they are in Minnesota and Wisconsin!"
"This is in response to the 'Retired Taxpayer' on the volunteers. Don't you understand volunteers work for free, therefore saving taxpayers money. I am proud to have the volunteers. I know several of them and I know they are well-trained and very capable of doing their job. I have watched them train and practice their skills. The county commissioners should be proud to have men and women that are willing to give of themselves to serve the citizens. The citizens should also appreciate these fine people for the service they provide for free saving them tax money. I for one applaud the volunteers and would like to see the county commissioners implement a program for recruitment. Volunteers again I thank you. Keep up the good work."
"I disagree with the board's decision not to help fund the fireworks this year. When looking at the overall deficit budget - the amount of the fireworks are small in comparison. The revenues generated must offset the cost. I realize there is a great cost for the police, fire and EMTs. The citizens of Newton County will now take their dollars to surrounding counties to spend. With the shape our country is in, now more than ever, we need to come together as citizens of our great country and celebrate our independence and freedom. If we no longer celebrate the Fourth of July then we no longer have a country."
"Can someone please tell me why with the new bus lot on the corner of Jack Neely and Kirkland that the people of Newton County paid for with our taxes, why there are two buses parked on Jack Neely side by side that is less than a quarter mile from the lot. Shouldn't they be parked in the lot?"
"I'd like to say thank you to Girl Scout Ginny Fahs! What a super fantastic thing you did for our troops! Taking a leap and getting many other Scouts and those in our communities involved in something you believed in, will bring joy to so many who miss their families and friends, as they serve our country in distant lands. You should be commended for the outstanding job you did organizing and bringing this whole thing together! And as I sat and read the story about what you did, I knew your parents could not have been prouder of you ... and neither could I! Keep up the good work, hon! You've really got a good head on your shoulders! God bless you!"
"Kathy Morgan, chairman of the Newton County Commissioners, you are just like your late husband and all the other politicians on the Board of Commission. ... Ms. Morgan said when she was campaigning she would ... look at an in-house attorney. After the election she went to Mr. Craig's defense. Mr. Bobby Sigman I want to thank you for bringing this information to the voters. Attention: I will send you a check to help pay for the $284 you spent. Now let's do the math: It cost the county $750,000 in legal fees last year; divide this by $150, an hour that's 5,000 hours; divide that by 40 hours per week; this will be 125 weeks. The last time I looked at a calendar there are 52 weeks in a year. There is no way they can justify this legal fee. ... "
"Where are the Porterdale police at the busy times of the day? People cutting through the filling station yards and Burger King trying to beat the traffic. I have almost been ran over several times where they are going so fast and not watching. They come down through the drive thru at Burger King and almost hit you when pulling away from the window. They need to start giving tickets for this before somebody gets hurt - maybe killed."
"I am calling about the hours at the neighborhood recycling centers. I just found out the recycling centers will not be opening till 9 o'clock a.m. on Monday through Friday. I know the county is trying to save money, but I thought the chairman and the Board of Commissioners said they did not want to cut the services that were provided to the citizens. If this is not cutting services then what does the chairman and Board of Commissioners call this? As a concerned citizen I would like to know whose crazy idea this was? What are the people who used the centers on the way to work suppose to do with their trash? Because most people have to be at work at either 8 a.m. or 9 a.m. this will cause more trouble than its worth in the long run."
"I would like to make a comment about Dr. Whatley's decision to cut the nursing staff at our schools by 50 percent ... This cut will take place at the beginning of the 09/10 year. There are many students in school who have very life-threatening conditions - lupus, cancer - there are students who have to have asthma inhalers, Epi pens. Some of them have to be administered by licensed personnel. They cannot be administered by office staff. Most of our special needs students are on medications and some of those medications can be given at home. It is the majority population not just the special needs that need these nurses. There are critical needs. One of our middle schoolers almost died a few weeks ago had not a nurse known to take a second Epi pen from another student's pack and save her life. By the time emergency personnel could have gotten to that school this child would have died. Office staff probably would not have known what to do when she started swell again and was not able to breathe after her first dose with her Epi pen. ... There has to be money somewhere ... that could be put in to the schools .... There has got to be some waste that could be cut. Our children already don't have books. There are so many things our kids are doing without."
"I understand in these troubled financial times the need for budget cuts. We are all tightening our belts. But I have to say I am astounded that the Newton County library will now be closed on Saturdays. I guess the interest of serving the children who are in school during the week is not as important as being there for deliveries from vendors on Mondays. Deliveries which could be rescheduled, I am sure. Maybe someone just does not want to work on Saturdays anymore. If they close Monday instead of Saturday they will still reap the same supposed savings of utilities and staff costs. How will they justify any budget for next year when everyone starts taking their kids to Nancy Guinn? I know that's what my family will do."
"The Newton Citizen can publish Mayor Carter getting new furniture for the mayor's office. They can put all this stuff about some family being charged ... a while back in the paper. But yet when someone comments about the Porterdale City Council no one at the Newton Citizen does anything about it. I believe they are a bunch of robotic people - one does what the other does. Porterdale residents need to wake up, smell the coffee and get with the flow. Get somebody in there who ain't going to play around with them. Get someone who is going to speak up for your rights and all that good stuff. It is time for the good ol' boys to hit the road in Porterdale."
"Shame on the people who left their poor dogs in the freezing snow without shelter. If you don't care about them, please give them to someone who will. Shame on you!"
"I know you probably won't print this, but I would like to know what kind of shelter puts out a homeless man and woman. ... How in the world can you put someone out like that the day before it snows."
"In my neighborhood we have a stray cat problem. I called Newton Animal Control and was put on a waiting list for a trap. This morning I received a call advising me that I could come by their office and pickup my trap. While there I asked what do I do when I catch something and was told to bring it to their office and was told their office hours. What am I paying taxes for? Is this an approved procedure? I tried to do the humane thing, but many will not if forced to pick up their traps and have to transport said animal to their station. The cages have meshed wire bottom and urine and feces could easily get into one's own vehicle since I do not have a pickup."
"My children have attended East Newton for several years now, and we have been very pleased with the education that they have received. However, we are concerned that the quality of our children's education is no longer the main focus. As we entered the building for our last conference, we were met by a large display of Seussical items promoting the school's play, but nothing promoting our children's educational accomplishments. A bulletin board was even posted in the main lobby showing how many personal advertisement lines each of the students in the play had sold. How embarrassing for that child who has talent, but has family and friends struggling in this economic hardship. I tried to justify everything I saw until last week. Friday, I ran to town to do some errands and saw several teachers trying to sell advertisements for the Seussical program to local businesses. Shouldn't these teachers be at school teaching our children instead of working on the play? Shouldn't this be something that is done after school or on the weekends? As a parent, I am wondering if my child's education is the first priority of East Newton and of Newton County School System."
"Does everyone understand now that you should dial 911 when McDonald's screws up your order? And the ironic part is the woman still thinks she's right! Mercy!"