The Newton Citizen Poll is a compilation of opinions submitted by readers. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Citizen newspapers. If you agree or disagree with something you read here, you may respond by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Please keep your comments brief.
"I don't understand with all the taxes we pay on property why jail inmates cannot eat properly. I understand that they are in jail, but I also understand that the county gets anywhere from $150 to $180 a day to take care of them."
The inmates receive a minimum of 2800 calories or more per day. Each inmate receives three meals a day at a cost of $1.70 per meal. Our average cost to care for the inmates at our facility is currently $45.00 a day for basic needs, excluding medical. As the Detention Administrator of this facility I take pride in running a clean professionally ran operation. I would invite any citizen or government official to visit our facility and see firsthand the care we give to anyone that is placed into our custody or visits our facility .-- Detention Administrator Capt. Sammy Banks
"More affordable housing in Newton? Great idea! Then we can have more ghettos and that will lead to more crime. Like we don't have enough already?"
"Well, it appears Mr. Whatley hasn't gotten the message from the people -- 'No Frills Government.' You said it was the best decision at the time ... Let's review -- 1. Out of town location when you could stay in town and save on room and food expense: 2. Not lowest bid. Your decision-making should worry the citizens of Covington! I wonder, would you have made the same decision if it was your money and you were on a fixed budget. And no, we the voters are not stupid as you suggest, we know what a retreat is. Enjoy yours on our money. Hopefully it will be your last as a councilman ... "
"Mike Whatley, you should not try and pop and speak. For one, the people (your bosses) are tired of stupid responses and idiotic excuses for every issue that politicians have. No one needs to go out of town to have a 'retreat.' Times are too tough. Many government employees are being let go or furloughed just to save a few dollars so you and your cronies can 'get away' and do the work you need to do in town. Spend, spend, spend is all anyone out there hears these days. You need to take a step back, open those ears and listen to the people that really run this city and county (the people). Let their money go. It is for use on really needed projects. Not a trip for you. This is our money. We let you use it. We can always take that power away from you on Election Day. And I think I will start that campaign."
"'The day the Bush administration took over from President Bill Clinton in 2001, America enjoyed a $236 billion budget surplus -- with a projected 10-year surplus of $5.6 trillion. When the Bush administration left office, it handed President Obama a $1.3 trillion deficit -- and projected shortfalls of $8 trillion for the next decade.' The $133 billion T.A.R.P. was signed by Bush. The entire projected 10-year cost of our involvement in Iraq is $1 trillion, or $100 billion a year. Wonder why we are in the economic situation that exists now? Look at the last 10 years. Decisions in 2009 by the current administration were made to keep us out of deep depression and bread lines. Facts -- truth ... not misinformation. Amazes me how quickly people forget ... Keep watching FOX news channel and believing the misinformation and hate they spin ... "
"I have not lived in Newton County very long. I moved here last year to be closer to my daughter and grandchildren. I do not understand the manner in which the city of Covington and Newton County decide how tax money is spent. All during the year, especially when school starts, supplies and donations are given to DFACS for children in foster care. Apparently not enough money is allocated to pay for these children's basic needs. While this is happening, a very large sum of tax money is being given to the adults at the Chamber of Commerce who can easily pay $55 a person to attend a meeting. I cannot understand an affluent adult in good conscience taking this money when the poorest of children's needs are not being met, and also when just plain citizens give from their pockets to purchase safety vests for our law enforcement. Perhaps a lifelong resident of the county will write this paper and explain this to me."
"It is pretty sad when the pro-choice agenda condemns CBS for selling an ad to a group with different ideas than theirs. Reminds me of what Obama does to people who disagree with him and his agenda. At least the pro-choice people don't try to 'bribe' people to change their minds and principles. It really worked on the senator from Nebraska and from Louisiana. When is Obama going to become more transparent and accountable for his actions since taking office over a year ago? How long is he going to continue blaming Bush for all the problems Americans are now facing? He needs to wake up and start fulfilling the promises he made on the campaign trail. He needs to focus on jobs; improving the economy; protecting us from terrorist attacks; no tax increases; and then a workable health care system that both sides of the aisle can agree to vote on and pass. If things do not change and Obama gets his priorities straight, we will show him and his congress in November -- what real change is by replacing those in Congress who are up for reelection and are not listening to their constituents."
"Isn't it interesting that J.C. Henderson says he couldn't afford him a lawyer so he wanted a public defender. Now all of a sudden he hired ... John Strauss. Where did this money come from? I would be interested to know the answer to that."
"I was calling about the guy in Atlanta wanting to start his own basketball league with just white players. My take on it is simple -- his money is going to be spent for the players. Let him buy who he wants to. As far as race is concerned, what about BET -- how many white people do they have on that? What about the Ms. Black America pageant? How many white people do they have on that?"
"Get ready Newton County employees for another round of furloughs, layoffs, pay cuts. Rumor has it the Fire Department alone must cut 5 percent. Which means layoffs and more made-up holidays to be able to take more money from the county employees. The Fire Department has problems with retention already. The county offers no pension like other fire departments. Hopefully after the upcoming budget the firefighters will not go somewhere else."
"Re: City Council's Retreat All the 'bonding' that creates alliances within the City Council could be created at a one-day retreat somewhere in Covington, perhaps at a hotel as suggested by Mr. Sigman in his statements to the news media. The focus has been on money spent outside the county and on the cost of retreat hotel rooms. How about the $5,000 to be spent on a facilitator from Conyers? Isn't the mayor capable of being the facilitator, enumerating out good points and problems ... resulting in possible solutions? Do we have to have a Conyers facilitator just because other cities adopted this practice several years ago? Are we sheep?"
"It might be interesting to do a follow-up on the mayor's office ... pictures, costs, etc."
"It might be interesting to do series on our Newton County industries. Most of us don't even know what is here. I've always been interested, for instance, in the perfume factory that makes the bottles. Do the French workers actually go back to France every six months? How many work in that factory? Pictures, human interest, contributions to the community for all the series! Fun!"