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 remember that the Citizen Poll is not a forum for comments either for or in opposition to candidates seeking elective office.
"I'm commenting on the needed repairs to Airport Road for the new school. Rumor has it the school was originally designed to access Ga. Highway 142 and during the planning stages, the school system learned of the additional cost needed to access Ga. 142 and had the designer of the school turn the plans, to allow the school to access Airport Road, saving $300,000-plus in cost. Now my contention is, if this is true, the Newton County Board of Education, not Newton County or the state of Georgia should bear the expense of the needed repairs if this change was done in a deceptive manner. I feel the rumor is true, because Airport Road would have never been approved as a safe access point into the school from either end. And for the recommendation from the state to post a deputy, the Newton County Board of Education should pay the expense of the deputy being out there."
Editor's note: According to Sherri Davis-Viniard, director of Public Relations at the Newton County School System, the entrance has always been designed to be on Airport Road.
"This is a question for law enforcement of Newton County. Are there any cold case murders on the books that have been looked at recently. I ask this question because I know of at least three murders that happened within the city limits of Covington that to my knowledge no one was ever brought to trial for. How about we use some of the manpower that are after traffic violators to bring closure to the families of the victims."
Comment from Capt. Ken Malcom of the Covington Police Department: "When a heinous crime such as murder occurs, the Covington Police Department thoroughly and tirelessly investigates the crime to the fullest extent. In very rare situations detectives may run out of leads that would enable them to make an arrest and solve the case. When this occurs a case may be deemed inactive, but it is never closed. These types of inactive cases are reviewed periodically by our Criminal Investigative Division in hopes that new leads can be established. We encourage our citizens to contact us with any information they may have about any crime they have witnessed or have knowledge of regardless of how long ago it occurred. Information may be left anonymously on cases in which they have knowledge via the Covington Police web site www.covingtonpolice.com (Simply click the anonymous tip icon on the left) Citizens can also contact our tip line at 770-385-6430.
The Covington Police Department also must do everything it can to make the streets safer for its driving public. The creation of the City of Covington Police departments Traffic Unit was in response to the increase of traffic volume in the recent number of years. Over the last three years, Officers have responded to an average to 1200 motor vehicle accidents per year of which 126 involve injuries.. "Speeding" is the most common contributing factor to serious injuries and deaths that occur during a traffic crash. Simply put, if we can reduce vehicle speeds on our city streets to a safe limit, then when accidents do occur they are less likely to involve serious injuries or deaths.
"To the guy talking about folks driving below the speed limit on 36. Don't feel alone. Live on 278 near 142, same issues on 142 and 278, especially on Sunday. The only place I've found folks going 'well above' the speed limit (and the Sheriff's Department can't really do much about it but write a warning ticket -- unless the are going 50-plus) is within our subdivision. Folks drive 40 percent to -60 percent-plus (or 35 mph -- 45 mph-plus) above the posted speed limit of 25 mph, often with a cell phone stuck in their ear. Add to that there are no sidewalks and young people riding bikes, people walking, etc. on the streets. It is a bit strange to me, there are a couple of roads in Newton County that the Sheriff's Department can sit and run radar -- don't know the details how that happened but it sounds like someone knows someone in the right places. Someone in authority needs to fix this -- I am very confident this situation is countywide."
"I was calling about Obama's proposal about cutting Social Security. I think that is the most pathetic thing I have ever heard of. You have a whole big mess of handout organizations that just deal with handout, handout, handout, and then you are going to just cut out Social Security. I know Obama said he was going to turn senior citizens out to pasture but then he said a lot of other things he lied about. To me he is turning senior citizens out to pasture all right, and it is an awful small pasture."
"I cannot believe that the city mayor and council of Oxford has voted a huge increase in salaries for them when the workers of Oxford that does all the work has not had a raise in over three years. I think it is ridiculous. I think we should get rid of every one of them, Oxford mayor and city council."
"There are eight murder cases going on in Newton County currently and in some states, not just counties but some states, don't have that many murders all year. You can google this and find out for yourself. This county has gone downhill and will continue to go downhill. You better just get out while you can."
"The old saying 'Where there is no vision the people perish' our commission should have voted for what was right. The millage rate should have been raised, and also the $25 charge to use the Dumpsters. It would cost more than that any other way. It is time to stop the good old boy system and do the right thing.... If we don't have money to run the county why did we keep building parks? Why not close all the parks and the rec center until the economy gets better and we can afford these things. The parks are only for a limited few. Many companies and people will not move to Covington with no money to fix the roads. We need businesses in Newton County. We don't even have a store to buy a nice dress or a man's suit. We all have to go elsewhere. Let's all pull together and make Newton County what it once was."
"Thank you to the person who informed me that Chris Smith also has to work on vacations. I would hope so. When you are taking five to 10 trips a year, I would think you would have to do some work while away on trips provided by daddy. I guess I'm lucky not to have to work on vacation what with my two weeks of vacation a year. Also, I'm not from the North. I was born and raised right here in Georgia."
"Congress will not allow an increase in the Social Security COLA (cost of living adjustment). However, the per person monthly Medicare insurance premium will be increased from the 2009 premium of $96.40 to $104.20 in 2010, $120.20 for the year 2011 and yearly increases to a wonderful $247 in 2014. Thank you Obamacare! Congress also gave themselves a $3,000-a-month cost of living adjustment! Remember this in November 2012!"
"I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them. (Thomas Jefferson)"
"The hatred you people from the South spew about people from the North is unbelievable. So-called religious church people. If it be known the person you tell to just shut up is probably one of your Southern buddies, you just don't want to admit it. So yes, when you yell all your hated vents at someone else you don't know a thing about, it does make me a better person. By the way, I didn't write about the alcohol sales, either. On the other hand the person who wrote about getting old and remembering all the good times, that was a great article we need more of those feel-good reads. You must have been a Northerner too, because they just don't have snow to sled on and ice ponds to skate on here. It was a great time wasn't it?"
"To the person who made the venomous comments about Porterdale -- Go to Conyers (especially church) and listen to what the good Christian citizens have to say about Covington and Newton County in general. His criticism pales in comparison. Why is it that people have this need to denigrate others to make themselves feel superior? By the way, I live in Porterdale and hold a college degree and I think we have a fine police department. If he feels the need to feel better about himself, he may include me in his criticisms."
"Previously there was a post from an elderly gentleman (his term, not mine) about character building events at school which are no more. One thing I picked up on was his mention of music. A brief look into today's 'music in the schools' is most depressing. Our schools don't teach 'music' anymore in the lower grades. They teach music appreciation where the children sit one day a week for an hour or less and listen to music. Doesn't any of our over-educated hierarchy understand the known facts which point out music instruction enhances and develops a child's brain power like nothing else? Then I got the excuse, 'Its too expensive.' Further research indicates a cost of $30,000 per year for books per school. Now, folks we are in the electronic age where we don't much use books anymore. In minutes online I found a company, 'Music You Can Read' who sells a totally comprehensive music instruction program for about $900 per school, and includes all the downloads you need. This program teaches children music beginning at age 4 and up! A recommendation to the school board: Go online, buy a system that teaches children music, save hundreds of thousands of dollars in yearly textbook purchases and put music instruction back in our schools five days a week! It is the best investment you will ever make."
"The eyesore of the week is the large unoccupied house with the huge front area on Conyers Street. There are three large trees on the ground that fell due to drought-stricken roots, during the snow of January 2009, but are obscured by the 12-inch to 3-feet-high grass and weeds. The grass has not been cut this year, but the fallen trees with dirt/root balls will go away in about 20 years. Most other residents on this street keep their lawns cut from March through October. Weeds and grass are not permitted to grow to a height exceeding 12 inches according to city ordinances 8.04-130 and 8.04-140."
"The Back 2 School Block party is ridiculous. We attended one year only to find out that only Newton County public school students can receive school supplies. As if children who are home-schooled or in private school do not need supplies. We won't be back."
"Do the businesses who donate for the Back 2 School Block party realize only Newton County public school students can receive the supplies? What about the children who are home-schooled or who attend school in other counties due to Newton not servicing them?"
"Now that the really hot weather is here, why not give your trash guys a break? Take that nasty, smelly garbage can and clean it out with the garden hose and a little bleach."
On Friday, July 15, 2011, when the GOP had the opportunity to let the American public know what was happening in the debt talks, Fox News was the only channel broadcasting what they had to say. Not one left-wing Obama-loving network carried their remarks. Love how fair and balanced these stations aren't. When Obama's news conference came on, all of the liberal, left-winged loon stations carried his every word. It is so obvious that each of the reporters had been picked in advance and told what questions they could ask. I do not remember a single conservative reporter asking anything. That is so one-sided, it is pathetic!! Americans only get Obama's side of the issues. He, of course, is still on the lame-game stance and this time the Republicans (not only Bush), are responsible for the financial mess we are in. God help us if this man is allowed to steal this election as he did in 2008. True God-fearing, USA-loving, Constitution-believing Americans must stand and be counted in 2012. Nov. 7, 2012, will either be the day of a new beginning for America or the continuation to the virtual end of America as we know her. The choice is ours and Obama must be - A one term president!"
"In the '80s the policies of the Democrats made me leave the party of my father and grandfather. The Republicans were more in line of my way of thinking/ freedom of the people to practice my belief in God. Work hard to build a better future not for me but my children. Conservative spending of the people's tax money. Live with honor. In the '90s I thought our country was headed on the right tract. But in the last 10 years I see that my party has learned to spend like Democrats. So therefore I have left the Republican Party because of the plan that 'Taxby' is pushing. That's right, its 'Senator Taxby' from now on. I will still go to the polls. I will vote but if there is not an independent candidate that has my way of thinking on the ballot, I will vote none of the above. By the way, Taxby, I scraped off your bumper sticker off my truck last night. Sincerely A Free American For Now."
"I was calling about the Atlanta school system's mess they are in. I think it is a whole lot more widespread than up there. I just think they are the ones that got caught and that being said, I think Beverly Hall is the leader of it. I think it is tee-totally embarrassing this is the worst scandal in school history and it happened here in the state. ... "
"I am calling in about the Airport Road and the new school building. When they first came out about the school being built on Airport Road I called in to the poll and brought up that the road couldn't handle all the traffic and the buses and all were going to be in the area. Later someone else called in and brought up the new school and all the traffic and that the red light needs to be moved. I am a resident of Airport Road and they are talking about closure of the road now and doing the widening of it later on in the future after the summer break of next year. That is going to be another inconvenience for us people who have to use that road to go to work and go do our shopping. I know they will have to make preparations for the ones that live there to get back and forth to their homes but sometime back must have been four or five years ago there was a grading project put in where they were going to move Airport Road from the residential area to a bypass that was going to come out right there at the bottom of the runway and it was going to come out at Pool Booth Road. I am wondering if the Citizen could look into the fact that was a project at one time, then it was stopped. It would help us residents that have to live on this road a lot if they could put back in that bypass that was started and that would keep a lot of traffic from the neighborhood where our children play and where we have to come in and out of the road to go to work. That would be a great deal of help if they done that when they done the realignment project."
"The citizens of Porterdale are really getting tired of Councilman Foxworth's many dramas and walkouts. Porterdale has been ridiculed for years and his unprofessional tirades to do not help our image. Remembering the city once had a public swimming pool close because it could not afford the liability insurance, where is the council thinking with this other recreational area 'pie in the sky.' Why not address the problem of restoring the gym and maybe getting a light installed at Crowell Road and 81. I wish the council would listen to the people of Porterdale."
"Wow. 'Breaking News' that Newton County School system failed AYP last year. On a positive note ... at least we know the administrators and teachers weren't cheating on the CRCT."