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Newton Phone Poll for Dec. 8, 2013

The Newton Poll is a weekly compilation of reader comments on subjects of local interest. The Newton Citizen publishes as many comments as space allows. Comments, which may be edited for space or content, are published anonymously on Sunday. To submit a comment, call 770-483-7108, ext. 403, email: poll@newtoncitizen.com or complete the online form.

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“I think that 2014 should be a time to vote out all local incumbents in all seats. I think qualifying for local and other elections is early like March of 2014 so please oppose the school board members and any BOC members and anyone else who is an incumbent. We need new blood to take on the problems Newton County has. … The ripple effect of elected seats matters, so please let’s try to clean up Newton County schools, and let’s get good solid businesses here — not more tattoo parlors and fast food chains and Walmarts that occupy the law enforcement. Our tax dollars are down the drain at these types of places where crime is high. I do all my shopping in Madison and Athens just to avoid the low lifes that frequent most of what is now Covington.”

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“Is the Newton County Board of Education allowing itself to be bullied by these freedom from religion groups? … I saw a special on Bill O’Reilly where a defense group says these groups are not going to take anyone to court because they always lose, but they will use threatening letters to bully small town boards. Is our school board being given bad legal advice by the board attorney? Other elected groups in our county use prayers. I demand an investigation by the Newton Citizen. Why is it OK for our school system to fail students on test scores and take away prayer at the board meetings? What does the letter of the law say?”

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“Wow, an elementary kid in NCSS with a knife with a 2-inch plus blade. Private schools come on over to ZIP code 30014 please!”

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“To the city leaders of Covington, when my garbage was last picked up on the regularly scheduled pickup day of Friday Nov. 22, there was a pink slip of paper left hanging from underneath the lid that had a cute picture of a turkey and ‘Holiday collection Notice’ typed across the top. Now I think that turkey may have been a depiction of the citizens of the city or at least some of us. That paper informed all who received it that our ‘garbage, limbs, grass clippings and recycling day would be Nov. 27.’ Here it is the morning of Dec. 4 and my garbage is still at the end of my drive overflowing, and that’s after several calls about it to the proper authorities. I have resisted the temptation as some have not to just put additional full bags of refuse on the ground next to the container because some of our refuse collectors refuse to pickup whatever isn’t inside of the container. By the way, that means that I have to put bags of garbage in my car and take them to the nearest dump. Come on, we just had a holiday in which friends and families may have visited and the trash is more than what it normally would have been. In my conversations with one official I was told that garbage pickup was heavier than usual and they were a little behind. OK, if the employees cannot handle having a four-day weekend, have them come back on Friday in the future. My $16.50 sanitation solid waste bill is always on schedule. I say forego the extra $40k in holiday lighting for the Square in the future and use it to pay overtime to the sanitation workers if that’s what it takes. My frustration is that there are people who have been inconvenienced by following instructions and they have had to make the extra effort of going out to the street to dump more household garbage until the cans are full, some are elderly — 70s and 80s — and not in the best of health. Not all have the means nor resources to take their excess trash to a dump, and I’m waiting to see how the extra garbage sitting neatly bagged next to a container will be handled. Not all will still be neatly bagged after strays and the rodents finish tearing into them.”

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“We are friends with the family of a Newton County detention sergeant. He has worked for Newton County for many years and worked his way up the ranks. He recently turned in his two-week notice. He accepted a better paying job with better benefits and a real future with another department. He did not find this better paying job in some inner city, crime ridden, police department. He accepted a job with the Porterdale PD. Yes, little Porterdale PD pays a starting patrolman with no experience more than Newton County pays a detention sergeant with years and years of training and service. If you doubt this is true, just ask your Newton County commissioner. I dare them to say it is a lie. A simple Freedom of Information Act request to each department is all that is needed to verify who is telling the truth.”

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“Do you believe that if you are loyal and support your employer your employer will take care of you? That would be wrong.”