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Newton Citizen Poll for Sunday, Oct. 20, 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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“There is a group of dedicated Newton County and city of Covington employees who are close friends. We are public safety employees who train together, bond together and work together. We support each other’s mutual support. This teamwork benefits all Newton County citizens. What also happens is that we compare our salaries and benefits. Covington employees top out on their salary scale in five years, Newton County employees can never top out. In 20 years of service Newton County employees can only get halfway through their pay scale. Covington city employees make thousands and thousands more than Newton County employees the very first year of employment. The Newton County commissioners do not care about employees. I dare any Newton County commissioner to say they paid even competitively with the city of Covington.”

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“OK peeps, so the Newton BOE and school system say they will have three educator summits. I read the article three times and if I missed it then pardon me, but we have the worst SAT scores around and ACT scores, and horrible graduation rates. And not once in any of this ‘we translate into Spanish for you at Newton High’ and ‘let’s talk about Title I money’ do I read one single thing about how the NCSS plans to improve the test scores and the grad rates. This is not helping. Teachers in my building are told to Tweet every single thing they do; we are not The Best and we won’t be The Best if we ignore the important things and talk about silly stuff. Signed, Fed Up Teacher.”

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“The Old Man is slightly confused at this time. Of course I may be confused most of the time, but this is serious. The government has shut down because the children can’t agree on something. The congressmen continue to draw their huge salaries. (I say huge because as a teacher I didn’t make as much as they do in one year that I made in a lifetime and they are only part-time employees) and they will still get their great pension and what a wonderful health plan they have. Then they close many of the operations (parks, exhibits, etc.) that bring in money to the coffer and put several people out of work. The FDA can’t do their job, many of the truly needy people are going to be without food from meals on wheels program if this thing isn’t settled soon and the Pentagon is shut down. Oh, I forgot, most of them who again make big bucks have been called back. Am I wrong? Now places like the CDC are closed. I hear there is plenty of flu vaccine so we don’t have to worry about that. I haven’ seen a report as to how many people who pay their taxes, go to work every day and are now out of work because of Congress, but I know several. I haven’t heard whether our boys who are fighting and dying overseas are getting their paycheck. I think some of them would rather the country would go under then to sit down and talk. They spew a lot of rhetoric on TV and I think one of them cried one time, but that is all they do — talk! And on top of that I understand those federal employees who are not working because of Congress will get all their back pay when this is over. Why aren’t they working now if they are going to get all their money back? Must be nice to draw a paycheck for not working, but I think we have that now. Well, by the time this goes to press all of this will be over for at least six weeks. Then we start over. I see that the ‘Walking Dead’ is back on TV. Is this a series about Congress?”

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“Newton Animal Control needs help. NAC has very limited funds and is not able to purchase many items or buy only in very limited quantities this is a wish list for Newton County Animal Control that helps them help the animals. Any donations or help is appreciated! The following items are always needed at the shelter:

- Capstar for both dogs and cats (tablets that instantly kill fleas).

- Cat Litter for our cats and kittens. We can only use the regular NON-CLUMPING clay type; any brand is fine. It doesn’t have to be scented.

- Dog & puppy and cat and kitten food. Any brand. Canned or dry.

- 3cc syringes with a 22ga x ¾” or 1” needles for vaccinations.

- Distemper/Parainfluenza/Parvo for dogs/puppies vaccine.

- FVRCP vaccine for cats/kittens

- Pyrantal Pamoate wormer.

- Laundry detergent and bleach for laundering towels and disinfecting bowls and kennel floors.

- Old bath towels, hand towels, and blankets to make beds for sick or injured animals, to help them feel safe and warm, and for drying off after baths. All sizes are helpful from face cloth to bath size.

- Digital cameras for documenting abuse cases. Currently there is only one at the shelter that must be signed out to an officer as needed. We need four additional cameras to be able to document on the spot and not have to go back to the shelter and possibly lose evidence.

- Heating pads, for very young or injured animals.

- Miscellaneous things: Trash bags 45 gallons or larger, paper towels, batteries (AA & AAA), pens, bowls, pots, pans, can openers. Donations can be dropped off at the shelter Monday through Friday 11 am till 4:30 pm or Saturdays 10 am till 1 pm. The shelter is located at 210 Lower River Road ~ Covington, GA 30016. Questions please call 770-786-9514.

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“Will the Newton Citizen do a follow-up story on Newton County commissioners pay increases due to an increase in population census count. The last we read most commissioners rejected the pay increase as a matter of conscience since county employees are paid less than they were six years ago due to commissioners balancing the recession shortfalls on the backs of workers. The exception was Democrat Commissioner J.C. Henderson, who indicated he had expenses and deserved the pay increase. What status? Why does J.C. deserve an increase in pay and county workers do not?”

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“Today I about witnessed two different accidents within an hour because of the poor driving habits of elderly Newton County drivers. Both drivers were on an I-20 on-ramp attempting to merge with 70 MPH traffic while traveling 45 to 50 MPH. In both cases the traffic on I-20 happened to be semi-tractor trailers in the slow (right hand) lane with car traffic passing them in the fast (left hand ) lane. The elderly on-ramp drivers would only speed up to 45 to 50 MPH when they attempted to merge with the legal speed limit traffic traveling at 70 MPH. The semis had nowhere to go. The cars in the fast lane blocked them from moving over, and the drivers of the cars could not see the slow traveling elderly drivers coming down the on-ramp. The elderly drivers trying to merge without speeding up was like throwing a rock into a swift stream. If you or your car cannot reach 70 MPH by the time you reach the end of the interstate on-ramp, stay off the interstate. You are going to kill someone!”

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“Last night the Newton County Recreation Commission voted Anthony Avery as their new director. This very ill-advised move is a potential disaster for recreation in Newton County. Avery is not qualified to run the organization, is not qualified to take care of the day-to- day operations, the supervisory requirements or the finances that come with the position. What could have been going through the minds of those board members who supported his elevation to director? The answer, nothing but good ol’ boy, back room politics and no consideration to what was best for Newton County. Nothing to do now but sit back and wait for the train wreck coming this way very soon.”

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“We’ve been thinking of buying land to build on. Looked at a nice piece of land in north Newton County. Then checked the schools. Why are there no public high schools north of I-20? Why should my kids spend over an hour on a crowded school bus?”