FreeSpeech for 10-03-07

Two real estate guys and a local PTC politician were overheard in a Fayetteville restaurant saying, "We've got to do something to neutralize Steve Brown." Later on the politician said, "TDK is probably happening in 2008." I hope you enjoyed the salmon and sweet tea!

FreeSpeech for 9-26-07

Hey, look, if the City Council puts the Kohl’s big box on Ga. Highway 54, we’ll eventually end up with big boxes on every busy corner. How are they going to stop them when they say the big box ordinance isn’t relevant? The Goodwill Thrift Store situation was a serious warning we shouldn’t ignore.

FreeSpeech for 9-19-07

[Fayette County Commissioner] Eric Maxwell is a hypocrite. He complained of County Attorney McNally as an unethical good ol’ boy and look what he does in his other fee-gathering spot as part-time judge. He asks the prosecutor in his court to dismiss the charges that a police officer brought against his client. “Can you help me out here?” This is not the first time in Fayette that a judge or a politician asked for a “little favor.” There is a tight little fraternity and no one will ever hold someone accountable on something like this. However, this may be the first time, though, that some one said, “No.” Who is this prosecutor? That took some courage on her part telling one of the judges in the court where she works, “No.” If you ask me, she ought to be the judge and not these other clowns.

FreeSpeech for 9-12-07

If you are as infuriated as I am about Kroger leasing their small PTC store to Goodwill, speak up. Go to and let your feelings be known. Don’t give them your business anymore. Email our mayor and city council. Isn’t it about time they went to bat for us? Newnan gets a Dillard’s and we will get Kohl’s, and now a Goodwill. This is beyond ridiculous. We need to have a town meeting and let our voices be heard. I don’t want us to end up as a downward spiraling laughing stock when the riffraff take ownership.

FreeSpeech for 9-05-07

Do any other middle school parents, preferably of eighth grade students, have as big a problem with the new math program as we do at our middle school? It’s been brought to our attention that the focus is no longer about having a teacher teach the students step by step, but rather to put the students in a “collaborative” group to allow them to figure out the answer to math problems as a group. It appears the teachers have been trained to present this new method of teaching to students, and are told that it will be more meaningful to the students to work together on a problem and come up with the solution, rather than have a teacher lead them. I have a huge problem with this. For starters our eighth grade students have been the guinea pigs of this new math program since its conception. For two years they did not even have a textbook to accompany the course. Secondly, it is my feeling that a lot of students have struggled with this program and are already behind in their math skills. They truly have not been given the proper tools to have a solid basis in math. And now they are put in groups to work through problems with little direction from the teacher until “after” they have attempted. My child says their group will just “sit there” when they cannot come up with an answer. It is also unfair to the more advanced student to have to “carry” the other students in the group. I’d like to hear from others on their views. I guess the CRCT test scores are speaking for themselves – it’s obvious something is not working.

FreeSpeech for 8-29-07

Monday will begin the third week of school in Fayette County, [and] it will also mark the third week of school at Sandy Creek High School without a gym. The gym at Sandy Creek High School has been rendered useless since June. In fact, the school officials were told in June that the installation of air conditioning in the gym would only take a few weeks. (By the way, this is the only high school in Fayette County without air conditioning and it looks like it’s going to stay that way for some time to come.) Well, guess what? There’s plywood on the floor and every now and then someone comes and looks around. Still no air conditioning, still no date of completion has been given. The Fayette County Board of Education is well aware of this as many parents have called and let their voices be heard on the matter. Any student who has PE scheduled as a class this semester has had to do book work in the cafeteria. This is an outrage. Currently the high school is having to trade off sports team practices with Flat Rock in the use of their gym. The high temperatures have made this even more difficult for all teams to get in a full practice. Home games for volleyball have been cancelled or rescheduled to other schools. Just how long is this going to last? Why wasn’t it finished before school started as planned? When will the real work even begin? When can the PE students actually dress out and have PE? This reminds me of last year’s rubberized track — they started the week before school started and got it completed just in time for spring track season. Oops, they must have forgotten all about cross country season using the track in the fall or PE classes. Why is it that our school always gets the short end of the stick? Come on, Board of Education, do something now.

FreeSpeech for 8-22-07

I read with interest several weeks ago the grandmother’s comment about the school supplies requested by her granddaughters’ schools, and the subsequent remarks by indignant Fayette teachers. Today I happened to glance at some of the supply lists that were still remaining at my neighborhood PTC Kroger. Yes, the lists DO request specific brand names and specific quality items. I live in PTC, but teach in Clayton, where we are grateful for any kind of supply that comes in, whether they’re from the Dollar Store, Wal-Mart, etc. We provide the rest of the supplies out of our paltry allotment, but mostly out of our own pockets, which includes school supplies and all the incidentals that make a classroom look and feel like a warm learning environment. I guess none of this should surprise me. Several years back, I was in a bookstore in PTC on the night a Harry Potter book was to be available. Several of us got to talking while we were waiting on the long line. The ladies behind me were Peachtree City teachers. I mentioned that I was an educator also. When they heard where I taught, their condescending remark was, “Well don’t expect to come and get a job in Fayette! We don’t want any of yours. We hire from our own.” Yaddy yadda. So I guess the elitist supply list shouldn’t surprise me, just goes with the territory. Guess they forgot the point of why they became teachers in the first place.

FreeSpeech for 8-15-07

I would like to address the comments made regarding the B. B. King concert. If you think that jumping up to dance, and showing your backside to Mr. King most of the time, was your way of showing the artist your appreciation, I would like to suggest enthusiastic applause and possibly a standing ovation between songs as being more appropriate. If you just have to dance, there is an area provided, stage right, that would even have room for you four. I would also like to remind you that you were the only ones standing up, and that you were blocking the view of everyone else. I would also like to tell you that we didn’t come to see you. We came to see B.B. King. I would like to say these things, but you know, in the end, I guess I’m just jealous of your seats.

FreeSpeech for 8-08-07

So the county commission is retreating to Callaway Gardens. Hmmm, I have a suggestion: Why don’t you retreat to the new $3 million Kenwood Recreation Park in North Fayette? That would save the taxpayers $5,000. I received a tax increase this year. Is this to help fund the Recreation Red Hat Society program? What part of the Red Hat Society falls under the recreation program? Is taking Fayette County taxpayers’ vans shopping in Alabama part of a recreation program? I guess it could fall under the walking program: they have to walk from the van to the shop to spend sales tax in another state. I get the picture. Also, to the Peachtree City councilman that is running for county commissioner: Since you voted yourself a doubled pay raise, I assume you will do the same on the county commission. Why is it that when people run for office, pay their qualifying fee, know what the salary for the part-time job is, then all of a sudden decide they need to raise their pay? What happened to the term “public servant”?

Free Speech 8-1-07

First I would like to say “Thank you!” to Kedron Kroger. I found it very disturbing to hear the comments made about the store. I have noticed over the past month or so a complete turnaround in the overall conditions of the store. As for the help I don’t know what store that person was shopping in but every time I go in I always get friendly service and the products I need. I have even went as far as to talk to the managers about getting special products and they always come through for me. I feel the only reason I have ever had to wait in line is because of the store being under-staffed but someone always opens a register and I have even been checked out by a store manager before. I love Kedron Kroger and I hate to know what we would do if it wasn’t there or if they had moved some over-priced retailer in like Publix.

FreeSpeech for 7-25-07

Here we go again with the school calendar. Having grown up in a part of the country where we didn’t start school until after Labor Day, let me say it ain’t all it’s cracked up to be. Do you like having your kids out of school by Memorial Day? If you start school in September, it will have to run to the end of June; there’s no way around it. Make the start date any later and people will start complaining about kids going to school in June when they should be out enjoying their summers and family vacations. By starting in early August, the semester break falls nicely before the Christmas break. It’s not much fun when you have to study for mid-term exams over Christmas, knowing you’ll have to take those tests in January when you get back. If you want a shorter school year, get rid of the ridiculous week off in February.

FreeSpeech for 7-18-07

Finally, someone had the courage to write what many Fayette residents knew a long time ago. The Fayette County schools are not all top-notch. Mainly, the south complex schools, McIntosh High, Booth Middle and Braelinn Elementary prop up the total Fayette scores. Take them out of the mix. The rest would be lucky to have scores that could compete with Coweta and Henry County schools. Just because you have a very expensive house for sale in North Fayette or Tyrone. A smart buyer will see through this and notice the individual school scores. Fayetteville and Tyrone will decline evermore. PTC will not be too far back.

FreeSpeech for 7-11-07

I beg to differ with [Sallie Satterthwaite in her column of July 4] about Ferrol Sams. Until the late 1960s, Dr. T.J. Busey, Sr., practiced in Fayette County. During World War II, he operated a small hospital. Sambo and Helen [Sams] were not the only M.D.s in town. The Murphys, Redwines, Hollingsworths, Blalocks, etc., were the backbones of Fayette County, with the Sams as a lesser influence. Sambo’s uncle went to jail while he was a sheriff. By the way, Floy Farr would never have been so successful if he had not first worked for the Redwine family.

FreeSpeech for 7-04-07

Mayor Ken Steele of Fayetteville is going to raise our taxes again. All the tomfoolery about keeping the same millage rate is just a hoax about hiding a tax increase. Go back and look at your tax bills and you will see the amount increase every year. Mayor Steele’s strategy has always been to keep over-developing Fayetteville so that the subsequent increase in the number of people paying taxes keeps growing. In addition, all of our home values keep getting marked up around 7 percent every year, which is a consistent annual tax increase even without raising the millage rate. Pumping up government growth by over-development from Steele is what is causing our current traffic problems in Fayetteville. Peachtree City is not the only place heading for traffic jams and more taxes, and my fellow voters of Fayetteville had better wake up. All of our water and sewer rates are going up to cover the Mr. Mayor’s double- and triple-digit growth during his tenure. We need someone to run as a slow-growth candidate against Mayor Steele. It’s time for a change in leadership.

FreeSpeech for 6-27-07

There they go again. The Board of Education is trying to move the school opening date for 2008 back to the first week of August. They think we’re not watching. Vote in their little poll, but tell them you want other options than Aug. 4 or Aug. 11. How about Aug. 25 or September? We have to be vigilant and outspoken, or they’ll have our kids back in school in July.

FreeSpeech for 6-20-07

The town of Tyrone is currently accepting resumes from citizens interested in serving on their Planning Commission. The ad is on their website but I’ll bet you can’t find it by clicking the listed topics. It is just for show. Not mentioned is the criteria for acceptance. Applicants must be gullible enough to think their efforts would be given appropriate consideration by the council, be able to take direction from the administrative advisory staff, comfortable with not having all the facts, sit by while outside professional planners make all the real decisions, be willing to violate Georgia and Tyrone laws, generally rubber-stamp the administration’s plans even if it harms property owners, and get the blame if wrong decisions are made. Not advertised is the necessity for new town management, and sincere representatives of the citizens to qualify Aug. 27-31 for mayor and two very important council posts for this year’s November election. Followers of the status quo will be given preference. Knowledgeable, independent thinkers need not apply.

FreeSpeech for 6-13-07

Peachtree City’s reserve funds are supposed to be earmarked or kept apart for providing cash flow and unforeseen emergencies not specified in the budget. It is foolish to use the reserve funds for items which should be funded through the budget. If the city council can’t control spending, they should raise taxes accordingly. Of course, many of us voted for the mayor because he claimed to be a staunch fiscal conservative. This type of governance is both thoughtless and irrational. We are suffering from severe incompetence.

FreeSpeech for 060607

The parent that feels Ms. Toney, the principal at Starr’s Mill, is an embarrassment and disgrace to the school does not have a clue what type of person she is. She is a soft and caring person and arrived demanding respect from some very spoiled children (probably this parent’s kids). I’ve personally worked with her on two projects and she was professional to work with. So parent, why don’t you join the PTO or some other organization at Starr’s Mill and get a first-hand glimpse of this lady before you spew your slander and unfair opinions in print. The person who is an embarrassment and disgrace is you.

FreeSpeech for 5-30-07

Starr’s Mill graduation — what an absolute embarrassment. The Starr’s Mill principal’s speech was a disgrace. Is this what the school system wants to portray to our children? You are aware that these children will be the leaders of tomorrow. I guess the principal just wanted to let our kids know that it’s OK to “ax” “quershions” just as long as you do it with “didnity” and are “sussessful.” All this comes from the woman that our school board has selected to lead our children. This is a true shame. She may have been a good administrator, but she is a poor principal. From some of the children I have spoken with, she, the principal, came in and demanded respect. From my experience, when you demand respect, you receive rebellion. I feel that the school board needs to rethink the person they have selected to be the principal of Starr’s Mill. From my experience, she does not relate to the students of the school. For the life of me, I am still trying to figure out what a “foo” is.

FreeSpeech for 5-23-07

Can someone please tell me what genius timed the light at Ga. Highway 74 and Dogwood Road so that it’s green for 40 seconds on Dogwood Road but green for only 10 seconds on Hwy. 74 at 5 in the morning?

My cat keeps begging me to take him to Tinseltown.

Geez, leave the mice in the movie theater alone. They gotta eat too.

FreeSpeech for 5-16-07

I also am a parent of three teenagers that has had an issue with other parents allowing my children to drink in their homes without my permission. (These are probably the same parents that let their 16-year-olds break the six-month, no-passenger law. I’ll save that for another time!) I am not an expert on the law, but I do know that underage drinking is against the law. It is also against the law to provide or serve alcohol to a minor. Many parents (my ex-husband included) think that they are teaching these teens to “drink responsibly,” by supervising them and/or not allowing them to drive. In my eyes, there is no such thing as responsible drinking. That term is an oxymoron. What are they teaching these kids? That it’s OK to break the law and that in order to have fun, one must drink. I don’t buy into the theory that teens are going to drink anyway, so might as well let them drink at home. Of course teenagers are going to drink – I’m not naive about this fact. Parents need to step up to the plate and get a backbone. If your child is caught drinking, there needs to be tough consequences. Underage drinking is against the law. What part of this statement do you parents not understand? Our legislators need to toughen up the punishments for MIP and providing alcohol to a minor. I have alcoholism in my family, as well as an ex-husband who is an alcoholic. With this kind of a history, my children are playing Russian roulette when it comes to alcohol. When there is a genetic component, crossing the line becomes a slippery slope. One minute you are fine and the next you have a drinking problem. I don’t want to take any chance here; the cards are stacked against us from the start. I have talked to my children on numerous occasions about the seriousness of alcohol and plan to take them to a counselor that specializes in addictions before they leave for college. I know my children will drink; that’s probably a given. But I am not going to make it easy for them, or any other teen, and I am not going to allow them or any other teen to break the law in my home. And I won’t tolerate others who are trying to be “cool parents” by allowing kids to drink. I am the mom (and teacher) that teenagers think is cool – not because I allow them to drink, but because I treat these teens nicely and with respect. Oh, and if I find out you have a group of kids at your house drinking, I will be forced to call the cops.

FreeSpeech for 050907

I am writing to the parents in Peachtree City that allow their underage teens and their friends to drink alcohol at their homes, as long as they “give you their car keys at the door.” In the past three months, my two older teenagers have been to several parties and get-togethers where the kids were allowed by the parents to bring and drink beer or alcohol at the home. It seems this is quite a common practice amongst parents here. The kids are told they have to be ”checked out” by the parents before their keys will be returned to them. What gives these parents the right or authority to allow my underage child to drink alcohol without my knowledge or permission, and then, to make the determination whether my child is sober enough to get behind the wheel of a car to drive home? Are these parents aware of the liability they are assuming? If one of these kids gets pulled over, and is asked by the officer where they have been drinking, or even worse, causes an accident where people are hurt or killed, they can be held responsible. I know I would consider them responsible. There are good reasons for a law prohibiting people under 21 to drink alcohol. I won’t get into them, we all know what they are. Parents, with prom and graduation around the corner, we as parents have to work together, not against each other, to encourage these teens to have fun without drinking, and if you’re aware that they have been drinking, to either drive them home yourself, call their parent for a ride home, or see if they can stay the night with you. I know kids drink, but they absolutely should not be driving afterwards, whether you think they appear sober enough, or not. None of us are qualified, or have the ability to determine how impaired someone really is, especially other people’s children. I think the majority of parents of teens will not, under any circumstances, give our underage kids permission to drink. Please don’t undermine our authority.

FreeSpeech for 5-02-07

You would think the PTC City Council would pay attention to the majority of citizens who said they don’t want annexation in the city’s survey. You would think they would pay attention to the current comprehensive plan that discourages annexing more land. You would think the City Council would avoid dislocating hundreds of students at Kedron, Crabapple and Booth, especially since the families moved to be in a certain school district, and push them out to the county. You would think the City Council would demand less density in the Westside. Think again; this City Council could care less and it shows.

FreeSpeech for 4-25-07

To all in Peachtree City, if I lived in PTC, I would run for mayor. I would stand in the gazebo at The Avenue and proclaim that I would support the requests of the residents, stop the unnecessary developing and have a growth reputation like police have with predators. The developers are being predators on your community. I would stand strong, use the power of the mayor position (veto and deny) and keep my word. The current and past mayor of PTC has lacked integrity, stability, accountability and [courage]. “Say what you mean, mean what you say and live by solid standards.” If you can not be truthful, I am sure the sheriff has your pinstripe size and a trash bag for roadside activity as that is where criminals best serve the community.

FreeSpeech for 4-18-07

A wedding in spring — what a lovely setting: Peachtree City, City Hall Plaza. Amidst the sultry beauty of a Georgia spring evening all gathered to honor the bride and groom. There it was: a Saturday night, a beautiful silk wedding tent, with lovely bows and ribbons, all in gentle pastel colors. The flowers were beautiful. The wine (and brewskis for Mr. Mayor) flowed freely. Some thought it was a bike race reception but truly it was a glorious union between the taxpayers as groom and the bride, the latest offering of the beautiful people, funding for another “world class offering,” officiated by the Rev. Doug Warner. The taxpayer groom may now kiss the bride (and the bonded indebtedness). Next nuptials: Airport Authority.

FreeSpeech for 4-11-07

For you people in Fayette County that are complaining about yard sales, can’t you find something better to do with your time? Please do me a huge favor and get a life.

FreeSpeech for 4-04-07

Fayette County Republicans can do better than accept the chaos and confusion that passed as the Fayette County Republican Convention on March 24, 2007, to continue in the future. Republicans that care about their party’s image should be embarrassed at this charade and not allow it to represent the Fayette County Republican Party.

FreeSpeech for 3-28-07

The south end of Ga. Highway 74 will be the new Ga. Highway 85, except all of the shopping centers will be much bigger. Let’s not allow a few trees and 48 years of solid planning get in the way of a little developer greediness.

FreeSpeech for 3-21-07

Maybe you thought your headline was being funny but I personally thought it was disrespectful to Chick-fil-A. The article was informative but the headline was out of order as far as I am concerned. I look forward to reading The Citizen and this is something I thought I needed to reply to. I have no personal affiliation with Chick-fil-A but think they are a good corporate neighbor and having their chicken planes in our airport would be a good addition.

FreeSpeech for 3-14-07

Steve Brown, you may be right about TDK. But the question still remains, Why didn’t you and your Council kill the project? And please, Steve, explain why you took all credit for getting the TDK project moving in your letter to the editor of October 2005, while blaming the former administration for not doing enough? Come on, Steve, it’s obvious you are posturing to run again. Please, please, simply answer the questions. Why didn’t you stop TDK while mayor?

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