Tue, 02/07/2006 - 5:39pm
By: The Citizen

Attention parents of Fayette County eighth graders: Watch out for plans that the math directors have for your child. Students with as high as a B average in pre-algebra will be pushed into an applied algebra class if the district gets its way. If your child is pushed into this class, keep in mind he/she will not meet college entrance requirements and most likely, will be locked out of higher level classes in later years. Insist that your child gets placed in algebra or you are closing the college opportunity door in ninth grade. The schools and district will say it is still possible, but the likelihood is almost zero. The creators of the new Georgia math curriculum want to eliminate applied algebra and get all kids in algebra or above. Keep in mind that pre-algebra is actually the first 12 weeks of algebra. Your kids can do it and you have been warned.

Fayette County Board of Education, falsifying documents is a felony, so why are the parents of the out-of-county students not being charged? If they were to falsify a document to get a credit card, then they would be charged with a felony. There’s no difference. My husband and I were both raised in this county and attended school here and we want our son to get the same education. My son is in kindergarten at Hood Avenue Primary and I see out-of-county tags there everyday. On one occasion I called Arlene Law who is the residency coordinator on 1/11 and offered to give two tags that were out of county. She refused to take the tag numbers from me and said, “The majority of the out-of-county tags are actually residents in the county but had already renewed their tags in the previous county they lived in and don’t want to pay a transfer fee.” I could not believe I was hearing this. My mother called on 1/13 and tried to speak with Arlene but she was leaving the office due to an emergency. My mother then spoke with Mr. Campbell’s secretary (Mr. Campbell is Arlene’s boss) and was promised that Mr. Campbell would be back in touch with her on 1/17. My mom did not receive a call from Mr. Campbell until 1/23. He basically told her the same thing that was written in his article but my mom decided she would go to the monthly FCBOE meeting on 1/23 and share with the board how she felt. She was told by a board member that the students’ residency is only checked when they enroll in school for the first time or if they change schools. This means my child who is in kindergarten at Hood Avenue Primary will not have to show proof of residency until he starts Fayette Intermediate. A lot can change in three years and if it’s a student that goes to any other elementary school in the county their residency will not be rechecked until they start middle school. This is how the students are getting in and staying in because nobody is checking the residency every year like they should be. Starting next month I will be going to the monthly FCBOE meetings and asking if anything has been done or resolved. The next board meeting is on 2/13 at 7 p.m. Further dates can be found on www.fcboe.org under the school board section. Please come to the meetings and voice your opinion. This is the only way we can keep them investigating this.

I was told by a prominent school board member that it is not a school board policy to prosecute the parents of out of county students. Seems to me all you have to do is change the policy. Making an example of a few will deter many.

In regards to the imbalance of student populations at some of the elementary schools (Jan. 18 Citizen), I have to wonder, what kind of spineless fools do we have on the school board and what kind of fools will we be if we don’t make some changes in November?

In our youth we try to figure out how things work. As we age, we try to figure out how to keep things working. The learning never ends. It is part of the puzzle we call life. You can let it overwhelm you or see it as the constant challenge that makes every day an adventure. You don’t have to win every game to enjoy the process. Sometimes we learn more when we don’t win.

I am writing in reference to Cal Beverly’s editorial entitled “Sheriff-Chairman face-off” in which he beseeches the Sheriff’s Department and County Commission to reach a private resolution to their disagreements. If Mr. Beverly knows that Greg Dunn means to run for sheriff (and I had heard that as well) then he must know that Chairman Dunn will not allow a private resolution to take place. I assume he means to base his future campaign platform on his assertions of the corruption, unmanageability and unaccountability of the current sheriff.

The county attorney (actually the firm, not one person) is being paid $500,000 a year. Obviously, someone wants us to believe that all of this money is spent suing the sheriff. The truth is that the lion’s share of that expenditure comes from the work done to maintain county ordinances, workman’s compensation claims, real estate transactions and all the other legal requirements needed to make sure that Fayette County is the way it is. You want the sheriff’s part to go away? Then have the sheriff comply with the law instead of breaking it.

There’s an interesting case in Clayton County identical to the one going on here in Fayette County between the county commission and the sheriff. They’ve been to court,sheriff lost,has to go through the county to buy anything, obey the Georgia state law. Do a Google search,you’ll find the article in another newspaper a few weeks back. Surprised none of the newspapers here picked up on the similarity,wrote a bit about it.

I find it amazing that every time the sheriff gets himself in deep or does something that is over the edge the two local newspapers bend over backwards to find something good to write about him. The other paper did a huge headline “Walking Tall’ with his picture because he saw someone stealing a bike, chased them, called some back-up and got the nasty evil-doer. Yup, that sure is honest to goodness front page news. Shame they couldn’t rustle up a dog napper ring to stop or something really heartwarming he did. This newspaper writes a story about how much drug money the sheriff’s guys helped to bring in over the past five years. Hmmm, let’s see, anyone out there ever seen a positive story about anything any other local elected official has ever done? (I don’t count anything they sent in themselves) Am I sensing a clear slant in how things are covered in these papers? What are you going to do if the sheriff or someone who works for him really turns out to have gotten himself in some super deep deep?

Yankee Dunndle came to town,
Riding in a HumVee.
Stuck a feather in his hat,
And called it Fayette County.
Yankee Dunndle’s hogging it up,
Yankee Dunndle Dandy.
Yankee Dunndle runs the store;
He wants all of our candy.

In response to Terry Maddox’s stalwart defense of Sheriff Johnson: Mr. Maddox seems to be confused on the issues here. No one has said that the sheriff has not provided quality law enforcement during his tenure. But to assume that the same techniques, processes and procedures in place 25 years ago are still totally valid today is silly. If that were true then my old 8-track tapes and vinyl records would still be in vogue. Mr. Maddox needs to be aware that many people are reluctant to sign letters to the editor because of possible retaliation when someone disagrees with the sheriff. Lastly, Mr. Maddox should be ashamed of himself for equating the tone of the dispute between the sheriff and the commission as Hitleresque on the part of the Mr. or Mrs. Dunn or Ms. Wells. At no time during this dispute has anyone characterized Mr. Johnson or his actions as anything so loathsome. Mr. Maddox and whoever in the sheriff’s department that told him what to write in his letter should apologize to the parties named.

I found Ben Nelms’ article on drug money interesting yet incomplete. I did not care for the subject matter of Mr. Nelms’ first few articles in the paper as I don’t like what appears to be attack news designed to inflame but I was nicely surprised the newspaper hired a true investigative reporter who went after facts and background rather than just report what individuals say. I hoped to see some in-depth, true journalistic stories jam-packed with facts coming from him. Instead he seems to have been squelched, tamped down and to become one of the pack. I would like to see him do a follow-up to the drug money story where the paper lets him do his stuff, he gets facts and find out the background. The one he just did seems to all be opinion gathered from talking to one or two people. It seemed like a nice public relations piece parroted to a receptive reporter.

The other day, my 5-year-old grandson came to me and said he wanted to be a policeman, just like me, when he grew up. He went on to say that he wanted to wear a shiny badge and put all the “bad people” in the world in jail. I remember growing up feeling the same way. I was going to make a difference in the world. My, how time has changed things. I would never discourage my grandson from following his dreams, but ... his mother could tell him about the sacrifices our family had to make and how I wasn’t there much when she was growing up, due to the part-time jobs required to supplement my salary. He’ll never know the heartache I felt when I had to notify the parents of a 16-year-old that their only daughter had just been killed in a head-on collision with a truck. Or the anger I felt when a jury failed to convict a man I had arrested for molesting a Down’s Syndrome teenager, only to go and molest another child the following year. Or the knot I felt in the pit of my stomach every time I pulled over a carload of people on a traffic stop, not knowing what would be waiting for me. No, I just held my grandson tight and enjoyed the moment. It’s nice to know that there are still some out there that are proud of us (even if they are only three feet tall and can’t vote yet).

I just love this section. Someone can toss out an innuendo that by voting for the ARC transportation plan, Greg Dunn is bringing MARTA to Fayette County. ARC stands for Atlanta Regional Commission, a 29-county group of which Fayette is a member. Mr. Dunn, as I hear it, is chairman of the transportation committee. Is there a better way to insure that we get our fair share of road tax dollars and priority on projects than to have one of your commissioners as chairman? By the way, the plan does not call for MARTA to be extended to Fayette County in this century. The truth is, the last time someone from the state of Georgia told the county commission that there would be mass transit in Fayette County, she was sent back to Atlanta with a resounding NO. A few months later, her boss (Roy Barnes) was shown the door too. If this is an example of the kind of tactics that will be used during this election cycle then look out voters, your in for a bumpy ride

To the person concerned and disappointed about the prejudiced honors program at an elementary school: Get a life. You don’t know what prejudice is until someone calls you colored to your face. You don’t know what prejudice is until you hear someone says the n-word under their breath and smile in your face because they didn’t think you heard them. When you’re at work and you hear Mexican slurs, but it’s fine because you’re black not Mexican. I don’t hold these things against people because they’re ignorant. Everyone is not like that, but the ones that are, I hope they wake up one day. Just because they learn of successful black people doesn’t mean they’re being prejudiced. The children learn of successful white Americans in history classes, so why not celebrate successful black Americans too. Black history is more than the month of February and Martin Luther King Jr.; it’s 365 days a year. Fayette County schools are majority white. History is about Americans, not white, black, Latino, Oriental, etc. Learn about culture, not about who got their time in the history assembly spotlight.

To satisfy myself as to who might be right, I went by the county tax commissioner’s office and obtained a copy of the minutes of the meeting Mr. Wingo referred to in May 2003 regarding asking the Board of Commissioners to approve online motor vehicle registration renewals. I read those minutes twice, and I can find nowhere that Commissioner Pfeifer asked for more information, for more explanation from Mr. Wingo, so apparently he didn’t open his mouth once. Why has this become a problem for him three years later?

I hope the residents of the area off the North Peachtree Parkway/Walt Banks Road area of Peachtree City enjoy spending a lot of time at home, because that’s what is going to happen if the roundabout is installed at that intersection. There will be times of the day when they won’t be able to get out of their subdivisions. Also, what added danger will exist for people in golf carts going through that intersection? Since the vehicles traveling inside the circle have the right-of-way, the golf carts and their occupants will be sitting ducks. At least, it would provide another recreation amenity: the Peachtree City Demolition Derby.

We built a four-lane bridge over Kedron Lake many years ago so that when the north parkway was four-laned, the bridge would be there. Now people want to waste money on a roundabout on the parkway at the high school. Now that the developers have gotten their million-dollar homes built under the road on the Peninsula, we can go ahead and put a four-laner above them. Nothing they can do about it now, except maybe give them the roundabout. We are going to reach the original plan for 75,000 citizens in PTC one way or another, believe me. Plans are made and we have the right mayor to do it. I would suggest that we put condo or apartments on the lake where the town hall and library now stand.

PTC taxes: Where are the tax reductions the new City Council promised? They have managed to increase my taxes 2.4 percent with the $12 golf cart fee and sounds like the stormwater fee will increase it another 3.2 percent for a total increase of 5.6 percent, and they have only been in office a month. Thank you, Judy, for realizing we do not want more density in the city. Hopefully you will remember that vote when the annexation issue comes back before you. Finally, they no longer have a prayer at the beginning of each meeting. Increased taxes and no God: I’m not impressed.

One morning last week on my commute to Atlanta from PTC I noticed a few workers in Tyrone trucks collecting trash on Ga. Highway 74 in the grass median area. Anyone ever witness this type of occurrence in PTC? Then, on the following Saturday around 8:30 a.m., I witnessed two middle-aged men and their kids who were no more than 10 years old collecting trash on Peachtree Parkway in the McIntosh Trail area. A month or so prior to that I witnessed no less than 10 senior citizens from the Knights of Columbus collecting litter on the parkway near McIntosh High School. Either PTC officials are totally blind or they just don’t give a flip about this epidemic of litter in our community. Kindergardeners and pensioners are doing the city’s job on a weekly basis? I remember the days when this city actually had some pride. The apathy is so pitiful that the city can’t even be bothered to post fines for littering signs on our major city streets as you will find in places like Vinings and Dunwoody, whose streets look nothing like ours, I can assure you. It is really quite sad to witness the demise of what was once a great place to live. Mr. Logsdon, now that we have cleaned up this town figuratively, why don’t we clean it up literally? I find it quite ironic that PTC wants us to pay more for trash pick-up in this grand monopoly scheme of theirs. I tell you what, PTC, you take care of your trash and we will take care of ours, how’s that? Put up the signs and clean up the mess. Anything less than that makes us just another filthy Southside suburb.

“The Grace and Gloria Show” of Tyrone was indeed a hit, and you are right, Aunt Bea had to pack the Planning Commission, the only requirement really wanted was an IQ the same as hers. The shady developers that can feed only in Tyrone will have to make sure they don’t ask for anything in front of the new town council members. This will be the best show in town, because everyone is truly getting what they deserve. The people voted for honesty and trust, and got it. The shady developers who got land rezoned are gonna have to develop it correctly or eat their rock hills, railroad tracks and cemeteries and pray that the questionable septic systems they put in don’t fail, or these two will be asking “why?” and not just using that as an excuse to give them the sewer they thought was gonna make them millions at taxpayers’ expense. I wouldn’t miss this for anything.

Re: “A Fayetteville man fleeing a deputy in a stolen vehicle.“ Was the deputy charged with grand theft auto?

I am sure that Rolader and Scarbrough would love to think that they have the county commissioners in their pocket as some one implied last week. I think you have the county commission confused with the good ol’ boys in Fayetteville. Rolader and Scarbrough need Fayetteville to annex their property before they can reap the profits of their development activities. The county commissioners are the only ones who care about, and comply with the land use plan, virtually without exception. If you want keep higher density development out of the county, it is clear that you can rely on the current county commission to do so, as they have for the last eight years. The voters should be very wary of those seeking office who have ties to developers, PCDC, mortgage bankers and the like. That is where the increased development will come from, not the current county commissioners.

No wonder “developers” has become a dirty word. Have you seen the lot near the library they scraped clean? The tree preservation ordinance is useless.

Hey, “fly boy, ”I’m glad you enjoyed my “wittiness,” and you’re right, I do need to get a life. Unfortunately, right now I’m having to get a job because of the greed of management and the arrogance of a certain “group” (yeah, here we go again). Also, it didn’t take much time to to come up with my comeback, you provided the words. And what makes you think I am a guy? Women can be witty, too. By the way, you can sign your name on the editorial page instead of lowering yourself to an anonymous chicken like the rest of us — again, your words.

This has been on my mind for a long time, watching car commercials on TV that promote how fast their cars can go. How they can go 0 to 60 in seconds. Spinning their tires and doing donuts in parking lots. Young drivers are watching these commercials and taking to the road with these ideas in their mind. Let’s have commercials that promote safety and ideas that will benefit young drivers. For me, give me a reliable vehicle that I don’t need to take out a second mortgage to afford. Speed kills.

I am aware that the Peachtree National Bank was sold to Synovis, making the owners very rich, but why are they suing us now for making a bad loan? Who are these people? Don’t we have a right to know the local board’s name that is suing us? It was a bad loan, made assuming the taxpayer dole was going to be limitless and constant. If they have a lien on the property, give it to them; if not, it is their problem. Lawyers have already made too much off this situation.

No one wants to have an abortion, any more than anyone wants to have any serious surgery. Sometimes it is simply the best or only solution. Women and young girls who acknowledge they are not in a position to adequately care for, but most important to protect, a potential child, but find themselves with an unplanned problem pregnancy, are the ones who chose an abortion. They understand that in our society, God will provide life, but protection is up to us. As the supports given to mothers and their children get cut for budgetary reasons, abortion becomes more necessary. If you want to stop abortions, make them unnecessary. Watch what happens to the Katrina survivors. It shows a lot about our country. At first, everyone rushes to help. It is the long-term support of our children that shows where are priorities really are.

Why does it seem that not just our county but all counties build large shopping centers then whine when the street they built it on will not handle the traffic it brings? Why not try it the other way around once?

Mr. Morgan wants to know why Sun City was rejected by the county commission. Take a closer look at the proposal. The details were published in The Citizen. I asked the county the same question. Why the rejection? It seems that the Del Webb people had met individually with each of the commissioners to explain the project. The only exception was Commissioner Wells who has a policy against meeting one on one with developers and has never done so. All of the commissioners were well versed in the proposal. Del Webb representatives wanted to do a “dog and pony” show which essentially was the same thing that was in the paper and had been provided to the commission by the staff, Why would the commission provide an additional forum for a developer who wanted to blow up the county land use plan by changing 12 ordinances to suit their purpose? Additional property taxes? Yes, but the burden on the county infrastructure (with the exception of the schools) would be crushing.

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