Summerville City Council To Adopt Fiscal Year Budget

The Summerville City Council will be meeting Tuesday evening at Summerville City Hall to adopt the 2018-2019 Fiscal Year Budget.  The meeting will be the second reading of the budget.

Summerville Mayor Harry Harvey says that the city is nearly $1 million in the “red” and that is prompting the call to raise water rates and gas bills.  The four percent hike in utilities is expected to bring in around $164,000 over the next year from the water department and around $55,000 from the gas department.

The council is looking to adopt a $13.8 million budget for the upcoming fiscal year.  That’s down from an earlier proposed budget of $17.6 million.

Tuesday evening’s meeting will be open to the public and will be held at 5 PM.

Family Argument Lands Summerville Man In Jail

According to a report released by the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Department late last week, a Summerville man wound up in jail after a family squabble on Wednesday of last week.

Deputies responded to a domestic call on Lily Drive in Summerville where several family members were involved in a heated disagreement.  Deputies talked with several witnesses who said that fifty-year-old Roland Bice, Jr. was the main instigator.

Deputies said that initially Mr. Bice was calm when they arrived on the scene, but became agitated and was argumentative.  Deputies were able to calm Mr. Bice, but as they were preparing to leave, deputies say that Bice began to yell at family members, ignoring deputies orders to quit arguing with his other family members.

Bice was arrested on charges of obstruction of law enforcement and booked into jail.

Out Of Town Man Reports Trailer Thefts

A Tucker, Georgia man reported the theft of two utility trailers to the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office last Wednesday.

The trailers were taken from property located at 693 Blowing Springs Road at the foot of Lookout Mountain in Menlo.  John Scott told deputies that both of the trailers were chained and locked on the property.  Area residents had reported seeing the gates to the property open a few weeks ago.

Mr. Scott told deputies that the trailers were last seen in November of last year, around Thanksgiving.

The theft is under investigation by the sheriff’s department.

Chattooga Democrats Meeting This Evening

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The Chattooga County Democratic Party will hold their regular monthly meeting coming up this evening at the Senior Center in Summerville.  Local Democrats will be discussing upcoming events and the fall elections.  All party members and interested citizens are invited at attend the meeting that gets underway at 6 PM.

Theft Reported On McGinnis Circle In Summerville

Summerville Police investigated a theft of stolen items from a pickup truck on McGinnis Circle.

Levi Scherer, of a Worsham Road, Lyerly address, told police that he had left his 2004 Dodge pickup truck parked in front of a residence on McGinnis Circle.  When he returned to the truck, he found that someone had entered the vehicle and stolen several items.

Scherer reported that two electronic tablets worth about $100 each, plus $100 in cash and his pain medication had been taken from the vehicle.

The incident is being investigated by the Summerville Police Department.

Lawnmower Fatality in Cherokee County, Alabama

The Cherokee County Coroner’s Office confirms that a Leesburg man is dead after being found underneath his lawnmower Saturday morning in a small creek on JT Mackey Drive near the Leesburg Fire Station.

Leesburg Police Investigator Jamie Chatman says that the victim was traveling on a John Deere Zero-Turn mower on JT Mackey when he somehow lost control and went down into a culvert with the mower landing on top of him. Chatman says that the accident is under investigation and at this time no foul play is suspected.

Cherokee County Coroner Dr. Jeremy Deaton has identified the individual as William “Bill” Joseph Sullivan, age 62, of Lokey Street in Leesburg. The cause of death has been determined to be blunt force trauma to the chest and the manner of death has been ruled an accident.

Leesburg Police Chief Brent Grimes says that a jogger noticed the lawnmower and immediately notified Cherokee County 911.

Local Cub Scouts Attend Camp

Several Chattooga County Cub Scouts attended Twilight Camp at Lock and Dam Park in Rome last week.

Tyler Floyd from Pack 38’s Webelos Den brought home medals for placing first in BB and Archery courses, and was also recognized for out shooting the range director.

 

 

Trees Down - Power Outages Sunday Evening

A storm that rolled through Chattooga County on Sunday evening left numerous trees down and power outages around Summerville.

At one point on Sunday evening, there were over 2,500 Georgia Power customers without power in a line that stretched from just north of Pennville to West Summerville and towards Highway 100.

As of 4:30 AM on Monday morning, Georgia Power was reporting that most of the power had been restored.  However, there were still power outages being reported on Y Street, Northwest Congress Street, Red Leaf Lane, and Hill Avenue in Summerville.  Also power was still out on Carol Drive in the Pennville area.  Less than twenty-five homes were still awaiting restoration of their power.

A tree was reported down across a house on Back Penn Road and a tree hit a car on Scoggins Trail.

North Georgia EMC was not reporting any outages as of early this morning.

Arrest Report - Sunday - June 17, 2018

Here is the latest arrest report from the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office.

Georgia DNR Conducts Falcon Survey

Peregrine falcons have been taken off the “endangered species” list, but their population in Georgia is still such that they are state-listed as rare in Georgia and rank as a species of significant conservation concern in the State Wildlife Action Plan. This plan is a comprehensive strategy to protect and conserve native wildlife and plants and their habitats.  In the first survey in twenty-three years, Georgia Department of Natural Resources experts flew cliff faces and other sites for falcons.  Lookout Mountain has the most favorable areas for falcon nesting, according to the DNR. The canyon features wide and tall cliff faces that were isolated, mostly free of plants and pocked with shelves, overhangs and crevices.  Surprising to some, one of the areas the falcons do well is in Atlanta – that’s the birds not necessarily the football team.  Peregrine falcons like to nest on the tall structures.  Atlanta has been the state’s nesting hot-spot for peregrines since 1996. As in some other eastern U.S. cities, the falcons have taken advantage of ample nest sites on high-rises, hunting hours extended by bright lights and plentiful prey, from pigeons and doves to starlings and migrating yellow-billed cuckoos.  You can read more from the Georgia DNR about the falcons below:

The first extensive search for peregrine falcon nests in Georgia this century has confirmed three key things.

The wilds of north Georgia still offer quality habitat for peregrines. Tallulah Gorge still has the state’s only known wild nest site. And metro Atlanta is still Georgia’s favored home for these feathered rockets.

In a helicopter survey, the first for peregrine nests since 1995, Dr. Bob Sargent of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources and other experts flew cliff faces and other sites for falcons and nests in April. Atlanta buildings where the birds are often seen and have nested were checked on foot in May.

Sargent, a program manager with DNR’s Nongame Conservation Section, said the appearance and success of the nesting pair at Tallulah Gorge State Park and reports of falcons at other mountain sites during breeding season made him wonder if there might be nests on other north Georgia cliffs.

“When I checked our records and discovered it had been 23 years since an intensive survey had been conducted, I decided a new survey was overdue.”

These crow-sized falcons are the world’s fastest birds. Peregrines are best known for their 200 mph-plus dives, or stoops, on ducks, pigeons and other prey. Although found on six continents, in the U.S. the species is recovering from a mid-1900s population crash linked to use of the pesticide DDT.

Peregrines were taken off the federal endangered species list in 1999. But they are state-listed as rare in Georgia and rank as a species of significant conservation concern in the State Wildlife Action Plan. This plan is a comprehensive strategy to protect and conserve native wildlife and plants and their habitats.

To help peregrines recover, DNR and partners released nearly 30 young falcons from hacking enclosures in north Georgia from 1988-1994. The region is on the southern edge of the species’ breeding range in the eastern U.S.

The survey Sargent led this year visited those north Georgia sites, and 14 cliff faces in all, from Cloudland Canyon State Park near Rising Fawn to Yonah Mountain in White County.

No eyries, or nests, were found and no falcons were spotted on the cliffs. But at least five areas, particularly Cloudland Canyon, looked suitable for nesting, according to Sargent. Each featured wide and tall cliff faces that were isolated, mostly free of plants and pocked with shelves, overhangs and crevices.

Nesting at inaccessible sites helps protect the eggs and young from predators and human disturbance.

Peregrines have nested on the cliffs at Tallulah Gorge State Park since 2015, Georgia’s first nest in a natural site in nearly 75 years. Although the nest failed this year, the falcons have fledged from six to seven young at the park.

Sargent said a peregrine was seen at a communications tower in DeKalb County during the April flight and from the ground in May. Birders also have reported falcons in and near a drum-like structure on the tower. Despite speculation about a nest in the drum, there has been no definitive evidence of one.

DNR’s previous aerial surveys, in 1995, 1987 and 1992, did not document any nests.

Befitting its NFL team, Atlanta has been the state’s nesting hotspot for peregrines since 1996. As in some other eastern U.S. cities, the falcons have taken advantage of ample nest sites on high-rises, hunting hours extended by bright lights and plentiful prey, from pigeons and doves to starlings and migrating yellow-billed cuckoos.

Although a nest has not been documented in Atlanta since peregrines stopped nesting on SunTrust Plaza Tower balconies in 2015, juveniles have been seen regularly. Observations from sites “between midtown Atlanta and Sandy Springs suggest there might be as many as four (nest) territories,” Sargent said.

While surveying in the metro area last month, he was encouraged by people’s fascination with peregrines. One businessman invited him to scan from his high-rise office. He had seen a peregrine on a nearby ledge in March and been interested in them since.

Sargent hopes this network of watchers, from building owners to maintenance workers, leads to the discovery of other eyries and “a greater understanding of peregrine ecology and management needs in urban environments.”

Please report peregrine nests or nesting behavior to Sargent at (478) 994-1438 or bob.sargent@dnr.ga.gov.

DNR works with landowners to help protect peregrine falcon nests on private property. The Nongame Conservation Section’s mission is to conserve Georgia wildlife not legally fished for or hunted, as well as rare plants and natural habitats. The agency depends primarily on fundraisers, grants and contributions to the Georgia Nongame Wildlife Conservation Fund. That makes public support critical.

Georgians can help by buying or renewing a DNR eagle or hummingbird license plate. Most of the fees are dedicated to wildlife (www.georgiawildlife.com/licenseplates). Upgrade to a wild tag for only $25!

Supporters can also donate at www.gooutdoorsgeorgia.com. Click “Licenses and Permits” and log in to give. (New customers can create an account.) Learn more at www.georgiawildlife.com/donations.

Visit www.georgiawildlife.com/conservation/annualreport to see how this support helps wildlife.

Survey Snapshot

  • First aerial survey for peregrine falcon eyries (nests) in north Georgia since 1995. Prior surveys, including in 1987 and 1992, did not document a nest.
  • Surveyed 14 north Georgia cliff faces and a communication tower in DeKalb County April 19. Sites included those used for hacking falcons from 1988–1994 (Yonah Mountain, Bell Mountain and Cloudland Canyon), and others were falcons had been reported or were potentially suitable.
  • No eyries found; one possible falcon seen, at the communications tower. At least five cliff faces appeared suitable for eyries, particularly Cloudland Canyon, site of a “wild” nest in 1942.
  • Follow-up search by ground in Atlanta May 11 included two sightings—a bird at Four Seasons hotel and in the “drum” at the DeKalb tower. No definitive evidence that either was nesting.
  • Report sightings and nests to Dr. Bob Sargent, (478) 994-1438), bob.sargent@dnr.ga.gov.
  • Peregrine falcons are state-listed as rare in Georgia and a high-priority species in the State Wildlife Action Plan, www.georgiawildlife.com/wildlifeactionplan.
  • The word “peregrine” means “pilgrim,” but has evolved in use to include “wanderer.”

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Fort Payne Firefighter Named "Firefighter of the Year" By VFW

A firefighter from neighboring DeKalb County, Alabama has received national recognition, being named the VFW’s “Firefighter of the Year.”

Every year the Veterans of Foreign Wars honors one firefighter from any part of the nation for being an outstanding public servant to their community. The winner of this year’s award resides in the city of Fort Payne.

More than 10,000 firefighters from around the country were nominated for the award. Nominated by their peers, the winner fulfills a long list of accomplishments through their public service to their community. “He’s the top of his field in everything he does, and he’s going to go a long way in our department,” said Chief Ron Saferite of the Fort Payne Fire Department.

Lt. Josh Jennings from the Fort Payne fire won this prestigious award, beating out every candidate around the nation.

Lt. Jennings is not only a firefighter but also an instructor and mentor to his peers. He also serves as a paramedic for the city.

WHNT

Domestic Dispute Leads To Car Accident

On Wednesday of last week Summerville Police responded to a minor vehicle accident on Oil Mill Road in Summerville.  When they arrived on the scene, a woman involved in the accident told officers that she and her son had been involved in a domestic dispute which led to the accident.

The Starling Mill Road, Lyerly woman told the officer that she and the other driver had already exchanged information and did not need a report.  But, the woman went on to tell police that she and her son had been arguing and that the argument became physical when her son hit her, causing her to wreck.  The woman’s son had fled the scene by the time officers arrived.

The woman said that she was afraid of her son and was fearful that he would come to her home and cause problems.

Officers advised the woman to call Chattooga 911 when she got home and inform them of the situation.  Officers also recommended that the woman take up the matter in Chattooga County Magistrate Court.

Walker County Sheriff Looking For Suspect

The Walker County Sheriff’s Department is asking for the public’s help in finding a man last seen in the Chattanooga Valley Area.

Sheriff’s investigators are looking for information in locating Kenneth S. Dues.

He was last seen in the Chattanooga Valley Road area of Flintstone on June 3rd at approximately 6:20 pm.

If anyone has any information on the whereabouts of Kenneth Dues, call Detective Zach Simpson at the Sheriff’s Department, 706-638-1909 ext. 1270.

Woman Receives Scam Call From Someone Claiming To Be From The IRS

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A Summerville woman reported to the police last week that someone tried to scam her, claiming to be from the IRS.

The complainant told police that she received a call on her cell phone from a man who identified himself as being from the Internal Revenue Service.  The man told the woman that she owed back taxes and needed to send money immediately.

The woman told the caller that she did not owe taxes and the caller told her if she did not send money immediately, she would be facing jail time.

The woman kept the caller on the line and pulled into the Redmond EMS station in Summerville and had EMS workers call Chattooga 911 about the scammer on the phone.  When the scammer realized that the complainant was contacting police, the caller began to cuss the woman and use profane language.

The Summerville Police Department are investigating the incident.

June Is Men's Health Month

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Today is Father’s Day and June is Men’s Health Month. Health officials say that physical inactivity, high blood pressure, and smoking are risk factors for heart disease, the number one killer of men in America. Over time, fat and cholesterol can build up in your blood vessels. When arteries that supply the heart and brain with blood become clogged, a heart attack or stroke can occur. These risk factors can be reduced by living a healthy lifestyle. Exercise is a key component to keep men healthy.

Exercise is a must. It can help keep your body’s blood vessels open and help prevent heart disease or stroke. Exercise reduces your risk of developing heart disease and lowers you risk of developing high blood pressure.

Exercise raises your good cholesterol and lowers your bad cholesterol. It lowers the amount of fat in your bloodstream, helps you lose extra weight, which can strain your heart, and makes your heart and lungs work more efficiently.

Walking, stair-climbing, dancing, jogging, and other activities of at least moderate intensity can also help you prevent or manage several chronic diseases that become more common with age: type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, and arthritis.

Both your body and mind can benefit from exercise.

Exercise can help you manage stress, make your life more enjoyable, boost your self-image and help counter anxiety and depression.

The Centers for Disease Control and the American Heart Association recommend at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic activity, 4 to 5 days a week. They also recommend moderate to high intensity muscle strengthening activity at least 2 days a week.

Chattooga County Fair Prepares For August Event

The Chattooga County Agricultural Fair is just weeks away.  This year’s fair will be held August 23-26 at the Chattooga County Agricultural Building and Summerville Middle School just off Highway 100 in Summerville.

The Chattooga County Fair Council has been working since the close of last year’s fair, preparing for this year’s event.  The fair will feature livestock exhibitions and shows by Chattooga County’s 4H and FFA students.  Agricultural events will be held daily at the fair.  (Find out more about CCAF Livestock Shows here)

In addition to entertainment and the Fair Midway, there will be lots of activity at this year’s fair and that takes a lot of volunteers.  If you are interested in volunteering to work at this year’s fair, you can find out more information on the fair’s website at www.chattoogafair.com .  You can click here to download a volunteer application.

 

Melon Safety From The University of Georgia

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An ongoing outbreak of foodborne illness linked to precut cantaloupe and watermelon purchased from grocery stores has caused 60 people in five states to become ill and about half of those to become hospitalized, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

To help consumers prepare melons safely at home, University of Georgia Cooperative Extension offers this advice:

  • When purchasing whole melons, choose fruits with no sunken or dark spots.
  • Before cutting a melon, wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and pay special attention to the areas between your fingers and around your nails.
  • Wash the outside of the melon under clean, running water. Use a clean produce brush to scrub the surface, then rinse it well.
  • Use a clean cutting board and clean knife to cut the melon on a clean countertop.
  • Once the melon is cut, either serve it immediately or refrigerate it immediately. The juicy surfaces of cut melons are great places for bacteria to multiply if conditions are warm. When melons are cut, they must be kept cold.
  • Don’t buy melons that are already cut or sliced unless they have been on ice or kept refrigerated.
  • Throw cut or sliced melons away if they have been at room temperature for more than two hours or have sat out in temperatures at or above 90 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour.

For more information on how to safely prepare and store foods, contact your UGA Family and Consumer Sciences agent at 1-800-ASK-UGA1 or review UGA Extension publications available at extension.uga.edu/publications.

 

Georgia FACES

Hot Weather Continues Through Next Week

Temperatures are expected in the 90’s again today across Northwest Georgia, and the heat index will make it feel like it is close to 100 degrees.  The forecast for the next seven days continues to show the same pattern.

The National Weather Service in Peachtree City, Georgia says that we can expect temperatures to get into the lower 90’s today, and combined with the high humidity, it will feel closer to 100 degrees.  Forecasters say that the “normal” high temperature for this time of year is 88 degrees, but last year on this same day we reached a high of 93 degrees.

The heat index is a measurement developed to give the “real feel” outside during periods of high temperatures and high humidity.  The higher temperatures mean that you need to keep hydrated and stay out of the heat as much as possible.  If you must be outside during high heat periods, be sure to drink plenty of non-alcoholic fluids – preferably water – and take frequent breaks in a cool area.

Also, remember to never leave children or pets in a hot vehicle.  Temperatures can soar quickly inside a vehicle and can lead to heat stroke and death in a matter of minutes.

Here is the extended forecast from the National Weather Service for Chattooga County:

Today
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 5pm. Patchy fog between 7am and 8am. Otherwise, mostly sunny, with a high near 92. Heat index values as high as 97. Calm wind becoming southeast around 5 mph.
Tonight
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly before 7pm. Partly cloudy, with a low around 70. Southeast wind around 5 mph becoming calm.
Sunday
A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 9am. Partly sunny, with a high near 88. Calm wind becoming south around 5 mph.
Sunday Night
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly before 2am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 70. South wind around 5 mph becoming calm.
Monday
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 8am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 89. Calm wind becoming west around 5 mph in the afternoon.
Monday Night
A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 71.
Tuesday
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 90.
Tuesday Night
A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly cloudy, with a low around 71.
Wednesday
A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 91.
Wednesday Night
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 72.
Thursday
A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 90.
Thursday Night
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 70.
Friday
A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 89.

 

Habitat For Humanity Working On Trion Home Today

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Habitat for Humanity will be working on a home in Trion today.  The Coosa Valley Chapter of Habitat For Humanity will be working on the home for a Roper Corporation employee.

Earlier this week Roper Corporation in Lafayette posted a notice asking for volunteers for the project that is taking place today.

Habitat For Humanity is a nondenominational, Christian organization that builds and revamps homes for families.  The organization has been active in Northwest Georgia since 1984.  The Coosa Valley Chapter of Habitat for Humanity covers Floyd, Polk and Chattooga Counties.