TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — The U.S. and Liberian governments have just begun the first formal patient testing of an experimental Ebola virus treatment that’s only been used on an emergency basis.
The drug, ZMapp, contains three genetically engineered proteins designed to hone in on a target on the surface of the deadly virus to stop the disease’s progression. ZMapp, developed by San Diego-based Mapp Pharmaceuticals Inc., is “grown” in tobacco plants engineered to make large quantities of the virus-blocking proteins.
Adults, as well as children of any age, will be enrolled in the study if they are admitted to Ebola treatment units in Liberia or are health care workers returning to the U.S. for treatment after being infected while serving in West Africa. That’s happened to seven U.S. medical and aid workers.
In addition, adults and children who may have acquired Ebola in the United States from contact with an infected person will be enrolled. That has happened to only two people — the nurses who treated patient Thomas Eric Duncan, who had traveled from Africa and died at a Dallas hospital.
SAVANNAH, Ga. — The federal government has awarded a $134.5 million contract to begin deepening the shipping channel to the Port of Savannah, meaning the long-sought harbor expansion can start as soon as the contractor gets its equipment in the water.
The Army Corps of Engineers announced Wednesday the first dredging contract has gone to Illinois-based Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company. The Army Corps says it’s unclear how soon the company will be able to start the job.
The DeKalb County Board of Ethics unanimously dismissed complaints Tuesday against commissioners Kathie Gannon and Jeff Rader.
The board heard the results of preliminary investigations into the charges, then found there wasn’t probable cause to move forward with the cases.
Gannon had been accused of improperly using taxpayer money to hire an attorney to appeal a zoning decision. Her office also allegedly used government funds to buy gift cards.
The board’s investigator, attorney Robert Browning, said he found that Gannon’s spending was for county business. The complaint against Gannon came from Lithonia resident Monica Parrott, who didn’t attend Tuesday’s meeting and wasn’t reachable by Browning.
A member of the DeKalb County Board of Ethics resigned Thursday after telling a county employee to “come outside” to settle their differences.
Ethics Board member Robert Blackman stepped down because of a heated argument Tuesday with Bob Lundsten, the chief of staff for ex-Commissioner Elaine Boyer, during the board’s meeting.
The spat occurred when Blackman questioned Lundsten about his allegation that Board of Ethics Chairman John Ernst had failed to be impartial.
Then Lundsten accused Blackman of being biased against him and said the ethics board member called him “slick” at a previous meeting in December. Blackman denied Tuesday he had called Lundsten any names. Lundsten responded by saying Blackman was lying, using a vulgarity.
Three would-be Atlanta-area cities are closer to becoming reality this week after Georgia lawmakers pushed proposals through preliminary votes with little opposition.
Efforts to form cities of LaVista Hills, South Fulton and Tucker could come to a vote before the full state House of Representatives next week. If approved, the measures calling for November referendums on cityhood would be considered by the state Senate next.
In rapid-fire succession, the cityhood bills were introduced Monday, passed by a subcommittee Tuesday and authorized by the House Governmental Affairs Committee on Wednesday. The committee signed off on all three of the measures, which allow residents in the boundaries of the proposed cities to vote on cityhood, within 10 minutes.
In partnership with national animal-rescue advocate Shane Smith and former Animal Control Officer Van VanDeWalker, all the animals currently in the shelter will be “pardoned” in hopes of having them adopted, and adoption fees will be reduced during the four-day event.
On Monday there were 46 [now 27] dogs and cats in the shelter at 1010 11th St., said Assistant County Manager Steve Layson.
The adoption special is tied to Animal Welfare’s impending move to a new building at 4214 Fulton Mill Road, Layson said. The department wants to reduce the number of animals that must be moved, but organizers also hope to build momentum that will continue through the new Animal Welfare Center’s opening, he said.
The long-awaited move should begin next week, and the new center is expected to be open Feb. 16, though the current shelter also will stay open as employees and animals settle in, Layson said.
“We’ll have to run a parallel operation to the one we have now,” he said.
I’m told that even if you’re not planning to adopt this weekend, you’re welcome to come meet the animals.
the Court held that African Americans, whether slave or free, could not be American citizens and therefore had no standing to sue in federal court,and that the federal government had no power to regulate slavery in the federal territories acquired after the creation of the United States. Dred Scott, an African American slave who had been taken by his owners to free states and territories, attempted to sue for his freedom. In a 7–2 decision written by Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, the Court denied Scott’s request and in doing so, ruled an Act of Congress in this case—the Missouri Compromise of 1820 which prohibited slavery north of the parallel 36°30′ north—to be unconstitutional for the second time in its history.
The decision would prove to be an indirect catalyst for the American Civil War and was functionally superseded by the post-war Reconstruction Amendments. It is now widely regarded as the worst decision ever made by the Supreme Court.
I remember very well. As a matter of fact I went to the Army surplus store and bought this backpack. I really thought we were going to be successful walking all the way from Selma to Montgomery. And somehow, someway I thought maybe we would be arrested and we would go to jail, so while in jail I wanted to have something to read. I had two books in the backpack. I wanted to have something to eat—I had one apple and one orange. One apple and one orange wouldn’t last that long. Being in jail, you know I had been arrested and been to jail before, the sad thing about being in jail for two or three days, you need to brush your teeth. So there was toothpaste and a toothbrush in there.
I don’t know what happened to that backpack, I don’t know what happened to the two books. I don’t know what happened to the trench coat. One of the books was by a professor of political science at Harvard and the other book was by Thomas Merton, the monk. I just wished I had them. The Smithsonian and the Library of Congress are always asking me what happened to them and I tell them I really don’t know.
Under the Gold Dome Today
8:30am – 9:30am
Senate Appropriations Education – 310 clob
9:00am – 10:00am
Senate Appropriatons Econ. Dev. – mezz 1
10:00am – 11:00am
House Jacobs Sub of Judiciary Civil – 132 cap- Cancelled
10:00am – 11:00am
Senate Appropriations Nat’l Resources – 450 cap
12:00pm – 2:00pm
Senate Insurance & Labor – mezz 1
2:00pm – 3:00pm
House MARTA Oversight Committee – 406 clob
Georgia Transportation Tax Bill Passes State House
Governor’s proposal to create Opportunity School District for failing schools moves to House
Gov. Nathan Deal today praised the Senate for passing legislation that would allow for an Opportunity School District (OSD) to aid chronically failing schools throughout the state. The constitutional amendment resolution and the implementing legislation will now move to the House for consideration.
“Today, we are one step closer to creation of an Opportunity School District, and one step closer to restoring children’s and parents’ hopes for a brighter future,” Deal said. “We’ve seen the successes that Louisiana, Tennessee and Michigan attained with similar, bipartisan measures. Working together, I believe Georgians can achieve the same for our students and families. I congratulate Sen. Butch Miller on his diligence and hard work in advancing these education reforms, and I commend the courage of the 37 other senators who supported this legislation. As the House considers this bill, I am confident that its members will also put the needs of Georgia’s most vulnerable students first. Through the efforts of our legislators, we will put this referendum on the ballot so that Georgians can assure that a child’s chance of success isn’t dependent on his or her ZIP code.”
The OSD legislation requires a constitutional amendment, for which there must be a two-thirds majority in both houses and majority approval by Georgia voters at the next general election. The OSD would allow the state to intervene in schools that have received failing grades for three consecutive years. The district could add no more than 20 schools per year, for a total of 100 at any given time. The schools would remain in the OSD for no less than five years and no more than 10 years.
“The Opportunity School District will allow us to bring new focus by education experts, better governance and best practices to schools that have underachieved for too long. The children trapped in these schools can’t wait. I believe all children can learn, but we have an obligation to provide access for high-quality education to those students and parents who are anxious for a better future. It’s my vision – and that of many legislators here – that every high school graduate in Georgia should have the skills needed to enter the workforce or further their educations in college.”