Peach County working to finalize water park deal | Politics |

FORT VALLEY — Peach County commissioners wanted to finalize a deal Thursday to help a businessman build a water park along Russell Parkway between Interstate 75 and U.S. 41, but commissioners paused when they saw the contract.

Commissioners thought they would be signing a deal with a company run by the water park’s developer, Jeff Franklin. Instead, the contract presented to them was with a company run by a Macon land developer, Tim Thornton, who wants to build a commercial subdivision, with the park inside.

Commissioners said they were willing to put as much as $300,000 toward building a road for the water park, which they say has to be built.

via Peach County working to finalize water park deal | Politics |

Bibb BOE rejects low bid from Albany firm | Education |

What could have been a fairly routine vote about accepting a bid for kitchen equipment for Heard Elementary School turned into an extended discussion about Bibb County school board policy Thursday night.

Board members rejected in a 5-2 vote the low bid presented by Albany-based Trimark Strategic, even though the bid for the equipment came in $9,000 lower than a bid from Macon-based Direct South.

Board members Lynn Farmer and Thelma Dillard were the only board members who favored accepting the bid, but they were outvoted. Board president Sue Sipe was absent.

via Bibb BOE rejects low bid from Albany firm | Education |

Welcome centers, rest areas to get spiffed up |

ATLANTA — One group that believes in the power of advertising are the members of the State Transportation Board because money from ads on official interstate highway exit signs is going to pay for renovating Georgia’s welcome centers and rest areas.

The Department of Transportation program that features logos of nearby establishments for $1,200 each per year is generating enough cash to enhance the appearance of the nine welcome centers and 17 rest areas that dot the Interstates.

via Welcome centers, rest areas to get spiffed up |

American Ebola doc: ‘I am thrilled to be alive’ |

ATLANTA — Calling it a “miraculous day,” an American doctor infected with Ebola left his isolation unit and warmly hugged his doctors and nurses on Thursday, showing the world that he poses no public health threat one month after getting sick with the virus.

Dr. Kent Brantly and his fellow medical missionary, Nancy Writebol, who was quietly discharged two days earlier, are still weak but should recover completely, and no one need fear being in contact with them, said Dr. Bruce Ribner, who runs the infectious disease unit at Emory University Hospital.

via American Ebola doc: ‘I am thrilled to be alive’ |

Warrant ordered for Ga. woman in explosives case |

ATLANTA — A warrant has been issued for a north Georgia woman who was arrested on new charges less than six months after a federal judge sentenced her to probation on federal explosives charges, court records show.

U.S. District Judge Richard Story signed an order for a warrant for Celia Savage and a probation revocation hearing will likely be scheduled.

via Warrant ordered for Ga. woman in explosives case |

GPA delivers big lift for cancer patients |

Good things don’t always come in small packages, as evidenced by the cutting-edge cancer treatment equipment that recently moved from Kobe, Japan, through Georgia Ports Authority’s Ocean Terminal in Savannah.

Proton therapy is an advanced, precise form of radiation cancer treatment. The technology is able to target cancer tissue with less damage to surrounding healthy tissue than traditional radiation treatments. However, the units are massive and heavy.

Last week, crews at Ocean Terminal unloaded more than 70 crates from a ship and loaded them onto trucks bound for ProNova in Knoxville, Tenn., the first proton equipment manufacturing facility in the U.S.

“This is another example of Ocean Terminal’s ability to handle outsized and super-heavy cargo,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Our dedicated teams are well-versed in the special handling requirements for freight in this category.”

A fully assembled proton therapy cyclotron weighs 220 tons, or roughly the equivalent of two space shuttles.

via GPA delivers big lift for cancer patients |

Athens mayor seeks delay in settlement of refugees |

Mayor Nancy Denson is seeking to put the brakes on plans to resettle 150 refugees in Athens-Clarke County in the coming months, according to records obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

In a letter to Georgia officials this week, the Democratic mayor complained that the International Rescue Committee did not reach out to enough people in her community early enough about its plans. She also raised concerns that the refugees could strain public resources in Athens-Clarke County, which is home to about 120,000 residents.

The IRC has proposed resettling refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Iraq, Myanmar and Syria in the region. Denson said she wants the IRC to delay its efforts and to “present a formal refugee integration plan” to local elected officials and others.

via Athens mayor seeks delay in settlement of refugees |

Audit: Cobb owes FEMA $557,943 |

Cobb County may have to reimburse the Federal Emergency Management Agency $558,000 in emergency assistance grant funds it received after the devastating 2009 flood.

The Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General performed a six-month audit this year on a portion of the $7.7 million in assistance provided to the county for debris removal, overtime paid to emergency responders, and more than 200 projects to repair damage to public facilities.

It found that the county received dual payments from insurance and FEMA on some projects, and that’s the money it says the county must repay.

County officials disagree with the audit findings, and say the amount owed is actually about $293,000. But the county’s argument hasn’t swayed the federal government.

via Audit: Cobb owes FEMA $557,943 |

Dogs will walk the runway to raise funds for Georgia SPCA | Gwinnett Daily Post

The Georgia SPCA’s 2014 fundraising gala, “An Evening in Paris,” will bring haute couture fashion to Gwinnett, for those of the four-legged variety. Some of Gwinnett’s most fashionable canines will be gracing the runway on Sept. 6 in order to raise funds for the Georgia SPCA.

The Georgia Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is a nonprofit pet rescue organization located in Suwanee. Its mission is to reduce the number of healthy animals euthanized in the State of Georgia by implementing successful adoption programs, offering low-cost spaying and neutering to the public and promoting responsible pet ownership.

“This is one of our most important fundraisers of the year,” Jane Stewart, Georgia SPCA executive director, said. “We depend on proceeds from this event to help us rescue and find new homes for more than 1,200 abandoned, neglected and abused pets each year and to provide low-cost vaccines and spay-neuter services to Georgia pet owners.”

via Dogs will walk the runway to raise funds for Georgia SPCA | Gwinnett Daily Post.