LOCAL NEWS                           

Tuesday November 26th, 2013


Word came yesterday that the Georgia Supreme Court has declared that the Governor may remove local school board members. This case was certified to the Supreme Court by the Federal District Court, Northern District of Georgia, as a question from Dekalb County. This now means that the Federal Court will make its' final ruling based on the Georgia Supreme Court's answer to the question presented. Once the District Court rules, that decision can be appealed to the 11th Court of Appeals. Many lawyers believe that the 11th Circuit would uphold the District Court and the Georgia Supreme Court and the case will likely end right there. Local News mentions all this because Sumter County Board of Education attorney E. Brian Watkins also filed the same with a Fulton County Court last year. Now that the Dekalb County ruling has been rendered the same in the Sumter County suit should also finally fall into place. As was mentioned, this is very good news for the Governor and not so good news for the Sumter County Board of Education who seemingly continues to ignore Georgia law with their recent decision to request 9 districts instead of the 5 + 2 plan signed by Governor Deal and what Federal Judge Louis Sands said on October 28th to follow. The Sumter County Board of Education holds a Retreat session to discuss their recent decision and more on Tuesday December 3rd at 6pm in the boardroom of the SCS Administration Building. The community is urged to attend.


Sumter County Tax Commissioner Wilkie Smith reminds all taxpayers that Sumter County taxes are due December 1st. Because December 1st falls on a Sunday, your County taxes may be paid on Monday December 2nd without a penalty. The deadline to pay your Sumter County taxes this year has been extended to Monday December 2nd. If you have questions, please contact the Sumter County Tax Commissioner's Office at 928-4530.


Another deadline is the day to get in your Americus Christmas Parade applications. That deadline is this Friday November 29th. Get in your parade applications now. No late entries will be accepted. Return your entry with the appropriate fees to the City of Americus before the Friday deadline. The annual Americus Christmas Parade will be on Thursday December 5th at 7pm through downtown Americus.


The Sumter Area Ministerial Association is sponsoring a community wide Thanksgiving Service this evening at 7pm at Central Baptist Church on the Upper River Road. The focus tonight will be giving back to the community through the Harvest of Hope Food Bank. Those attending tonight are reminded to bring a canned or boxed food item that will go to the food bank. All offerings tonight that are given will be going to support the Harvest of Hope Food Bank. The community is encouraged to attend and help our fellow neighbors in need.


Americus Police had a quiet Monday according to yesterday's incident reports. Gloria S. Anderson was arrested at 107 W. Jefferson Street and charged with shoplifting.

A traffic stop conducted on E. Forsyth Street resulted in the arrest of Eddie James Baisden for speeding, open container and driving without a license on his person.

Officers were summoned to the Emergency Room where 1st Responders had brought in a person reported down on Masonic Street. Upon officers arrival, the victim Ralph Lewis Jr. was pronounced deceased from an apparent heart attack. The Coroner was notified.

Hit-n-run accidents were reported at 907 MLK Boulevard and at 1604 E. Forsyth Street.

There was 1 reported accident yesterday with no injuries.

The Americus Fire and Emergency Services will begin spraying your live Christmas trees with a fire retardant on Thursday November 28th and will continue to do so until Monday December 23rd. You can bring your tree by Fire Station#1 on S. Lee Street any day after Thursday to receive this free service. Keep you and your family safe this holiday season by taking advantage of this free service.