FLOWERY BRANCH - Rubye Mae Keith, 90, passed away Wednesday, January 28, 2015. Mrs. Keith was a member of The Church of God of Prophecy of Hoschton. She loved her family and enjoyed reading and watching Western movies. She was known for giving out cards. Mrs. Keith was preceded in death by her husband, Henry T. Keith; parents, Charlie and Anna ...
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CBRE Atlanta’s Office recently released its 2014 4th Quarter Atlanta Industrial Report and Jackson County for the first time leads all Metro Atlanta market counties in new industrial speculative (spec) construction.
“Jackson County leads Atlanta in new industrial spec construction, accounting for approximately 30 percent of the total,” Stated CBRE first vice president of Industrial Properties Group Todd Barton.
2014 was a strong year for spec building announcements for Jackson County. IDI Gazeley announced the construction of their new 840,000-square-foot spec building for its Jefferson Distribution Center Park in late second quarter at the intersection of Interstate 85 and Georgia Hwy. 82. Ridgeline Property Group, in partnership with Hillwood Investments, announced in October the construction of a 1.1-million-square-foot spec building in Braselton at the intersection of I-85, Hwy. 53 and Hwy.124. After the reporting deadline, TPA Group announced a new 614,000-square-foot spec building to be constructed at the intersection of I-85 and Hwys. 53 and 124 in Braselton.
Going into 2014, Jackson County was still carrying almost 3 million square feet of industrial space vacancy. With the locations of Ollie’s and DSC Logistics, the expansion of Hitachi-Koki, plus additional long-term leasing space from Kubota and LVI, Jackson County currently has just under 500,000 square feet of vacant industrial space.
“Reaching this benchmark is an outstanding statement about the business environment for Jackson County,” declared Josh Fenn, president, CEO and economic development director of the Jackson County Area Chamber of Commerce. “When these major development firms make spec building investments of this size, it is a statement about the future of your community, and we are very grateful.”
The Jackson County Board of Education will hold the first of two public hearings on closing Benton Elementary School in Nicholson Thursday night.
The meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. in the school gym, located at 5488 Hwy. 441 South, Nicholson.
A second hearing will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 5, at the school board office, located at 1600 Winder Hwy., Jefferson.
Benton’s enrollment of 323 falls well below the state’s minimum of 450 students for the system to earn administrative funding. That means administrative salaries at the school must be paid totally from local funds with no state help.
The school last received significant improvements in 2002 when $1 million in upgrades were done to the campus. Now, the BOE must decide if it wants to invest more SPLOST money for some much-needed refurbishment, or merge Benton to maximize class space on the east side of the county, which has excessive classrooms due to new school construction over the past decade.
However, citizens in the Nicholson community have voiced disapproval of the move, saying the school should be kept open.
There are two options if the school is closed:
•The students currently attending Benton will attend South Jackson Elementary School, which would have an anticipated enrollment of 886 students.
•The students currently attending Benton will attend either South Jackson or East Jackson elementary schools. SJES would have approximately 702 students, while EJES would have an anticipated 665 students.
Under either option, there are no construction projects necessary to complete these moves, school leaders said.
Detectives at the Commerce Police Department have a pair of suspects in the apparent theft of copper wiring from the old Ingles grocery store building on South Elm Street.
A man walked into the police station and reported that he had been “dumpster diving” behind the store and saw two white males run into the woods. The man said there was copper wire at the location.
Two officers responded to the scene and found multiple rolls of copper wire laying on the loading dock behind the store. They saw a black Ford Ranger drive around the back side of the shopping center from the north end and made contact with two males in the vehicle.
Asked why they were driving behind the shopping center, one of the men said they were out for a drive and were going to Fred’s. The officers noted that one of the men appeared very nervous, with trembling hands.
Police released both men.
The officers went to the top of the loading dock and found a metal door slightly ajar. They entered the building, andfound a hatch leading to the roof open. On top of the building, police found where copper wiring had been cut from the air conditioner units on the roof and from the control boxes in a mechanical room inside the building.
The officers turned the scene over to the department’s investigators.
My friend Bob was in town recently, and he told me a story about a group of “city fathers” in Japan who were concerned because most of the young people in their town were moving away. They wondered what would become of their town. “Soon we’ll have no more fishes,” said one, using a metaphor. “What shall we do?”
“Bring in more fishes!” said another. “Revive our culture’s old traditions, which have been dying out, and people will come here to enjoy them.” And so they did, and so it was. People came from far and near to participate in the ancient and formal tea ceremony, watch Sumo wrestling, admire the serenity of the gardens, and yes, try their hand at cormorant fishing — and much more. And the town thrived.
Hearing that story, I thought about how often I’d seen the way reaching back to the past could lead to a brighter present (and future.) The Foxfire books, the Old Sautee Store, and local Bluegrass bands (Crystal River and BlueBilly Grit, for example) are just three examples of how the “old Georgia’s” arts, crafts, and culture — maintained and/or rediscovered — are enhancing the “new Georgia,” enlightening and enlivening us all. [Full Story »]
JEFFERSON - Denise Guined, 52, died Sunday, January 25, 2015. She was the daughter of the late Lester Brakhage and Hazel Denny Digman. Survivors include her husband, Daniel Guined; children, Brian (Amanda) Reidling, Kristy (Hadley) Brown, and Kelli (Ricky) Rutledge; brothers, Mike, Ray, and Dennis Brakhage; sisters, Kathy Brakhage, Tammy ...
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COMMERCE - Bonnie Cowart Loggins, 77, died Tuesday, January 27, 2015, at Athens Regional Medical Center. Mrs. Loggins was born in Commerce, the daughter of the late Hoyt and Mamie Williamson Cowart. She was a homemaker and a member of Full Gospel Holiness Church. Mrs. Loggins was preceded in death by brothers, Curtis, James, Robert, and J.L. ...
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