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COVID numbers spike at Schools

Staff Written Front Page, News

By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor Just one week after students returned from a long winter break, 162 Morgan County students have been sent back home to quarantine after being exposed to active COVID-19 cases. More than four percent of Morgan County’s student population is currently under quarantine as of press time on Tuesday, Jan. 12.  The increase in coronavirus cases locally and subsequent quarantines due to exposure are reaching spikes seen over the summer when school first resumed.  “We are definitely monitoring our local numbers, which are similar to …

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Perdue, Loeffler take Morgan County

Staff Written Front Page, News

By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor  Morgan County voters overwhelmingly voted for Republican Incumbent Senators David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler.  However, Democratic Challengers Jon Ossoff and Reverend Raphael Warnock gained ground in a “red” stronghold county like Morgan.  Statewide results were not yet reported as of press time on Tuesday, Jan. 5.  Perdue earned 7,727 votes in Morgan County, while Ossoff earned 3,093.  Loeffler earned 7,693 votes in Morgan, while Warnock earned 3,125 votes.  Ossoff and Warnock came close to President Elect Joe Biden’s totals in Morgan this past November. …

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Times-Journal buys Morgan County Citizen

Staff Written Front Page, News

Special to the Citizen Times-Journal, Inc. has purchased the Morgan County Citizen weekly newspaper in Madison, Ga., it was announced today by owners of the two publishing companies. “We are excited to welcome another fine community newspaper to our group of publications,” said Otis Brumby III of Times-Journal, Inc. “The Citizen has long been a part of Morgan County and top on our priority list is to continue that legacy that began with its launch in 1846.” “Dianne and I have relished the time we have served Morgan County and …

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COVID cases climb

Staff Written Front Page, News

By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor  Georgia reached a grim milestone this week, surpassing half a million confirmed cases of COVID-19 and nearly 10,000 resulting deaths since the coronavirus pandemic hit Georgia in mid-March last year. Georgia Governor Brian Kemp announced a field hospital at the Georgia World Congress Center would be opened due to record numbers of COVID-19 patients being hospitalized across the state.  Morgan County’s case numbers are also on the rise, increasing by more than a 100 new cases in the last two weeks, bringing the cumulative …

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Medical Center records sixth profitable year

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By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  For the sixth consecutive year, Morgan Medical Center has turned a profit, raking in $245,000 for the last fiscal year, according to Kyle Wilkinson, the hospital’s Chief Finance Officer.  On Tuesday, Jan. 5,  Morgan Medical Hospital leaders appeared before the Morgan County Board of Commissioners to deliver an annual update of the hospital’s finances and business operations.  “For FY 2020 we reported a Net Income of $245,000.  This makes six consecutive years that Morgan Medical has reported a positive year financially,” said Wilkinson Tuesday …

Vaccine comes to Morgan

Staff Written Front Page, News

Front line hospital workers first to get  COVID-19 vaccination By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  The coronavirus vaccine has landed in Morgan County, with local healthcare workers among the first to receive the new vaccine.  On Monday, Dec. 28, healthcare workers from Morgan Medical Center in Madison were injected with Moderna’s new COVID-19 vaccine, sparking hope that there is a light at the end of the pandemic’s tunnel.  “I see the vaccine as the first step in our journey back to normalcy and the routine living of our lives,” said …

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$500k missing from house

Staff Written Front Page, Law Enforcement, News

Police arrest housekeeper in massive gold theft By Patrick Yost Editor  A Rutledge cleaning business owner is currently in jail on charges that she removed and sold more than $500,000 in gold and other precious metals and cash from a Madison customer. According to Det. Andre Johnson, Madison Police Department, Kimberly McMickle, 56, was arrested on Friday, Dec. 18 on one count of exploitation of an elderly person and one count theft by taking. Johnson said warrants allege that in an approximately two year period, McMickle removed gold coins, silver …

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6,500 early votes and counting

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By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  About 6,500 Morgan County voters have cast their ballots early ahead of the January 5 runoff election, in which Georgia’s two coveted U.S. Senate Seats hang in the balance between Incumbent Republicans David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler and Democratic Challengers Jon Ossoff and Reverend Raphael Warnock.  The last chance to cast your ballot early is this week. Early voting ends, Thursday, Dec. 31. Early voting hours til then, are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Morgan County Board of Elections and Registration, located …

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Polling sites shut down

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Board says lack of poll workers cause of closures By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  Just one week before the highly-anticipated Senate runoff elections, Morgan County is closing down two polling places on Election Day, January 5, after a wave of COVID cases and COVID quarantines hit local poll workers.  The Morgan County Board of Elections and Registration (BOER) held an emergency special-called meeting, announced just hours before convening on Tuesday, Dec. 29, in which only three board members attended, voting to close Morgan County’s two smallest precincts—Clack’s Chapel and …

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Runoff voters rival presidential election

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By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor Morgan County voters are flocking to the polls to cast their ballots early in the immensely consequential U.S. Senate run-off election. The two Senate seats at stake in Georgia will not only determine the political fate of Georgia, but the political fate of the entire nation. In the first week of early voting, 2,725 voters cast their ballots in Morgan, with 628 voters showing up on the first day. As of press time on Tuesday, Dec. 22, 3,548 voters have cast ballots. That’s nearly 20 …

Perdue campaigns in Madison

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By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor Republican U.S. Senator David Perdue rolled through Madison as part of his “Win Georgia, Save America” bus tour ahead of the upcoming runoff election on January 5. Perdue and his campaign team claimed to be the Republican Party’s last hope to protect outgoing President Donald Trump’s accomplishments and to serve as “firewall” against the incoming Biden Administration’s legislative goals.  Perdue, 71, just returned from Washington D.C. after voting in favor of the new $900 billion COVID relief bill late Monday night. Tuesday morning he was …

Ossoff holds rally in Madison

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Health, Jobs & Justice Tour comes to Madison By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  As the eyes of the nation fall upon Georgia for the upcoming runoff election that will decide the fate of the U.S. Senate, Jon Ossoff, the Democratic candidate running for one of two Georgia Senate seats up for grabs, kicked off his statewide campaign tour in Madison on Sunday, Dec. 13.  Nearly 200 supporters showed up to Madison’s Town Park to cheer Ossoff on, including Madison Mayor Fred Perriman, Morgan County Commissioner Donald Harris, Madison City …

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Masks are a must in Madison

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By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  The Holiday season is usually a time of togetherness and celebration. But as the coronavirus pandemic is still looming over the nation, the Madison Mayor and City Council are urging citizens to stay vigilant in taking safety precautions throughout the holidays. Georgia is on its way to half a million coronavirus cases and nearly 10,000 deaths.  “We are in dangerous times,” said Madison Mayor Fred Perriman, who worried citizens will let down their guard as they get swept up in Christmas celebrations. “We all …

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Early voting starts strong

Staff Written Front Page, News

More than 600 vote on first day By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  Morgan County voters are headed to the polls once again to cast their ballots for two high-profile senate seat races that will determine the fate of the U.S. Senate. The races will decide on which party controls the U.S. Senate, prompting national media spotlight to glare upon Georgia as prominent politicians, both Democrat and Republican, flock to the Peach State to campaign for their party’s candidates. The run-off election is between Republican Incumbent Senator David Perdue and …

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Man struck, killed by train

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By Patrick Yost Editor  A 23-year-old Rutledge man was killed Friday when he was struck by a train. According to Georgia State Patrol reports, Timothy Brandon Shore was pronounced dead at the scene of the tragic incident. Shore was struck by a CSX train traveling westbound on the rail line in the city limits of Rutledge. The train struck Shore at approximately 10:30 p.m. A GSP report states that Shore was sitting on the rail line between James Street and Fairplay Street in Rutledge when he was struck by the …

Georgia lawmakers still crying fraud

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Burt Jones and Jody Hice earn praise from Trump but condemnation from election officials By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor Morgan County representatives, Republican State Senator Burt Jones and Republican U.S. Congressman Jody Hice, made national headlines this week, after their efforts to cast doubt over the election results earned public praise from President Donald Trump, but stern rebukes from Georgia election officials.  Both Jones and Hice have used social media in recent weeks to question the election outcome, in which President-Elect Joe Biden won the State of Georgia by …

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Buckhead goes big

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Town Council paves the way for massive development By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor Buckhead is now poised to become the epicenter of development in Morgan County.  The Buckhead Town Council passed several measures at a special called meeting on Nov. 30 to clear the way for significant expansion and developments to unfold. The Town Council approved a large land annexation and a new zoning designation to allow for a variety of residential and commercial developments.  “I would give anything if Buckhead could stay like it was when I was …

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Trial study testee vouches for vaccine

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By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor A local Madison woman, who is both a healthcare worker and volunteer in Pfizer’s vaccine trial for COVID-19, is vouching for the testing process.  Kate Booker, of Madison, is one of 30,000 people worldwide volunteering with Pfizer to test out a new vaccine for COVID-19, the highly contagious and potentially lethal coronavirus currently sweeping the globe.  “As you probably know, the Pfizer COVID vaccine is about to be given outside of the study phase.  In fact, first doses were given in the U.K. this morning,” …

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COVID cases higher than reported

Staff Written Front Page, News

Morgan County’s coronavirus case count is estimated to be four times higher than previously thought, according to a new report from the AJC By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  A new report released by the Atlanta Journal Constitution (AJC) estimates that Morgan County’s official current coronavirus case count is most likely four times higher than reported by the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH). Statewide, the report estimates coronavirus cases are a third higher than the current official tally.  “In Morgan County, 60 miles east of downtown Atlanta, the most …

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Car chase ends in one man’s death

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By Patrick Yost Editor   A Madison man has died of injuries sustained after a car chase that exceeded 130 mph ended with a crash. According to Georgia State Patrol reports, Octavious Dionte Clark, 29, was pronounced dead at the scene of the culmination of a car chase that began near the intersection of Ward Road and Rutledge Highway and ended when the driver of the 2003 Ford Mustang lost control of the vehicle near the intersection of Hollis Harris Lane and Dixie Highway. The Mustang left the roadway and struck …