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Mixed Voices: CSA statue drives debate

Staff Written News

By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  Madison City officials will announce a special public forum dedicated solely to discussing whether or not to remove the Confederate Monument erected in Hill Park in Madison after a petition to take it down earned more than 250 signatures. But that forum may take months before being scheduled due to the ongoing threat of the coronavirus pandemic.  As word spreads of the requests from citizens to remove the Confederate monument, city officials have been inundated with e-mails and phone calls from citizens voicing their opinion on …

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Schools to open Aug. 6

Staff Written Front Page, News

By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  Morgan County schools will reopen once again, after closing down in early March due to the coronavirus pandemic sweeping across the nation and entire world. Education officials across the country have been scrambling to craft academic plans to balance student learning with student safety. Morgan County school officials have opted to reopen all Morgan County Schools full-time in early August, implementing rigorous sanitation procedures and day-by-day monitoring of staff and student health. Hand-sanitizer stations will be in every class room, and while masks will …

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To mask, or not to mask is government question

Staff Written Front Page, News

By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  Georgia Governor Brian Kemp embarked on a statewide tour last week to urge all Georgians to voluntarily wear masks and social distance while in public due to spiking coronavirus cases confirmed across the state as more businesses and public spaces reopen. Kemp said mask wearing and social distancing is the closest thing the country has to a vaccine against COVID-19, a highly contagious and potentially lethal upper-respiratory disease.  However, Kemp’s recommendations are just that, leaving plenty of wiggle room for how public spaces implement …

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Madison to re-open government meetings

Staff Written Front Page, News

By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  After months of Zoom calls and Livestreamed meetings, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the City of Madison is reopening all board meetings to the public, but with some conditions.  According to City Manager David Nunn, the public will be welcome to attend board meetings, but there will be limited seating, social distancing guidelines practiced, and masks to be distributed to attendees.  “We have the seats spaced out six feet apart and we ordered masks to give out to people who come without them,” said Nunn. “We …

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Back to school rally ‘drive–thru’ this year

Staff Written Community, News

By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  Every Year, the Morgan County Family Connection and Morgan Medical Center orchestrates the Back to School rally to equip families with the supplies and information they need for the upcoming school year.  “ We are in the process of planning for the 2020 Back to School Rally.  As you know this is your collaborative’s annual summer event which brings together ALL sectors of the community to help the children in our county be prepared to start the school year successfully,” said Velde Hardy, a director of Morgan …

Our Stories: How COVID-19 Has Affected Us

Staff Written News

by Carole Mason Growing up after World War II, I never dreamed that 70 years later life would be like this for us and our family.  Bob and I have become experts at this staying at home bit.  We relax with feet up, dogs in our laps, naps on the front porch…what’s not to like? Since I am allergic to technology, I live in an old-fashioned world, and I like it just fine.  Our friends supply us with garden vegetables, so no shortage of food, and the paper goods have …

Atlanta violence prompts warning from Kemp

Dianne Yost News

View this email in your browserAtlanta violence prompts warning from Kemp By Beau EvansStaff WriterCapitol Beat News Service Gov. Brian Kemp has sounded a warning following a pair of fatal shootings near a burned-down Wendy’s in Atlanta that has been a focal point for recent protests against police brutality and racial injustice. Kemp said his administration “won’t hesitate to take action” in the wake of the shooting deaths and after protesters damaged the state Department of Public Safety headquarters in Atlanta around 1 a.m. Sunday, according to the Georgia State Patrol. Atlanta authorities said …

City Council joins national debate on CSA monuments

Staff Written News

By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor  A monument in Madison may be the next the battle in the ongoing culture wars across America.   A petition calling for the removal of a Confederate monument on display in Madison’s Hill park has garnered over 160 signatures, prompting Madison Mayor Fred Perriman to announce that the city council will discuss the issue at a July work session. “It’s going to be a tough conversation, but it’s a conversation that needs to be had,” said Perriman.  The tall, slender monument crafted out of …

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Wanted man shoots self before arrest

Staff Written News

By Patrick Yost editor  A Morgan County resident apparently shot himself while Morgan County Sheriff’s Office investigators were attempted to execute a probation violation warrant on the man in an Oconee County residence. According to Lt. Brandon Sellers, Morgan County Sheriff’s Office, Edgar Franklin Cape, 48, Madison was found with a gunshot wound to the head in a bathroom closet at a Hillsboro Road, High Shoals residence while deputies were trying to clear the residence. Cape was transported to an Athens hospital but died on Friday, June 26, said Chief …

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Governments can share COVID cash

Staff Written News

By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor  Morgan County and each municipality are poised to receive over $1 million in relief funds from the State of Georgia to help recuperate costs and losses caused by the coronavirus pandemic.  Georgia Governor Kemp announced Monday that about $1.2 billion in relief funds would be distributed to every county and city across the state. Morgan County and each city’s share of those funds amounts to $1,009,055. Statewide, roughly $1.2 billion in relief funds will distributed.  According to the Governor’s Office, Morgan County will receive …

City adopts $16.9 million FY 21 budget

Staff Written News

By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor  Madison City Council unanimously voted to adopt the new budget for the 2020-2021 Fiscal Year last Friday, June 26.  The new budget is nearly $16.9 million dollars, about a $100,000 increase from the current year’s budget. According to city officials, the new budget is playing it safe in light of the coronavirus pandemic.    “I want to thank Karen Stapp [the City’s Chief Finance Officer],” said Madison Mayor Fred Perriman before the vote Friday morning.  “We thank you for the job you have done getting …

GBI arrests Morgan man on child molestation charges

Staff Written News

By Patrick Yost editor  A four day investigation by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation ended with the arrest of a Morgan County man on several counts of child molestation and sodomy. According to GBI Special Agent Mary Chandler, Danny Edward Cronic, 48, Madison was arrested on June 16 after he completed an interview with a GBI agent. Chandler said Cronic has been charged with two counts sodomy, one count aggravated child molestation and one count child molestation. She said the charges stem from alleged events that occurred when the victim …

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Gov. extends public health emergency, COVID cases rise

Staff Written News

By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor  The State of Georgia is extending the public health emergency due to the ongoing threat of the coronavirus pandemic. The new executive order extends the rules for business operations, social distancing guidelines, bans gatherings of 50 of more, and mandates shelter-in-place for the medically fragile until July 15. Georgia Governor Brian Kemp is also embarking on a state tour before the Fourth of July weekend to encourage Georgians to wear masks in public as a record spike in coronavirus cases surges throughout Georgia. “Wear …

Cultural Center goes virtual to adapt to COVID

Staff Written News

By Trinity Martin Staff Writer Months ago, when the world began to seemingly stop in the face of a pandemic, the Madison-Morgan Cultural Center was forced to close its doors after the virus hit. But they took this hit and ran with it. After taking appropriate safety precautions and closing down March 15, the institution made it its mission to serve the community digitally. “The arts are positive and healing and that’s what we need right now,” said Kim Brown, executive director. With the help of a grant from the …

Kemp Signs Hate-Crimes Bill Into Law

Dianne Yost News

Kemp signs Georgia hate-crimes bill into law By Beau EvansStaff WriterCapitol Beat News Service Hate crimes will be punishable in Georgia for the first time in 16 years after Gov. Brian Kemp signed legislation Friday that cleared the General Assembly this week amid tense back-and-forth and tears of joy. Under legislation Kemp signed Friday, prison time could be meted out for those who terrorize or physically harm others based on their race, color, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, sex, gender, or whether they have a physical or mental disability. The added penalties would …

Home delivery of alcohol gains OK from General Assembly

Dianne Yost News

Home delivery of alcohol gains OK from General Assembly By Dave WilliamsBureau ChiefCapitol Beat News Service ATLANTA – Restaurants, supermarkets and liquor stores would be able to make home deliveries of beer, wine, and distilled spirts in Georgia under a bill that has cleared the General Assembly.The state House of Representatives gave the legislation final passage 114-45 Thursday, two days after it cleared the Georgia Senate overwhelmingly.Supporters argued legalizing home delivery of alcoholic beverages is particularly timely in the midst of a global pandemic that has forced Georgians to shelter in their …

‘Historic’ pact signed at Pearl High

Staff Written News

By Patrick Yost editor  Lt. Gen. Gen. William Caldwell, president, Georgia Military College and Madison City Council Member Ed Latham, who also serves on the Madison Downtown Development Authority, (DDA) both signed a historic “Pearl-Burney” agreement Monday morning that cleared the way for the college to begin utilizing space at the former Morgan County Middle School. The agreement, according to Madison City Planner Monica Callahan, will create five classrooms, an office and other space for the growing GMC campus in Madison. Callahan said the college would not leave its existing …

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No vote recount, board says

Staff Written News

By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor  With the national spotlight on Georgia’s election debacle in June, some Georgia counties are opting to recount votes after discovering valid ballots cast were left uncounted, but Morgan County will not be one of them. Despite recount requests from Morgan County officials and election volunteers, the Morgan County Board of Elections and Registration (BOER), for the second time, narrowly voted against a recount in order to ensure all votes were counted accurately. During the June 18 BOER meeting, in a 3-to-2 vote, the motion …

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School budget at $43.6 mil

Staff Written News

By Patrick Yost editor  The Morgan County Board of Education voted unanimously to advertise its fiscal year 2021 $43,676,313 budget at a special called meeting  Monday. The budget includes an expected 4 percent increase in revenue and a 7 percent reduction in expenses. According to Dr. James Woodard, superintendent, Morgan County Charter School System, last year’s budget was $46,969,201. Dr. Woodard said he asked for and received a 15 percent reduction across the board in this year’s budget. The budget includes a $400,000 reduction in the system’s teacher retirement system, …

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Millions in real estate sold in Morgan

Staff Written News

Compiled by Dianne Yost staff May 28, 2020 • Christie Norma-Grace White of Buckhead to Jacob Lindsey of Athens, Ga., Ferrell Lane Madison, 106 acres, $200,000. May 29, 2020 • Dorothy Dickson Sells of Decatur, Ga. to Clarence T. Harper, III of Madison, Brownwood Road, 31 acres, Madison, $200,448. • New Leaf Homes, LLC of Greensboro, Ga. to Makeda Coleman, Trustee of Makeda Coleman Rev. Trust dated …* of Madison, 1040 Lancaster Lane, Madison, $388,000. June 1, 2020 • Edgar Scott Tolbert, Ex. Last Will & Test of Virginia C …