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Sta writer;
History has throughout time been lost
as the victim of time, circumstances
and apathy. Grin Board of Commis-
sioners member Dick Morrow is dedi-
cated to preserving tangible remnants
of local history by establishing the
Grin-Spalding County Archive.
“During the time that my son, Je,
and I were researching the Stonewall
Cemetery, when we visited individual’s
homes, they would go into their
bedrooms and bring out books, boxes
of documents, newspaper clippings
and old photographs, and I realized no
one’s protecting them. One house re
could wipe them out,” he said.
He spoke of the wealth of records to be
found throughout the area, including
that which represents the Civil War,
African-American history, local school
and government records and those of
the courts.
“We have all this amazing history in
Grin and Spalding County, and it
needs to be archived. We need to col-
lect and archive this history before any
more is lost,” Morrow said. “The records
of our history is being lost and the
sooner we rescue it and salvage our
history, the better o we’ll be. We’re
already late getting started.”
Upon realizing how crucial the need
for preservation is, he contacted an At-
lanta archivist who advised he visit the
Sta writer;
Amid some recent sci-
entic research touting
potential health risks asso-
ciated to exposure to high
levels of uoride, Grin
entreprenuer Ben Johnson
has mounted a campaign
aimed at stopping the uo-
ridation of the local water
Whether by word-of-
mouth or social media via
his Facebook page, Spald-
ing For Pure Water, John-
son is working to educate
the public regarding the
potential negative conse-
quences of uoridation. He
is utilizing scientic data,
such as Harvard School
of Public Health report in
which researchers system-
atically reviewed 27 stud-
ies, primarily from China.
The researchers concluded
that “results support the
possibility of an adverse
eect of high uoride
exposure on children’s neu-
Although it stated the
standardized weighted
mean dierence in IQ
scores between children
exposed to high uoride
levels, as compared to
those unexposed, was .45,
Johnson says there is no
valid reason to unnecessar-
ily risk children’s neurode-
velopment when uoride
– which has for decades
been added to drinking
water supplies to enhance
dental health – is available
through other means.
Furthermore, he pointed to
revisions brought forth by
the United States Depart-
ment of Health and Human
Services (HHS) that pro-
poses the recommended
Jessica Williamson Gregory, Publisher
Display advertising: | 770.584.7677
Story ideas/submissions:
770-229-3559 | PO Box 2251 Grin GA 30224
Hours: Tuesday - Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Grip strives for accuracy in all its editorial content. If
you have a question, comment, or concern about articles
or photos published in The Grip, please do not hesitate to
call or e-mail us.
SEPT 1 - 13, 2012 VOL. 02 NO. 18
GA Dept. of Revenue:
Spalding's backlog of tax
appeals is 'an irregularity'
With thousands of ap-
peals remaining outstand-
ing from 2010 and 2011,
Spalding County begins
to 'improvise' appellate
process, possibly to some
property owners' advan-
tages, says the Department
of Revenue.
Spalding County ocials
now face an uncertain path
to resolution for the 1,999
taxpayers who requested to
have their property assess-
ment appeals heard by the
Board of Equalization.
Opposition mounts
against uoridation
The front page of 1940 Centennial edition
of the Grin Daily News will be a part of the
Grin-Spalding archvies.
Archive creation will preserve Grin history
DUSTY TAKLE ::: It’s hard to imagine that the fact Grin,
Georgia is full of talented artists and musicians could pos-
sibly still be a secret. So many people from this mill town
continue to astound the city with their talents.
Adam Grubbs was no disappointment August 24 and 25
when he performed in the one man show “No Fame, No
Shame” to benet Main Street Players. Adam packed the
house both nights performing a variety
'No Fame, No Shame,'
no disappointed fans
Remembering the ultimate sacrice
Why the
system is so
The plan
now in place
to catch up
p. 2
Sta writer;
We each have dening
moments in our life, those
moments that shape our
future in ways we perhaps
cannot imagine. For Chris
and Jane Rodgers, 9/11/01
was one of those times,
but for much greater
reason than the devastat-
ing attack wrought against
our country – it was the
catalyst behind their son,
Blake, dedicating his future
to the United States Marine
Still just a boy, Blake spent
the remainder of his child-
hood with that singular
goal, a goal that was ac-
complished immediately
upon his 2008 graduation
from Spalding High School.
Despite the dangers they
knew their son would face,
Chris and Jane said they
always supported Blake's
decision to serve his coun-
try. They took great pride
in the fact that their son
had set such a noble goal,
achieved it and went on to
excel as a marksman.
“He always seemed so
happy. That was what he
had wanted for so long,
and he really loved being a
Marine,” Chris Rodgers said.
“Blake went out there to do
a job, and he did it well.”
Jane said her son went
to Afghanistan for one
purpose – do defend this
“He risked his life for the
country he loved, to keep
its people safe,” she said.
“He did it purely for the
pride of the country he
As a Marine, Blake also
grew to love his band of
brothers, and he devel-
oped a particularly close
Above: Fellow Marines gathered in prayer during Lance Cpl.
Christopher Blake Rodger's dignied transfer in Dover, Del.
2 5ept 1 - 13, 2û12
top stories
Gather with family and friends for a
catered event to honor a special life
Haisten McCullough Funeral Home
Westwood Gardens and Mausoleum
1155 Everee Inn Road, Griffin
Now available to families served by:
Sta writer;
Ad Valorem Tax Digest Compliance Manager
Ellen Mills, of the Georgia Department of
Revenue, has classied the failure to move
forward with 2010 and 2011 Board of Equal-
ization (BoEq) appeals as an irregularity that
must be rectied in order to be in compli-
ance with the law’s protection of taxpayer
Prior to Jan. 1, 2011, BoEq appeals were
handled by the Tax Assessor’s oce, but revi-
sions to the law transferred that responsibil-
ity to Spalding County Clerk of Court Marcia
Norris. Since that time, no action has been
taken on any outstanding appeals led by
Spalding County property owners.
“We’ve gotten to this blockade here. This is
not the proper process, so to tell you how to
resolve the problem is not an easy question
to answer,” Mills said. “It’s not something
that normally happens – not to this mag-
nitude. The most important thing is to get
the taxpayers through the process, so their
concerns can be heard. There may not be a
resolution, but the taxpayers can’t be denied
their appeal. Taxpayers have a right to due
process, and how can they take it to the next
level in Superior Court if they’re denied a
Board of Equalization appeal?”
Spalding County ocials now face an uncer-
tain path to resolution for the 1,999 taxpay-
ers who requested to have their property
assessment appeals heard by the BoEq.
According to Larry Griggers, a consultant
with Ad Valorem Tax Appraisal and Collection
Services (AVTACS), the company contracted
to conduct Spalding’s county-wide revalua-
tions, one potential solution was proposed
at a Thursday meeting that included himself,
Norris and Spalding County Manager William
“We’re (he and Wilson) asking for those ap-
peals to be given back to us (the Board of
Assessors) for an opportunity to settle them,
based on what we found during the 2012
revaluations,” Griggers said.
He explained that Spalding County Chief Tax
Assessor Tim Whalen supports the proposal,
and Norris also expressed her willingness to
cooperate with this plan.
“All we have to do now is get the Board of
Assessors’ approval on it and we’ll be able
to knock those things out much more ef-
ciently that the Board of Equalization would
be able to,” he said. “Then, if we’re unable to
reach a settlement, we’ll re-certify the ap-
peals and get them back over to her (Norris)
to schedule (BoEq) hearings.”
By law, these appeals must be certied
within 180 days of the conclusion of the ini-
tial Board of Assessors’ initial appeal process,
and that deadline has been far exceeded
for the 1,142 appellants from 2010 and 857
appellants in 2011. However, according to
Griggers, the law is a directional law, in that it
does not address the issue of consequences
in the event of noncompliance.
“Yes, they’re beyond the time limit, but they
need to get on with it,” Mills said. “I don’t
think the law contemplated this situation.
This is not an issue for which any nes or
penalties would be assessed to the county,
but it would certainly be cited as an irregu-
larity in a report.”
Mills said the law does not address that op-
tion of county ocials kicking the appeals
back to the Board of Assessors for reconsid-
“There’s really not a provision for going back
the other way, but if it resulted in a favorable
outcome for the taxpayers, that could be a
good thing,” she said. “They’re improvising
at this point. They simply must address the
issues at hand and get this taken care of.”
Griggers went on to say that this improvisa-
tion may be in Spalding County property
owners’ best interest, due to the outcome of
the comprehensive revaluation procedure
completed in June.
Although each of the 1,999 appellants were
originally unable to reach a resolution with
the Tax Assessor’s Oce during their original
appeal, future negotiations will be based on
revised numbers.
“We’re actually going to negotiate with a
lower number than if we had tried to hear
the appeals earlier before the Board of
Equalization. We’re going to use the revalu-
ation numbers,” he said. “In 2010 and 2011,
the numbers we had on the tax digest were
frozen from 2008, and that was at the height
of the real estate market. For many, those
values are lower now. There is a silver lining
to this delay in the clerk’s (Norris’) oce. It
has really worked in our favor because now
we have much more accurate numbers from
the revaluation to work with.”
These most recent gures indicate that
11,815 Spalding County properties increased
in value, 17,653 decreased and 582 remained
virtually unchanged.
“By us taking the appeals back under our
wing, if everyone agrees to that, we’ll be able
to negotiate out a number that we’re very
comfortable with,” Griggers said. “I’m fairly
certain the sta will be able to knock a huge
dent in this.”
He stressed that should this proposal gain
nal Board of Assessors approval, it will not
deny any Spalding County taxpayer the right
to an appeal before the BoEq should a reso-
lution remain elusive.
“The important thing in all this is letting the
property owners be heard,” Mills said. “That is
their right.” Ω
Outstanding Spalding County ad
valorem appeals an 'irregularity'
Backlog of
ad valorem
caused by

County ocials say 1,142
appeals led in 2010 and
857 led in 2011, for a total
of 1,999, have not yet been
The reason given for the
backlog? A change in the
Georgia law enacted in 2010
by the state legislature that
removed the Board of Equal-
ization appeals process from
the Tax Assessor's Oce and
placed the responsibility
with each county's clerk of
Spalding County Clerk of
Court Marcia Norris said the
change went into eect Jan.
1, 2011, and acknowledges
that no Board of Equalization
appeals have been heard
since that time.
“I got no help personnel-
wise and I just didn't have
the people to do it,” she
explained. “There was a mix-
up between the 2011-2012
budget where I was funded,
but I didn't nd that out until
we started working on the
2012-2013 budget. I went
back and showed (Spalding
County Manager) William
Wilson my paperwork, and
there's no indication of the
change for personnel.”
Spalding County Chief Tax
Assessor Tim Whalen said a
second aspect of the revised
tax code regarding ad va-
lorem notications has also
signicantly contributed to
the problem.
Prior to the revision, county
ocials were only required
to mail notications to
taxpayers when there was
a change in their property's
value. Now, the county must
mail notications to all prop-
erty owners annually. This
has resulted in a tremendous
increase in the number of
appeals led.
“Before, you had maybe
25 (taxpayers) appeal to
the Board of Equalization.
When we had a manage-
able number of appeals,
we could handle them in
this oce. I think the vast
majority were handled in the
year they were led, or at
least before the next year's
tax digest was set,”Whalen
said. “Instead of that number
going before the Board of
Equalization, now you have
2,000. They just dropped it in
their (county clerks of court)
laps without any planning,
and this is what it's come to,
at least in Spalding County,
Norris has announced the
hiring of a part-time em-
ployee to handle the appeal
workload, but that may be
insucient to resolve the
issue of outstanding 2010-
2011 Board of Equalization
According to Whalen, his
oce has 180 days to certify
all appeals moving forward
to that step in the appeals
process. Once that step is
taken, the clerk has no less
than 15, but no more than
20 days to notify property
owners of their appeal date.
Those appeals must also be
scheduled no less than 20,
but no more than 30 days
from the date of notication.
For the 1,999 outstanding
appeals from 2010-2011,
those dates have long since
When asked to explain how
those years' appeals could
possibly comply with the
time parameters required by
Georgia law, Whalen said, “I
don't know. I can't answer
that for you...the law really
requires, or intends, for a
speedy hearing of those ap-
peals cases.”
He said he is unaware of any
provision that allows for the
appeals to be heard outside
the required time frame, and
that he does not know of a
solution to this situation.
“That's something that
would have to be taken
up in the courts,”Whalen
said, before adding, “Well,
it wouldn't be written o.
There would have to be
some resolution to every ap-
peal, but I don't know who
would force the hand." Ω
County 'improvising'
to resolve the
State ocials
to oer
in wake of
Much work remains to be
completed before any Spald-
ing County property assess-
ments can move forward
in the appeals process, as
there is currently no certied
Board of Equalization (BoEq)
in place.
Spalding County Clerk of
Court Marcia Norris said after
she became responsible for
the BoEq, she lacked the
oce sta to accommodate
the additional workload, and
that although funding was
made available for her to
hire a clerk in the Fiscal Year
2012 budget, she was un-
aware it had been provided.
Spalding County Manager
William Wilson conceded
her point and explained that
during the budget process,
every line item is reviewed
with the exception of per-
He said Norris was made
aware of the funding for a
part-time oce assistant
to work 20 hours per week
early in the budget planning
process for Fiscal Year 2013,
which began in February
2012, yet no one was hired
to ll that position until very
recently. Norris said that
employee is now undergo-
ing the requisite background
check for employment and
will soon be present in her
In addition, Wilson said Nor-
ris was informed well over
a year ago that the funding
for the BoEq, previously pro-
vided to the Tax Assessor's
Oce, had been transferred
to her oce. These funds are
designated for mandatory
training for board members,
as well as operational costs.
For FY 2012 – which be-
gan July 1, 2011 – the full
$10,000 budget was allotted
to Norris, but no training
took place.
When budget talks for FY
2013 began in February,
the full $10,000 remained
untouched. Due to a sharp
increase in the number of
ad valorem assessment
appeals led in recent years
– a trend that is anticipated
to continue this year – an
additional $7,000 was allot-
ted for the establishment,
training and certication of
BoEq members. At this time,
the full $17,000 remains in
food & arts
5ept 1-13 2û12 3
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of songs from “Xanadu” to
“Let it Be.”
Becky Mozo-Adams ac-
companied Adam on piano
while his cousin, Carson
Willis, and friend, Alison
Kirkland joined him on
stage for a couple of mash-
ups. Adam enlightened
the audience that a “mash-
up” is the new hip term for
Perhaps the most moving
moment of the night was
when Adam’s brothers
joined him on stage. This
was the part of the show
that was top-secret. A
surprise he pulled o well,
melting the hearts of his
family and friends alike.
His step-brother, David
Fountain (and manager of
Bank Street Café) played
guitar while Adam har-
monized with his brother,
Brandon Grubbs, who
sang “The Day That I Die”
by Zac Brown Band. The
banter and stories between
the three were especially
moving. David shared how
the rst time he met Adam
was in a room before his
mother married Adam and
Brandon’s dad. They talked
about how none of them
really ever shared anything
in common. But as they
grew older, they connected
in music. “David asked me
to start singing some at
Eagles Way Church. That
sort of started bringing
us closer,” Brandon said.
David told the audience, “I
remember going to watch
Adam perform musical
theater when he was at
Furman. I was only 12
or 13, and I was bored to
tears. Then, Brandon was
into sports. I wasn’t. But
something changed as we
became adults. Music con-
nected us. Now, they are
two men I look up to and
Adam ended the show
with “Somewhere Over
the Rainbow” because it
was his mother’s favorite.
He dedicated the per-
formance to Bernadette
Peters, because ,“why not?”
The audience stood and
applauded the amazing
performance wrapped in
humor and a great deal of
charm. Smiles and cheers
lled the auditorium. There
is a demand for another
weekend of “No Fame, No
Shame.” When I questioned
Adam on the possibility of
a repeat performance, he
simply responded, “I think
we just might.” This is good
news for those who missed
it and for those who just
can’t get enough of Mr.
Adam Grubbs. Ω
For more information about
the Main Street Players and an
updated calendar, visit www.
« fame, cont.
The Gypsy Gourmet
calls Grin her home,
having been a Damn
Yankee/transplant for
over a year in our little
community. She is a
chef, a truck driver, a
blogger, a freelance
writer, and a ren-
egade foodie scouring
the country in search
of the perfect bite.
Imagine if you will,
the most sleep deprived night you’ve had
in a month; parents this isn’t a huge stretch
for you. Then you roll out of bed, get ready
for work, drag through your day, and nd
yourselves starved and exhausted after a list
of frustrations a mile long.
This commonplace scenario also happens to
me, with one dierence - most of the time at
the end of such a day, I’m hundreds of miles
from Grin, and home seems like a distant
The best way to nourish your body and soul
doesn’t come from a random convenience
store’s version of cellophane wrapped sad-
ness. It doesn’t come out of a paper sack
with grease stains on the side. It can come
right out of your kitchen, RV, or big rig with-
out much hassle.
I was dog tired on the border of Canada and
Michigan, had numerous trailer issues, and
found myself parked in a truck stop across
from a decent-sized grocery store awaiting
a service truck. I almost sprinted across the
street in my pursuit of something to satisfy
our craving for comfort food. My plan was
to pick a few simple ingredients, have a nice
meal, and go to bed.
In a few short moments inside I had as-
sembled the perfect meal. Some “weeds”
or mixed greens, fresh raspberries, a ripe
nectarine, a baguette of crusty French bread,
shredded parmesan cheese, and a certied
Black Angus ribeye steak.
I had a few things already in my
pantry in the truck, like dress-
ing, yellow grape tomatoes,
fresh blueberries, olive
oil, and an old standby,
spicy Tex-Joy season-
ing. Beautiful!
From preparation to
execution of it only
took about 20-30
minutes., and I
only had four
items to clean. I
served the quick
dinner thick
paper plates, and
we had a meal t
for kings in less than
30 minutes. Consider
this the next time you are
about to drive-thru some
fast food joint.
In the time it takes to wait in line,
order, and drive away disappointed,
you too can have a meal t for royalty.
Until next time folks, eat well, laugh often, be
free, and be you! Ω
On the road & in the kitchen with Gypsy Gourmet
Season both sides of the ribeye and set aside.
Assemble the salad with raspberries, diced nectarines, blueber-
ries, tomatoes, and a dusting of Parmesan cheese.
Cut the crusty baguette into slices, brush them with olive oil on
both sides, dust them with granulated garlic, and set the skillet
to medium high.
Add a few tablespoons of olive oil to the skillet and place the
steak and the four pieces of garlic toast in the same skillet. (For
a medium rare steak like mine, on a one inch cut, I recommend
four to ve minutes on each side. )
Coincidentally, that’s just enough time to ip the bread, sprinkle
some Parmesan cheese on top, and let the steak rest for a few
minutes before slicing.
p o l l o f t h e w e e k
Should the state government
continue to require the addition of
uoride to drinking water?
4 5ept 1-13, 2û12
The Ole Mill Auction House
Vickie L. Wilson
Lic. # AU003850
Consigners welcome!
Need to clear out that basement, garage or storage?
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Monday: Closed
Tues-Thurs: 4:30-9:30
Friday: 3-10
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1119 Zebulon Road. Griffin, GA
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Edward Jones Financial Advisor
Over 70 percent of Americans age
65 and older will need some form of
long-term care, whether it is at home,
in an assisted living facility or a nursing
home. No matter where you receive
care in retirement, associated costs can
be signicant. In fact, the cost for one
year of nursing home care is currently
more than $70,000.
Healthy people generally spend more
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than unhealthy people do. Why?
Healthy people live longer. At some
point during their longevity, they’re
likely to develop health problems and
then survive longer after an illness
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chronic care (medical and nursing
services that focus on long-term care).
The good news is you don’t need to be
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Learning more now and incorporating
that knowledge into your retirement
strategy is a powerful way you can plan
to receive care on your own terms.
Women are generally more aected by long-
term care than men.
- More women than men wlll need
chronic care (80 percent of women age
65+ vs. 60 percent of men)
- 70 percent of nurslng home resldents
are female
-The average nurslng home stay for
women is longer – 3.7 years, vs. 2.2
years for men
Why long-term care is an important topic for
Women typically live longer than men,
with half of women living until at least
age 90. This longevity may impact your
need for personal care.
Women may spend twice as many
years needing care as men and
consequently twice as much money on
care. The nancial strategies you build
now can provide you with options
regarding the long-term care you may
need, including where you receive it
and by whom.
Women frequently don’t have a spousal
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There are a number of strategies that
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long-term care needs when they arise,
thereby reducing the need to rely
on your children for care or nancial
Relying on medicare and medicaid may
not be an option. You may anticipate
you’ll be able to turn to Medicare or
Medicaid to help pay for long-term
care. In reality, this may not be an
option, as the following features of
these programs indicate:
- Llmlted nexlblllty - |n many states,
coverage is not available for in-home
care, which is where you may expect
and desire to receive necessary care.
- 8eneñt celllng - Medlcare pays a
maximum of 100 days of nursing home
care, and only if care is required after
an acute hospital stay for conditions
such as a heart attack or broken hip.
- Strlct quallñcatlon guldellnes -
Medicaid support for long-term care is
subject to strict income and asset tests
that vary by state, leaving Medicaid an
option primarily for those who have
minimal income and/or have already
spent down their assets.
Knowing these restrictions on
government-funded options may
impact how you build and fund your
retirement strategy – and that can
make a signicant dierence for you
and your family in later years. Ω
Whether a short visit or
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A woman's perspective on long-term care
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Co-Owner, A Novel Experience
This book is a gem for those
who like a good story laced
with British understated wit
and incisive, (but not cynical)
observations on how people
accommodate to others
who are from dierent
backgrounds. It also has a
lovely grown-up romance
that plays out against some
hilarious scenes of culture
clash in a small English
Major Pettigrew (retired)
leads a quiet, proper life
until his brother's death
sparks an unlikely friendship
with Mrs. Jasmina Ali, a
Pakistani shopkeeper and
recent widow. Their growing
aection for each other
unsettles her extended,
traditional family and the
Major's supercilious son,
Roger, who can't feature
his father stepping out of
his class. The entire village
of Edgecombe St. Mary
observes and comments on
the propriety of this most
unusual relationship.
The ensuing drama when
east meets west at the
local country club's annual
dance, complete with an ill-
advised "Indian" theme, is a
deftly-written commentary
on the best and worst of
society. The story is full of
nely-drawn characters
who populate the subplots,
including a seedy land
development scheme, the
hit-and-miss relationship of
the Major's son and his sleek
American girlfriend, Mrs. Ali's
progressive niece and her
traditional suitor, and the
struggle over an exquisite,
and valuable pair of Churchill
I rst read this book because
it was on the list for the
Drop-In, Guilt-Free Book
Group that meets at A Novel
Experience in Zebulon. I
thought it was going to be
a so-so, burlesque romp
of a book and I probably
would never have picked
it up, but for the book
club. It turned out to be
something much more. It's
a delightful, wry, complex,
risky love story that had me
alternately laughing out
loud at the Major's barbed
commentary and racing to
the end to see if the Major
and Mrs. Ali would succumb
to the pressures from their
respective societies.
The story covers themes that
will resonate with anyone
who has grown up or lived
in a small, tradition-bound
town that is experiencing
change. Embedded in an
entertaining story is an
examination of how we
dene our communities by
who does not belong--and
the miserable feeling of
being excluded.
In "Major Pettigrew"
author Helen Simonson,
a transplanted Brit, has
suggested a wonderful
response to this universal
occurrence--she says "I
hope that perhaps such
experiences are the grit that
makes a pearl in the oyster."
A calendar of book club
meetings can be found at Ω
Book review: Mr. Pettigrew's Last Stand
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Make allowance for each
other’s faults, and forgive
anyone who oends you.
Remember, the Lord forgave
you, so you must forgive oth-
ers. Colossians 3:13
It’s easy to remember the
forgive part. Okay, it’s easi-
er. It’s the rst part we tend
to overlook: Make allow-
ance for each other’s faults.
Most of us have a dicult
time making allowances
for each other’s faults. In
other words, we don’t allow
people to fail us. We forget
to make those allowances.
The truth is every person
we are in relationship with
will fail us. My spouse will
fail me. My children will fail
me. My friends will fail me.
And, I will fail them. The
key is to not allow those
moments to dene that
relationship. Instead, we
must view it as a moment
in time. A moment where
we allowed that person to
fail us. A moment where
we forgave them as soon as
they did. A moment. That’s
Even though none of us
think of ourselves as per-
fect, we still have a tough
time allowing others to be
awed. As a parent, I have
to constantly remind myself
to allow my children fail. I
have to guard against over-
parenting. There are times
I try to prevent them from
failing instead of letting
them to make mistakes.
Allowing them to fail. I
want to protect them from
failure. But, if I could pro-
tect them from every single
failure, they would never
see their need for a Savior.
I’m going to fail you. You’re
going to fail me. When
we do, we have a gap. On
one side of that gap is my
expectation of you. On
the other side of that gap
is what actually happens.
We choose what goes in
the gap when someone
fails us. We can ll that gap
with bitterness, anger, or
hurt. Or, we can ll that gap
Make Allowances
Question: Sometimes my girl
friends and I will share medica-
tions such as antibiotics, Adderal
or Xanax when one of us has a real
need for it and the other has some
left over. Is this safe?
Since this question came
up, I have heard about
people talking with their
friends and discovering
that they have similar
ailments. A well-meaning
friend may oer his or her
prescription remedy so that
you can see if it works for
you. It seems like a friendly
gesture, even benign, but it
is dangerous.
The decision to take a drug
of any kind should not be
taken lightly. Your physician
has studied long and hard
to prepare to make the
kinds of critical decisions
that go into prescribing
medications. A prescription
is given to an individual for
a specic problem, taking
into consideration that
person’s history, physi-
cal exam, imaging when
appropriate, and other
diagnostic information.
Trading prescriptions is full
of problems. First, drugs
are controlled poisons.
Each has side eects that
may be hard to predict or
control. To make mat-
ters worse, your internal
biology is unique to you, a
concept known as bio-
specicity. That means side
eects that may not aect
your friend may manifest
in you.
The same holds true for al-
lergies, which are also hard
to predict or control. While
your friend may not be
allergic to drug in question,
you might be. Once the
drug is inside your system,
an allergic response may be
disastrous. Another point
that is just as serious is that
you may have a condition,
known or unknown, that
makes a given contraindi-
cated. Once it is ingested,
it may be too late to make a
dierent choice.
Many people take a
number drugs, prescrip-
tion and nonprescription.
A large number of people
take over-the-counter
supplements for one thing
or another. This raises the
possibility of drug interac-
tions with any foreign sub-
stance. Taking someone
else’s prescription leaves
you wide open to the pos-
sibility that your drugs will
ght each other, and the
battleground is you.
It is also possible that a
drug may mask serious
symptoms that are warning
you of a condition. If you
suppress those symptoms,
you may delay or hide
something that would
have sent you to your own
physician for help. This is
particularly true with any
drug that suppresses the
immune system, such as
steroids or nonsteroidal
anti-inammatory drugs.
Drugs are metabolized
by the body and then
dealt with by the liver
and kidneys for excretion.
Many drugs will harm these
organs. You can really get
into trouble with organ
damage if there is a drug
interaction or allergic
Many drugs are dosed
according to your size and
weight. Using a drug that
is formulated for someone
else can give you a dose
that is too large or too
Do you ever keep drugs
in a bottle other than the
one that came from the
pharmacy? If you do, then
it is possible that you have
no idea what the drug
really is because it is now
mislabeled. How well you
trust your friend’s memory?
Do you trust that memory
with your very life?
So you can see that bor-
rowing someone else’s
drugs is borrowing a lot
of potential trouble. It
is a form of gambling in
which winning may be just
surviving, and losing could
be--well, not surviving. The
next time a solicitous friend
oers you their prescrip-
tion, “just say no.” Ω
The dangers of sharing prescription drugs
with forgiveness, grace, and
allowances for that person’s
faults. We choose what
goes in the gap.
Paul follows up Colossians
3:13 with this:
14 Above all, clothe your-
selves with love, which binds
us all together in perfect
harmony. 15 And let the
peace that comes from Christ
rule in your hearts. For as
members of one body you
are called to live in peace.
And always be thankful.
Get up every morning
and wrap yourself in love.
Choose peace over being
right. And, be thankful for
those people in your life.
Even when they fail you. Ω
friendship with a young
man named Chris Medina.
Although they were in
separate platoons, on Sept.
1, 2010, Medina was set to
go out on patrol close to
Blake's camp in the Hel-
mand Province.
“Blake wasn't even suppose
to be going out that day.
He volunteered to go, be-
cause he wanted to go on
patrol with his friend,” Jane
Rodgers said. “He went out
any time he could.”
Because his platoon
remained at its camp,
Blake was able to take out
his favorite weapon – the
SAW, or Squad Automatic
Weapon, which res up to
1,000 rounds per minute
– he was with one of his
best friends and it was a
beautiful day with blue
skies overhead.
“It was a great day for him,”
Jane said.
Less than four hours after
he left camp, Lance Cpl.
Christopher Blake Rodg-
ers, only 20-years-old, was
taken from his family who
loved him more than life
itself, killed by a single bul-
let red in the midst of a
horric attack.
“He was killed in a complex
ambush,” Chris Rodgers
said, his voice breaking
with grief. “They were
under heavy re from mul-
tiple directions.”
As the two year anniver-
sary of their son's death
approaches, Chris and Jane
now reect on the war he
fought and the shifting
sands of what once was the
overwhelming support of
the American people.
“They're saying there's no
reason for us to be over
there, but for people like us
and countless others who
have lost sons, daughters,
husbands and wives, when
people say there's no rea-
son for us to be there, it's a
slap in our faces,” Jane Rod-
gers said. “I do not believe
Blake was over there for no
reason. I do not believe his
death was for naught.”
“He was over there defend-
ing our country and our
safety,” Chris Rodgers said.
“The sights, the sounds, the
smells – we'll never experi-
ence what they do, but
they'll never forget it. That
should be respected and
While Chris and Jane know
their son will never be
forgotten, and they are
thankful for the rich legacy
he left behind. Even so,
people still understandably
struggle to know what to
say to parents who have
lost so much.
“People are afraid some-
times to talk about him.
They don't want to bring
him up or say his name
because they're afraid it
will upset us,” she said.
“Well, not a day goes by
that we don't think of him.
Some days, the grief does
feel new, but we will never
forget him and we want
others to remember him,
too. I know he did doing
what he loved, and what
God intended for him to
do. We want people to
celebrate his life.” Ω
6 5ept 1-13, 2û12
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Thomaston-Upson County
Archive, which began in
“Today, they have what
was an old, small school
library that’s full of historical
records. It’s astonishing,” he
Not only does the archive
provide information to resi-
dents, but also has grown to
be quite a draw for visitors,
particularly the “heart of
the genealogy and ancestry
“They’re getting tourist –
three or four thousand every
year. It draws people from all
over the country who had a
relative who lived in Upson
County. If you do genealogy,
they ask that you give a copy
to the archive, and they have
shelves full of those records.
You may be able to trace
your family and nd that
someone has done the work
for you,” he said.
“You can go there and pull
up census records from
1860, 1870; you can see
who lived there; who owned
property; you can see who
led suit against who; and
you can learn if you had
relatives who served on
boards, and view old school
year books and even phone
books – it’s all there. If you
want to do historical re-
search for something you’re
writing, you can go there
and learn about a small
Georgia town going all the
way back to the 1800s. It’s an
incredible collection.”
Impressed and encouraged
by what has been accom-
plished in Upson County,
Morrow said he has received
much information from
Chief Archivist Penny Cli,
who has advised him on
steps to take to begin the
process in Grin.
He said he has taken a
number of groups to Upson
County, including city and
county school ocials, fel-
low members of the Grin
Board of Commissioners and
local history enthusiasts, and
with each trip, excitement
for the project has grown.
He now has organized
a team including Grin
Special Projects Coordinator
Vicki Hyatt and the Grin-
Spalding Historical Society,
which has already taken
steps to establish a local
The Grin-Spalding County
School System has provided
space in its Taylor Street
building directly across the
street from the old Coca Cola
building, and the city has
utilized prison crews to clean
and prepare the facility.
“A lot of individuals and
groups are excited now be-
cause this archive has been
an outstanding need in our
community and it’s now go-
ing to be met,” Morrow said.
“I hope one day, we’ll grow
to where we have a part-
time archivist, but for now,
we need volunteers who will
work with us to help collect,
sort and organize these
documents, and we’re look-
ing very strongly for folks
who have historic records
and documents they may be
willing to let us have, or at
least make copies of.”
Those interested in assisting
with the eort to preserve
Grin-Spalding County
history by volunteering or
donating historical records
to the archive are invited to
attend a meeting to be held
at its future home, begin-
ning at 7 p.m. Sept. 24. Ω
« archives, cont.
« sacrice, cont.
This photograph of Marine Lance Cpl. Christopher Blake Rodgers was
taken the morning of Sept. 1, 2012. Less than four hours later, the
young Grin native was killed in a complex ambush in the Helmand
Province of Afghanistan. Jane Rodgers said the smile on her son's face
was typical, because he was happy to be living out his life's purpose by
serving his country as a United States Marine.
level of uoride can be set at the lowest
end of the current optimal range. In con-
junction with the HHS recommendation,
the Environmental Protection Agency also
reviewed the amount of uorine allowed
in drinking water.
Peter Silva, the EPA assistant administrator
for the Oce of Water, in 2011 said these
actions were based upon “the most up to
date scientic data,” which demonstrated
that over time, Americans’ increased ac-
cess to more sources of uoride since the
1940s, when it was rst introduced in the
U.S., has resulted in increasing incidents of
dental uorosis, marked by “barely visible
lacy white markings or spots” on tooth
Grin Director of Public Works Brant Keller
said he has been contacted by Johnson
regarding his concerns, but has not yet
reviewed the data he provided.
“Right now, I don’t really have an opinion,”
Keller said. “I’ve got to evaluate the infor-
mation and see how it compares with the
CDC’s (Center for Disease Control) informa-
tion, and see where they’re going. But, the
CDC is adamant about keeping uoride
in the water. As late as 2006, there was
a major study conducted on uoride in
water. I haven’t had a chance to review it,
but the CDC is sound in it’s recommenda-
tion. It must be pretty substantial, because
they’ve managed to convince everyone
else that uoride needs to remain in the
According to Keller, uoridation of the
local water supply has been in place since
the 1950s, and the process currently costs
in the neighborhood of $20,000 to $30,000
annually for the chemical and distribution
“It’s part of our permit conditions and
stopping the uoridation would require
the water permit to be amended,” Keller
said. “I’ve been here 21 years, and this is
the rst time anyone has brought it up.
Just because one or two people are ques-
tioning it doesn’t mean it’s the best thing
for everyone. Sooner or later, though, the
city will have to take a stance on it, so
whoever has the best science, we’ll take a
look at it.”
Because the distribution of uoride is
state-mandated for every water system in
Georgia, and to stop the process locally,
voter approval through a referendum
would be required.
Johnson has been investigating that
process, and said the process is such that
it would be dicult to accomplish prior
to the Nov. 6 election. He does, however,
intend to continue educating both of-
cials and the community with regard to
uoridation, and he plans to pursue the
referendum in 2013.
“More than 200 communities have voted
to stop uoridation. Anytime people are
asked if they want to do it (uoridate
the water supply), they say no,” he said.
“There’s a movement to stop uoridation,
and that’s where we are – we’re basically
spreading the word. It’s not that they’re
doing a bad job. We’re just trying to make
a good thing even better.” Ω
« uoridation, cont.
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101 N. Hill Street
Downtown Grin
Sta writer;
Grin Fire-Rescue (GF-R)
has entered into a mu-
tual-aid agreement with
Spalding Regional Medical
Center Emergency Medi-
cal Services, which will
allow the city’s personnel
to legally assist with major
emergencies outside of its
While GF-R has histori-
cally responded whenever
necessary to incidents that
occurred outside the city
limits, this agreement
formalizes that working
“If there was a situation
where they needed assis-
tance and it wasn’t avail-
able elsewhere, they could
call on us legally,” said GF-R
Chief Tommy Jones. “But
the mutual-aid agreement
does more than just pro-
tect the re department.
It also helps to solidify the
relationship between de-
partments. It creates more
solid ground.”
The agreement follows
basically the same lines of
assistance that currently
occurs in the city.
“There’s criteria that has to
be met,” said Grin Public
Service Director Frank
Strickland. “What we don’t
want to have is for us to
become the primary care
responders when that’s
not what we’re here to
do, so yes, there’s a list of
what we’ll respond to and
there are some calls that
dispatch isn’t even going to
send us to.”
“There are seven dierent
categories of calls when
we assist EMS,” Jones said.
“They are cardiac arrests;
severe bleeding, which
could mean a shooting
or stabbing – something
of a severe nature; chok-
ing calls; any unconscious
victim; any fall from over
ten feet, which would be a
standard roof line or high-
er; any rescue call, such as
someone who is trapped in
a building, if someone has
fallen into any type of pit,
well or trench where a wall
would need to be shored
up or if a piece of heavy
equipment has fallen on
them; any situation where
someone would have to be
removed from a dangerous
environment other than a
re; and motor vehicle ac-
cidents with injuries or haz-
ards. That is what the city
manager (Kenny Smith)
and public safety director
have authorized us to assist
EMS with. That keeps us
within our training param-
eters. A large portion of
our personnel are EMTs
(emergency medical tech-
nicians), but we’re not a
licensed medical provider.
All of our capacities are on
an assist EMS capacity.”
GF-R will continue to
respond to all calls of these
types within the city limits,
but will only do so in the
county under limited cir-
“Say, if they had a major
event, they could call us
out into the county if they
needed us. I would say
it’s more for catastrophic
events,” said Jones. “It’s
about service. We believe
these mutual-aid agree-
ments are a great tool to
build a better working rela-
tionship between depart-
ments and provide better
service to citizens.” Ω
Grin Fire signs mutual aid agreement with SRMC
5ept 1-13 7
the budget.
Norris has reported to city
and county commissioners
that she now has eight BoEq
members and anticipates
the appointment of a ninth
during the October term of
the Grand Jury. In addition,
she stated that three of the
current members previously
completed their training
and will soon be prepared to
begin hearing appeals.
However, Wilson said there
is no record that any cur-
rent BoEq member has had
the mandatory continuing
education training required
annually, and therefore,
none of the eight are eligible
to hear appeals at this time.
Norris had announced it was
her goal to send all members
to training this year, most
likely in mid-December.
Upon completion, Spalding
County would have nine cer-
tied BoEq members, which
would constitute two board
and three alternates.
Due to the backlog of ap-
peals – 1,999 – that are yet
to be addressed from 2010
and 2011, as well as those
stemming from the 2012
revaluation process, Larry
Griggers, a consultant with
Ad Valorem Tax Appraisal
and Collection Services
(AVTACS), has appealed to
state ocials for special as-
Griggers, formerly the direc-
tor of the Georgia Depart-
ment of Revenue Property
Tax Division, was able to
arrange an intervention in
the interest of simplifying
the board members' training.
“They classied this as an
emergency situation and
have agreed to schedule
private training that we're
going to hold here in Spald-
ing County,” he said. “They
will be certied and ready to
go when we nish hearing
the initial 2012 appeals.
That's going to have us in
good standing when we get
through the process and are
ready to certify this year's
appeals, and re-certify any
2011 and 2012 appeals that
will move forward to the
Board of Equalization.”
In addition, Griggers said
a 2011 legislative revision
allows Georgia counties to
establish one BoEq for every
10,000 properties, so rather
than having nine members,
Spalding County will be
allowed to train and certify
18, which will include nine
board members and nine
Not only will this signicant-
ly speed up the overdue ap-
peals process, but because
the private training will
be conducted in Spalding
County, costs will be greatly
reduced as food and lodging
will not need to be provided
to board members.
“It was a perfect storm of ap-
peals of a magnitude we've
never seen before,” Griggers
said. “But I'm hopeful we
can make lemonade out of
lemons.” Ω
« state, cont.
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Costa Rican wood items
Organic Jam, Jellies & Spices
Shabby chic furniture
Spice of the Month club
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