GPC professor says of Mayan prediction, ‘it’s not the end of the world’
he Australians will be among the first to know if the Maya were right. “They’re already building underground shelters there,” said Ernie Guyton. Guyton, a Georgia Perimeter College anthropology professor, is talking about the ancient Mayan long calendar, which some say predicts the end of the world on Dec. 21. Those on the other side of the world, including Australia, will awaken first to this date—if they awaken at all, that is. “Will Dec. 21 be a horrific cataclysmic end-of-days event for the human species? A positive spiritual or societal transformation? Or just another day in the life of our planet?” Those are the questions Guyton poses in lectures on the topic. The speculation stems from the prediction found a few years ago in hieroglyphics on a tablet near a Mayan monument in Tortuguero, Mexico. It foretells that “the 13th Bak’tun will be finished on four ajaw, the third of Uniiw ... It will be the descent of the nine support gods to …” What does it all mean? Guyton explained that a Bak’tun equals 394 years and that Dec. 21, 2012, marks—approximately—the end of the 13th Bak’tun, a span of 5,126 years from the beginning of Mayan time. The parts of the tablet that actually say “what happens” and what actually “will descend” relating to this date have eroded over time, making it indecipherable, Guyton said.
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“I recommend investing in a 2013 calendar.”
IS SHE WHYIS SHE SO SOHAPPY ? WHY
Ernie Guyton, an anthropology professor at Georgia Perimeter College, says those who believe the Mayans predicted Dec. 21 as the end of the world should remember the Mayans also thought the world was flat. Photo by Leita Cowart
While he’s dubious Interestingly, he added, people from writing books Writings from the 16th about the long calendar prethe present day Maya as a and making their own precentury predict the destrucdiction, Guyton noted that whole don’t attach much dictions of what the Maya tion and rebirth of the nine the Maya have been spot significance to the end of the meant by the end of the 13th levels of the subterranean on with predicting celestial Bak’tun 13, nor do classic Bak’tun. underworld and the 13 levevents—including the alignperiod hieroglyphics give Guyton noted that the els of the skies, the robbery of the “great serpent,” the ment of planets and constelit much due. And the Maya collapse of the classical deterioration of the sky and lations in the sky and the haven’t used the long calen- Maya civilization left the the collapse of the Earth. cycles of Venus and Mars. dar since the classic Mayan Dec. 21, 2012, date in obMany modern-day books “Their solar calendar was civilization died out around scurity for more than 500 also have latched onto the more accurate than the EuA.D. 900. years. “The subject of the end-of-the-world scenario, ropean calendar at the time,” Guyton quoted Mayan end times doesn’t come up but anthropologists and arhe said. ethnographer Jose Huchm again until the 16th cenBut, he cautioned, “Reas saying, “If I went to any tury,” he said. He sees a cor- cheologists view the long Maya-speaking communities relation between the revival calendar prediction as more member that we’re investing a lot of time and energy into and asked people what is go- of this legend with the Span- of a media and New Age frenzy. a prediction by a people who ing to happen in (December) ish colonization of Central Because she gets her news updates online from the The Champ Still, Guyton gets grilled thought the world was flat.” 2012, they wouldn’t have America and a renewal of Because she gets her news updates online from the The Champion. “They’ve any idea. That the world was Maya’s cultural desire to Because shetheir her newsone by his students. The Champion. And for those wonderonline from about ing whether to forgo holiday going to end? They wouldn’t reclaim gets heritage, updates been asking the it. Some shopping, Guyton has some believe you. We have real now influenced with Chris- are very interested; others are nervous that world iswww.facebook.com/championnewspaper advice: “I recommend inconcerns, like rain.” tian “apocalyptic rapture” coming to the end,” he said. vesting in a 2013 calendar.” But that hasn’t stopped mythology.
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The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
From left, DeKalb County residents view a map of the county that includes the cities and unincorporated areas of DeKalb. Photos by Carla Parker
County’s role questioned as new cities form
by Carla Parker firstname.lastname@example.org
What would be the role of DeKalb County going forward if more cities are created? That was the question asked by DeKalb legislators at a Nov. 29 meeting held by the Senate Study Committee on the Incorporation of the City of DeKalb. State Sen. Gloria Butler (D-55) chairs the committee that includes Democratic senators from DeKalb and Sen. Fran Millar (R- 40). The meeting featured a presentation by the University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government on the process of creating a city. The Governmental Services and Research department of the Carl Vinson Institute has done studies on annexations and consolidations for cities in Georgia, including Dunwoody and Brookhaven. John O’Lonney, a retired Carl Vinson Institute faculty member, said one of the issues the institute looks at when doing a study on a new city is the fiscal viability. “We define fiscal viability as the ability to provide the same level of services that the county is already providing using the same tax and fee rates in this new area,” O’Lonney said. “If you don’t get the same level of services you’re not viable.” O’Lonney said a new city should have a good manager and be able to provide citizens the same level of services as they are currently being provided by the county. “We can’t guarantee that,” he said. “We can’t guarantee good management and we can’t guarantee good decision making by whoever the elected body is,” he said. “Our role is to ensure that citizens won’t see something dramatic happen in terms of tax increases or cuts in services.” However, some citizens in unincorporated DeKalb County are concerned about a tax increase if another city is formed. Sen. Gail Davenport (D-44), who represents the southwest DeKalb County area, said south DeKalb residents have been feeling neglected and are concerned about being left with the brunt of property taxes and having to pick up the “slack.” “Their concerns were if you keep creating all these cities then the other part of south DeKalb would not flourish and would not benefit,” she said. O’Lonney said creating a city could have an effect on unincorporated areas because the people creating the city are pulling their taxes and fees from the county to pay for their own services. “Sometimes that can mean they get a tax decrease, sometimes the tax increases,” he said. “It depends on the value of the properties and fees that just went away. But, they don’t have as much area or people to serve.” Millar said the creation of new cities will cost the unincorporated areas more money if the county continues to provide services to the new cities. “What I think happens as these cities are created is DeKalb County has lost the revenue, but they’ve kept the people on board that were doing the work before,” Millar said. “And if you don’t have to provide the services, why do you keep the people? They’ve kept the payroll up there and they haven’t eliminated staff, although they no longer provide service in that area.” If that continues, what will be the real role of the county going forward, Millar asked. “Because it’s not duplication of services,” he said. “If the county chooses not to eliminate the staff that used to service Dunwoody it’s going to cost more money and that’s been the problem.”
Sen. Gloria Butler chairs the Sen- David Tanner (back) and John ate Study Committee on the Incor- O’Lonney give a presentation on poration of the City of DeKalb. city creation to DeKalb legislators.
Sen. Gail Davenport voiced her concerns about how a new city will effect south DeKalb.
A raw sewage treatment facility in Doraville shuttered its doors and moved out of the area after a leak contaminated nearly 40 square yards of an industrial area in the city. Photos by Daniel Beauregard
by Daniel Beauregard email@example.com
Doraville water treatment facility shuts down after spill
for the spill, Industrial Water Treatment, is located at 2600A School Drive. According to city officials, the company has said it will be shutting down its operations at the site of the spill. A press release stated that Industrial Water Treatment is a business that accepts waste from contractors that pump septic tanks. The company treats the water with various agents and separates the solids from the liquids. The solids are hauled away to a land fill and the liquids go, by way of the private sewer line, into the DeKalb County sewer system. Vickie Elisa, director of communications for the DeKalb County Board of
A sewage leak in Doraville contaminated approximately 40 square yards of soil Nov. 19. City officials said the leak, which occurred in Doraville’s industrial sector, also permeated the surrounding area with the smell of excrement. “This is obviously an unacceptable incident but the city, county and board of health’s response to the incident has been swift and thorough,” Doraville Mayor Donna Pittman said. “Local officials will closely monitor the cleanup until it is complete.” The plant responsible
Health, said investigators were sent from her department to investigate the site, along with DeKalb County Code Enforcement officials. “As far as we’re concerned at the Board of Health, the situation has been resolved,” Elisa said. After county and city officials determined there was a sewage leak they issued notices Nov. 21 to the owner of the plant to cease operations, repair the leaks and clean up the affected area. Although the spill was a “serious violation” of local ordinances and state law, officials stated that the incident has not been deemed a threat to surrounding businesses or nearby neighborSee Spill on Page 3A
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
School system discusses changing attendance zones, decommissioning schools
by Daniel Beauregard firstname.lastname@example.org To accommodate a growing student population, the DeKalb County School District (DCSD) has proposed adjusting the district’s attendance boundaries for the 2016-17 school year. School officials said DCSD’s population grew by Joel Harper, seen here in both pictures, is back in jail after an admore than 800 students this ministrative mistake caused his release. year, which brings its total enrollment to approximately 99,000 students. The DeKalb County Board of Education recently received a draft of a school reorganization plan for the by Andrew Cauthen Sgt. Adrion Bell said email@example.com investigators located Harper 2016-17 school year, which is also the foundation for through their investigation After 11 days of freedom, and “did not go on any pub- a five-year local facilities plan. a man mistakenly released lic tips.” According to a press from jail was recaptured Investigators received release, the proposed facilby DeKalb Sheriff’s Office information leading them to Fugitive Squad and SWAT 5276 Cedar Rock Drive and ity plan is a state report that outlines the schools and atTeam. set up undercover surveiltendance line adjustments Joel Ledarius Harper lance at approximately 5 was captured Nov. 30 after p.m., according to the media beginning in the 2013-2014 a three-hour standoff at his release. They surrounded the school year that the complete school organization family home on Cedar Rock home and later concluded Drive in Lithonia. that Harper was inside with being finished in the 201617 school year. his 4-year-old daughter. On Aug. 31, Harper DeKalb Schools spokesAfter negotiations to surwas sentenced to 10 years man Jeff Dickerson said the render failed, SWAT entered in prison for two counts state will give the district the home and apprehended of armed robbery and one count of aggravated assault. Harper who was hiding in a funding for a certain number of seats, and if DCSD exbedroom closet, according In a public announcement ceeds that number it won’t to the release. SWAT Team Nov. 30 before Harper was get any additional funding. members found his daughlocated, DeKalb County “We went through this ter unharmed in an upstairs Sheriff Thomas Brown during the previous redisbedroom. stated, “Harper should be tricting process,” Dickerson Harper was transported considered desperate and said. to the DeKalb County Jail dangerous.” District officials said the without further incident and Harper was released from his daughter was returned to goal of the five-year local the DeKalb County Jail facility plan is to support her family members. Nov. 21 due to an adminisBrown has taken the nec- teacher and student success trative error, according to a by easing overcrowding at essary steps to ensure such media release. Jail officials administrative errors are not some schools while building discovered the error after repeated, Bell said. “The in- student capacity in certain a records audit and immedividuals responsible will go diately turned the informathrough whatever training or tion over to Fugitive Squad disciplinary action deemed investigators who began CITY OF CHAMBLEE PUBLIC NOTICE necessary.” searching for Harper. areas of the district. The plan also incorporates requirements for new specialized programs, including a comprehensive arts school, to offer students well-rounded educational experiences. “After hearing from several top business leaders about the skills needed for job success in the 21st century, it is clear now more than ever that we must prepare our students for the sciences, increase technological innovation and encourage business entrepreneurship,” said Superintendent Cheryl Atkinson. “That is the growth sector of jobs for our youth.” The new plan also proposes decommissioning 12 schools that were slated to receive capital improvements in the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) Program. “It’s an effort to bring efficiencies to the system and to reduce the excess capacity in our system,” Dickerson said. “It’s not etched in stone; it’s just an idea to start a conversation.” In 2011, eight schools were decommissioned under then Interim Superintendent Ramona Tyson’s redistricting plan. Many residents were concerned about the boundaries that were redrawn and the schools that closed but Dickerson said it was a necessary, albeit painful, step to better the school district. “It was painful but it was successful,” Dickerson said. “I think that everybody realized at the end of the day that they weren’t going to get all of what they wanted but in the long run it would benefit the district.” Dickerson said the new proposal is not “nearly as severe” as the previous redistricting plan and it will be subject to board revision and parental input. However, he said the need to reduce the number of empty seats in the district isn’t subject to change. “We need to deal with population and demographic changes and really get in line with state guidelines,” Dickerson said. “We can’t have a large number of empty seats in our classrooms.” If the plan moves forward, school officials will recommend to the board that the projects for the older facilities slated to be decommissioned be deemed unnecessary. The plan also asks that the funds for the older projects be reallocated to cover costs to accelerate the completion of new schools and other capital improvement projects. According to officials, expected revisions will consider K-7 or K-8 programs and funding based on a cash-flow model versus a bond-funded model. There will also be no impact to the overall SPLOST budget, a press release stated. The board will meet again Dec. 6 at 2 p.m. to continue discussing the proposed school organization and is expected to make its final review and vote at its Dec. 10 meeting at 6 p.m.
SWAT team recaptures man mistakenly released from jail
Spill Continued From Page 2A
hoods. Elisa confirmed that it appears the treatment facility is planning to move out of the area. DeKalb County spokesman Burke Brennan said the revocation of their “industrial pretreatment” permit was mailed Dec. 3 and hand delivered to the treatment facility. “It is taped on the door and a copy put in the mail slot,” Brennan said. “The tanks were disconnected from the sewer and the bypass in the back was cut and elevated disconnecting it. There is also a banner on the building saying for lease.” Brennan said the county is continuing to investigate the property owner to determine if the facility was being leased or if Industrial Water Treatment is the actual owner.
An initial draft copy of the proposed 2013 Operating Budget for the City of Chamblee will be available for review at City Hall on Thursday, November 15, 2012. A copy of the proposed 2013 Operating Budget for the City of Chamblee will be available for review at City Hall on Friday, December 7, 2012. A public hearing on the proposed budget will be held on Monday, December 10, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. in the Civic Center, 3540 Broad Street. Any persons wishing to be heard on the budget may appear and be heard. The City Council will adopt the budget on Tuesday, December 18, 2012. The meeting will begin at 7:30 p.m. and will be held in the Civic Center, 3540 Broad Street.
Repeal stand your ground
ground” and were not defending themselves from an advancing threat. These laws need to be repealed. The man charged in the Davis murder is 45-year-old Michael Dunn of Brevard County, Fla. According to witnesses and news accounts Dunn approached the teens complaining their music was too loud. Granted it is annoying how loudly some of our teens play their music, regardless of their race. But is that a reason to pump nearly a dozen bullets into a car of some loud mouth teens? Dunn reportedly pulled alongside the SUV where Davis and the other teens were listening to music. Davis was in the back seat. Dunn reportedly asked them to turn down their music. As one can imagine, Davis and Dunn exchanged words and, according to reports, Dunn started firing into the SUV. Dunn’s girlfriend drove them off, but he later returned to Brevard County and was arrested after witnesses provided his tag number and other information. Here’s the clincher. Dunn may have protection under Florida’s so-called Stand Your Ground Law. It’s the same statute that George Zimmerman is using to justify killing Trayvon Martin. The Advancement Project, a human and civil rights organization, has renewed its call for the repeal of Stand Your Ground laws around the country. It’s not about self-defense, they say, but sanctions killing people at will. It is no surprise that the most high profile cases involving these laws also involve Black teenage boys. It was my fear when Georgia’s law was passed and remains so today. Dunn should pay for the crime of murder in the Davis slaying. If the noise of the music was a nuisance or an annoyance, Dunn should have called the police and let them handle it. I am sure they would have been happy to bring a peaceful resolution to the problem. No, I think Dunn was showing off in front of his girlfriend – gun blazing, testosterone pumping like action heroes John Wayne or Arnold Schwarzenegger. Dunn willfully took matters into his own hands and with malicious intent took a young man’s life in the process, just as Zimmerman did in the Martin slaying.
Opinion The Newslady
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7 , 2012
Another teenaged Black male is gunned down at the hands of a White man “feeling threatened and standing his ground” in Florida. The similarities between the death of young Trayvon Martin and now 17-year-old Jordan Russell Davis are glaring. Each of the teens was minding his own business. Each was confronted by a White male. Each was unarmed. Each was shot to death when they reacted to the confrontation with a White man who felt threatened. When our “Stand Your Ground Law” was introduced in the Georgia Senate, I expressed the opinion that the law would create open season on young Black males who are often “threatening” by their mere existence. The Martin and Davis tragedies bear out that foreboding notion. Their assailants “took their
How much longer do we think these young Black males will be the clay pigeons for someone’s target practice? History has a way of repeating itself when the errors of the past are not corrected. I pray the families of young Black males keep instilling in them the value of all life, avoiding trouble and the folly of retaliating against ignorance. Sadly, human nature is such that at some point the laws of selfpreservation kick in and the results could be catastrophic. Lawmakers in Georgia and other states that have Stand Your Ground Laws should make it a priority to repeal them. One Trayvon Martin case is one too many. A high ranking government official was heard to say, “One time might be an accident, twice is a trend and three times is a habit.” Let’s not get into the habit of watching young men die at the hands of men who feel “threatened.” Steen Miles, The Newslady, is a retired journalist and former Georgia state senator. Contact Steen Miles at Steen@dekalbchamp.com.
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
Opinion One Man’s Opinion
A cliff is a tough place to meet in the middle
ments, once again declaring disaster averted and our republic saved. Bull****. Pardon me, and thank my editors for softening that second syllable. This deep spending hole has been several presidents and sessions of Congress in the making. Though the need to begin a clear path out is long overdue, getting there will also take “Under capitalism, man exploits time. In the near term Democrats and man. And under communism, it is Republicans alike on Capitol Hill just the reverse.”— John Kenneth need to lead. Both sides must cross Galbraith (1908-2006), a Canadianthe great divide and bring to the table American economist considered both a spirit of compromise and real a leading proponent of Keynesian concessions of lasting cost and value. economic theory and 20th century Tax hikes are coming for the American liberalism. wealthy. There are however not enough millionaires to squeeze to I am not an economist, nor am a close next year’s project deficit fortune teller. My areas of expertise of another trillion dollars. Entitleare more generally rooted in comment spending, the largest driver of munications, history, politics and growth in our federal budget, closely public policy. This last election was linked to the ever escalating costs somewhat surprising to me, as a very of healthcare simply has to be addissatisfied electorate largely returned dressed. Means testing for benefits, a Congress and White House that rewith new income floors and a move portedly they are not happy with. to increase the eligibility age for Which brings us to the continental retirement as well as eligibility for divide and fiscal cliff, and our chalMedicare must be considered. lenge to see our nation’s leadership A potentially logical place to start reach a compromise before we autois to simply freeze all government matically trigger significant cross-the- spending at 2011 or 2012 spending board tax hikes (end of all Bush era levels. This means all spending—detax cuts) as well as significant spend- fense spending, entitlements, cost of ing cuts, disproportionately impacting living adjustments (COLAs), federal our defense budget. Most pundits are employee salaries, benefits and penpredicting an 11th hour “hail Mary,” sions, etc. closer to Christmas Eve, followed by An idea proposed by Congressa blur of photo ops and pronounceman Connie Mack (R-FL), and U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY), has merit. It’s called “The Penny Plan.” The Congressional Budget Office and both chambers of Congress typically build budgets with an annual increase in expense of between 5-7 percent over the prior year. Doing simple math, and without compounding the interest on the debt, that means five years from now our federal government budget would typically be more than 25-35 percent higher than it is today. The Penny Plan instead cuts real spending, across the board, by 1 percent—one penny per dollar for each of the next seven years. Even according to several more conservative forecasts of that spending trajectory, as we close on the end of this decade, we would again begin approaching a balanced budget. That said, a word of caution. You have most likely already made spending cuts of an even greater percentage in your own household budgets, just as many businesses have laid off employees and reduced their expenses during this recession. With government spending it is simply not quite so easy or simple. Government does not manufacture, produce or sell products (in the main, subtracting the occasional golf course, concession stand, lodge or conference center). The federal government primarily is a services industry. Between 70 and 80 cents on most federal dollars is salary and benefits for agency employees (excluding transfer and entitlement payments). Debt servicing, renting or providing space for the agency typically consumes another 10-15 percent (including utilities). So, without closing down a facility, or laying off employees or cutting their pay rates (which almost never happens), between 80 and 95 percent of your tax dollar is already committed. This leaves 5-20 percent to actually spend on the service which the agency is intended to provide. A cut of 1 percent, given only an optional budget universe of 5-20 percent means a reduction in service and/or the program budget ranging from 5-20 percent each year. And so while most of you are focusing on the holiday season, and celebrating the end of this year and looking ahead to 2013, the chasm remains. Although I have never visited our Grand Canyon, I have repeatedly heard from many who have been something akin to “Wow, that would be a long fall to the bottom.” Words to the wise if you are listening up there in D.C. Bill Crane also serves as a political analyst and commentator for Channel 2’s Action News, WSB-AM News/Talk 750 and now 95.5 FM, as well as a columnist for The Champion, Champion Free Press and Georgia Trend. Crane is a DeKalb native and business owner, living in Scottdale. You can reach him or comment on a column at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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We sincerely appreciate the discussion surrounding this and any issue of interest to DeKalb County. The Champion was founded in 1991 expressly to provide a forum for discourse for all community residents on all sides of an issue. We have no desire to make the news only to report news and opinions to effect a more educated citizenry that will ultimately move our community forward. We are happy to present ideas for discussion; however, we make every effort to avoid printing information submitted to us that is known to be false and/ or assumptions penned as fact.
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
Championof the Week
said he got involved with the organization because of the services it provides for immigrants. “It’s an association that serves an immigrant community that otherwise would have diﬃculty assimilating and getting services for moving ahead, getting jobs, things of that nature,” he said. The organization helps Ethiopian immigrants adjust and develop in their new environment through Samuel Belete, a native programs in the areas of of Ethiopia, moved to the advocacy, education, emUnited States in 1986 for ployment, healthcare and an opportunity at a better community outreach. education and life. Belete said the ECAA is His journey led him to a all about being there for career as an aeronautical one another and helpengineer with the Federal ing others in their time of Aviation Administration. need. Now, he is helping other “[ECAA] addresses isEthiopian immigrants ﬁnd sues that immigrants the opportunities similar have. We support new to what he found. comers and those that Belete is the executive have been here for some director of the Ethiopian time,” he said. Community Association in Theodros Hailegiorgis, Atlanta (ECAA) ‒ a social, a friend of Belete, said Becultural and philanthropic lete’s hard work, commitorganization that serves ment and vision for the the Ethiopian community. ECAA has strengthened Established in 1983, ECAA the community and imassists in the promotion proved the lives of others of personal growth, ﬁin DeKalb. nancial stability, positive “His commitment to family and community help others, to ﬁnish what relations and community he started, to push the empowerment. bar of success has been Belete has been volun- his motto and [he] was teering with the organiza- able to plant this motto tion for three years and into all of his followers was elected executive and associates,” Hailegiordirector two years ago. He gis said.
DeKalb Schools graduation rate less than 60 percent
by Daniel Beauregard email@example.com The Georgia Department of Education (GDOE) has released statewide graduation rates for the 2010-11 school year and Georgia has one of the lowest in the country—the DeKalb County School District’s (DCSD) is even lower. According to the most recent data, only 67 percent of Georgia’s students graduate from high school in four years, making it one of the states with the lowest graduation rate. Only Nevada, New Mexico, the District of Columbia and Bureau of Indian Education rank lower than Georgia. The graduation rate in DCSD for the 2010-11 school year was 58.7 percent, with 6,689 students graduating. Whites (70.1 percent) and Asians (63.3 percent) were among those with the highest graduation rates while Blacks (58.1 percent) and Hispanics (46.8 percent) had the lowest. Jeff Dickerson, a spokesman for DCSD, said the overall graduation rate from the past year is troubling. “To drill down a little bit it gets even more troubling and among certain minorities the rates are terrible,” Dickerson said. Dickerson said the number among Blacks and Hispanics is particularly troubling. For the past three years, the achievement gap between Black and Hispanic students and White students has remained, on average, around 20 percent. “I think when Superintendent Cheryl Atkinson and the board look at those numbers they’ll begin to implement some programs to improve the graduation rate,” Dickerson said. Although the district bears the brunt of responsibility for educating its students, Dickerson said, in some areas low parental involvement plays a key role in whether some students graduate. “We can’t do it all on an administrative level but we certainly want do our part and work with parents and families to bring that up,” Dickerson said. In prior years, DCSD’s graduation rate sat at approximately 79.2 percent. Many other districts in metro Atlanta also experienced a drop from the 2009-10 school year to the 2010-11 school year. The Atlanta Public School System’s rate dropped from 66.3 to 52 percent; Gwinnett County Public Schools from 84.4 to 67.6 percent; and the Fulton County School System from 85.3 to 70.1 percent. The only district in metro Atlanta that remained unchanged was the graduation rate of the City Schools of Decatur’s (CSD) high school, which was approximately 88 percent. Recently, the federal government changed the way graduation rates are calculated and Dickerson said that may explain the drop in scores both state and countywide. “The federal government has standardized the way all states report graduation rates and it has changed the landscape nationally,” Dickerson said. “The numbers are brand new and it’s a major concern for the superintendent.” Dorie Nolt, assistant director of communications at GDOE, said the way the new rate is calculated allows school officials to track more accurately whether a student has dropped out, or transferred to another school or district. “Before, if somebody dropped out of a school they could have counted them as a drop out or transfer but schools have to find out what happened to the student now,” Nolt said.
if you would like to nominate someone to be considered as a future champion of the Week, please contact kathy Mitchell at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (404) 373-7779, ext. 104.
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
2418 Gresham Road, Atlanta. For more information, call (404) 244-4374. Town hall meeting on underage drinking scheduled Beyond the Bell, an organization to combat teen drinking has announced a meeting scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 13, at 6:30 p.m. The event will be held at East Lake YMCA, 275 E Lake Blvd SE, Atlanta. Admission is free. Teens, youth, parents, educators, law enforcement, alcohol permit holders, community members, partners and leaders are encouraged to attend this informative, open discussion about the risks of alcohol to youth, drunk driving, underage drinking, consequences and alcohol availability to youth. For additional information, contact Beyond The Bell, DC Promise at (404) 431-9595 or via email at: email@example.com. Information is also available at www.dcpromise.org and www.beyondthebellkids.org
Two screenings of movie scheduled As part of its Senior Movie Time series, Wesley Chapel-William C. Brown Library on Tuesday, Dec. 11, presents two screenings of The Grey, starring Liam Neeson and Durmot Mulroney. The first show is at 11 a.m. and second the show is at 1 p.m. Funding for the movie is provided by the Friends of the Wesley Chapel-William C. Brown Library. Wesley Chapel-William C. Brown Library is located at 2861 Wesley Chapel Road, Decatur. For more information, call (404) 286-6980. Annual holiday bazaar scheduled The DeKalb Community Service Board’s Crossroads Annual Holiday Bazaar will be held Friday, Dec. 14, 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. in the Bohan Auditorium of the Richardson Health Center, 445 Winn Way, Decatur. The DeKalb Community Service Board’s clients will display and sell their jewelry, artwork, greeting cards, bookmarks and more. Crossroads is a mental health peer support program for DeKalb residents. For more information, visit www.dekcsb.org or call (404) 370-7460. Local store to assist refugee leaving for school Finders Keepers Furnishings is hosting a reception honoring associate Kanu Biah as he prepares to leave in January to pursue a dual four-year degree in commercial piloting and business administration at the Middle Georgia College of Aviation. “He will tell you about his life before war touched his village, about life in refugee camps provided by the U.N., and about transitioning into American culture, including what it was like to play for the Fugees soccer team,” said Finders Keepers owner Bonnie Kallenberg. The event will be Saturday, Dec. 8, at Finders Keepers Furnishings, 2753 E. College Ave., Decatur, 6 to 8 pm. That store along with other Finders Keepers locations will be accepting donations to assist Biah with education and living expenses.
Advent Lessons and Carols service announced Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church presents its unique service of Lessons and Carols, Sunday, Dec. 9, at 10:30 a.m., in the historic Glenn sanctuary on the Emory campus. Children’s, youth and adult choirs, soloists and instrumentalists will offer music to proclaim Advent texts chosen especially for this service. Leading from the organ will be organist laureate Timothy Albrecht, assisted by Jeffrey Kershner, timpani, and Karin Bliznik, associate principal trumpet with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Music Director Steven Darsey will lead. Featured soloists will be Glenn youth, Mary Katherine Henry and Maddie Allums. In addition to congregational carols and hymns, the poetry of John Donne and Byron Herbert Reece will be heard, and the chancel choir will sing J.S. Bach’s final movement from Cantata no. 181, Laß, Höchster, uns zu allen Zeiten. The service will conclude with Bach’s “Dona Nobis Pacem” from the B-Minor Mass. The event is open to the public. Glenn Church is located at 1660 N. Decatur Road, NE, Atlanta. Church to offer free Christmas concert “Christmastide at Shallowford,” a concert presented by the adult and youth choirs of Shallowford Presbyterian Church, will be held Sunday, Dec. 9, at 4 p.m. The youth choir includes more than 60 teens. A holiday event for the entire family, the concert will feature traditional music, classical music and familiar Christmas carols. The audience will be invited to sing along on a few carols. The event is free and open to the public. Shallowford Presbyterian Church is located at 2375 Shallowford Road, Atlanta. For more information, call (404) 321-1844 or visit www.shallowford.org. Performers to come together for a ‘skiffle’ Skiffle with Ken J and Friends comes to Gresham Library Tuesday, Dec. 11, 7 - 8 p.m. “A rent party, or skiffle, is a social occasion where tenants hire a musician or band to play and pass the hat to raise money for their rent. The rent party played a major role in the development of jazz and blues music. It originated in Chicago during the 1920s and disappeared from American music in the 1940s. Ken J. and Friends fuse acoustic melodies with sultry vocals and poetry that mixes words with lyrics,” according to an announcement from the library. The group has hosted The Rent Show, a skiffle, throughout Metropolitan Atlanta, bringing together artists, singers and spoken word performers from across the country. Gresham Library is located at
American Legion Post to hold breakfast The American Legion Harold Byrd Post 66 in Avondale Estates will host a breakfast on Dec. 8. The menu for the 8-10:30 a.m. breakfast will include scrambled eggs, sausage patties, bacon, grits, french toast, biscuits and gravy, coffee, tea and juice. All are invited, including families, college students and seniors. The cost of the breakfast is $5 for adults and $2 for children. American Legion Post 66 is a local chapter of the national organization. The nonprofit runs programs that benefit veterans, young people and the community at large, and rents its ballroom out for events such as birthdays, class reunions, religious ceremonies and wedding receptions. For more information about the breakfast, call (404) 292-2352, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.americanlegionpost66.org.
Clarkston annual tree lighting set The Clarkston Women’s Club will host the Clarkston Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony on Dec. 8. The 6 p.m. ceremony will include a fireworks display, light refreshments, music, a choir and surprises for children. Santa Claus will also make an appearance. The Clarkston Women’s Club is located at 3913 Church Street. For more information, visit www. cityofclarkston.com.
Author to speak on scripture-inspired book Local author Brenda K. Stewart will discuss The Gift, her book of scripture-inspired poems and prayers, Saturday, Dec. 15, 6:30 - 7:30 p.m., at the Redan-Trotti Library. Stewart will talk about her reasons for writing and answer questions about the process of having her book published.The RedanTrotti Library is located at 1569 Wellborn Road, Lithonia. For more information, call (770) 482-3821.
Holiday jazz concert announced Ja’Naan returns to the Decatur Library Musical Bookings stage Sunday, Dec. 9, 3 - 4:30 p.m., with her jazz ensemble, Beat’N-Sync, to usher in the festive season with holiday classics, old and new. The performance is appropriate for all ages. Funding is provided by the Friends of the Decatur Library. The Decatur Library is located at 215 Sycamore Street, Decatur. For more information, call (404) 370-3070.
Women’s club to hold tour of homes The General Federation of Women’s Clubs Stone Mountain Women’s Club will hold its Christmas Home Tour Saturday, Dec. 8, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. The event includes lunch at the GFWC Stone Mountain Women’s Club Clubhouse, 5513 East Mountain St., Stone Mountain. Donations are $20 in advance or $25 the day of the tour. Proceeds benefit charities supported by the women’s club. For more information, contact Elizabeth Wells at (770) 822-9947 or (404) 630-9925 or visit email@example.com.
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
Police fatally shoot man who tried to steal dog, patrol car
by Andrew Cauthen firstname.lastname@example.org DeKalb County Police have identified a man fatally shot by an officer after he tried to steal a neighbor’s dog and then a police car Nov. 22. Christopher Lee, 44, died after being transported to a local hospital following the incident. Both officers involved are on routine administrative leave as the department continues to investigate the case. Police are also trying to determine whether Lee, who lived in the neighborhood at 4834 Truitt Lane, was a resident of an unlicensed personal care home. According to a statement provided by police spokeswoman Mekka Parish, officers were called to 4878 Wilkins Station Drive in reference to a possible demented person. A resident at the home told police that a man had entered their open garage, claiming to own the family’s dog. “The homeowner confronted the man and removed the dog to the inside of the home,” Parish said. “The man then entered the homeowner’s car in the driveway and sat inside. At some point, the man went to the front door of the home stating again he was the owner of the dog.” The resident “armed herself with a butcher knife and confronted the suspect outside again. The suspect was able to take the knife from the homeowner. He then chased the homeowner down the street and attempted to stab her,” Parish said. When Lee fell down, the resident was able to get away and call police. When police officers arrived, they found the suspect on Wilkins Way Drive cutting wires attached to a cable box, Parish said. The officers ordered Lee to drop the knife, but he refused and began walking down the street toward a group of people. The officer then cut the suspect off with his patrol unit and when a second officer arrived on scene, both officers exited their patrol units, Parish said. Police said Lee, still armed with the knife, then entered one of the patrol cars and attempted to drive off, while the car was still in park. When the suspect continued to refuse to comply with the officers’ commands, police shot him with a Taser, but he removed the prongs from his body, police said. “The suspect then made a threatening gesture toward officers at which point they were forced to discharge their weapons,” Parish stated. Lee was transported to a local hospital where he later died.
Three DeKalb men charged with counterfeiting $50 bills
Three DeKalb men are part of a group of six Georgians accused of counterfeiting up to $1 million in $50 bills and distributing the fake money nationwide. Cameron R. Longshore, 30, and Ian J. Longshore, 27, both of Decatur, and Kenyada Barrion, 35, of Stone Mountain, appeared Dec. 3 in federal court before U. S. Magistrate Judge Russell L. Vineyard on counterfeiting charges. A federal grand jury returned a seven-count indictment Nov. 19, charging the three men, along with Heath J. Kellogg, 36, of Woodstock, and Stacy P. Smith, 37, and James C. Kellogg, 63, both of Marietta, with conspiracy to manufacture and distribute counterfeit U.S. currency. The indictment alleges that from approximately Feb. 1, 2011, until the first arrests in this case on Nov. 15, 2012, the defendants conspired to manufacture and distribute counterfeit U.S currency, mainly $50 bills. Heath Kellogg, a selftaught graphic artist, developed a manufacturing process for counterfeit currency. Smith would assist Heath Kellogg with the manufacturing process, for which both men purchased supplies on various occasions. James Kellogg, Heath’s father, joined the conspiracy after it was under way and assisted with the manufacturing of the counterfeit bills by performing work and storing supplies at his home. Smith would take custody of the completed counterfeit currency, which was then distributed through a network of individuals. The defendants sold the counterfeit currency to customers in exchange for genuine U.S currency, at various discounted rates. In August 2012, Secret Service agents performed controlled buys of the counterfeit currency using a cooperating defendant, while performing surveillance on the members of the conspiracy. On each occasion, the cooperating defendant purchased counterfeit currency with a face value of $2,000 for $900 in genuine currency. On both occasions, the cooperating defendant arranged to purchase the counterfeit currency by contacting Barrion, who ultimately delivered the counterfeit money. On Aug. 10, Barrion was assisted by Cameron Longshore and on Aug. 14, Barrion was accompanied by Ian Longshore.
Reckless driver fatally shot by Dunwoody Police
by Andrew Cauthen email@example.com A reckless driver in Dunwoody was fatally shot by Dunwoody Police after he damaged several vehicles and endangered police officers and several pedestrians Nov. 28. The incident occurred near Perimeter Mall at approximately 6:20 p.m. According to a police statement, Dunwoody Police officers noticed a vehicle driving recklessly through the parking lot of 41 Perimeter Center East. “An officer attempted to pull the vehicle over and a pursuit was initiated,” according to the statement. Police said that during the pursuit, “the suspect refused to stop and drove recklessly through parking lots and on several streets disregarding the safety of pedestrians and the public.” At the intersection of Ashford Dunwoody Road at Perimeter Center East, “the suspect’s vehicle rammed several cars,” according to the statement. Two uniformed officers on foot approached the vehicle and tried to prevent the suspect from fleeing. “The suspect continued to strike other cars moving back and forth,” police said. “Fearing for the safety of the motoring public, pedestrians and the officer’s safety, an officer fired one shot at the suspect.” The man’s vehicle hit other cars as he continued through traffic and turned onto Perimeter Center East. His vehicle struck a light pole in front of Savannah Park Apartments on Perimeter Center East and was stopped. Officers immediately detained the suspect and rendered first aid until DeKalb County Fire Rescue arrived on scene. The suspect was transported to Grady Memorial Hospital for emergency care where he was subsequently pronounced deceased, according to police. The man has been identified as 34-year-old Bradley Almy of Marietta. The officer involved in the shooting, Sgt. Jason Dove, who has served with the Dunwoody Police Department since March 2009, has been placed on paid administrative leave, which is in accordance with departmental procedures. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is assisting with the investigation of the incident at the request of the Dunwoody Police Department.
REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL for the City of Brookhaven Risk Management and Insurance Services
The Governor’s Commission on Brookhaven is seeking proposals from vendors to provide insurance proposals for the following areas of coverage: 1) Public Entity General Liability 2) Law Enforcement Legal Liability 3) Property & Contents 4) Public Entity Cyber Liability 5) Public Entity Employment Practices Liability 6) Public Entity Management (Officers) Liability 7) Government Crime (theft, forgery, computer fraud, loss inside/outside building) 8) Public Sector Services Umbrella Excess Liability 9) Excess Errors & Omissions 10) Workers Compensation 11) Automobile (including Hired and Non-owned The City will accept questions and comments until 5:00 PM, EST on Friday, December 7, 2012. Questions must be submitted in writing to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that this email is for proposal questions ONLY and not for submission of actual proposals. Oral or Verbal questions will not be accepted. Bids must be submitted by 5:00 PM on Tuesday, December 11, 2012. Information concerning this solicitation can be found at www.brookhavencommission.com. Offerors are encouraged to check this site daily for updates, amendments and questions and answers.
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
The Mayor and City Council of the City of Chamblee, Georgia will hold a public hearing on Thursday, December 13, 2012 at the Chamblee Civic Center, 3540 Broad Street, Chamblee, GA 30341 at 6:00 p.m. to receive public comments regarding the following zoning matters: 1)Pursuant to Appendix A, “Zoning Ordinance”, Article IX “Civic Design”, Section 902 B and as illustrated in the “Streetscape Guidelines: Street Designations” requires the landscape zone to be placed immediately adjacent to the curb. The landscape zones along Clairmont Road, Peachtree Boulevard, and Buford Highway require tree planting and pedestrian lighting within the landscape zones (which are typically within the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) right-of-way. The street sections along state roads must be approved by GDOT and require that street trees and lighting be located in a manner not to obstruct site distances for pedestrians and vehicles. The City of Chamblee, Ga seeks to modify the zoning text as well as the guidelines in order to be consistent with GDOT’s standards by moving the street trees and lighting behind the sidewalk when conditions do not allow for placement a minimum of 14’ behind the back of curb along State Highways as required by GDOT. 2)Pursuant to Appendix A, Zoning Ordinance”, Article II, “Administration”, Section 202.A.1 the City of Chamblee, GA seeks public comments regarding proposed text amendments to the Industrial Transitional Zoning Standards. 3)Pursuant to Appendix A, Zoning Ordinance”, Article II, “Administration”, Section 202.A.1 the City of Chamblee, GA seeks a zoning map amendment to rezone the following properties to the Industrial Transitional (IT) District:
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Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way Green Industrial Way John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive John Glenn Drive Parcel ID Current Zoning Proposed Zoning 18 323 03 034 CC IT 18 323 03 034 CC IT 18 323 03 034 CC IT 18 323 03 033 CC IT 18 323 03 033 CC IT 18 323 03 033 CC IT 18 323 03 033 CC IT 18 323 03 033 CC IT 18 323 03 033 CC IT 18 323 03 033 CC IT 18 323 03 033 CC IT 18 323 03 033 CC IT 18 323 03 040 CC IT 18 323 03 040 CC IT 18 323 03 040 CC IT 18 323 03 040 CC IT 18 323 03 040 CC IT 18 323 03 032 CC IT 18 323 03 032 CC IT 18 323 03 032 CC IT 18 323 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Drive Munday Drive Munday Drive Munday Drive West Hospital Ave West Hospital Ave West Hospital Ave West Hospital Ave West Hospital Ave Cumberland Drive Cumberland Drive Cumberland Drive Cumberland Drive Parcel ID Current Zoning Proposed Zoning 18 323 05 045 I IT 18 323 05 045 I IT 18 309 02 102 I IT 18 309 02 100 I IT 18 309 02 095 I IT 18 309 02 101 I IT 18 309 02 032 I IT 18 309 02 099 I IT 18 309 02 097 I IT 18 309 02 103 I IT 18 309 02 089 I IT 18 309 02 096 I IT 18 309 02 098 I IT 18 309 07 050 NC-2 IT 18 309 07 050 NC-2 IT 18 309 07 051 NC-2 IT 18 309 07 047 NC-2 IT 18 278 03 066 CR IT 18 278 03 101 CR IT 18 278 03 124 CR IT 18 278 03 065 CR IT 18 278 03 064 CR IT 18 278 03 063 CR IT 18 278 03 062 CR IT 18 278 03 061 CR IT 18 278 03 060 CR IT 18 278 03 060 CR IT 18 278 03 060 CR IT 18 278 03 060 CR IT 18 278 03 060 CR IT 18 278 03 060 CR IT 18 278 03 060 CR IT 18 278 03 060 CR IT 18 278 03 060 CR IT 18 278 03 058 CR IT 18 278 03 058 CR IT 18 298 04 081 VC IT 18 298 04 079 VC IT 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REUSE REDUCE RECYCLE
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
Group collecting Christmas gifts for former foster children
by Andrew Cauthen email@example.com Sometimes, grandparents, aunts and uncles, and other family members who undertake the task of rearing their young relatives struggle provide for the children. “It’s so difficult to make ends meet every week even with support from the state,” said Trenny Stovall, director of the DeKalb County Child Advocacy Center (CAC). For some, “being able to provide Christmas for these kids” is a hardship—especially when multiple children are brought into the home. That’s why the CAC for the past nine years has provided Christmas gifts and meals for former foster children through a program called Hope for the Holidays. Stovall said the Hope for the Holidays event is one way that the CAC attempts to bring a little joy and normality to the lives of some of these children. The program has sponsored more than 400 children since it began. For years, the gifts for the program were usually supplied by DeKalb county workers, Stovall said. But as the economy entered a recession, “Things were tight.” The program has provided Christmas gifts for as many as 100-150 children in a year, but in 2009 only approximately 30 children were helped. With assistance from the community, that number has grown to approximately 70 children this year. Stovall said the CAC has taken on this holiday project because “our job doesn’t end at providing legal support in court.” When children age out of foster care, they are two to three times more likely to be homeless, unemployed, criminally active or get pregnant, Stovall said. “We have failed these kids if they are not thriving when they leave foster care.” The CAC, which represents 1,000 children each year, provides legal support and advocates for children who have been abused and neglected, most of whom reside in foster care. Last year, more than 580 children entered the foster care system in DeKalb County. Several hundred leave foster care annually. The CAC is seeking financial and in-kind support from the community for its Hope for the Holidays event. All contributions will be used to directly benefit the selected families. In the past, in-kind donations have
The DeKalb County Child Advocacy Center is planning to give Christmas gifts to 70 children who are no longer in the foster care system. Photo provided
to thrive,” Stovall said. “We included gift cards, holiday believe that they deserve dinner baskets or vouchers, what we deserve.” clothing, educational aids, toys, etc. Financial donations will be used to purchase items from wish lists that have been submitted by the selected families. Stovall said buying toys for younger children is easy and more popular, but a particular need is gifts for teenagers such as gift cards and movie passes. Examples of in-kind business donations are reduced cost haircuts and hairstyling provided by Pro Way Hair School on Memorial Drive. “DeKalb children deserve
our unique boutiques and destination dining spots in the heart of DeKalb.
Stovall said the CAC is planning to distribute the gifts on Dec. 18.
DeKalb County CEO Burrell Ellis reminds you of the Best Practices for Proper Disposal of
for holiday happenings and hoopla
F.O.G. enters plumbing through garbage disposals, sinks and toilets. It coats the inside of plumbing pipes and also empties into DeKalb County’s sewer system. Here are three simple guidelines to help keep F.O.G. out of our pipes and sewers:
1. 2. 3.
POUR fats, oils or grease into a sealable container, allow it to cool and throw it in the trash. Do not pour down the drain or toilet. SCRAPE plates and cookware before washing. Do not throw scraps of any kind down the drain. Instead, place them in waste containers or garbage bags. WIPE excess grease from all plates, pots, pans, utensils, and surfaces with a paper towel before washing. Throw the greasy paper towel away.
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Plumbing and sanitary sewer systems are simply not designed to handle the F.O.G. that accumulates in pipes. When it gets into the pipes and hardens, blockages occur and cause sewage to backup and overflow out of manholes or into homes. This is expensive for you, and for the County. The damages caused by fats, oils and grease in the sewer system are costly to repair. Over time, they increase the costs of our water and sewer services.
Find out more at VisitDecaturGeorgia.com
Advertising funded by the Decatur Craft Beer Festival
12/4/12 8:38 AM
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
Dunwoody councilwoman admits to leaking information, apologizes
by Daniel Beauregard firstname.lastname@example.org After an investigation lasting more than nine months and costing taxpayers more than $60,000, a Dunwoody City councilwoman has admitted to leaking information from executive city council sessions. In a Nov. 30 letter, Councilwoman Adrian Bonser admitted to leaking information from an executive session but said that at the time she was unaware that she was doing anything wrong. “I apologize to the mayor and council and to the [residents] of Dunwoody for my indiscretion as a member of the city council,” Bonser said in the letter. “I made a mistake and I sincerely regret my actions.” An investigation released May 21 conducted by attorney Bob Wilson stated that former Dunwoody City Attorney Brian Anderson and Bonser were responsible for leaks from a February executive session about a land transaction. The report also said Bonser leaked information to a source who gave blogger Bob Lundsten details regarding the executive session. When Bonser was interviewed by investigators, the report states, she “was not truthful in her responses.” As a result of the investigation Anderson settled with the city and was awarded a severance package of two months’ salary and benefits totaling approximately $29,000. After the details of the report were released, Bonser claimed she never leaked any information and called the findings, “sloppy at best and politically motivated at worst.” Several months later Bonser filed an ethics complaint of her own alleging Dunwoody Mayor Mike Davis and the rest of the city council held several illegal executive session meetings. In her complaint, Bonser also named Dunwoody City Manager Warren Hutmacher and accused Davis of asking her to resign before the ethics investigation was complete. As part of a settlement between Bonser, Davis and the rest of the city council, she has agreed to drop her complaint against the mayor. “I am doing this in good faith as I am not demanding a statement of apology from him,” Bonser said. Davis said it is unfortunate that the ethics issues turned into such a drawnout process. “As soon as the investigation began and the public became aware of the leaks, the message was received and leaks stopped,” Davis said. “After nine months of public discussions, discovery and exploration I am happy to say the matter is concluded.” Davis said that although the process to stop the leaks was difficult he thinks the city is stronger because of it. “I thank the [residents] and leaders of Dunwoody for their encouragement, patience and support throughout this process. This has been an expensive lesson for us to learn as a city,” Davis said. The city will conduct a review of its ethics policies as part of the dismissal terms signed by Bonser, Davis and the five other council members. Additionally, Davis and all members of the city council have agreed to undergo training on the Georgia Open Meetings Act.
DeKalb County Wants to Hear From You Regarding the Proposed Franchise Agreement Renewal with Comcast Cable Communications
Send your comments and/or concerns regarding Comcast’s current performance under the current franchise agreement and/or the future cable-related needs and interests of your community to www.dekalbcountyga.gov.
The Champion Weather
Seven Day Forecast THURSDAY
Partly Cloudy High: 58 Low: 43
Dec. 6, 2012
Today's Regional Map Weather History
Dec. 6, 1886 - A great snowstorm hit the southern Appalachian Mountains. The three-day storm produced 25 inches at Rome, Ga., 33 inches at Asheville, N.C and 42 inches in the mountains. Montgomery, Ala. received a record 11 inches of snow. Dec. 7, 1935 - Severe flooding hit parts of the Houston area. Eight people were killed as 100 city blocks were inundated. Satsuma reported 16.49 inches of rain. The Buffalo and White Oak Bayous crested on Dec. 9. Dunwoody 56/42 Lilburn Smyrna Doraville 57/43 57/43 57/43 Snellville Decatur 58/43 Atlanta 58/43 58/43 Lithonia College Park 59/43 59/43 Morrow 59/43 Union City 59/43 Hampton 60/44
In-Depth Local Forecast
Today we will see partly cloudy skies with a slight chance of showers, high temperature of 58º, humidity of 77%. East wind 5 to 10 mph. The record high temperature for today is 74º set in 1998. Expect mostly cloudy skies tonight with a slight chance of showers.
Mostly Cloudy High: 59 Low: 47
*Last Week’s Almanac
Date Hi Lo Normals Precip Tuesday 56 45 60/40 0.00" Wednesday 58 36 59/40 0.00" Thursday 60 29 59/40 0.00" Friday 62 36 59/40 0.00" Saturday 69 39 58/39 0.00" Sunday 71 45 58/39 0.00" Monday 72 42 58/39 0.00" Rainfall . . . . . . .0.00" Average temp . .51.4 Normal rainfall . .0.94" Average normal 49.1 Departure . . . . .-0.94" Departure . . . . .+2.3
*Data as reported from De Kalb-Peachtree Airport
Partly Cloudy High: 65 Low: 49
Partly Cloudy High: 67 Low: 50
Partly Cloudy High: 67 Low: 49
Few Showers High: 64 Low: 45 Last 12/6
Local Sun/Moon Chart This Week
Day Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Sunrise 7:28 a.m. 7:29 a.m. 7:30 a.m. 7:30 a.m. 7:31 a.m. 7:32 a.m. 7:33 a.m. Sunset 5:29 p.m. 5:29 p.m. 5:29 p.m. 5:29 p.m. 5:29 p.m. 5:29 p.m. 5:30 p.m. Moonrise 12:03 a.m. 1:03 a.m. 2:05 a.m. 3:11 a.m. 4:19 a.m. 5:28 a.m. 6:37 a.m. Moonset 12:37 p.m. 1:11 p.m. 1:47 p.m. 2:27 p.m. 3:13 p.m. 4:06 p.m. 5:05 p.m. First 12/20
Mercury Venus Mars Jupiter Saturn Uranus Rise 5:48 a.m. 5:18 a.m. 9:45 a.m. 5:07 p.m. 4:27 a.m. 1:46 p.m. Set 4:21 p.m. 3:58 p.m. 7:34 p.m. 7:15 a.m. 3:26 p.m. 1:59 a.m.
Mostly Cloudy High: 60 Low: 42 New 12/13
Local UV Index
National Weather Summary This Week
The Northeast will see mostly clear to partly cloudy skies today, partly cloudy to cloudy skies with scattered rain Friday and Saturday, with the highest temperature of 59º in Germantown, Md. The Southeast will experience mostly clear to partly cloudy skies with a few showers today through Saturday, with the highest temperature of 81º in Ft. Myers, Fla. In the Northwest, there will be partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rain and snow today and Friday, scattered rain and snow Saturday, with the highest temperature of 62º in Colville, Wash. The Southwest will see mostly clear to partly cloudy skies today through Saturday, with the highest temperature of 81º in Gila Bend, Ariz.
How much of the Earth is continually covered in snow?
0 - 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11+
UV Index 0-2: Low, 3-5: Moderate, 6-7: High, 8-10: Very High 11+: Extreme Exposure
Answer: Twelve percent of the Earth.
StarWatch By Gary Becker - Dressing for the Geminids
It honestly could not get any better for the biggest meteor shower of the year, the Geminids. They reach maximum on the morning of Thursday, December 13, about the same time as the radiant from which the meteors are streaming nears its highest point in the sky. The moon is also new on the 13th offering no diminution to the bountiful number of bright shooting stars which this shower produces. When devotees think about meteor observing, they most commonly defer to the balmy nights of Perseid viewing in August. The Geminids produce double the activity of the Perseids, about 120 meteors per hour near dawn from a rural site. It’s the cold, wintry conditions that commonly keep people from enjoying this event. Here are some suggestions for staying comfy while observing meteors in winter. Keeping your head, hands, and feet toasty is the big challenge. Consider buying hand and toe warmers at a local hardware store to help fortify the digits of your body from succumbing to the cold. “SmartWool” socks are very comfortable, even if your body has an aversion to wool. Layer your clothing, two to three pairs of polypropylene long johns will help wick away moisture without causing you to chill. You really don’t have to worry about the traditional shirt and pants, but an outer baggy shell of thick polyester fleece, top and bottom, will help trap extra body heat in your clothing. Make sure you have at least one balaclava (head gear), warm gloves, and a scarf. A ground tarp, air mattress and pillow will help with comfort and keep your equipment clean. Remember, if you have overdone your clothing and become too warm, you can always peel back your sleeping bag or your balaclava to make adjustments, but if you are underdressed and the shivering begins, know that your quality time under Geminid skies will be very limited. More about the Geminids next week... www.astronomy.org
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
Woman arrested for concealed gun in DeKalb courthouse
DeKalb Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested Yolanda Perdue, 27, at the public entrance of the DeKalb County Courthouse Nov. 28. A loaded handgun was discovered in Perdue’s bag by deputies prior to the arrest. Perdue told deputies that she was visiting the court to file divorce documents. Perdue was taken without incident to the DeKalb County Jail and charged with carrying a weapon in an unauthorized location.
Aderhold Foreman Ray
DA seeks death penalty against gang members
by Andrew Cauthen email@example.com DeKalb County’s district attorney announced Dec. 4 that he is seeking the death penalty in the case of three alleged gang members who robbed and killed a man in January. “These are egregious allegations,” said DA Robert James about the case. “[The defendants] viciously beat and stomped someone. And they do it until someone is dead. After that, the allegation is that they robbed this individual and they did it as part of organized crime, as part of a gang.” James said the violence in the case was “so high it shocks the conscience.” Darrius Aderhold, 22, of Atlanta; Christopher Foreman, 20, of Stone Mountain; and Jonathan Ray, 19, of Tucker, are each charged with malice murder, two counts of felony murder, aggravated assault, aggravated battery, false imprisonment, robbery, theft by taking, and 14 counts of violating the Street Gang Terrorism and Prevention Act. The defendants are accused of robbing and killing 46-yearold Robert Ross on Jan. 8 in a Super 8 Hotel located in Tucker. James said the defendants’ actions were part of gang initiation into the Bloods. The men perceived the victim to be gay. “The facts of this case scream out for the death penalty,” James said. “I don’t really know what else to do in a scenario like this. This is one of those cases where the facts are that bad.” This is James’ first time seeking the death penalty, although when he became DA there were four active death penalty cases in DeKalb. “This is the first time I’ve made a decision like this,” James said. “I’ve been reviewing the case since March. We’re at a point now where we feel like it’s the appropriate thing to do. It was not an easy decision.” “In terms of the facts, they’re terrible, they’re horrible, they’re egregious and the violence in this case was completely gratuitous. This [victim] wasn’t doing anything but minding his own business. “If we don’t seek [the death penalty] in a case where an individual is singled out, perhaps because of his perceived sexual orientation, where there’s gang activity involved, and where a person is beaten literally to death…what case do I consider the death penalty?” James asked. According to the indictment, the defendants beat Ross with a chair leg, seriously disfiguring him and fracturing his skull. The men also stole jewelry, a pair of pants and car from Ross. The men were trying to earn membership, increase their status or maintain membership in the gang, according to the indictment.
DeKalb House Delegation to hold legislative town hall meetings
The DeKalb County House Delegation will hold legislative preview town hall meetings to discuss issues and initiatives taking place under in the Georgia General Assembly during the 2013 Legislative Session. The delegation is soliciting comments from DeKalb residents as legislators prepare to start another legislative session. “We have some new legislators and veteran legislators that are always looking to hear from constituents about what their most pressing daily life concerns are before we start the legislative session and this is a perfect opportunity to do so,” said Rep. Dar’shun Kendrick, secretary of the DeKalb House Delegation. The meetings will be held Dec. 13, 6:30 p.m., Cross Keys High School; Jan. 3 , 6 p.m., Maloof Auditorium, Decatur; and Jan. 8, 6:30 p.m., Porter Sanford Center in South DeKalb. The town hall meetings will be open forums where residents can express concerns and ideas. The DeKalb House Delegation is made up of members of the Georgia House of Representatives who have any portion of their legislative district in DeKalb County. The delegation meets every Monday (non-holiday) at noon in the Coverdell Legislative Office Building across from the state Capitol. For more information about the town hall meetings, contact Rep. Kendrick (678) 323-7887 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
Wonderful evening of theater as It’s A Wonderful Life comes to the Renaissance Project stage
by Kathy Mitchell Kathy@dekalbchamp.com n place of its usual production of A Christmas Carol, the Renaissance Project theater this year has chosen for its holiday offering It’s A Wonderful Life. “It’s sort of an American Christmas Carol,” observed the theater’s producing artistic director Michael Cole. There are some interesting parallels in the two stories. Both, of course, center on a lifechanging Christmas experience. Both dip into the past to unravel a complex present and both have supernatural intervention to help the main character see things to which he had been blind. Both classics proclaim the triumph of such values as friendship and compassion over money. It’s A Wonderful Life, like A Christmas Carol, has a trouble-making cynical old miser, in this case banker Henry Potter, wonderfully played in very Lionel Barrymore-like (Potter in the movie) fashion by Cole. While the movie It’s a Wonderful Life was based on a short story, The Greatest Gift, the play draws more on Frank Capra’s movie than the original work. The story, for the benefit of those who haven’t watched the 1946 movie lately, is of George Bailey, a young man who dreams of leaving his hometown Bedford Falls, N.Y., to do great things. He is held back by the need to keep the family business, Bailey Building and Loan Association, out of the hands of the moneygrubbing Potter. A mistake by his well-meaning but absentminded uncle leaves George positioned not only to lose his business to Potter, but to go to prison as well. The prayers of his family and friends are answered when Clarence Odbody, an angel who’s trying to earn his wings, steps in as George is contemplating suicide on Christmas Eve. The angel—much like the spirits in A Christmas Carol—shows George the impact his life has had on those around him. As with A Christmas Carol, this Renaissance Project production draws on scripture for inspiration—the theater, after all, is on the campus of a church. Director Elisha Hodgins states in her program notes, “Instead
Trivon Howard, right, and Kara Michele Wilder play roles made famous by Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed in the 1946 movie It’s A Wonderful Life.
Patricia McLaughlin as the angel superintendent guides Angel Second Class Clarence Odbody, played by Chase Steven Anderson, as he tries to help George Bailey and earn his wings at the same time.
of looking for the Christ-like traits in the character whose main problem is self-sacrifice, I began looking at the lives of the disciples. The 12 disciples were average Joes who weren’t at the top of their class and probably didn’t have wonderful reputations…they were asked to lay everything they had ever wanted down and sacrifice their lives to better themselves and their community at large.” The Renaissance Project has done a laudable job of adapting the movie to the physical limitations of the stage, with parts of the story being told by Patricia McLaughlin as Odbody’s superintendent angel. She joins an all-around fine cast that includes Trivon Howard and Kara Michele Wilder in roles made famous by Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed. Chase Steven Anderson is delightful
as Odbody. I was especially impressed at how well players pulled off some rather tricky physical maneuvers. I was pleased to see a good opening night turnout for this play. This worthy community theater does not draw the audiences it deserves. Especially, those who live in south DeKalb County should schedule a holiday treat for themselves by seeing this moving production. Renaissance Project plays are performed on the campus of Traveler’s Rest Baptist Church, 4650 Flat Shoals Parkway, Decatur. It’s A Wonderful Life is on stage Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 5 p.m. through Dec. 16. There is a 2 p.m. matinee on Dec. 15. Tickets are $16. For more information, call (678) 250-4800 or visit. www.trp-atl.org.
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
Principal passionate about parental involvement
mented programs to link the “I think that has to do community to the school. with communication,” BosHe has also added the word ton said. “I believe the suc“Super” in front of Stone cess is a result as humbling Marchell Boston, prinMill’s name. ourselves of educators and cipal of Stone Mill ElemenRecently, the teachcreating an inviting environtary School, has been coners at Stone Mill prepared ment for all parents.” necting parents and teachers breakfast for more than 100 In addition to events such for more than a decade. parents at the school for a as block parties and field Boston has been an edudays, Boston said, Stone cator for 16 years, beginning meet-and-greet. “I guess you could say Mill also has the Most Valuhis career in 1996 at Ronald I’m the community princiable Parent Program (MVP). E. McNair Middle School as pal,” Boston said. “With the MVP proa teacher, then counselor. He In the past, Boston said gram, parents earn points graduated from Southwest there was a feeling within for volunteering at the DeKalb High School. the community that parents school,” Boston said. “We From the time he was and teachers were partnerwant to have something for in elementary school until ing to teach their children. everyone to do so they feel he graduated from college, However, he said some of they’re useful to the school; Boston said, his parents that has been lost and more and we want to engage evwere involved in his educaoften than not, he’s finderyone regardless of their tion. He said having parents ing there’s an adversarial socioeconomic and educawho were so instrumental relationship between some tional level.” in his success is what motiparents and teachers. vates him to be so passionBoston ate about connecting Stone Mill with the community. “Often times parents don’t understand how things have changed in schools from when they were in school and there’s a misunderstanding,” Boston said. “I think it’s an issue because there’s a lack of communication.” Boston also said his parents stressed the importance of representing his community, which is why he has remained in south DeKalb. The first time Boston held an event to connect parents with teachers and school staff was when he was a counselor at McNair Middle. He held a parent meeting at an apartment complex off Flat Shoals Road. Last year, Boston was principal of Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy and returned to those same apartments off Flat Shoals Road to host a block party. DeKalb County School Superintendent Cheryl Atkinson was joined by Board of Education members Jesse “Jay” Cunningham, Jr. and “The intent was to raise Donna Edler, as well as other community members, for the groundbreaking ceremony at Miller Grove High School on Nov. 28. student achievement by linking with parents and the community,” Boston said. Boston said that the school had decided to funds from the voter-approved SpeDeKalb includes 35 new classrooms, visit the apartment complex by Daniel Beauregard email@example.com cial Purpose Local Options Sales Tax an auditorium and an amphitheater. where most of their students (SPLOST). The one-cent tax will help The project will also provide renovalived to go straight to the The DeKalb County School District fund capital improvement projects for tions to the existing building, includsource to reach parents. (DCSD) broke ground on construction the district through 2017 and will fund ing updates to plumbing facilities and “This was an opportunity projects at Miller Grove, Southwest approximately 300 projects district the roof. for us to form and cultivate DeKalb and Martin Luther King Jr. wide. According to a press release, the relationships and promote high schools recently. To date, SPLOST has provided project at Southwest DeKalb combines active engagement as we The construction at Miller Grove more than $1.2 billion in revenue to funds from SPLOST III and SPLOST raise student achievement,” includes a classroom addition and support capital improvement plans IV. Boston said. renovations to several existing classfor DCSD since 1997. Since then, 22 Renovations at Martin Luther King Stone Mill is the third rooms. The project will cost approxinew schools, 22 major renovations and Jr. High School include a new ninthschool where Boston has mately $6 million and is slated to be modifications and many other capital grade wing, administrative area and served as principal and complete in September. 2014. renewal projects have been completed. classrooms. at each one he has impleAll projects will be paid for using The construction at Southwest by Daniel Beauregard firstname.lastname@example.org
DeKalb starts new school construction projects
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
Small businesses have big impact on local communities
The fall 2012 Small Business Owner Report, released recently by Bank of America, found the majority of Atlanta small business owners are planning on sustaining or growing their businesses over the next 12 months. Specifically, more than one-third (36 percent) plan to hire more employees, while 50 percent expect their staffing needs will remain consistent. This is particularly good news for DeKalb County, which is home to thousands of small, locally owned businesses, according the Bank of America’s Danielle Modzelewski. “Having a healthy local economy is crucial,” she said. “When small business owners in such places as Stone Mountain and Lithonia are doing well, it’s good for everybody.” The report is a semiannual study exploring the concerns, aspirations and perspectives of small business owners across the country. It defines a small business as one with two to 99 employees and annual revenue of between $100,000 and $5 million. The survey, which includes a sampling of small business owners across the Atlanta market, found that more than half (58 percent) of the Atlanta small business owners surveyed anticipate that revenue will increase in 2013, while only 7 percent expect revenue to decline. However, this optimism is tempered by their views on the economy, with 42 percent of Atlanta small business owners confident that their local economy will improve over the next 12 months. Respondents were even less confident in the national (41 percent) and global economies (30 percent) improving in that same period. The study also shows that the local economy has the greatest impact on Atlanta small business owners. More than half (53 percent) reported that the majority of their customers come from their local community, compared to 36 percent who indicated that their customers
According to a recent survey by Bank of America, 42 percent of Atlanta small business owners are confident that their local economy will improve over the next 12 months.
come primarily from outside their local community but within the United States. Only 3 percent indicated that the majority of their customers come from outside the United States. Among those urging DeKalb residents to boost the local economy by patronizing local businesses is State Rep. Karla Drenner of Avondale Estates, a city that boasts a large number of locally owned small businesses. In a statement released in conjunction with National Small Business Day, Nov. 24 this year, Drenner said, “What if our state and local governments, along with our school systems, leveraged their purchasing power to favor Georgia and local businesses? Imagine the impact to our economy and the jobs this could create. “While there is little that we can do about the national
economy we can impact our state and local economies, by simply paying attention to where we shop, what we buy and where we eat,” she added. “The success of our small business community in Atlanta and that of the local economy are very closely linked,” said Felicia Lewis, small business banker manager in Atlanta for Bank of America. “What small business owners need is expertise that is grounded for their local market and unique needs, and that’s what Bank of America is committed to providing. We want small business owners to have the guidance necessary to grow and reach their business goals in 2013.” Modzelewski said the winter holiday shopping season is important to small retailers, even though events such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday have little
effect on their bottom line. “Small businesses rarely have the budgets for big advertising pushes that national businesses use to entice shoppers,” she said. Even though the Saturday between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is called National Small Business Day, such businesses are more likely to depend on increased sales throughout the holiday season. When questioned about their relationship to larger businesses, only one in four respondents indicated they see larger businesses as their biggest competitors. Seventy-nine percent indicate they have larger businesses as customers, and 29 percent say that larger businesses motivate them to become better small business owners. From a competitive perspective, Atlanta small business owners cite a num-
ber of factors that drive customers to choose them over larger businesses, including customer service (81 percent), quality (72 percent) and reliability/trust (70 percent). More than one in three (35 percent) Atlanta small business owners said their customers choose them because they are local. Seventy-two percent of respondents said they have enough access to capital to run their business effectively, and only 15 percent said that they applied for a business loan over the past year. Despite their optimistic views for growth in the coming year, 76 percent do not intend to apply for a business loan in 2013. “Atlanta small business owners are savvy, but continue to seek counsel on how to make their money work harder for them,” said Steve Turner, Southeast region sales executive for Bank of America. “This is why Bank of America committed to hiring 1,000 small business bankers across the country, including 35 in the Atlanta region. Our small business bankers work with customers to provide advice based on a deeper understanding of their business, so they can focus more on things like innovation, quality service and customer loyalty.” Through September, Bank of America has extended $513.4 million in credit across Georgia to small businesses – this includes $209.2 million in new originations, which has helped enable Bank of America to exceed its national small business lending pledge to the White House and the U.S. Small Business Administration. “Small businesses are the backbone of our economy and the fabric of our communities. Over the last two decades, small and new businesses have been responsible for creating two out of every three net new jobs in the U.S., and today over half of all working Americans own or work for a small business,” said Karen G. Mills, administrator of the federal Small Business Administration.
The Voice of Business in DeKalb County
Two Decatur Town Center, 125 Clairemont Ave., Suite 235, Decatur, GA 30030
DeKalb Chamber of Commerce
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
More than half of young HIV-infected Americans are not aware of their status
CDC: Too many young people continue to become infected and few are tested for HIV Young people between the ages of 13 and 24 represent more than a quarter of new HIV infections each year (26 percent) and most of these youth living with HIV (60 percent) are unaware they are infected, according to a Vital Signs report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The mostaffected young people are young gay and bisexual men and Blacks, the report says. The analysis looks at the latest data on HIV infections, testing and risk behaviors among young people and was published in advance of World AIDS Day, Dec. 1. Overall, an estimated 12,200 new HIV infections occurred in 2010 among young people ages 1324, with young gay and bisexual men and Blacks hit harder by HIV than their peers. In 2010, 72 percent of estimated new HIV infections in young people occurred in young men who have sex with men (MSM). By race/ethnicity, 57 percent of estimated new infections in this age group were amoung Blacks. “That so many young people become infected with HIV each year is a preventable tragedy,” said CDC Director Thomas R. Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “All young people can protect their health, avoid contracting and transmitting the virus, and learn their HIV status.” According to CDC experts, a number of factors contribute to the high levels of HIV in young people and vary by population. HIV prevalence is higher in some communities than in others, which can increase the likelihood that a person will be exposed to infection with each sexual encounter. Previous research has also found that other factors can increase risk of infection, such as higher levels of unrecognized and untreated infection, as well as social and economic factors, such as poverty, lack of access to health care, stigma and discrimination. Despite recommendations from the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics that call for routine HIV testing of youth in medical settings, the analysis shows that 35 percent of 18-24 year olds have been tested for HIV, while only 13 percent of high school students (and 22 percent of sexually experienced students) have ever been tested. Partially as a result of lower testing levels, HIV-infected people under the age of 25 are significantly less likely than those who are older to get and stay in HIV care, and to have their virus controlled at a level that helps them stay healthy and reduce their risk of transmitting HIV to partners. The CDC also examined risk behaviors among high school students in 12 states and nine large urban school districts, and found that young MSM reported engaging in substantially higher levels of risk behavior than their heterosexual male peers: • Young MSM were more likely to report having had sex with four or more partners or ever injecting illegal drugs. • Among students who were currently sexually active, young MSM were more likely to have used alcohol or drugs before their last sexual experience, and were less likely to have used a condom. • Young MSM were also less likely to report having been taught about HIV or AIDS in school. “We can and must achieve a generation that is free from HIV and AIDS,” said Kevin Fenton, M.D., director, National Center for HIV/ AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention, CDC. “It will take a concerted effort at all levels across our nation to empower all young people, especially young gay and bisexual youth, with the tools and resources they need to protect themselves from HIV infection.” These efforts are under way as part of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy, he said. CDC works with partners across the country to help prevent HIV and other STDs among young people. These efforts include encouraging HIV education and testing, funding the delivery of targeted testing and prevention services for youth at greatest risk, and working to address the social and environmental factors that can place some youth at increased risk. CDC also provides data and support to help communities develop effective school- and community-based HIV and STD prevention efforts.
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
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Marist advances to semifinals; Tucker, Stephenson fall short
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012 FOOTBALL:
he Marist War Eagles and St. Pius X Golden Lions are the only two teams left in the playoffs after as the Tucker Tigers and Stephenson Jaguars both fell in Class AAAAA state playoff road games on Nov. 30. Marist 15, Stockbridge 7 Marist defeated Stockbridge 15-7 in the Class AAAA quarterfinals. Marist relied heavily on its run game in this win, rushing for a total of 181 yards. Running back Gray King scored the only offensive touchdown in the game in the third quarter. Kicker Thomas Andrews made two field goals from 18 and 23 yards, and defensive lineman Greg Taboada sacked Stockbridge quarterback in the end zone for a safety. Head coach Alan Chadwick said his team is excited about playing in the semifinals. “It’s an opportunity to reach your ultimate goal of playing and winning the state championship,” he said. “We’re hanging by a thread still. We survived another tough ball game, but the kids are excited and giving us all they’ve got.” The War Eagles will play at Ridgeland on Dec. 7 in the semifinals. Northside-Warner Robins 23, Tucker 20 The No. 5 ranked Tigers pushed the No. 1 ranked Northside-Warner Robins Eagles to the
final seconds before the Eagles pulled out a 23-20 victory in Warner Robins. The Tigers needed one last defensive stand with Northside threatening from the 10-yard line. Tucker’s Stephen Reynolds hoped to end the threat on third down when he pulled in an apparent interception that was ruled out of bounds in the end zone. The play set up a fourth and seven at the Tiger seven.
Gray King (22) and Myles Willis (12) along with their 12-1 Marist teammates will advance to the AAAA quarterfinals at Ridgeland on Dec. 7. File photo
Northside quarterback Glenn Smith came through on the fourth down play as he lofted a pass just over a Tucker defender that was hauled down by Bryan Dyson for the score. The extra point made it 23-20 with 24 seconds to play. A screen pass on fourth down with only one second to play went from Juwaan Williams to Dominick Sanders, who got inside the Northside 40-yard line before being forced out of bounds as time
ran out. The Tigers led most of the game and rallied to take a 20-16 lead with 1:22 to play as Williams scored his third touchdown of the night on an 11-yard run to complete a 13-play, 75-yard drive. The big drive came following Northside’s taking its first lead of the night on a seven yard run by Curtis Martin with 7:29 to play. The Tigers lead 7-0 early on a 16-yard run by Williams with 4:17 to play in the first quarter. Northside made it 7-3 at the half on a 23-yard field goal by John Tignor with 4:04 to play in the first half. Tucker opened the second half driving 72 yards in three plays as Williams scored on a 23-yard run around the left side to give the Tigers a 13-3 lead less than two minutes into the second half. Martin cut the lead to 13-10 with a 55-yard run for a score with 9:15 to play and his go-ahead touchdown came following a fumble return by linebacker Tray Payne down to the Tiger 13. Tuckers finished 10-3 on the season. Ware County 14, Stephenson 0 Ware County advanced to the Class AAAAA semifinals with a big defensive effort against the Stephenson Jaguars to win 14-0. The Jaguars could not get into the end zone while Ware County scored in the first and third quarters to secure the victory. Stephenson finished the year 9-3 overall.
Each week The Champion spotlights former high school players from the county who are succeeding in athletics on the college level.
Manny Atkins, Georgia State (basketball): The junior forward from Tucker helped lead his team to a close 67-66 win over Liberty on Dec. 2. Atkins scored 17 points and had five rebounds in the win. Atkins is averaging 12.9 points, 6.3 rebounds and 2.1 assist per game on the season. William “Shaq” Goodwin, Memphis (basketball): The freshman forward from Southwest DeKalb had a double-double in the 93-65 win over Tennessee-Martin on Nov. 29. Goodwin scored 17 points and had 12 rebounds in the win. He is averaging 7.5 points and 5.3 rebounds per game. Kierra Paige, Alabama State (basketball): The sophomore shooting guard from Redan scored 14 points and had three steals in the 105-30 win over Oakwood College on Nov. 26. She is averaging 8 points on the season.
The Champion chooses a male and female high school Athlete of the Week each week throughout the school year. The choices are based on performance and nominations by coaches. Please e-mail nominations to email@example.com by Monday at noon.
MALE ATHLETE OF THE WEEK
Branden Mitchell, St. Pius X (football): Mitchell rushed 15 times for 164 yards and caught two passes for 42 yards and a touchdown in the Golden Lions 40-35 win over Washington County High School in the quarterfinals of the Class AAA playoff on Nov. 30.
FEMALE ATHLETE OF THE WEEK
Miaya Crowder, Southwest DeKalb (basketball): Crowder scored 16 points and grabbed four rebounds in the 76-15 win over Martin Luther King, Jr. on Nov. 30. The center was 7-of-9 from the field and had one steal and a block.
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
Grayson Klinger (55) and other St. Pius X players celebrate their win over Washington County on the Class AAA playoff quarterfinals. Photos by David DiCristina
St. Pius X beats Washington County to move on to semifinals
by Carla Parker firstname.lastname@example.org With 1:33 left in the game on a fourth and one play, the St. Pius X Golden Lions needed one more first down to seal a trip to the Class AAA playoff semifinals. Fortunately, they did not have to run a play because the Washington County defense jumped offside, giving the Golden Lions a first down and a 40-35 win in the quarterfinals. St. Pius (11-2) is in the semifinals for the fifth time, first since 2006. Head coach Paul Standard said it felt great to be close to playing for a state title. “I’m so proud of these kids,” Standard said. “They played so hard against a great football team. I just can’t be more proud of this group of young men and our coaching staff did a great job.” The Golden Lions will face North Hall on Dec. 7 at 7:30 p.m. St. Pius X got off to a rocky start in the first quarter. After St. Pius kicker Thomas O’Leary kicked a 43-yard field goal on its first possession, the Golden Hawks got a quick 14-3 lead. Running back Melvin Hill ran up the middle of St. Pius’ defense for a 54-yard touchdown. On the next possession, St. Pius X running back Branden Mitchell fumbled the ball and was recovered by Washington County. That turnover led to a 6-yard touchdown pass from quarterback William Walker to wide receiver D.J. Sanders. The Golden Lions didn’t falter though. On their next possession, quarterback Jack Spear connected with Mitchell on a 22-yard touchdown pass to shorten Washington County’s lead to 14-10. St. Pius X took a 17-14 lead in the second quarter on a 3-yard touchdown run by fullback Ryan Braswell. That touchdown came after linebacker Daniel Crochet intercepted a pass by Walker. The Golden Hawks got the lead back after a 32-yard touchdown run by Hill to go up 21-17, but that lead didn’t hold long as Spear connected with running back Nick Ruffin on a 57-yard touchdown pass to give the Golden Lions a 24-21 lead. St. Pius X went up 27-21 before halftime after a O’Leary 44-yard field goal. The Golden Lions came out in the third quarter running the ball with Mitchell, who finished the game with 164 rushing yards. Braswell finished off the long opening drive with a 3-yard touchdown run to give St. Pius a 33-21 lead. The Golden Hawks responded with its running game as well, and Hill topped it off with a 32-yard touchdown run. After back-toback turnovers by both teams and a bad snap by Washington County on a fourth down play inside the red zone, Mitchell broke out a 75yard run that set up a 1-yard touchdown run by Braswell to give St. Pius X a 40-28 lead. Mitchell said he thought he had a touchdown on that run. “They caught up to me on the 1-yard line,” he said. Washington County scored the final touchdown of the game on an 8-yard pass from Walker to wide receiver D.T. Latimer, but it wasn’t enough to win. Standard said his team didn’t panic after being down 14-3 early in the first quarter. “We just ran our game plan,” he said. “[Washington County has] got a great football team but our kids just hung in there and we got enough stops on defense to help us win the game.”
St. Pius X running back Branden Mitchell (4) jukes his way to the end zone.
Jack Pelt (22) avoids a tackle.
The Champion Free Press, Friday, Dec. 7, 2012
DeKalb County Basketball Scores
Boys: Nov. 27 Dunwoody defeated Arabia Mountain 72-66 Miller Grove defeated Stephenson 64-42 Galloway defeated Cross Keys 52-41 Lithonia defeated Cedar Grove 48-42 Nov. 30 Columbia defeated Carver 78-52 Lakeside defeated Clarkston 56-48 M. L. King defeated Southwest DeKalb 51-48 Stephenson defeated Tucker 61-56 Dec. 1 Clarkston defeated Towers 53-51 North Gwinnett defeated Columbia 64-62 Lithonia defeated Arabia Mountain 54-51 Miller Grove defeated Archer 72-70 Girls: Nov. 27 St. Pius X defeated West Hall 50-19 Stephenson defeated Miller Grove 43-40 Nov. 30 Greater Atlanta Christian defeated Decatur 53-34 Maynard Jackson defeated Cedar Grove 39-36 Mays defeated Arabia Mountain 45-37 Southwest DeKalb defeated M. L. King 76-15 Tucker defeated Stephenson 53-48 Dec. 1 North Gwinnett defeated St. Pius X 65-45
Stephenson’s Kaliyah Mitchell (25) takes a shot over Tucker defenders.
Tucker’s Corey Mohale (21) makes a defensive play for the ball. Photos by Bruce James