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Manchester, Georgia
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February 20, 2014     The Hogansville Herald
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February 20, 2014
 

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~t PAGE 4A - HOGANSVKLE HERALD THURSDAY, FEB. 20, 2014 1 THE HOGANSVILLE HERALD USPS 620-040 vneh anh @perate Wy rib ublicatimw, Jnc ROBERT E. TRIBBLE, President JOHN KUYKEND,U.L KIM MITCHELL PUBLISHER/EDITOR BUSINESS MANAGER A snowstorm in the Southrestaurant's employees and is as rare as a glass ofthe restaurant's owner Mark unsweetened tea at a church Meadows. supper; however there haveOnce the snow started been two of them thus far this accumulating Meadows Meadows for not only preach- b ing the second mile concept but actually living by it," she wrote. ANDY KORER Phone (706)846-3188 year. closedtherestaurantandsent IT IS NO SECRET that ASSOCIATE EDITOR Fax: (706) 846-2206 Folks around the staff home. But a few Chick-fil-A was founded by a n news@swr-mercur/.com Birmingham Ala. were not hours later many of them Christian family and it is also .q ANG.SLA BROWN P.O. BOX 426 all that worried though. The returned unable to get to their no secret that they run their LAvotrr EDrr0R Manchester, GA 31816 storm was only suppose to homes. The store is located a business on Biblical values. :) O i Le Ors, forth C yofHogo, e dust the city and surround- little over a mile from the What happened near :] ing area, not even enough interstate and store manag- of people and loving people Birmingham is an example powder for a Southern snow- er Audrey Pitt left her car on before you are worried about of how those biblical values j man, the side of the interstate and money or profit. We were just are played out. joined several other drivers tryingto followthe modelthat Chick-fil-A's generosity ' WHEN the first trudging through the snow. we all have worked under for didnot stopwiththe free food. ^j ,snowflakes began to fall no Some of the drivers had so long and the model that we They opened up their dining one paid all that much atten- been stuck in their cars for have come to love. There is room to anyone who wanted tion, but then the flakes kept nearly seven hours without nothing else we would have to sleep on a bench or in a :] Everyone was up in the air last week as the predic- tions of a terrible winter storm were headed our way. The Governor declared a state of emergency, busi- nesses closed, schools closed and Georgia came to almost a stop." One of the ladies in my office was quoting the Internet on Tuesday saying, "according to the Internet this is going to be a histori- cal winter storm." Well, I can tell you in my 57 years on God's Earth I've seen much worse. If you turned on the tele- vision or the radio all you could hear was how the win- ter storm was going to be one of the toughest Georgia had ever seen. I'm sure there was some pretty bad weather in certain parts of Georgia, but you couldn't tell there had been an ice storm, for the most part, around here. Sure, the trees had some ice on them but the roads never iced, were never closed and the temperature never got much below the freezing point. My grandmother always said, "If you don't like the weather just wait five min- utes ,and it, ,wKl, change. That's kind of accurate for our weather. Last week as we all braced for "a historical win- ter storm" that turned out to be nothing more than frozen rain that caused some downed trees, some power line problems and a few slick spots on the highways, I couldn't help but thing what Patrick Young once said about the weather. "The trouble with weath- er forecasting is that it's right too often for us to ignore it and wrong too often for us to rely on it," Young said. I have to say that I'm extremely glad that I do not have the job of predicting the weather and I'm glad there are educated people that can, but only GOd knows what the weather is really going to do. So, for all the hoopla that was put out on the Internet last week, I didn't see "a his- torical winter storm" by any stretch of the imagination. ? I B .I. .VE the reason we get so worked up about win- ter weather in the south is because we don't see ice and snow very often and are not prepared for it. We don't' drive in it enough to feel com- fortable doing so and there is the fact that we like to play in it when we do receive it. So, when we hear winter storm, we may get a little overly excited. I'll just bet, when we do get @inter weather that brings us to a halt, the folks up north are laughing at us a little but I have a cure for that. If they think it is funny that the south shuts down when a winter storm hits us, let's bring them down here during our hot summers and see how they endure it. I'm not sure if they would loss weight due to all the sweating they would do, or gain weight because of all the water they would drink. One thing you can bet on is that they would not go back to the north as white as the paper this newspaper is printed on, the would either go home red as beets or have a nice crisp tan, depending on how long they stayed. One thing is for sure, they would find out that while they spend their money preparing for the winter weather buy- ing chains for their vehicles, falling. Before too long folks any food or water so the staff done but try to help these peo- in places like Hoover and of Chick-fil-A decided to lend ple any way we could," she Inverness realized it was a helping hand. They cooked said. much more than a dusting, several hundred sandwiches Lauren Dango was one of but at that point it was too late and stood on both sides of 280 those stranded motorists. She for anyone to do anything, and gave the sandwiches to has known Meadows for Icy interstates and high- anyone who wanted them.years and was stunned when ways soon became clogged she saw him walking from car with cars and trucks. THE STAFFERS braved to car with the Chick-fil-A Thousands of motorists soon the falling snow and ice as sandwiches. "I looked up and found themselves stranded they offered hot chicken I am like what is he doing, he with nowhere to go including breasts tucked between but- had a catering order and it many stuck on Highway 280. tered buns to everyone and got cancelled so he pulled Chick-fil-A had a captive refused to take a single penny over and started giving away crowd of hungry customers for the sandwiches. The meal food." If that was not enough but instead they decided to was a gift and for the frozen Meadows even helped a driv- give away their food. folks it wasmanna from hear- er push his car up an incline. A large number of those en. Ms. Dangowas sotouched stranded motorist were able Ms. Pitt said that the folks by Meadows' kindness that to find shelter in the storm were surprised that the sand- she sent a letter to Chick-ill- thanks to the kindness and wiches were free."This corn- A's corporate office in generosity of a Chick-fil-A party is based on taking care Atlanta. "Kudos to Mark i would like to share with you an experience I had with a law enforcement officer last Saturday evening. I have the utmost respect for those men and women willing to pin on a badge, strap on a gun, and stand between the lawless and the lawful. They are frequently out- gunned, often underpaid, and salt.for their driveways, snow certainly under-appreciated. shovels and so on, that med- But every so often I won- ications for sunburn don't der about some of those come cheap in the south, but entrusted to such positions. they would gladly spend Last Saturday afternoon whatever it took to ease the and evening Vicki and I spent pain. time traveling through cen- tral Georgia. we do not get I'I DOES not matter this chance very often so we where you live the weather took advantage of it and is going to have its ups and enjoyed the time away. downs. The climate you live It was getting late and we in is going to dictate that. I'll were finally heading home, have to say though, I would passing through a county not rather live in the south and in our readership area. For have to deal with the occa- those not particularly astute, sional winter storm than live that means we were not in the in a cold climate like the counties of Harris, northern part of our country Meriwether, Talbot or Troup. has to offer. We were driving along a I wouldn't fair well in a two-lane state highway in the cold climate. I don't like cold dark when I spotted a deputy weather. I would do well in a sheriff patrol ear along the tropical climate, but then you side of the road. As I passed, have to worry.about hurri- the officer quickly pulled out canes, and began to follow us. The truth of the matter is, the weather is the weather. We can talk about it, it's a great starter for a conversa- tion, but we certainly can't change it. Weather is much like life. Sometimes it is good, some- times it is bad and there's not much you can do about it except carry an umbrella or stay indoors all the time. Now for those that doubt you can accurately predict things, I'm going to make a prediction about what is going to happen tonight. About 9 p.m. take a look out your window and see if my prediction comes true. I might just surprise you. Tonight's forecast: DARK! HOGANSVn HERALD is published weekly by Trib Publications, Inc. at 3051 Roosevelt Highway, Manchester, Georgia 31816. The Hogansville Herald is published proudly for the citizens of HogansviUe and its goal is to produce quality, profitable, community oriented newspa- pers that you, our readers, are proud of. We will reach that goal through hard work, teamwork, loyalty, and a strong dedication toward printing the tmth. USPS 642-040. Subscription rates by mail: $25 in Troup, Hams or Meriwether Counties; $32.50 a year in state; $40 out of state. Prices include all sales taxes. Periodical postage paid at Hogansville, Georgia 30230.Single copy 50 . FOR S SCRn'TIONS call (706) 846-3188 or write to Circulation Manager, Trib Publications, P. O. Box 426, Manchester, Georgia 31816. booth. And the following -I morning the staff members fired up their ovens and pre- pared chicken biscuits. The only thingthat was closed was q the cash register. "It was a q blessing for us to be able to help people," Audrey said. "For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat," j Jesus said in the Gospel of Matthew. "I was thirsty and . you gave me something to drink. I was a stranger and you invited me in." You can bet your boots that Truett Cathy and his fam- ily were very pleased to know that their restaurant owner, manger and staff abided by Jesus' words in the Gospel of Matthew. Vicki's little Scion xB is far from the fastest vehicle on the road. Automotive experts report the tiny 1.S liter engine in the little refrig- erator box on wheels devel- ops a whopping 103 horse- power. I think those experts are giving it some. While they get great fuel mileage, those little things do not go any- where in a hurry, We were cruising at the speed limit, as evidenced by the speedometer and GPS unit. The deputy continued fol- lowing. The officer would slow down and back off, and then abruptly speed up, rapidly coming up behind us. I cannot say for sure if the officer was attempting to pro- voke me into erratic driving so he could stop us and charge me with some offense there- by adding to the financial cof- fers of that county. But that intention seemed fairly obvi- OUS. UNFORTUNATELY for the officer, I have consider- able . patience so that approach does not work with me. I kept the speed steady. A would have been most unhap- Py. As we passed through a 3 second small town, the rear- most officer apparently turned as when I next checked the mirrors, there was again only the one patrol car behind us. -t The officer continued fol- As we approached one small lowing us for about six miles town, I slowed well before when passed out af, that r reaching the speedlimit signs indicating 45 and then 35. As we passed through, I waited until after passing the 55 mph sign before speeding up. We then passed a second deputy sheriff patrol vehicle parked alongside the road and would you believe it pulled out behind the first patrol car? Now we are leading a parade of two deputy cars as we drove through the night. Mile after mile ticked by as the first officer continued slowing down and then speed- ing up. On more than one occasion had I needed to hit the brakes to avoid a deer, the patrol car's front end would have encountered the back end of our Scion. I would have felt sorry for that officer as that is Vicki's Scion and she county and out.of hiajuris- diction. He pulled onto a coun- ty road and we left him 3 behind. From the time the first officer began trailing us until we left that county I would r estimate was a distance of .} about 1S miles -- and likely a bit longer. I Based on the actions of that officer, there must be absolutely no crime in that rural county. ,r Other that what I have already postulated, I have no v idea why that officer chose to follow us so intently. I can- not help but wonder if this has happened to other motorists. Whatever the officer's reason he, or she, must have been sorely disappointed. That's my opinion, q POSTMASTER: Send address changes to P. O. Box 426, Manchester, GA 31816. Feb. Ii was the 21st leg- islative day of the 2014 session of the General Assembly, which was interrupted by last week's winter storm. With less than half of the session remaining, lawmakers still have a full agenda of issues to address before final adjourn- ment March 20. They include the $20.8 bil- lion annual state budget for fis- cal year 2015, legislation to authorize the use of a certain form of medicinal marijuana to treat seizure disorders, the Safe Carry Protection Act for licensed gun owners, expan- sion of the HOPE Grant to pay full tuition for high-achieving technical college students and Gov. Nathan Deal's criminal justice reform plan to assist the transition of criminal offenders into productive-law abiding citizens upon their release from incarceration. In legislative action that did take place last week, a majority of the House of Representatives voted to table legislation that would have made changes to state law deal- ing with probation officers who work for private companies. Sponsors of HB 837 said the measure is necessary to address a court ruling last year stating that judges cannot "stop the clock" on a criminal sen- tence if an individual on pro- bation had stopped checking in or paying fees to a private pro- bation company, and that it was unconstitutional for private probation companies to use electronic monitoring. A bipartisan group of House members successfully amended the legislation to leave stopping the clock on a sentence to the discretion of the judge and to prohibit pri- vate companies from charging more for supervising misde- meanor offenders than state probationers charge felons. Those amendments led supporters of HB 837 to at least temporarily end debate and pull the proposal from consid- eration. The House majority also approved legislation that would prevent some school bus drivers, cafeteria workers and other non-teaching employees from seeking unemployment compensation outside the school year. I voted against HB 714, which would adversely affect some 64,000 of our state's low- est-paid workers and drive Georgia families deeper into poverty, and now goes to the Senate for its consideration. Health Care Concerns: Last week, the Lower Oconee Community Hospital in Wheeler County became the fourth Georgia hospital in the last 14 months to close its doors because of "dire financial straits." When a hospital closes in a small community, the citizens not only lose their main source of medical care, they often lose one of their major employers, further devastating the local economy. But instead of taking action to improve the situation, many of our state's top governmen- tal leaders appear to be doing everything in their power to deny access to affordable health care to our citizens. First of all, Gov. Deal con- tinues to refuse to accept fed- eral funding to expand Georgia's Medicaid program under the Affordable Care Act - despite the fact that 650,000 presently uninsured Georgians would be covered. With the federal govern- ment completely paying for the expansion the first three years and 90 percent of the costs thereafter, Georgia would receive an estimated $3.4 bil- i i ' lion per year - which would help our hospitals keep their k doors open and boost the econ- omy by providing tens of thou- sands of new health care jobs. Inexplicably, the highest- ranking officers of the House ,i of Representatives introduced legislation last week that would prohibit the governor (in the J event he changes his mind) or i any other official from expand- ing Medicaid in Georgia. Finally, Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens has joined ,: in filing a lawsuit that would prevent thousands of Georgians who have already enrolled in health insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act from receiving the federa, l tax credits that make their monthly premiums affordable. If the attorney gen- eral's lawsuit is successful, these Georgians would undoubtedly lose their cover- age and the state's number of : uninsured residents would rise significantly. ' ) ) ) Rep. Carl Von Epps (D- LaGrange), Georgia House District 132. During the leg- islative session, contact me at 512 CoverdeU Legislative Office Building, Atlanta, GA 30334; by phone at 404-656-7859; or by email at carl.epps@house.ga.gov mail- to :carl.epps@house.ga.gov. '1