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The Hogansville Herald
Manchester, Georgia
April 7, 2005     The Hogansville Herald
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April 7, 2005

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Church Yard Sale a Hit r Bill Will Save Bucks For Homeowners -10A The "11 Formerly The Hogansville Herald Sewing the Hogansville-GramTiUe Area Since 1944 Ballet Performance Thrills Onlookers -5.4 PRSRT STD AUTO U. S. POSTAGE PAID HOGANSVILLE, GA PERMIT NO. 35 VOL. 62, NO. 14 HOGANSVILLE, GEORGIA- THURSDAY, APRIL 7, 2005 10 PAGES . 1 SECTION . 1 INSERT .50 . ,Februaw ' Jobless Rates Jobless Picture Worsens By ROB RICHARDSON Spring begins with unem' ployment in the four-county West Central Georgia area substantially higher than it was a year ago. Troup rose to a 6.9 per- cent rate in February com- pared to a 6.8 in January. In February of 2004, Troup had 4.8 percent rate - shortly before massive mill layoffs were announced at WestPoint Stephens. According to figures just released by the Georgia Department of Labor, the Harris-Troup-Meriwether- Talbot area showed an aver- age jobless rate-of'IS.2 per- cent for February, compared to 5.0 percent a year ago. The area's 6.2 rate rose slightly from the 6.1 percent average shown in January. : West Central Georgia's numbers also remain high- r than the statewide unem- ployment average, which Yeas 5.3 percent in February, p from the 5.0 recorded for lanuary. The state rate was 4.2 in February of 2004. In the four counties, some 3,561 workers were jobless, according to the labor depart- ment. Troup, the most populat- ed of the four counties, had the most unemployed: 2,080. There were 722 in Meriwether, 552 in Harris and 207 in Talbot. The jobless rate improved slightly from January to February in Meriwether, but worsened in Harris, Troup and Talbot. ;ee JOBLESS, Page 2A  By Clint Claybrook THAT TIME OF YEAR - Willie Rosser, who learned his gardening techniques from his mother; was at work among his flowers last week, including this azalea in his yard at 406 Askew Avenue. ;. - Auction s access No. Pleasing Ev, ,.ryone By CLINT CLAYBROOK :: The large crowds that the Van Byars and Son Auctions bring downtown !every other Saturday arestarting to bother some Hogansville residents. In recent weeks, Beverly Weeks and others have complained about trucks with merchandise headed to the auc- tion showroom at 308 East Main St. Weeks, in particular, has griped about the Van Byars trucks blocking 'a couple of handicapped parking places in front of their store while unloading during the week. Some merchants have complained that the auction crowds take up nearly all the parking spaces in downtown on Saturdays. That would be understandable, per- haps, except that promotion of down- town "traffic"- shoppers, that is - is one of the main objectives of the newly organized Downtown Development Association. Traditionally, progressive mer- chants learn to draw those crowds, who are already downtown, into their own stores. Instead, it seems, the complaints By Clint C!aybrook WHAT AM I BID? -Jackie Byars shows off one of the items some 80 people were bidding on in Hogansville last Saturday. about the auction traffic are continu- ing. The DDA is known to be looking into how to deal with the complaints and downtown traffic in general. On Saturday, April 2, just about every parking place downtown was occupied. Downtown was so crowded that the Hogansville Pharmacy had a red traf- fic cone placed in one parking space out front, reserving it for drug store traffic only. Inside the auction room, a crowd of some 80 bidders was looking for deals on everything from toy railroad cars to individual pieces of china and com- plete rooms of antique furniture. Jason Brooks, the son of Van and Jackie Byars was among the auction- eers keeping up the constant stream Of patter aimed at bidders, while his moth- er helped display the many items on sale. t The Byars family has been helping draw crowds for 14 years with their auctions, a thrift shop on Highway 29 and the Oak Rose Bed and Breakfast, which opened last year. Saturday's crowd was small in com- parison to others, Jackie Byars said. "Normally we'd draw 200 to 300" people at the auctions every two weeks," Maybe their son will help keep them coming: Jason was recently judged the best auctioneer among major college entrants by the Georgia Association of Auctioneers and will be competing in July to find out if he's the best in the country. Alcohol License Approved Packed House Watches Council Unanimously Agree to Proposal By BRYAN GETER The Hogansville City Council Monday night unan- imously voted to approve an application for an alcohol license for China Cafe at 1879 East Main Street. A packed house was on hand for a public hearing prior to the regular meeting to voice their opposition to the application. One man said that there was enough alcohol already in Hogansville without vot- ing for more to come. Pastor Robert Longshore of the Lighthouse Church said he had given the coun- cilmembers a brochure stat- ing the dangers of alcohol. "John Mayo, founder of the Mayo Clinic, said that alcohol is a poison," Preacher Longshore stated. He urged the council to hesitate before voting on the issue. , "I have 20 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchiIdren that I am concerned about," he added. One citizen asked, "don't we have enough drinking and drlving on our highways already? One drink leads to another." But council members unanimously approved the license, except for Councilwoman Jean Crocker, who was absent: Burglary, FireRaise- Authorities' Suspicions By CLINT CLAYBROOK Investigators are looking into a burglary that happened on Friday, March 18 and a fire that heavily' damaged the same residence just south of Hogansville four days later. A mobile home belonging to Greg and April Whaley at 360 Tin Bridge Road that had been extensively added on to was already burning when one of their sons arrived home about 3:30 p.m. on March 22, April Whaley said. It spread rapidly into other parts of the house when the boy opened the door, according to Troup County Fire Chief Jerry Heard. The house was heavily damaged through-out, so extensively "that they'll just have to bulldoze it hnd rebuild," according to April Whaley. She said "everything but my husband's clothes, and mine, was destroyed" either by fire, smoke or water. BURGLARS who had hit the residence on March 17 took just about everything that wasn't nailed down, she said, including her sons' Play Station equipment. She said the fire was more than a little suspicious. "They know it was suspicious because a gas can was found betweent the living room and the dining room" and the eyes on her gas stove were left burning by whoever set the fire, she believes. The sheriff's department is investigating, an investiga- tor told The Home News. OTHER HOUSES on Tin Bridge Road have been bur- glarized in recent days, the Whaleys said. In one of those incidents, , according to sheriff's inves- tigators, several pieces of lawn equipment were taken in a burglary that happened between March 21 at 10 p,m. and March 22 at 8 a.m. Among the items stolen in that incident at 573 Tin Bridge Road were a Snapper 44-inch riding mower, a green Murray self-propelled push mower with an attached grass catcher, a Stihl gas pow- ered weedeater and a TaskForce air compressor. A bank account has been opened at Flag Bank in Hogansville to help the Whaleys,and friends are ask- ing the public to make deposits to "The Whaley Fund" and help a family in a time of need. By Clint Claybrook TOTAL LOSS - Photograph made through a broken win- dow at this home at 360 Tin Bridge Road shows the gut- ted remains of Greg and April Whaley's residence,