|Issue 9.66 | Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2009 | Forward to your friends!|
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DULUTH, Ga., Nov. 17, 2009 -- Despite the challenging economic climate we all face, there are a host of myths about homelessness in Gwinnett. Here is just a sampling.
What is a Rainbow Village Angel? An individual or family or company who contributes $25, $100, $500, (whatever they can) every month. In Gwinnett and neighboring counties, there are well over a million people. If just 500 of that million gave $100 a month (about the price of a grande latte a day), Rainbow Village's general operating costs would be completely underwritten.
We can end family homelessness. And if we join hands, one by one by one, we will.
Based in Gwinnett for almost 20 years, Rainbow Village is a one-to-two year transitional housing program for homeless families with children, offering furnished homes, case management, adult life-skills classes, an after-school program, and stability in a community in which healing takes place and hope is restored. Visit the Website at www.RainbowVillage.org to find out how to be an Angel and other ways you can help.
NOV. 17, 2009 -- Budgets of state government are so tight that it is impacting us in many difficult ways.
The crunch is closing roadside rest stops, not only in Georgia, but in many other states. Perhaps you have noticed that in Gwinnett County, north of Suwanee, the state earlier closed that rest area, though it was not then because of budget problems.
On a recent drive northward on Interstate-85, we noticed some rest areas along the highway in South Carolina and on I-95 in Virginia were boarded shut....because of budget restrictions. Here in Georgia, the Department of Transportation has been quoted as saying that closing of a rest area can save the state $300,000 annually.
That may help Georgia's budget. But how about travelers? Such closings can make it rough on them. There's good reason to have rest stops on highways: to give drivers relief. Some 20 per cent of auto accidents and 12 per cent of near crashes come from drowsy drivers. Finding convenient areas to stop simply to stretch, rest, or even snooze when you are sleepy, are necessary. And that's not mentioning the need of rest rooms. That got us to thinking, and we came up with this: why not privatize rest areas along highways?
It could bring a windfall of cash to the state, and the Department of Transportation. After all, why not put the land of the rest stops up for sale, and allow those buying the property not only to have rest, refreshment, tourist info and rest rooms, but also sell what those on Interstate highways need most of all: gasoline or diesel fuel?
The benefits would flow to the traveling public. It's a perfect spot to allow for-profit rest stops at places now costing the state money or now dormant. Adding this networks of rest stops along the roadway would be met with enthusiasm by the motorists; more for-profit businesses would open; and the state would be the immediate beneficiary in selling now non-taxed land and putting money into the treasury at a time needed. Welcome Centers around our borders could also be privatized and save money.
There's one snag: Federal highway regulations won't allow commercial properties along Interstate highways. When the Interstate system was conceived, one rule aimed at making sure motorists could take a break without any pressures to make a purchase at any such stop. Even the vending machines at rest stops on Interstate highways must be run by non-profit institutions.
In a few states, where there are toll roads which look like Interstate highways, you can stop at commercial rest stops, simply because these are not on the Interstate highway system.
The tough economic times has given rise to some states wondering if the federal highway system would allow the states to get a waivers to allow privatizing Interstate rest area operations. But so far, no state has made the move to seek such a waiver.
One thing for sure: commercial operations of rest stops would be far better than shuttering them, as many state are now doing. These difficult times require innovation to maintain our quality of life. For profit rest stops have distinct advantages. And they could be achieved relatively quickly.
We need forward-thinking government officials who can realize the advantage of commercializing rest stops, which can immediately benefit the traveling public.
The public spiritedness of our sponsors allows us to bring GwinnettForum.com to you at no cost to readers. Today's sponsor is E.R. Snell Contractor, Inc. of Snellville. Founded in the 1920s, ERS was built on Christian beliefs with honesty and integrity leading the way. Specializing in roads, bridges and culverts, its goal is to build a safe and modern highway system while preserving our natural environment. Through quality production and high safety standards, it strives to be the best contractor possible, while continuing to be a positive influence on its employees and the community. Internet access is available at www.ersnell.com.
I am wondering where is the screaming and indignation about the recent "healthcare" bill passed by the House that exempts its very creators from being subject to what they have said is good for the rest of us! The House of Representatives rejected proposed amendments to make themselves subject to the very same plan. That is beyond outrageous!
President Obama won't even say that he and his family will participate in it, but he wants it for "us." Healthcare reform? Yes, absolutely. Looking at other options for those without insurance? Yes, absolutely.
Speeding a bill of this magnitude through Congress at warp speed without the details of who, what, when, where, or HOW being spelled out in clear terms? No! We don't implement and figure out as we go; it's called a business plan and a budget, and any business which tries to fly by the seat of their pants usually crashes, too.
Just take your blinders off for a minute and look at the current government run healthcare programs like MediCare and the Veteran's Administration, and you will see "disaster" written on the wall.
Can't wait to experience that with our new government run healthcare.
If you can print this without your own retort, I will be impressed.
It was perhaps a "friend" who complained about Facebook
Editor, the Forum:
About that recent letter from Debbie Willis about Facebook.
Ms. Willis needs to read the terms of service for Facebook. While she may no longer see the postings she made on her home page, this may not be due to the service provider. It is highly likely that one of Ms. Willis' "friends" reported her posting as offensive, and as per the terms of agreement, the social networking site removes comments that are deemed by the community to be alarming.
And while a social media site does allow all users to "publish" their comments, in no way should Ms. Willis view herself as a member of the Fourth Estate. She is merely one of 65 million people who are currently using the site.
of subdivisions work to improve Courtside Triangle
Medical Center has announced that it will construct a new outpatient diagnostic
center in Loganville early next year.
Santa arrives by train at Southeast Railroad Museum Nov. 21
Carrying on a railroad tradition, Santa Claus will arrive via train on Saturday, November 21 at 1 p. m at the Southeastern Train Museum in Duluth. There will be activity tables for children to help decorate the museum for Christmas, refreshments will be available and Santa will be available to take those candid shots for the start of the Christmas season.
The museum gift shop will be open to handle Christmas shopping opportunities. You can also visit the information desk and sign up for "Breakfast with Santa." This is scheduled Saturday mornings from December 5-19 from 9 until 11 a.m.
Braselton sets Cookies with Santa workshop for Nov. 21
your ticket today for Braselton's Cookies With Santa at Santa's Workshop
to be held November 21at 1 p.m. in the Community Center next to the Braselton
Park on Harrison Street. Please arrive 15 minutes early to get ready for
High School's Theatre Arts students won the Georgia AAAAA One-Act Play
honors went to the cast, crew and director of Lost in Yonkers, the Neil
Simon play about two young teen boys sent to live with their domineering
grandmother and eccentric relatives in Yonkers during World War II. It
won over seven other plays from other regions around the state. Director
Gina Parrish, at the helm of Norcross Theatre Arts for 18 years, has won
the regional competition several times over the years but this was her
first state champion trophy.
* * * * *
the Brookwood High School Fencing team took part in the Milton High School
Open Junior Men's EPEE last weekend. All of Brookwood's fencers advanced
to Direct Elimination bouts with three players placing in the top ten.
Tim Elam tied for third place with Kevin Brown and James Norton ranking
6th and 10th respectively.
Suwanee HAWK signal gets pedestrian group award
Suwanee's HAWK (High-Intensity Activated Crosswalk)pedestrian signal, the first in Georgia, has been recognized with a Golden Shoe Award from the PEDS pedestrian advocacy organization. At the 10th annual Golden Shoe Awards celebration in Atlanta November 10, the City of Suwanee received one of eight awards presented for outstanding pedestrian-friendly initiatives.
The HAWK signal was activated at Buford Highway and Town Center Avenue in August, as part of a larger railroad underpass project, to help provide safer and easier pedestrian access between Town Center and historic Old Town; the two sections of downtown Suwanee are separated by a major state highway and railroad track.
In addition, the City of Suwanee has received recognition once again from the Government Finance Officers Association, this time for its 2009-10 budget presentation.
Nominations being accepted for Leadership Character Awards
Nominations are now being accepted for the 7th annual Leadership Character Awards. The awards are hosted by Turknett Leadership Group in partnership with the Siegel Institute of Leadership, Ethics and Character at Kennesaw State University and sponsored by Crawford and Company and KPMG. The deadline for nominations is December 4, 2009.
Honor a leader you know who has exceptional integrity and character. You may nominate online at www.leadershipcharacter.com. For more information call Susan Hitchcock at 770-270-1723.
Every qualified nominee will be honored at the luncheon, where top awards in several categories will be announced. Categories are:
(Continued from previous edition)
Because the Salzburgers maintained a degree of stability and economic prosperity, they became ardent defenders of the Trustees' ban on slavery and limited land ownership. When groups like the Malcontents called for changes in the colony's leadership, the people of Ebenezer argued that the Trustees had a progressive but sound vision for Georgia.
Many Salzburgers believed that in order to realize their goal of building a religious utopia, they needed the social utopia promised by the Trustees. Thus, criticisms directed at the colonial leadership became criticisms of the Salzburgers as well.
When the Trustees lost the support of a majority of Georgians, Ebenezer lost much of its influence in colonial politics. The Trustees lifted the ban on slavery in 1750, and the leadership of Ebenezer finally admitted that their settlement, based on small farms, trade, and industry, could not compete with plantation agriculture or slave labor. In addition, Ebenezer's isolation would gradually change as land speculators scoured the countryside for land on which to grow their cash crops.
Although the Salzburgers played a prominent role in the affairs of Ebenezer throughout the colonial era, the decision to allow slavery forced the settlement to change. Furthermore, after the Trustees lost their charter in 1752 and Georgia became a royal colony, the Salzburgers lost their most powerful allies. Consequently, their influence in Georgia politics waned.
Because of Ebenezer's strategic location in the defense of Savannah, it changed hands several times during the American Revolution (1775-83). The state of Georgia established a magazine there, and after the British invasion in 1778, British forces heavily fortified the town with redoubts.
The fighting left the town in ruins, and it never fully recovered. The county seat moved to Springfield in 1799, and Ebenezer steadily declined until it had all but disappeared by 1855. The town's Jerusalem Church (later, Jerusalem Evangelical Lutheran Church), finished in 1769, still stands. It is one of the few Georgia buildings to survive the Revolutionary War. John Adam Treutlen, Georgia's first state governor, lived in Ebenezer.
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"We better meet these people here, who are going to be our neighbors, before they meet us."
Those interested in the history of Gwinnett need to know that the recently published book: Gwinnett: A Little Above Atlanta, has sold fast, with the first editions about sold out. Get yours before they're gone. Go to www.elliottbrack.com to order, or buy the book at a local bookstore shown on the site.
The books are available at:
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FOR CHARITY. You can give "A Gift of Laughter," a great book of cartoons by Bill McLemore, to help raise money for Rainbow Village. At just $20, it's a fun way to help. To order, call 770-497-1888, or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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