LAWRENCEVILLE LAWN: Here's a conception drawing of what is about to happen over the next year in Lawrenceville, as that city gets a central park complex in the midst of its downtown. The concept was produced by Tunnell-Spangler-Walsh Associates of Atlanta. For more information, see Elliott Brack's perspective.
Issue 12.12 | Friday, May 11, 2012
GwinnettForum.com is a twice-weekly online community commentary for exploring pragmatic and sensible social, political and economic approaches to improve life in Gwinnett County, Ga. USA.
By William S. Morris III
ATHENS, Ga., May 11, 2012 -- My friendship with Conrad Fink began when I was elected to the Board of Directors of the Associated Press in 1976. Conrad was the Vice President of the AP and he and I quickly became close friends.
Both of us deeply believed that the most important element for the survival of democracy is an informed electorate. By any measure, local daily newspapers have done the job of keeping our electorate informed. No other media can hold a candle to what local daily newspapers have done throughout our history and are still doing today.
Conrad's practice and experience in newspaper reporting and newspaper management made him an outstanding professor. The University of Georgia was lucky that he came here in 1983.
Conrad expressed in a recent speech his concern about . . . .
said . . . . .
believed . . . . .
Nevertheless, Conrad had three main ideas that he felt we should follow . . . .
Fink: (1932-2012): May he rest in peace!
2012 -- Hurrah, hurrah! for the City of Norcross! It has joined
the cities of Lilburn and Duluth in banning smoking on or near city property,
including parks, sidewalks, recreational fields and city buildings, among
other places. The ban won't go into effect for another month, as people
will be given an opportunity to get informed about the new regulations.
amazing how fast the United States has moved to limit smoking, and with
relative ease. Before 2003, there were few states that had smoking restrictions.
But somehow, in 2003, 41 states jumped on the bandwagon limiting smoking
in public places. That was before the June, 2006 report from the U.S.
Surgeon General which concluded "there is no risk free level of exposure
to secondhand smoke."
bans, restaurants and bars howled "foul!" But results have shown
that restaurant receipts since the smoking ban have instead prospered,
and these places have not been hurt. Of all places, Ireland was the first
European country to ban smoking in restaurant and bars, with the unexpected
results most positive. Since then other European countries have taken
such no-smoking measures.
adds up to living in a better world today. Who would have thought?
* * * *
cheers for the City of Lawrenceville in its now-underway Lawrenceville
Lawn project. This amounts to something similar to what Duluth, Norcross,
Suwanee, Snellville and Sugar Hill have done
.that is, creating a
green space for gatherings near the center of town.
was this week, with work anticipated to be completed in about 12 months.
Estimated cost is $4.4 million for the entire project. The city purchased
several tracts of land, including the former Edge's Cafeteria, to create
the open spaces for the project. The property runs from Clayton Street,
east on Luckie Street, to Jackson Street. And
it has possibilities
to be expanded eventually with adjacent city-owned property.
for the forward-thinking progress of the City of Lawrenceville.
* * * *
political season, and odd items happen to political candidates. Now
comes Gwinnett Commissioner Mike Beaudreau, who will probably be a candidate
to succeed himself in the July Republican primary, trotting out a proposal
for Gwinnett to adopt a LOST (Local Option Sales Tax) tax. In effect,
it would add another penny sales tax while reducing property tax by a
so preposterous about Beaudreau running this up the flagpole at this time
is the economic times in which we live. It makes you wonder where Commissioner
Beaudreau got his economic understanding. After all, anyone knows that
in period of an economic downturn, revenue based on sales tax always declines.
Taxes on property are a much more solid and assured way of taxation than
is a sales tax, which can yo-yo around, and not provide the solid base
for revenue. About that there is no question.
sales taxes are regressive, and forever hurt those on the lowest economic
rung. This is not a good, but whacky, idea. We hope it gets downplayed
* * * *
up: forget the name of a neighbor? This site is not perfect, but it's
one way to keep up with who lives around you: http://neighbors.whitepages.com/.
The only problem apparently is that those living there must have a land-line
phone to be included in this compilation.
The public spiritedness of our sponsors allows us to bring GwinnettForum.com to you at no cost to readers. Today we shine our spotlight on Heaven & Associates, P.C., a certified public accounting firm, dedicated to being your partner in navigating a changing world. They are located at 40 Technology Parkway South, Suite 250, Norcross, Georgia. The firm works with clients to minimize their tax obligations, address the financial and accounting needs of their businesses and address the broader accounting needs of estate planning, business succession planning, and benefit and retirement planning. They can be reached at 770-849-0078. Their web site is www.heavencpa.com.
Editor, the Forum:
There are only 682 traffic signals in Gwinnett? Really? I though some roads had half that amount. Seriously I though the number in Gwinnett would have been more like 20,000.
Someone is removing one this week at the intersection of Camp Branch and Gravel Springs, near the I-85 overpass. There is one of those big GDOT blinking signs announcing the removal. In this case the signal was extremely close to the old bridge and had to be relocated when the bridge was upgraded and the intersection re-routed.. The light being removed and the one that will remain can't be any further than a couple hundred feet away.
John Smoltz will appear at the Gwinnett Braves Stadium for a Gwinnett County Public Library "Meet the Author Series" special event on Friday, May 25. Smoltz will be available to sign copies of his book, Starting and Closing: Perseverance, Faith and One More Year, for baseball fans and readers alike from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Smoltz, former starter and closing pitcher for the Atlanta Braves, is an eight-time All Star and Cy Young award winner and World Series champion, who is now an active sportscaster. The Atlanta Braves will be retiring Smoltz's number 29 in June.
Gwinnett County Public Library Executive Director Nancy Stanbery-Kellam says: "It's wonderful that the library can help welcome back John Smoltz as he begins a new chapter in his amazing career, this time as an author. We love when we can bring both history and new beginnings to our community in unexpected places. Hosting John Smoltz at Coolray Field allows the library to be right where the action happens, with our customers in the moment."
This event is free for ticket holders of Friday's game. Books will be available for purchase at the stadium and a percentage of books sales will benefit the library. Books purchased at this event will be signed and personalized. Please do not bring pre-purchased books or memorabilia to the stadium. Memorabilia signing will not be offered at this event.
Coolray Field is located north of Lawrenceville on Georgia Highway 20, near Interstate 85. For more information, visit www.gwinnettpl.org, call (770) 978-5154.
Gwinnettians can help county Great American Clean-Up
Gwinnettians are invited to join the Great American Clean-Up Challenge in the county, now through May 31.
Clean and Beautiful has set a goal to engage more than 24,300 citizens
in 230 community improvements projects through the end of May. Projects
making the biggest improvements in the community will win cash prizes!
To register your project, click
Citizens can join a volunteer group for Good Neighbor Community Days by visiting http://www.gwinnettcb.org/join-a-volunteer-group/.
Almost, Maine to be presented in Snellville beginning Friday
Theatre will present Almost, Maine opening May 11 and continuing
through May 27 in its new location at 2338 Henry Clower Boulevard at New
London Plaza in Snellville.
The performances are Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2:30 p.m. on May 11-13, 18-20 and 25-27. Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 on the day of the show. Children/students (3-19) and seniors (55+) are always $10. Tickets can be purchased either online through our website. at Margins Charity Thrift and Variety Mall, or through our Web site or at the theatre box office. For additional information visit www.newlondontheatre.org or call 770.559.1484.
Third annual Arts in Park set for May 19 in Suwanee
The third annual Arts in the Park in Suwanee is just around the corner, on May 19. The North Gwinnett Arts Association will have over 50 artist booths, with 48 of these artist booths participating as juried entrants competing for $1,250 in cash awards.
A standout this year is the entertainment schedule. Donna Wilkes, owner of Atlanta Gigs, worked magic to create an upscale circus atmosphere with day long entertainment. Among them will be the Peach State Opera performing Operatizers. These are mini portions of opera.
The Imperial OPA Circus will also be performing. Jugglers, fire eaters, an aerial acrobat performer, a ballet dancer, along with a stilts walker, unicycles and a humongous paper mache do-do bird all combine to provide magic for attendees.
Suwanee, Georgia, the North Gwinnett Arts Association, Inc. is a non-profit
organization and maintains an open membership policy. Artists of all types
--- painters, digital artists, photographers, potters, woodworkers, metal
workers, jewelers, fabric artists, writers, poets, performing artists,
and more --- are welcome to be a part of this organization. The NGAA is
designed to be a gathering of artists, crafts persons and art lovers from
everywhere who bring their experiences, ranging from beginner to professional,
local to international, to share and enjoy.
Dr. Cheryl Davenport Dozier is the new president of Savannah State University (SSU), named to the post this week by the University System of Georgia (USG) Board of Regents. She has held this post at SSU since April of 2011.
Prior to being at Savannah State, Dozier served as associate provost for Institutional Diversity at the University of Georgia from 2006-2011 and assistant vice president of Academic Affairs at the Gwinnett University Center from 2002-2006. She is a tenured Professor in the School of Social Work. She earned a Doctorate in Social Welfare from Hunter College, at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York and received a Master's in Social Work from Atlanta University (now Clark-Atlanta) School of Social Work and a Bachelor's degree from Fairleigh Dickinson University, Teaneck, N.J.
She is the co-principal investigator for the Peach State Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation, a $10 million National Science Foundation (NSF) funded program at UGA that broadens the participation of minority students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics at SSU and six other USG institutions.
Watts again is interim president of Georgia Perimeter College
Rob Watts has been named interim president of Georgia Perimeter College. Watts previously served as interim president of Georgia Perimeter College in Decatur from 2005-2006 and begins his second stint on May 14. He takes over from former GPC president Anthony Tricoli, who is taking a position in the University System's Academic Affairs Office.
Watts has an extensive career in the University System. He was chief operating officer for the University System of Georgia until earlier this year, a position he held since 2006.Watts has also served as an interim president of Georgia Highlands College in Rome, as the interim director of the Gwinnett University Center in Lawrenceville from 2001 to 2002, and Watts was the interim president at Middle Georgia College, in Cochran.
Watts earned both a bachelor's and master's degree from Florida State University, in Tallahassee. He also holds a master's degree from Johns Hopkins University's Bologna Center, in Bologna, Italy.
"The book takes place for one day, on December 1, 1955, as Georgia Power Company closes the floodgates on a dam in Middle Georgia to provide a lake for power generation. This is all fiction. Lake Sinclair opened in 1953, and must have been the model for this story. The book only concentrates on a few characters, including partly being told by a big, black, happy Chow dog, who emerges as the most likable character in the book. The story of people losing their land for power generation will resonate with people all over the country. The author, a University of Georgia graduate now living in Philadelphia, has a gift for moving you along in the story, and provides solid description of events, the land, and its people. It's well worth the read. This was the first electronic book we've read ..which we find is not our favorite way to read a book. We want to be able to flip ahead see how many more pages until the end of a chapter."--eeb
Savannah's remarkable city plan is distinguished from those of previous colonial towns by its repeated pattern of connected neighborhoods, multiple squares, streets, and designed expansion into lands held by the city (the common). It is unique in the history of urban planning in a number of respects, not the least of which is that the squares allow for more open space in Savannah than in any city layout in history.
Founded in 1733, Savannah is situated on a 40-foot-high bluff overlooking the Savannah River, 18 miles from the Atlantic Ocean. Laid out by General James Edward Oglethorpe, it was the last colonial capital to be established by Britain in America.
The basic plan unit is a ward, 600 feet to a side in the north-south direction, and 540 feet to 600 feet in the east-west direction. Streets and building lots are organized around a central open space or square. Each ward has a name. Wards were originally organized as urban neighborhoods with direct correlation to garden and farm lots in Oglethorpe's expanded regional plan system.
bounding the wards allow uninterrupted movement of traffic. Internal streets
are interrupted by the squares to create a pedestrian-friendly scale.
Savannah's plan reflects political and organizational considerations of the day. Each ward had tythingmen, who shared guard and other duties. Wards were tied to a larger regional plan of garden and farm lots. The repetitive non-hierarchal placement of wards, squares, and equal-sized lots points to the utopian ideals of the colony. The regularity of these lots controlled the size and rhythm of development in the third dimension to create a visually diverse and humanly scaled city.
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© 2012, Gwinnett Forum.com. Gwinnett Forum is an online community commentary for exploring pragmatic and sensible social, political and economic approaches to improve life in Gwinnett County, Ga. USA.
"Education's purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one."
MORE COPIES AVAILABLE
Previously out of print, Elliott Brack's 850-page history, "Gwinnett: A Little Above Atlanta," is now available again. Since its original publication, the book was declared the winner of the 2010 Award of Excellence for documenting Georgia history by the Georgia Historical Records Advisory Board. It is also the winner of the Gwinnett Historical Society's Whitworth-Flanigan Award for 2011 for preserving the history of Gwinnett County.The book includes 143 demographic and historic tables, with more than 4,000 names in the index, and 10,000 names in the appendix.Two versions of the book are available. The hardback edition is priced at $75, while a softback edition is $40. Books are available at:
You can also order
books through the Internet. To do that, go to www.elliottbrack.com
to place your order. For mail orders, there is a $5 shipping and handling
fee. Purchases are also subject to the 6 percent Georgia sales tax.
SEARCH GWINNETT FORUM
IN THE COMING WEEK
(NEW) National Train Day: May 12 at the Southeastern Railway Museum in Duluth. Visit the Museum as it commemorates the driving of the Golden Spike that marked the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad in1869. Special activities on Saturday include crafts, games, a scavenger hunt, and special learning stations. Also note that the museum has extended its hours for the summer. The museum will now be open Wednesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. It will be also opened on Sunday for Festival Weekends. More info.
Jazzy Thing: 19th annual Annandale Village fundraiser, will be held May 12, at Wild Bill's in Duluth. Experience an evening of distinctive cuisine, games, silent auction, live entertainment, dance, music, and an Arts Bazaar. For more info, call (770) 932-4887 or go online here.
Intelligence" speech: 7:30 a.m., May 15, Gwinnett Technology
Forum, Busbee Center of Gwinnett Technical College. Dr. Steven Vicinanza,
president and CTO of BlueWave Computing, will speak. Email
for more info.
Input sought concerning the Yellow River Park Trail Rehabilitation
Project: 6:30 p.m., May 17, Mountain Park Activity Building, 1063
Rockbridge Road, Stone Mountain. The goal is for the renovated trail system
to benefit all park user types while protecting the natural resources
of the park. More
SOON AND ONGOING
Striped Bass Fishing Tournament: 6 a.m. to 3 p.m., May 18, Harbor Pavilion at Lake Lanier Islands. Includes breakfast and lunch. Sponsored by The Cross Group of Merrill Lynch. Proceeds benefit Gwinnett Children's Shelter. Info: Call (678) 474-1817.
Beauty and the Beast Ballet, presented by Northeast Atlanta Ballet at Gwinnett Center in Duluth: 7:30 p.m., May 18, and 3 p.m., May 20.
Boat Show and Sugarloaf Leisure Living Tour: 10 a.m to 4 p.m. on May 18 and 19. Hosted by Sugarloaf Country Club Charities; among the beneficiaries will be the Duluth-based Foster Children's Foundation. The Tour will showcase the outdoor living spaces and indoor terrace levels of four homes. The boat show will be at the TPC Sugarloaf Country Club! More info online.
15th Annual Norcross Car Show: 8 a.m. until 4 p.m., May 19, in downtown Norcross. Proceeds benefit medical scholarships. For more info, call Liz or Dodger DeLeon at 770-448-2664 or send email.
Eighth Annual Beach Bash: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., May 19, Braselton. Festival to be in downtown Park, and features many activities, including arts, crafts and food vendors, plus musicians. Event is free. More info.
Music Recital by two seniors: 7:30 p.m., May 21, Pearce Auditorium, Brenau University. Performing will be Tenor Jeff Akana, from Suwanee, and Trumpeter Matt Scout of Flowery Branch. The program is free and open to the public. More info.
Memorial Day Parade in Dacula: 10 a.m., May 28. Bill Tiller, a Korean War veteran of the U.S. Navy, will be the Grand Marshal. Theme for the 19th annual parade is "Their Sacrifice, Our Gratitude." A one-mile Fun Run begins at 8 a.m. and a 5K run starts at 8:30 a.m. For more information, send email.
MORE EEB PERSPECTIVE
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