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Plant Vogtle on track after schedule revised

1 hour 30 min ago

Georgia Power Co. reported Friday that Plant Vogtle expansion is progressing as planned after the Waynesboro facility’s budget and schedule were revised earlier this year to reflect an 18-month delay and a $246 million increase in capital construction costs.

Total construction and capital costs remain at $5.045 billion, and in-service target dates for the plant’s two new nuclear reactors – Units 3 and 4 – are still tentatively set for June 2019 and 2020, respectively, the power company disclosed in its latest construction monitoring report.

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Southeast watches storm approach

3 hours 20 min ago



All of Florida is carefully watching Tropical Storm Erika as the disorganized system makes its way over Hispaniola.


Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center in Miami said that as of 11 a.m. today, the forecast showed the storm hitting the state Monday. The forecast path has Erika skirting the state’s Gulf Coast and then moving up Florida’s spine north of Tampa.


The next 24 hours will be critical in the storm’s development, hurricane center meteorologist James Franklin said.


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Bond granted in gang rape case

4 hours 30 min ago


A judge set $50,000 bonds Friday for four young Augusta man accused of robbing and sexually assaulting at gunpoint two escorts lured to town to meet with a potential client.

Senior Judge William M. Fleming Jr. rejected the prosecutor’s request to deny bond or set restrictive conditions for bond, except for agreeing to an 8 p.m. curfew.

Jahmal Hamm, 18, Curtis D. Jordan, 19, Devonta L. Kitchens, 17, and Maxene Saintal Jr., 16, each faces charges of two counts rape, two counts aggravated sodomy, and armed robbery.

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Woman claims assault led to miscarriage

5 hours 10 min ago

Police are investigating a woman’s miscarriage that occurred shortly after she reported an assault by the unborn child’s father, authorities said.

Richmond County sheriff’s deputies were called to the 29-year-old woman’s Belmont Avenue apartment about 4:30 a.m. Aug. 15.

She told them she was awakened when Darielle Washington, 34, grabbed her arms and argued with her about Facebook posts. According to an incident report, Washington did not live with the woman but had in the past and likely unlocked the door with a key.

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Confederate monument protected by Plexiglas

6 hours 57 min ago




CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Mecklenburg County officials have encased a Confederate monument in a Plexiglas barrier to prevent it from being vandalized again.


The Charlotte Observer reports the county has built a wooden frame over the 1929 granite pillar at the Grady Cole Center and installed a transparent Plexiglas container around it.


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South Georgia karate instructor guilty of molestation

10 hours 54 min ago

WOODBINE, Ga. -- A south Georgia jury found karate instructor Thomas Franklin Ary guilty Thursday in his retrial on three charges of the child molestation of a young student.

The eight-woman, four-man Camden County jury began deliberating about 11 a.m. and returned about 4 p.m. with its verdict of guilty on all counts of molesting a young girl who was 8 and 9 during two summer camps at Pak’s Karate Institute in Kingsland where Ary was a longtime instructor.

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Georgia 'rampage' victim dies

11 hours 18 min ago


ATHENS, Ga. -- One of the victims of a man’s rampage this week in Oglethorpe County has died, while her killer was released from an Athens hospital.

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Savannah State student shot, killed on campus

11 hours 26 min ago

SAVANNAH, Ga. -- A Savannah State University student was fatally wounded Thursday night during an altercation at the student union.

Christopher Starks, a junior from the metro Atlanta area, died at a local hospital, officials said.

Classes were delayed until 10 a.m. today.

Savannah State police said the shooting took place late Thursday night near the student union on campus.

No description of the suspect was available late Thursday night, school spokeswoman Loretta Heyward said.

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Lockdown lifted following Savannah State University campus shooting

17 hours 56 min ago

Savannah State police said a shooting took place late Thursday night near the student union on campus.

One male was taken to a local hospital for treatment of his injuries, said Loretta Heyward, Savannah State spokeswoman. The extent of his injuries was not immediately known.

No description of the suspect was available late Thursday night, Heyward said.

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State commission denies petition for Columbia County charter school

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 10:42pm

For the second consecutive year, the State Charter Schools Commission has denied a local group’s petition to establish an arts-infused charter school in Columbia County.

Organizers behind the Columbia County School for the Arts were anticipating the commission’s decision after receiving a letter earlier this month indicating that the review panel would recommend to deny their petition.

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Former energy secretary backs MOX plutonium disposal

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 9:10pm

Federal lawmakers should work with the U.S. Energy Department to restructure a Savannah River Site project that converts weapons-grade plutonium into fuel for commercial use at nuclear power plants, a former energy secretary recently told the Senate’s ranking Democrat.

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Georgia Regents Health System, University Hospital talk of need for partnerships

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 8:53pm

In separate meetings Thurs­day, the leadership of both Georgia Regents Health System and University Hospital said they were doing well financially but see the need to partner with others in the future.

New health system CEO and GRU President Brooks Keel said some of those talks have been with each other. In coming years, there could be only a handful of very large health systems left in Georgia, University CEO Jim Davis said.

After his first health system board meeting, Keel said he met with Davis about a week ago.

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Perry brings presidential campaign to Aiken Friday

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 5:41pm

Former Texas governor Rick Perry will bring his presidential campaign to Aiken on Friday.

Fellow Republican presidential candidates Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum and Jeb Bush have already visited Aiken County. Visits by Ben Carson and Carly Fiorina are scheduled for September and October, respectively.

Perry will speak at the Aiken County Republican Party’s luncheon at 1 p.m. downtown in Newberry Hall. Doors open at Noon.

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Woman charged with murder in death of infant

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 4:07pm

A 21-year-old woman has been charged with murder after a Wilkes County infant died Monday.

According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Takela Jones was caring for Sidney Lewis, who was 5 weeks old, at the time the infant suffered injuries that resulted in her death. Jones was the girlfriend of the infant’s father.

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Stock turmoil won't affect Augusta, report says

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 3:38pm

ATLANTA — Ignore the fluctuations in the stock market because the Augusta economy is continuing to grow and add jobs, according to a university forecast released Thursday.

Much of the Wall Street turmoil is in reaction to Chi­na’s shifting monetary policy and an overdue correction in its own stock market. The factors generating growth in the U.S. in the first half of the year – consumer demand and corporate investment – should fuel a healthy second half, too, according to the quarterly outlook from the Economic Forecasting Cen­ter at Georgia State Uni­versity.

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New study: Up to 54 percent of county sales taxes paid by non-residents

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 2:55pm

A new study commissioned by the Metro Augusta Chamber of Commerce estimates non-county residents pay up to 54 percent of sales tax revenue.

The finding by the Carl Vinson Institute of Government bolsters support for special purpose, local option sales tax 7, also known as SPLOST, which backers say is fair because non-residents help fund sales tax projects inside Augusta-Richmond County, including roads and other infrastructure used by visitors.

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Palace Malice to retire from racing

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 2:24pm

Palace Malice had it all in his career as one of the top thoroughbreds: speed, stamina and charisma.

The colt had the stamina to go the distance and win the Belmont Stakes, and he had the speed to cover shorter distances and win races such as the Metropolitan Mile. Through it all, the son of Curlin out of Palace Rumor exhibited a flair for the dramatic.

Now, the 5-year-old colt’s racing career is over. Dogwood Stable, which jointly owns Palace Malice with Three Chimneys Farm, made it official with a news release Thursday.

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SRNS donates $10,000 for Aiken County's 100th Habitat for Humanity house

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 2:04pm

Savannah River Nuclear Solutions presented Aiken County’s Habitat for Humanity chapter with a $10,000 check this week to help the local nonprofit reach a major milestone -- the construction of its 100th house in more than 25 years of service to the community.

The donation marks the third Habitat house co-sponsored by SRNS, which has previously provided financial support for homes in Aiken County built in 2010 and 2011.

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No Confederate ban in Spartanburg schools

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 12:59pm


SPARTANBURG, S.C. — Schools in Charleston County have banned Confederate items from clothing, jewelry and cars on campus this year, just a couple of months after the shooting deaths of nine people at a historic black church.


The Herald-Journal of Spartanburg reports school officials in Spartanburg County are not singling out Confederate items as banned this year.


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Blasting near Grovetown today

Thu, 08/27/2015 - 12:51pm

The sound of explosions might be heard this afternoon near Grovetown as construction continues on new sewer lines.

According to a news release, Tiger Blasting will be working today beginning 12:30 p.m. for the development of a project off Georgia Highway 221.


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