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Frantom joins race to fill Donnie Smith's commission seat

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 9:36pm

Sean Frantom, a former Super District 10 candidate and a favorite of Mayor Deke Copenhaver, has thrown himself in the pool of west Augusta men seeking appointment to former Com­mission member Donnie Smith’s District 7 seat.

Smith resigned Monday amid a state investigation’s finding he spent most of Masters Week at a hospitality house while also drawing his Georgia State Patrol salary. He retired from his State Patrol job Sept. 1.

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New Pendleton King Park waterfall is volunteers' labor of love

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 8:07pm


The new waterfall in Pendleton King Park’s Lake Elizabeth is more than a pretty face.

It is a beauty, but it’s also the means to cleaner, healthier water.

Tuesday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony to unveil the feature highlighted the hundreds of hours of manpower volunteered and thousands of dollars in donations provided by local residents, businesses and service organizations.

The waterfall was the brainchild of the Phinizy Center for Water Sciences.

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Family Dollar surveillance shows burglar taking detergent, Coca-Cola

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 7:36pm


Police are seeking a man who broke into a Milledgeville Road store to steal laundry detergent on Aug. 31.

Surveillance video showed a man pry open the front doors of Family Dollar, 2310 Milledgeville Road, and leave with five boxes of Gain and one Coca-Cola. The same man returned to the store on Tuesday. Police said items taken during Tuesday’s burglary have been recovered.

Anyone with information can contact Richmond County Sheriff’s Investigator Rolf Cramer or any on-call investigator at (706) 821-1020 or 821-1080.


Police seek suspects in burglary of Pineview Drive residence

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 7:27pm


Police are seeking two people for questioning in a burglary on Pineview Drive on Friday.

The men were driving a silver 2014 Dodge Journey SUV.

The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office is offering a cash reward for the identity of the two suspects, according to a news release issued Monday. The amount wasn’t released.

Anyone with information can contact Richmond County sheriff’s Investigator William Walker or any on-call investigator at (706) 821-1020 or 821-1080.

Ceremonies to mark Sept. 11 terrorist attacks

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 7:25pm


Ceremonies to mark the 13th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks are scheduled Thursday in Columbia and Richmond counties and at Fort Gordon.

Moments of silence, the tolling of bells and the lowering of U.S. flags to half-staff are among the events planned.

“Every year, it becomes more distant in people’s minds,” said Pam Tucker, the director of emergency management for Columbia County. “We have a whole new generation that doesn’t remember it at all.”

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State Court Judges' Council chooses to ignore ethical opinion to stay out of pending litigation

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 7:18pm


The judicial disciplinary commission’s opinion that no judge should voice his opinion in any pending litigation has failed to persuade the organization representing state court judges to stand mute in pending litigation over the use of private, for-profit probation services.

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Richmond County school board approves 'BackPack' program to fight hunger

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 7:06pm

The Richmond County Board of Education voted to formalize a partnership with Golden Harvest Food Bank on Tuesday, paving the way for a program designed to help elementary school students eat well during weekends and school holidays.

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Downtown jazz festival to benefit Augusta United Negro College Fund

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 6:49pm


The second annual Ann N. Johnson UNCF Jazz Festival will feature a national recording artist and local favorites to raise money for the Augusta United Negro College fund.

Sunday’s festival, which begins at 6 p.m. at the Jessye Norman Amphitheater, 1 Ninth St., will feature Wondaland Arts Society with national recording artist Roman GianArthur; Sounds Unlimited; Mike Frost Band; and TuTu D’Vyne featuring Quiet Storm.

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Georgia Regents University's Ricardo Azziz deems consolidation a success

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 3:44pm


ATLANTA — Things are looking up since the consolidation of Augusta’s two universities, Georgia Regents University President Ricardo Azziz told the University System of Georgia Board of Regents on Tuesday.

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Georgia Southern faces familiar attack

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 2:47pm


STATESBORO, Ga. — For about 30 years, Georgia Southern baffled opposing defenses with its signature triple-option offense.

So what happens this year? The Eagles break away from their vaunted under-center attack and schedule ... Georgia Tech, where the mastermind of the offense, Paul Johnson, now resides as head coach.

The Yellow Jackets, Georgia Southern’s opponents Saturday, are averaging 285 yards a game after opening the season with wins over Wofford and Tulane.

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Georgia regents seek $2 billion for state schools

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 2:43pm


ATLANTA — Taxpayers will fund an additional $46 million for public colleges and universities, or 2.4 percent more, if the Legislature approves a request that the University System of Georgia’s Board of Regents unanimously authorized Tuesday.

The total appropriation would come to $2 billion and rep­resent one-quarter of the annual budget for Georgia’s 31 schools. Tuition, fees and research grants make up the rest.

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Spurrier: Georgia game 'a must' for Gamecocks

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 2:09pm


Steve Spurrier knows what’s at stake in Saturday’s game between South Carolina and Georgia, even if recent history suggests otherwise.

Spurrier’s Gamecocks need a victory to remain alive in the Southeastern Conference’s Eastern Division race. With one loss already in SEC play, a second loss would be devastating.

“It’s pretty much a must for the division if we’re going to have a shot,” Spurrier said Tuesday during his weekly news conference in Columbia. “It would be very helpful.”

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Attendance streak ends for Falcon fan

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 1:38pm

 MACON, Ga. -- One of the most enduring streaks in Georgia sports, one that spanned nearly half a century and 30 losing seasons, ended Sunday.

 Atlanta Falcons superfan and World War II veteran Joe Curtis, who had attended every home game in the team’s history, missed the Falcons’ showdown with the New Orleans Saints in the Georgia Dome.

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Apple unveils watch, larger iPhone

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 1:29pm

CUPERTINO, Calif. — For the first time in years, Apple’s iPhones aren’t the star of the show. Apple unveiled a smartwatch on Tuesday, a wearable device that marks the company’s first major entry in a new product category since the iPad’s debut in 2010.


The move is significant because of recent questions about whether Apple still has a knack for innovating following the 2011 death of co-founder Steve Jobs.


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Augusta Technical College, Columbia Middle School among finalists for Georgia STEM Education Awards

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 12:52pm

Augusta Technical College and Columbia Middle School in Grovetown are among the finalists for the third annual Georgia STEM Education Awards.

The award is given to schools, organizations or companies who have made “outstanding efforts and achievements in supporting and promoting science, technology, engineering and math education in Georgia,” according to a news release sent out by the Technology Association of Georgia.

The winners will be recognized Sept. 26 at the Savannah International Trade and Convention Center.

Commanding general Army Cyber Command at Fort Gordon describes new network at TechNet Augusta conference

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 12:38pm


The commanding general of the Army Cyber Command said Tuesday that his team expects to break ground next year on a defense network at Fort Gordon that will work with private technology firms, and the federal departments of justice and homeland security.

Speaking before a crowd of more than 500 people at TechNet Augusta’s second annual military conference, Lt. Gen. Edward Cardon provided the first public details on how the Army Cyber Command will function at Fort Gordon.

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Technet Augusta opens

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 11:43am

Lt. Gen. Edward Cardon, head of the Army Cyber Command, spoke Tuesday during the opening of Technet Augusta, a three-day conference for the nation’s top Army and industry leaders to discuss the latest defense technology.

Jury ready for SC sheriff case

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 11:32am

COLUMBIA— A jury has been seated in the federal fraud trial of Williamsburg County Sheriff Michael Johnson.

The (Columbia) State reports Johnson’s trial will begin Monday. He faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted.

Prosecutors say Johnson created false police reports so customers of a co-defendant’s credit repair business could claim their overdue bills were caused by people who stole their identity.

Authorities say Johnson helped create more than 100 fake reports over three years in the county of 34,000 people.

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Aquinas still No. 1 going into home opener

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 11:31am


Aquinas football remained No. 1 in advance of its home opener on Friday.

The Irish received 13 of 14 first-place votes in the Georgia Sports Writers Association Class A high school football poll. The Irish, who are 2-0 and had a bye this past week, were a unanimous pick previously. No. 4 Mount Paran Christian took the other No. 1 vote in this week’s poll.

Of the four ranked local teams, only Burke County moved in its poll. The Bears lost to No. 3 Griffin, 36-22, and dropped three spots to eighth in Class AAAA.

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GRU study could explain autism gender gap

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 09/09/2014 - 8:36am

With therapy four times a week, including gymnastics, 7-year-old Ellison Steed is gaining ground on his peers despite his autism spectrum disorder.

“I’m so excited because he is doing so well in school,” said his mother, Erica.

New research at Georgia Regents Uni­ver­sity could help explain why males are much more likely to develop autism, and could provide a potential target for treatment. They might lack a certain receptor for estrogen.

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