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Expect better enrollment second time under Affordable Care Act

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 11:28pm

As he was at the opening minutes of the first open enrollment period, Russell Head will be at his computer today just minutes after midnight as the second open enrollment period begins in the health insurance marketplaces under the Affordable Care Act.

He is hoping for a “much better” result from logging onto healthcare.gov, instead of hours staring at an error message and continually refreshing the screen.

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Academy of Richmond County students embrace technical skills, career-based classes

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 10:42pm

 

Technical education helped Academy of Richmond County student Hope Campbell make the jump from home schooling to public school.

Campbell, 16, transferred to Richmond Academy three years ago and felt lost when deciding which classes to take. After talking to her counselor, she decided to enter the school’s cosmetology “career technical pathway” to learn how to create hairstyles and maintain professionalism with potential clients. She’s earning credits toward college and preparing to enter the workforce after graduation.

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Savannah River Site to host military training on Saturday

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 10:16pm

 

There’s no reason to be alarmed by the sound of helicopters over Aiken County Saturday. Officials say it’s just an exercise.

Beginning about noon, several helicopters will fly in and out of Savannah River Site as part of the South Carolina National Guard’s Carolina Thunder exercise, according to a news release.

Simulated rifle fire and battlefield noise may be heard in the area of Highway 125, and several full-size replicas of anti-aircraft weapons have been positioned around the site.

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Augusta property crime reports decline during holiday season despite perceived greater threat

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 8:31pm

 

Richmond County officials say the holiday season puts more people at risk of becoming victims of property crimes, but the numbers tell a different story.

Each year in November, sheriff’s offices in both Richmond and Columbia counties ramp up public service announcements with the hope that residents take heed and shop with caution, or else run the risk of a present-less Christmas.

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Southern Railway Freight Station featured on annual Easter Seals ornament

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 8:21pm

 

Miniature depictions of a historic train depot on downtown Augusta’s Reynolds Street will soon hang from Christmas trees across the city.

The Southern Railway Freight Station, built in the early 1900s, is the featured landmark on the 2014 Ornament of Hope from the Easter Seals organization. Proceeds from sales of the ornament benefit the agency’s programs to help people with disabilities transition to jobs.

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Nuclear Regulatory Commission grants extension for MOX construction deadline

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 5:54pm

 

A 10-year extension for construction of the mixed-oxide fuel fabrication facility at Savannah River Site has been approved by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

According to a news release, the NRC signed an order Thursday extending the completion deadline until March 30, 2025. CB&I Areva MOX Services, the facility’s contractor, asked for the extension in May after numerous construction delays, some caused by lower-than-projected annual funding from Congress and delivery delays for components.

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Bond set for Augusta man facing drug trafficking charges

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 5:31pm

 

An Augusta man accused of receiving a hefty load of drugs by mail was granted a $50,000 bond Friday.

Cecil Ray Hodge, 54, was targeted by Richmond County Sheriff’s narcotics investigators on Nov. 6 based on a tip he would receive a mailed package containing illegal drugs, said Assistant District Attorney Falin Syms. Officers reported finding 13 pounds of marijuana, nearly 6 ounces of methamphetamine, and 163 tablets of morphine.

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AT&T stops adding Web tracking codes on cellphones; identifiers hampered online anonymity

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 4:03pm

WASHINGTON — AT&T Mobility, the nation’s second-largest cellular provider, said Friday it’s no longer attaching hidden Internet tracking codes to data transmitted from its users’ smartphones. The practice made it nearly impossible to shield its subscribers’ identities online.

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Georgia eyes probation reform

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 1:13pm

 

ATLANTA -- At the direction of Gov. Nathan Deal, a panel of criminal justice experts has been studying Georgia’s misdemeanor probation system and is expected to make a slate of recommendations, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Friday.

“Transparency and oversight are probably the two key catch phrases that are driving what we’re doing,” said Georgia Court of Appeals Judge Michael Boggs, co-chair of the governor’s Criminal Justice Reform Council.

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Bond denied for two Augusta men facing rape charges

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 1:09pm

Two men accused of rape and false imprisonment in what a prosecutor described as a bizarre scheme to terrorize someone were denied bond Friday.

Ricky L. Darby, 41, and William J. Krepps, 20, have been held without bond since their arrests earlier this month. Neither man has a felony record but Senior Judge William J. Fleming Jr. denied bond in Richmond County Superior Court on grounds they could pose a danger to the community.

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SEC leads Tailgate Top 10

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 1:00pm

Before football games at the University of Mississippi, one of the best parties in the South is held on 10 grassy acres shaded by dozens of hulking oak trees in the middle of campus.

Under canvass tents, women in dresses and high-heeled shoes mingle with men wearing pressed khakis and starched dress shirts.

The buffet tables are covered with checkered cloths and freshly cut flowers. There’s plenty to eat and drink.

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Facts about Richmond County property taxes

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 12:00pm

As the saying goes, nothing is certain but death and taxes, and the due date for the second item has arrived.

Stragglers who submit their Augusta ad valorem tax bill payments after Saturday will find their bills bearing 1 percent interest per month and a 10 percent late payment penalty, according to arctax.com, the Web site of the Richmond County tax commissioner.

Here are some other facts about local property taxes:

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U.S. Rep. John Barrow lists Washington townhouse for rent

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 11:39am

U.S. Rep. John Barrow listed his Washington townhouse for rent this week, just days after he said he will sell his Augusta home to spend time with family in Athens, Ga., following a 10-year run in the House.

Barrow’s spokesman, Richard Carbo, confirmed the Augusta congressman plans to rent his two-story condominium about a half-mile from the U.S. Capitol, but refused to speculate on whether the move signals Barrow’s intent to seek re-election in the future.

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Dogwood Stable's Palace Malice will return to racing in 2015

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 11:03am

Palace Malice will race again in 2015.

Dogwood Stable’s prized colt, who won the 2013 Belmont Stakes, has been cleared for competition after an examination found him to be fully recovered from a bone bruise.

“The X-rays and ultrasounds taken in Kentucky on Thursday morning are as good as we hoped they would be, and Dr. Larry Bramlage and Dr. Robert Copelan pronounced him completely sound,” Cot Campbell, Dogwood president, said in a release issued Friday.

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Free church concert Sunday

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Fri, 11/14/2014 - 9:17am

St. John United Methodist Church is presenting a free concert Sunday afternoon open to the public.

The performance, featuring the Vega Quartet with pianist William Ransom, begins at 3 p.m.

The church, 736 Greene St., will provide a nursery, while an offering will take place for the Maxwell Theatre Project.

For more information, call (706) 724-9641.

 

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