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Group pushing SC school reform

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 01/21/2015 - 8:37am

COLUMBIA -- A new committee is forming to address South Carolina’s educational shortcomings following last fall’s Supreme Court decision that found the state had failed to provide a “minimally adequate” education in poor, rural school districts.

The lawsuit had been filed by poor school districts about 20 years ago.

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Bad health care news for school workers

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 01/21/2015 - 8:34am


ATLANTA — The state agency that oversees the health care of almost 2.5 million Georgians has drawn sharp questioning over a budget proposal involving a small fraction of them.

The Department of Community Health’s $13 billion budget for fiscal year 2016 would eliminate health insurance coverage for 11,500 “non-certificated” school personnel like bus drivers and cafeteria workers.

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Georgia nets new DOT commissioner

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 01/21/2015 - 8:27am


ATLANTA — The Georgia Department of Transportation has a new leader.


The 14-member State Transportation Board on Tuesday elected longtime agency employee Russell McMurry to be commissioner, effective immediately. He replaces Keith Golden, who headed the department for nearly three years and is leaving GDOT at the end of the month.


McMurry joined the agency in 1990 as a civil engineering trainee. Gov. Nathan Deal last month tapped him to be the department’s next planning director after he had been chief engineer for two years.

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Ga. coach charged with biting rival

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 01/21/2015 - 8:24am

MARIETTA, Ga. — A high school coach in suburban Atlanta is accused of biting another coach’s face.

An arrest warrant says South Cobb High School girls basketball coach Melonie Joyce Martin was standing about two inches from coach Tyrone Harris when authorities say she bit him in the eye and nose.

Martin’s attorney, S. Carlton Rouse, tells WSB-TV Martin denied touching Harris and never threatened his safety.

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Commission refuses to waive landlord's late payment penalties

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 01/21/2015 - 12:51am

An Evans businessman grew livid Tuesday after eight Augusta Com­mission members refused to waive about $3,000 in late payment penalties and interest he owes on 23 rental properties he owns in Richmond County.

Bill Powell stormed out, announcing he would “speak to the media” about the issue after the commission denied his request. Mayor Hardie Davis adjourned the meeting, which had no business left to consider.

“I’m going to get out of Rich­mond County. I’m not going to invest in Richmond County any more,” Powell said.

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Report: NFL found 11 footballs were not properly inflated during AFC title game

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Wed, 01/21/2015 - 12:15am


The NFL says its investigation into whether the New England Patriots used under-inflated footballs in the AFC championship game is ongoing after a report Tuesday night claimed the league found 11 balls were not properly inflated.

Troy Vincent, the NFL’s executive vice president for football operations, told The Associated Press that the “investigation is currently underway and we’re still awaiting findings.”

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U.S. Congressman Rick Allen issues response to State of the Union addr

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 11:11pm

U.S. Congressman Rick Allen issued a response Tuesday evening following President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address.

Allen was sworn in Jan. 6 to the 114th Congress as the new representative for Georgia’s 12th district.

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Golf club employee accused of stealing $1,200 from customer

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 10:55pm

An area golf club employee was told not to return to work after she was seen on video stealing $1,200 from a customer’s wallet Monday.

Video showed a 72-year-old victim leave his wallet on the restaurant counter at Green Meadows Golf Club while he turned to speak with another patron, according to an incident report from the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.

The female suspect, who has not been arrested, took $1,200 out of his wallet and then slid the wallet behind a soda dispenser, the report stated.

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Martinez man charged in trespassing, eluding incident in Grovetown

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 7:27pm

A Martinez man was arrested Monday afternoon in Grovetown on charges of driving under the influence, possession of a shotgun, obstruction of law enforcement and attempting to elude sheriff’s deputies.

Raymond Majzer, 34, of Morehead Drive, was seen trespassing on the 400 block of Railroad Avenue around 5:30 p.m. according to an incident report from the Grovetown Police Department.

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Tennessee cutter Teri Arney wins $35,000 Non-Pro Any Age finals in Augusta Futurity debut

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 6:43pm


Teri Arney will have a great story to tell her co-workers back at the crime lab.

In her first Augusta Futurity appearance, she walked away a winner Tuesday. Aboard Sadiereyes, Arney marked 220 to win the $35,000 Non-Pro Any Age finals by 3.5 points at James Brown Arena.

Arney, of Lebanon, Tenn., claimed the first-place check for $3,500. Brandi Scott and Freckles Dual Play finished second at 216.5 for $3,000, while Jason Britt and Dontreynonmyparadesf placed third (216, $2,500).

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Aiken man arrested in Dollar General robbery, deputies say

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 6:31pm


Aiken County authorities have arrested a man accused of robbing a dollar store and attacking two clerks late Monday.

Quarmaine Marquise Jones, 22, of Aiken, was booked into the Aiken County Detention Center on two charges of assault and battery in the first degree and one charge of strong armed robbery, according to a statement form Capt. Eric Abdullah.

About 10:03 p.m., Aiken County sheriff’s deputies were called to the Dollar General at 4435 Jefferson Davis Highway in reference to the robbery.

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Residents use fuel rewards, club memberships for huge gas savings

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 4:44pm


Travis Doss arrived early last week at the Kroger gas station on Washington Road to reserve a pump for him and his wife, Katharine, to share.

For years, the Augusta couple has used their Kroger Plus Card on holiday gift card purchases for friends and family – a Christmas tradition that pays double the savings in gas prices each January.

They were about to find out how much their rewards totaled this year.

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SC man dies from workplace injury

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 3:40pm


A Barnwell, S.C., man was killed in an accident at Macuch Steel in Augusta last week.

Coroner Mack Bowen said Ralph Avery Zorn, 59, died Friday at Georgia Regents Medical Center shortly after falling from a scissor lift at his workplace at 1527 Augusta Ave.

Bowen said Zorn was on the scissor lift about 20-30 feet in the air when another piece of equipment hit the lift, knocking Zorn to the ground.

Autopsy results determined Zorn died from multiple blunt force injuries.

OSHA is investigating the death.


Six-time Augusta champion Austin Shepard wins Classic Open go-round

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 2:20pm

Austin Shepard is back in Augusta making noise in the event he seems to enjoy the most.

The three-time Classic Open champion will enter the finals of this event later this week with a good chance to add to his number of wins in the Garden City.

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Temperatures to drop again by Friday

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 1:32pm


It may seem like the beginning of spring has arrived this week, but experts say winter is far from over.

Temperatures will shift again on Friday away from the pleasant upper-60s to more January-appropriate numbers. Several back-to-back systems will keep that cold air hanging around for a while.

At least for Thursday evening through Saturday, that temperature change will include some rain. There is a 70 percent chance of rain Friday with expected highs below 50 degrees.

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Ga. cop gives 'eating while driving' ticket

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 1:27pm


ATLANTA — Madison Turner told Atlanta’s Channel 2 Action News he had no idea he could be ticketed after Cobb, Ga., police pulled him over last week for eating while driving.

But that’s just what happened to the Alabama man, due in court Feb. 3.

“The officer explained to me that he observed me eating a burger for two miles,” Turner said. “He said specifically three times, ‘You can’t just go down the road eating a hamburger.’”

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Darius Rucker returning for Rock Fore! Dough concert

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 10:51am


Three rising country music artists will join Grammy Award winner Darius Rucker for the 11th annual Rock Fore! Dough concert benefitting First Tee of Augusta.

Singer and songwriter Sam Hunt, southern rock band A Thousand Horses and local musician Phillip Lee Jr. take the stage April 7. Rucker is performing at the concert for the eighth time.

The concert, held annually during the week of the Masters Tournament, is at the Lady Antebellum Amphitheater in Evans for the third year. The lineup was announced Tuesday morning.

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Camera knocks out Tiger tooth

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 8:28am


CORTINA D’AMPEZZO, Italy — Tiger Woods has another reason not to like cameras — his agent said it cost him a tooth.


Woods made a surprise visit to Italy on Monday to watch girlfriend Lindsey Vonn capture her record 63rd World Cup race. The photo that generated all the buzz was Woods missing his front tooth.


The culprit, according to his agent, was a camera.


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SC paid $5 million in road damages

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 6:38am


South Carolina has paid more than $5 million for damages from the state’s roads in the past year.


The Greenville News reported documents it obtained under the Freedom of Information Act showed the state spent more than $5 million in legal claims by motorists and others whose cars were damaged or who were injured or killed.


The figures from the state Insurance Reserve Fund show the state also spent more than $2 million in legal costs in those claims.


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Richmond County Development Authority wants extension for jobs news

Latest from The Augusta Chronicle - Mon, 01/19/2015 - 10:47pm

Augusta committed last month to build a road, extend utilities and do site work at a corporate park if a major manufacturer announces plans to locate here by Feb. 1, but the announcement is now on hold after the unnamed company’s board couldn’t meet due to inclement weather.

According to documents obtained by The Chronicle, the Richmond County Development Authority wants to amend the city’s resolution of support for the inducement package, allowing an announcement by April 1 due to the weather issue.

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