27 April 2015

[TPC] - Monday Mash-up: Word on the Street, Purchasing & the C-town Way

The Piedmont Chronicles 

~ est. 2010 ~

[State of GA]
[Newton Co.]

So...per the word on the street, at least a few of the powers-that-be seem to be in full-on wagon circle mode as we have seen what can only be described as a "Hail Mary." A push to bring in Aaron Varner, former BOC Chair, to serve as County Manager. A few things...

First off, please know that we cast no aversions aspersions upon Mr. Aaron. The man can sing Hank Williams Sr. better than just about anyone, and, he is, by most accounts, a pretty decent and stand-up fella. The Hank thing makes him special in my book. Plus, he's a cool guy. It's always a pleasure seeing him. However, we do not need him as county manager. How 'bout this? Why doesn't Newton Co. start following the law? Our current form of government is, in our estimation, illegal and in violation of our charter. All that is needed, from our perspective, is a lawsuit filed by at least one Newton Co. citizen. Let's get it together, BOC folks - you're doing it way wrong!

  - Vendor and purchasing policy committee -

they're not even trying to hide things anymore. JC pushing for Junior to be on the vendor and purchasing policy committee! Sure, bring in the one who may allegedly, that is - al-leg-ed-ly (per that o'er boy that stay down the way, and he, who in turn, had been given the info from big lil' Walter that stay down just past the chicken coop) - be responsible for a million dollar drain that should be at least coming somewhat close to breaking even. And, oh yes, he's a vendor! Sounds legit. Sure...WHAT???

Let's take a moment for a quick prayer: 

Dear Lord,

Please lift up this BOC in your arms and give them some help. They're sorely lackin', right now, Lord. They need your help. Desperately.

Yours in Prayer,
Newton County

  - The Covington/Newton Way -

It's a code. A way of doing things. And a piss-poor way of doing things at that. This quagmire du jour is generations in the making.

~ there exists a term in operations management called "Escalation of Commitment." It refers to natural human tendencies of avoidance and denying of reality. Also known as sticking one's head in the sand and feverishly doing the same things that got you to this bad point in the first place. "Escalation of Commitment."

~Also - a culture of going along to get along. Deferring to people in positions of power. And a resignation of hope that things can be changed because, after all, this is Newton County.

It's a sordid state of affairs, thy brothers and sisters, but that's okay - it can be fixed.

Hope springs eternal...

Lord willin' and if the creek don't rise, we'll see you next time.


21 April 2015

[TPC] - The Tuesday Round-up: The Bursting of the Dam in Newton Co. and the 4th GOP District Party

The Piedmont Chronicles 

~ est. 2010 ~

[State of GA]
[Newton Co.]

~Another week; another bad story out of Covington/Newton Co. We now see that the proposed Bear Creek Reservoir, in which over $21 million has already been spent by Newton Co., is nowhere near the point of getting a permit from the Corps' of Engineers. And nor should it. With new population growth estimates, there will be no need for this project for at least a generation or two, if ever. And let's not forget the following, folks: 1. Remember when it came out a couple of months ago that water levels, for whatever reason, were purposefully being kept low at Lake Varner? 2. The Hard Labor Reservoir will be coming online soon - they need customers, and we may, at some point, need some of their water. And it will be right there waiting on us.

~Speaking of Reservoirs and Dams and such. Here's a nugget I just had to share from the one and only Fred Wheeler. Mr. Fred is the founder of Patriots' Table and is a very engaged politically conservative activist from the Covington area:
The Dam's Bursting:
   With all the unresolved matters backing up on the BOC it almost seems like a dam about to burst. The budget, government organization, Bear Creek, the landfill. Nothing gets settled-the can just gets kicked farther down the road. And now the County Manager has resigned. The BOC meets tomorrow (Tuesday)  at 7:00PM. Come see them squirm. It's good cheap entertainment.
~And to that point, remember that it's the 3rd Tuesday of the month so it's BOC time, baby! Historic Courthouse on the Square, 7PM.

4th Congressional District GOP Happenings 

~Switching gears here, and a quick word from us - while the Chronicles is now very much covering local events and political stuff, we usually really don't get into the partisan stuff, but we felt compelled to do so over some egregious events that occurred regarding the 4th Congressional District GOP convention this past weekend in Conyers, GA.

A thorough write-up of the events can be found at our sister blog - The East Metro Blog.

For starters, this is what delegates, alternates, guests, spectators, and press saw when they arrived at the convention. According to multiple sources, there was a 5th law enforcement vehicle as well and at least 5 or more armed law enforcement officials were in the meeting chamber including one, who according to one source, was wearing military-style dress. Nothing says the electoral process like a strong show of police power (the power of the gun) as hired guns - literally bought and paid for by the establishment of this particular political party apparatus. God Bless America! 

A quick synopsis:

  • spectators and guests were not seated - a clear violation of GA GOP bylaws, as we understand it. Breaking of bylways? Where have we seen that recently? 
  • All those present were forced to turn off their cell phones and other electronic devices. Freedom, baby! Freedom! "Give us, us Free!" & "And I'm proud to be an American..." 
  • Basically just a total and absolute Clusterf*ck of a proceeding. As a point of comparison, the 10th GOP District party didn't seat anyone from Newton Co. Which, given the ongoing appeal of the Newton Co. GOP convention, was the only sane and logical move. As I'm told, the state party passed on to the 4th that they were expecting them to do the same. As we also understand it, the state party is beginning to lose its patience with the current ruling establishment of the 4th.
And keep in mind, there are other district parties within the GA GOP that "get it." Look at the 3rd - Dale Jackson, Liberty-wing and TEA Party darling, just got elected to a second term as that entity's Chair. Several others are seeing the light as well.

Just a big ole mess. Just like Newton County.

Til next time, y'all.


15 April 2015

Word on the Street: Tom Garrett Edition

The Piedmont Chronicles 

~ est. 2010 ~

...word on the street

Tom Garrett, county manager, has tendered his resignation. Not official. All alleged at this point, but that's been the buzz from multiple sources...

If so, where do we go from here? Reach out to a previous administrator. Maybe a former department head who had enough a while back and walked? Someone currently on board?

Will we have a chain of command at all now?

Hell, it can't be worse than what we've had recently, no?


12 April 2015

[TPC] - The Sunday Edition ~ 12 April 2015

The Piedmont Chronicles 

~ est. 2010 ~

[State of GA]
[Newton Co.]

- The Sunday Edition -

>Local Politics
>Art, Music & Culture

>History & Local Places
>Miscellany & What-Not

Another week in the books in Newton Co., and another Sunday Edition of The Piedmont Chronicles. So good to see you again; join us, join us...

Local Politics 

~I'm starting to wonder if all elected GOP officials in Newton Co. have a thing for self-flagellation. First we have Keith Ellis, who, he, apparently being an Indian Giver, giving his rationale to the Covington News for removing Neuhierl from the Citizens' Committee on purchasing and vendors: 
"When someone is critical of the Board of Commissioners...they should be respectful...and not make critical statements..." 

Are you kidding me? What? And what did she say? That per state law any government vendor has to have his taxes paid? Or her saying what every sane and rational Newton Countian knows - Tommy Craig is the BOC's wet nurse, and those lil' guys don't want no one else but Mr. Tommy to be there for them? Incredible!   
~John Douglas voted against raises for the NCSO and FDNC because, "everyone else deserves a pay raise." Everyone, Mr. Douglas? Even the no-accounts and lazies? He sounds more and more like a Democrat every day. Maybe he should switch parties... 

~And not to be outdone, Levie Maddox's main concern at this point appears to be that Tommy Craig is being singled out.  I guess attending BOC meetings in not a concern since he wasn't at the last one. 

~Landfill update? Not much to report other than it seems at least a few of the powers-that-be seem to be a little sore and put off that the Citizens flexed their muscles a bit and white and black folks came together to put the brakes on something that may have been a disaster for our home county and would have seriously lined the pockets of a select few. How...DARE THEY?!

~The Newton Co. Collaborative was announced this past week. A 19-member "super duper" committee of elected officials, business leaders, and activists. My main man Aaron Brooks, "local politician," is on there. Well hey, Aaron, it could have been worse, eh? Could have called you one of the following: 1. Community Activist (think Belton's last-second mailer); 2. Dookie-head; or, 3. Late for Supper...haha! 

08 April 2015

So Many Towns and Cities in the Great State of Georgia: Thunderbolt Version

The Piedmont Chronicles 

~ est. 2010 ~

The Great state of Georgia, according to Wikipedia, can lay claim to some 500+ incorporated cities and towns. When you factor in unincorporated towns, villages, and communities; that number easily eclipses 1,000. So many cool towns, and a lot of great names. There's Omega, Experiment, Good Hope, Sparta, Cairo, Athens, Ideal, Kingston, and so many others. Last edition, we covered Hepzibah, GA.

This time, we turn our eyes to the southeast and down to the coast in Chatham Co., GA and the uniquely named town of Thunderbolt, GA. One of the coolest city names in the great state of Georgia, in my opinion, this town runs along the shore of the Wilmington river and is in very close proximity to Savannah and shrimping and fishing are among its biggest enterprises.

From the official city of Thunderbolt webpage, here is a bit of history: 

"The Town of Thunderbolt, a small town who owes its name to a legend of a lightning strike that created a freshwater spring on the Wilmington bluff. Native Americans were found to be among the first inhabitants.
Thunderbolt was a settlement which evolved into a shipping point for local plantation needs which also serviced the river traffic. In 1856, the Town of Thunderbolt was incorporated as Warsaw and then began its history as a processing port for the fishing community. In 1890, Georgia State College was founded for the education of African Americans. This college continues to be a historically black institution and is known today as Savannah State University.
In 1921, Warsaw's name was restored to Thunderbolt and the seafood processing continued to play a large part in this community's development. In 1939, yacht racing became popular and saw the construction of a yacht basin. Annually, the "Blessing of the Fleet" was celebrated until recent years and shrimping evolved into the primary seafood product.
Today, the Town of Thunderbolt remains a unique community with a distinct personality all of its own. Families dwell in this town for many generations which becomes a part of our town's rich history.
This is the legacy of the Town of Thunderbolt!"
A cool little town with a very cool name and background; I've always wanted to visit it sometime, perhaps soon I will. 
*And yes, I get that Chatham Co. isn't in the Georgia Piedmont. So what... 

05 April 2015

Local: Washington St. Communities - Sandhill & Texas Alley

The area in and around Washington St., just south of the Square, has a long, rich history. It has traditionally been an African-American community, but like so many other aspects of our society, that is starting to change as things blend and merge, and that's a good thing, in my estimation.

- Sandhill - 

The Sandhill community is that high hill in the Washington St. area off South West Street. Apparently, the soil was very sandy, more so than most other areas, and that's where the name came from.

- Texas Alley - 

Also known as Rear Washington, the name Texas Alley came about when Texas C. Weaver built a new house in 1919 on Rear Washington, and the name changed to Texas Alley. This is in the same general area as Sandhill but is to the south in the areas of Avery and Hill streets.


I really like this general area and have always had an affinity for it, as well as the rest of Washington Street down towards Porterdale. Unfortunately, there isn't just much info at all in the book, the History of Newton Co., but I am in the process of doing some more research on this area and plan on doing an expanded write-up in the next few weeks.

Coming down the pike - I've been working on a write-up complete with pictures of the Covington Mills community. That will be coming soon as well.

Okay for now, thanks & take care.


[TPC] - The Sunday Edition

The Piedmont Chronicles 

~ est. 2010 ~

[State of GA]
[Newton Co.]

- The Sunday Edition -

  • In re: SB 127
    • The Gold Dome and its GOP Leadership is just a complete mess right now. Really, it's worse than that. They are now actively trying to erode Constitutional and Natural rights. They must be watched for the danger to Freedom & Liberty that they are. It's beyond the pale, and those responsible for this outright power play and desire to muzzle public dissent must be treated as the public enemies and scoundrels they surely are. 
    • Of course, now, it's the new normal - a brave new world, if you will. And most of these folks are just too dumb to understand it. It's like they want to be Frank Underwood or something, but they just don't have it in them. Still, they're the problem they are. As ole Big Lil' Walter that stay down at the Grove would say - "gotta hold him down, folks - can't let 'em get up!"

  • The Newton Co. Landfill situation 
    • Monday night the Newton Conservative Liberty Alliance* hosted its March General Meeting at the Washington St. Community Center. A crowd of over 120 people attended. Things got heated at times, but it was a very good coming together of people of all points of the spectrum - political, race, age, socio-economic, etc. This broad-based coalition can achieve big things for the betterment of the city of Covington and Newton, Co., I believe. 
      • The featured speaker, Tonya Bechtler, did a fantastic job. This woman, y'all...thank Goodness she has taken the lead on this thing. Always remember, the BOC will never give her any credit or place her on any of the citizens' committees, but she's the one who got this on everyone's radar. And look, in my humble estimation, all of this - like so many other things in Newton Co. - stinks to high Heaven. We need folks like Tonya...
      • Ditto for Mrs. Brenda Mullins. What a wonderful lady! These folks in and around the Spring Hill Community have had a landfill or dumping grounds of some sort in their backyard for going on 70 years, and quite naturally, they are sick and damn tired of it. And yes, there's a racial aspect to all of this - and if you don't get that - then that's YOUR problem... 
      • And Aaron Brooks did a fantastic job, I thought, of hosting the meeting and especially moderating the Q & A session. I don't think anybody else in Newton Co. could have pulled it off. Well done, Mr. Chairman.

  • The Newton County BOC? 
      • Dysfunctional. Sad. A disgrace,maybe even? 
        • These folks could have been the heroes - could have saved the day - but like the folks at the Gold Dome and most other elected officials - they're too busy running from their own shadows. Hell, they can't even get the county attorney to make even just a token decrease in the legal fees that are probably the highest of any county in the state of Georgia. Put a fork in the 2015/16 BOC, I guess, they done. 
      • How sad! Just a shame...

  • And let me just put this out there - I still don't like Nathan Deal, and there's the whole thing about how he allegedly he hates dogs and children, but had it not been for him, and if the Gold Dome had been left to its own devices, we probably wouldn't have gotten anything done vis-a-vis HB1. So, there. I'll give credit where credit is due. Big kudos to Rep. Peake and my main man, Dale Jackson, and thanks to my Rep., DC Dave Belton, for voting for it. 

Well, folks, hope everyone has a good Easter. Til next time...


*Disclosure: Your esteemed editor is a member of this organization. 

03 April 2015

New Public Enemy #1 in Georgia

The Piedmont Chronicles 

~ est. 2010 ~

Nathan Deal, per that boy that stay down the street, allegedly still hates and is mean to the following groups: old folks, small children, dogs, people with cancer, and charitable organizations. With all that said, the little man has maybe forged just an inch of goodwill with his handling of HB1. So...let's give him that.

But whoever is responsible for the egregious add-ons of SB 127, deserves nothing. Per that o'er boy down the street - Ralston, the "speaker" of the House, may have - allegedly, that is, AL-LEG-ED-LY, had something to do with it. It got removed once the shit hit the fan, but it must always be remembered. A guy like that, if the word on the street is true, is a danger to the people - and folks like that must be dealt with accordingly.

Supporting information:

Peach Pundit Write-up 

Alex Johnson's write-up

Oh well...all's well that ends well, right?