30 December 2018

The Top 12 TPC Stories of 2018

*ed. note: what follows are the top 12 stories of the year here at The Chronicles based on total views here at the website & also the number of views at TPC's Facebook page. Each story will be numbered with the column title (which will also be a link to the original piece); date; lede (if there is one), or a very quick synopsis; along with a key quote or "money line" & possibly an editor's note, with another link at the end. Hope you enjoy! - MBM 


The Top 12 TPC "REAL Stories" of 2018 


7 February 2018

#BulldogBob readying his defense of Covington's interests

Three hour "Kangaroo Court" ends with no action taken against McKelvey & Rhodes amidst a "cop out" by Newton BOC 

"Watching Robert (Bob) H Stansfield today was like watching a lion mauling an antelope on the Discovery channel."
Read the original article... 


Common Sense Prevails: The Anderson Avenue Gazebo WILL Stay

19 December 2018

The Historic Walker & Cora Harris Gazebo* at the Corner of Anderson & Thompson
 Downtown Covington, GA 

Covington Board of Adjustments & Appeals (BOAA) votes unanimously to approve variance

*ed. note: this is a piece that no doubt would have finished higher if it'd hit earlier in the year. The feedback on this one was extraordinary, especially on social media & particularly with the familial dynamics of the Harris & Atha families. All's well that ends well & I'm just so glad that things worked out the way they did for Carla & Ray. 

Read the full article here...


McKoon the Clear Choice for Secretary of State: A TPC Editorial Endorsement

16 May 2018

He was the ideal person to be the holder of the Great Seal - MBM
"McKoon is known throughout the great state of Georgia as a staunch defender of individual liberties and one of the most effective advocates for ethics reform & government transparency that we've ever had under the Gold Dome."

Read the full article here...


Kayla's Corner: 148 Strong

12 September 2018

Keeping an Eye on Covington & Beyond
"Well, the past week has been a roller coaster of emotions for us here in Covington & Newton Co. One of our protectors - CPD officer Matt Cooper - was shot in the line of duty. By all accounts, Mr. Cooper is a great, great man. A husband, a father, a public servant. As horrendous as that shooting was, our community's response was nothing short of amazing! Like so many others, I've never been prouder to be from Covington. So here's what's going on this week in town, and most of it is related to Officer Cooper. "Let's all be 148 Strong!"

Read the full article here...


Covington Councilman Josh McKelvey Tenders His Resignation from the Newton Co. Rec Commission

20 March 2018

The Councilman - A good, good man - MBM

Strongly worded letter speaks to the dysfunction of the Newton Co. Government 

TL;DR - Mic Drop

Read the full article here...

19 March 2018

*ed. note: this was my second ever local advertising campaign. As evidenced by Travis doing another run later in the year, I think it was pretty effective. Travis is a great guy, top-notch real estate guy & is a very hard worker. I also consider him a good friend & am very grateful for his support of TPC.

14 September 2018

Legal Fees Paid to WTC from the NCSO over the last four years

Commentary  - "Time & time again questions have been asked of the Sheriff as to what, exactly, is going on. Why is this much money being spent now compared to just a few years ago? The default reaction of the Sheriff has always pretty much been - I'm the Sheriff & I can spend this money however I want, I'm a Constitutional Officer. And, technically, he has a point there; however, the law states that the funding mechanism, ultimately, is the governing authority of this political subdivision, which is the BOC. I, and many others, feel that the time has come for Chairman Marcello Banes & the five district Commissioners of Newton to really get serious about figuring out these legal expenses being paid. With the difficulties we saw with the budget process the last two months, the time has come to nip this thing in the bud."

2 February 2018

As the world turns in Newton Co., GA, USA.DEVELOPING..


28 February 2018

"Five O'Clock Bar & Grill, located at 7189 Turner Lake Rd, has become a veritable institution over the last several years. Opened back in the mid 2000s, this fantastic music venue - that also happens to have some of the best food in the home county - has continued to thrive as truly a "Cheers" type place, where everyone knows your name." 

*ed. note: TPC's first ever local advertising campaign, I think it really surprised both Greg Rogers, the owner of 5 O'Clock, & myself with how much traction it got. I'm such a big fan of this place & I'm here to tell you once again - their food is amazing! Check it out if you haven't already. And remember - TPC advertising works!


22 October 2018

"There are many out there that think the Covington-Newton Chamber of Commerce & Main Street Covington are not operating the way they should be. That things should be better. Maybe this unfortunate episode will bring to the forefront this situation so that the merchants, citizens, politicians, officials & other stakeholders can get all of this sorted out."

*ed. note: a follow-up piece on the "Square Controversy" also got a good number of hits & if you put the two of them together, would have finished 2nd based on the numbers. 

1 August 2018

Both Marcello Banes & Lanier Sims, Chairman & BOC 2 Rep, respectively, "lose their cool"

"The following has been verified by three sources:

Lanier Sims, after the meeting was adjourned, did allegedly curse Scott Jay, the Newton Co. GOP Chair, twice using the "F word," and was purported to have slapped away Jay's hand as he was attempting to shake hands with the commissioner. This seems to be borderline assault. One witness said the following - "everyone was just like...okay...WTF is happening here?"

Lanier Sims, BOC 2

Marcello Banes, Chairman of the BOC
But that was just part of it.

Marcello Banes, as confirmed by at least two people, did "bow up" to a Newton Co. taxpayer & "bumped up to him." He was also purportedly talking about race & racial issues in response to the BOC not voting for the budget with the increase. Also, he had to be separated by another individual two different times with two different people according to sources.

That all seems reminiscent of the last time around when the previous Chair, Keith Ellis, starting feeling the heat & seemingly wilted under the pressure. By the way, Keith Ellis is white. As one person mentioned to me, the pressure cooker that is Newton Co. politics is not for the faint of heart. When that pressure starts rising, mistakes start getting made. Just ask Keith, Levie Maddox & John Douglas from the last go-round." 

*Ed. note: this was...strange. As I opined at the time - did it mean you were racist if you wanted lower taxes? I think more than anything, both Banes & Sims lost their cool or maybe were having issues dealing with the pressures of public office or something; regardless, based on sources & the evidence at the time, they both really messed up that night & probably understood that. As fate would have it, it seems as if the county turned a corner after this & has had a smooth last several months. Upon further review, I do think that we - Newton Co. - had some racial tension there for several months. Between the Rec Commission situation (see above), the Confederate memorial discord & a few other things (and people), we had a state of strife that we'd not seen in quite some time. It certainly seems that things are better now. I sure hope so...

4 February 2018

Newton native and recording & touring Country artist Drew Parker played the Ryman Theater - the original Grand Ole Opry - this past weekend in Nashville, TN as an opening artist for Country Superstar Luke Combs

*ed. note: I knew this post was on a different level within just a couple of hours. When I first checked the pageviews at the site, I thought I misread it at first. I then look at Facebook & realize that this thing had truly gone at least somewhat "viral." I think when it was all said & done, I believe there were upwards of 200 shares. It was something. Other than TPC's dedicated page on the John Williams peon murders (which has been making the rounds worldwide for years now), this is the most viewed post in the history of The Piedmont Chronicles. 

So, based on the numbers, those were the most viewed posts at TPC this year. Now time for some...


These are some posts that got a lot of views but didn't quite crack the Top 12. In no particular order:

The Great Mulch Controversy of 2018

- Update on the Spillers Park Situation

[Bess Tuggle] - A Mother's Love: Remembering "Thing 1"
- [MB McCart] - REAL Politick: MBM's GA Voting Guide

- [Perrin Lovett] - The Amazing Truth About Guns in America

TPC's Case of the Mondays: Outrageous Tax Increases in Newton; BOC Meets Tuesday

- The Facebook Data Center at Stanton Springs & the $42 BILLION Phantom Bonds

- [Ellis Millsaps] - Comes Now the Cranky English Major

- TPC Profiles - Mac Gay: Local Renaissance Gentleman, Poet & Scholar


Again, as I've mentioned on a couple of posts here lately, it's been a banner year for The Chronicles & none of it could be possible without you. Thanks so much for reading. Until next time...

- MB McCart, TPC Editor

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