Power Outages On Butler Dairy Road & Dry Creek Road

(847) 898-6877

Georgia Power is reporting a power outage on Butler Dairy Road in Summerville this morning.  The power outage is affecting about 23 customers and Georgia Power says that the outage was caused by a downed tree on a power line.  The utility company expects to have power restored around 10 AM this morning.  North Georgia EMC is reporting a power outage on Dry Creek Road that is affecting about 54 customers.  Crews are on the scene but NGEMC has not given an estimated time for restoration for that outage.

Cherokee County Officials Discourage Flood "Sight Seeing"

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Photo: WZQZ’s Ben Groce

Weiss Lake continues to rise and is now over six feet above full pool which is contributing to flooding around Cherokee County. The Cherokee County, Alabama EMA is asking people to refrain from sight seeing in flooded areas.

Cherokee County EMA posted on Saturday, “Please refrain from sight seeing and taking photos in flooded areas. This is for your safety and property owners are trying to secure their homes and valuables and this is hindering them from being able to do so.”

As of 4 AM Sunday morning, Weiss Lake was at 570.09 feet, which is 6.09 feet above full pool.

Officials are asking people not to enter flooded areas where there may be power-lines or underground utilities under water.

 

New Flood Warning For Chattooga River

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The National Weather Service in Peachtree City, Georgia issued a new Flood Warning for the Chattooga River Sunday morning at 3:54 AM.   There is a Flood Watch that will expire at 7 AM this (Sunday) morning and Wind Advisory in place until 7 PM this evening.  Otherwise, the rain has moved on out of the area and we will see sunny skies today; clear tonight and sunny on Monday.

National Weather Service Peachtree City GA
354 AM EST Sun Feb 24 2019

The Flood Warning continues for
  The Chattooga River near Summerville.
* From late this morning until this evening.
* At 3AM Sunday the stage was 12.8 feet...and rising.
* Nonflood flooding is occurring and Minor flooding is forecast.
* Flood stage is 14.0 feet.
* Forecast to rise above flood stage by late this morning and
  continue to rise to near 14.1 feet by this afternoon.The river will
  fall below flood stage by this afternoon.
* At 14.0 feet...Minor flooding of woodlands and fields begins along
  the river upstream and downstream from the gage on U.S. Highway 27
  or Rome Boulevard.
* This crest compares to a previous crest of 14.2 feet on Dec 29 2018.

241 AM EST Sun Feb 24 2019

...WIND ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 7 PM EST THIS EVENING...

* WINDS...West 15 to 25 mph with gusts up to 35 mph.

* LOCATIONS...north Georgia, generally along and north of a line
  from Summerville to Ellijay to Hiawassee.

* TIMING...through this afternoon.

* IMPACTS...Gusty winds will blow around unsecured objects. Tree
  limbs could be blown down and a few power outages may result.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A Wind Advisory means that sustained wind speeds of at least
20 mph...or gusts to 35 mph or stronger are expected. Winds this
strong can make driving difficult...especially for high profile
vehicles. Use extra caution.

Latest Forecast:

Sunday
Mostly sunny, with a high near 58. Northwest wind 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph.
Sunday Night
Clear, with a low around 34. Northwest wind 5 to 10 mph.
Monday
Sunny, with a high near 57. North wind 5 to 10 mph.
Monday Night
Clear, with a low around 32. Calm wind.
Tuesday
Sunny, with a high near 64.
Tuesday Night
A 20 percent chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 41.
Wednesday
A 30 percent chance of showers. Partly sunny, with a high near 62.
Wednesday Night
A 20 percent chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 46.
Thursday
A 40 percent chance of showers. Cloudy, with a high near 61.
Thursday Night
A 40 percent chance of showers. Cloudy, with a low around 46.
Friday
A 40 percent chance of showers. Cloudy, with a high near 61.
Friday Night
A 50 percent chance of showers. Cloudy, with a low around 47.
Saturday
A 20 percent chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 59

Lyerly Elementary School "Seuss-tastic" Celebration

Lyerly Elementary School is having a Seuss-tastic Celebration on Friday, March 1st, 2019 at 4:30-5:30. Join them for games, crafts, story time and pizza. All activities are free. Parents must attend with their child. Come Celebrate the birthday of Dr.Seuss and help us foster the love of reading through our Title 1 Building Parent Capacity Program.

Don't Fall For Utility Scams

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Almost every day there are reports here in Northwest Georgia about people falling for some type of utility-based scam.  Chattooga County residents are served by Georgia Power and North Georgia EMC – both utilities are warning residents about scammers and their tactics in an effort to prevent customers from being taken for their money.

Remember, utility companies do not want to be paid with “Green Dot Cards” or “Bitcoins.”  If someone calls and tells you that your utility is about to be shut off if you don’t pay with a specific pre-paid card it is a scam!

Just this past week a man in Floyd County was told that Georgia Power would turn off his power because he was delinquent.  The scammer even sent someone to the man’s house to act like they were tinkering with the meter after the man agreed to purchase prepaid cards and hand them over.  That customer was taken for $3,000.  Turns out, he was not behind on his Georgia Power bill at all.

North Georgia EMC has repeatedly told their members that they will never call on the phone and demand payment, yet NGEMC received a report of a caller stating that they work for NGEMC and a past-due bill needed to be paid immediately. The caller gave the following callback number: 800-984-8362 ext. 501. NGEMC does not call individual members to collect payment and does not have a 1-800 phone number.  Never give your personal or payment information to an unsolicited caller.

If you receive a suspicious call demanding payment from Georgia Power or North Georgia EMC, call them at one of their published numbers and verify the information you have received.

To contact Georgia Power call:  888-660-5890

To contact NGEMC, call their Trion office at: 706-734-7341

(859) 913-0440

DUI Arrest In Summerville

Summerville Police conducted a traffic stop and found an open can of malt liquor between the seats of the pickup truck being driven by forty-five-year-old Tracy Bruce.

The officer said that when he approached Mr. Bruce he could smell a strong odor of alcohol coming from the Ford Ranger pickup truck.  That’s when the officer noticed the open can of alcohol and observed another empty can in the bed of the truck.

Mr. Bruce agreed to a field sobriety test, but told the arresting officer that he was “too nervous” to finish the test as it was being administered to him.

Bruce was booked into the Chattooga County Jail on charges of DUI for alcohol.

Governor Honors Corporate Landowners

Gov. Brian Kemp recognized three corporate forest landowners this past week for their stewardship and land management practices benefiting wildlife across Georgia.

Georgia Power, Weyerhaeuser and CatchMark Timber Trust were honored as 2018 partners in the Forestry for Wildlife Partnership.

Administered by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division, Forestry for Wildlife Partnership is a voluntary program that promotes sustainable forest and wildlife conservation in corporate forestry practices. Partners tailor guidelines to improve management for reforestation, harvesting techniques, recreation, sensitive natural sites and outreach.

The 2018 partners were recognized in a brief ceremony Tuesday at the State Capitol including DNR Commissioner Mark Williams, DNR Wildlife Resources Division Director Rusty Garrison and others.

 

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CHS "Great Promise Partnership" Students At The Capital

The Great Promise Partnership students from Chattooga High School spent Wednesday of their last break to travel to the state Capitol. Students toured the Capitol and watched the ongoing session in the House of Representatives.

Great Promise Partnership was developed to help at-risk students complete  their high school education while gaining real-world job skills, thus gaining the ability to build successful lives. By forming public/private  partnerships in communities across Georgia, the program shows students that  they have a place in Georgia’s economic future.

Kristy Colbert took the students to the state capital and says, “The students truly enjoyed watching laws being passed. They were able to see the new school bus law be passed and enjoyed the discussion and voting – the process really interested them. They wanted to skip lunch and stay there.  At lunch they met with three legislatures and an intern who discussed various topics such as voting, being an educated voter, the importance of contacting your representatives, and standing up for your beliefs.”

The students were also able to get a photo with Governor Kemp while in Atlanta.

 

Some Republicans Call For Ralston To Resign

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The Atlanta Journal-Constitution says that ten Georgia Republican legislators joined an effort Friday to oust their leader, House Speaker David Ralston, because of allegations that he abused his power to delay cases against criminal defendants he represents.

The dissident lawmakers signed a resolution asking Ralston to resign after an investigation by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Channel 2 Action News found he frequently delayed criminal cases by claiming court dates interfered with his legislative duties.

Ralston, a defense attorney, rejected calls for his resignation from the group led by state Rep. David Clark. Ralston said he’s done nothing wrong.

Ralston asked judges to reschedule court proceedings 57 times over a two-year period, using a law that requires judges to defer to his legislative duties, according to the AJC and Channel 2 investigation.

The House didn’t publicly discuss or take action on the resolution during its legislative session Friday. Resolutions require a majority to pass.

Ralston is getting some bipartisan support.  Republican former Governor Nathan Deal and Democratic former Governor Roy Barnes have voiced their support for Ralston.

GNN/Compiled Sources
(720) 387-3695

Senator Mullis Legislative Report

State Senator Jeff Mullis has released his weekly legislative report.  Mullis said that the state senate honored Nathan Deal and Zell Miller this week.  House Resolution 1 will name the a new judicial complex the “Nathan Deal Judicial Center.”  A bill passed a senate committee this week that will place a monument to former Governor Zell Miller by placing a monument to him on the capital grounds in Atlanta.  You can read Sen. Mullis’ complete report below:

We have officially reached the half way point of the legislative session. I am proud of the incredible things we have already accomplished under the Gold Dome, from passing a balanced Amended Fiscal Year 2019 budget, to crafting meaningful legislation that will improve the lives of all Georgians. As committee meetings continue to meet and bills continue to be passed over the next 20 legislative days, I look forward to seeing what this body can achieve.

I am proud to announce that two important pieces of legislation I sponsored and carried passed committee and the Senate this week that honor two great Georgians, former Governors Nathan Deal and Zell Miller. House Resolution 1, which I carried, passed through the Senate on Friday and received final passage. This legislation honors the life and legacy of Governor Deal and will name the new state appellate judicial complex the “Nathan Deal Judicial Center.” Governor Nathan Deal is an honorable governor who served from 2011 to 2019 and dedicated his career to improving Georgia’s economy through the introduction of new trades, such as the movie industry. It is particularly appropriate to name the judicial complex after Governor Deal because of his efforts in criminal justice reform. I am proud to have carried this bill and look forward to honoring our former governor in this way.

I sponsored Senate Bill 107 which passed the Senate Committee on State Institutions and Property this week. This bill honors former Governor and United States Senator Zell Miller by allowing for the placement of a monument in his honor on the grounds of the State Capitol complex. This monument will be funded entirely by private individuals, foundations or organizations. Additionally, SB 107 allows the Capitol Art Standards Commission and a monument committee to give the final approval of the design and placement of the monument. The Honorable Zell Miller contributed to Georgia in a multitude of positions – from Mayor of Young Harris to State Senator, Lieutenant Governor, Governor and eventually United States Senator. It is only right that this man, one of Georgia’s best, is honored in the place where he served for so many years.

In addition to our legislative duties, we often welcome outstanding citizens to the Gold Dome to be celebrated in the Senate. This week, we celebrated Dentist’s Day at the Capitol, honoring the men and women who work to ensure that Georgians stay smiling. I sponsored a Senate Resolution to not only recognize Wednesday as Dentist’s Day, but also to recognize Friday as Give-Kids-A-Smile Day and dedicating the month of February as Children’s Dental Health Month.

On Thursday, I welcomed Major Tommy Bradford and his beautiful family to the Capitol. Major Bradford is a deputy for the Dade County Sheriff’s Department who was run over while in the line of duty by someone attempting to flee law enforcement which resulted in a lost leg and hip replacement. His perseverance and dedication to law enforcement is remarkable, and I commend Major Bradford on his commitment to valor and for living out the true meaning of public service.

Every time we gavel in for a legislative day, the Senate hears from a chaplain. This Thursday, I invited Pastor Jay Neal, a former member of the Georgia House of Representatives and a close friend of mine, to serve as the Chaplain of the Day. Pastor Neal spoke to us about the battle with addiction that thousands of Georgians face. He discussed the program that he runs at Lakeview Wesleyan Church in Rossville, Georgia, to help those who are unable to help themselves. I thank Pastor Neal for his visit to the chamber and for his sincere and encouraging words.

As we move through the next half of the 2019 Legislative Session, please do not hesitate to reach out to me. My office door is always open for questions, comments or concerns. Thank you for your continued trust in me, it is an honor to serve the 53rd Senate District.

(612) 834-4468

Emergency Declared In Cherokee County, Alabama

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Effective at 4:00 PM on February 23, 2019 a Local State of Emergency has been issued for Cherokee County, Alabama due to the rising water in and around Weiss Lake.

Probate Judge/Commission Chairman Tim Burgess signed the Proclamation at the recommendation and request of Cherokee County EMA Director Rogers.

Today Director Rogers surveyed the damage which is affecting all families and properties in and around the lake. With the latest river level forecast to crest tomorrow or Monday at 570′ and the current river level at 569.41′ we are experiencing significant flooding at every point around the lake.

Once the river crests it is expected to stay at 570 until approximately Wednesday or Thursday of next week.

Please heed all warnings from local authorities as we all deal with this together.

No photo description available.

(304) 303-6008

Trion Heights Cancels Sunday Services

713-752-1374

There will be no services at Trion Heights Baptist Church on Sunday, February 24th, 2019 due to weather related facility issues.

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Saturday Evening Weather Update

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Chattooga County and Northwest Georgia could see some severe storms later tonight and into Sunday morning.  The storms are expected to be accompanied by strong winds and there is even a slight chance for a tornado.  That has prompted a Wind Advisory that is place from 7 PM tonight until 7 PM Sunday night.  There is the possibility of power outages.  With the ground already saturated, trees could come down and be uprooted.  The Flood Warning for the Chattooga River will be expiring at 8 PM this evening.  The river was over 16 feet earlier this afternoon (flood stage is 14 feet), and at 4:45 PM it had dropped to 15.53 feet. Find out more about tonight and tomorrow’s weather below:

From the National Weather Service: Hazardous Weather Outlook:

This cold front will sweep across the entire area tonight into
Sunday morning. A line of showers and a few thunderstorms will
accompany the front, bringing a period of moderate to heavy rain,
gusty winds and occasional cloud to ground lightning. Some storms
could become strong to severe, especially across northwest and west-
central Georgia, late tonight into early Sunday morning. Isolated
damaging wind gusts and even a brief tornado are possible. An
additional 1/2 to 1 inch of rain can be expected, however locally
higher amounts can be expected.

Outside of any showers or storms, gusty winds will develop later
tonight, especially in the higher elevations of north Georgia. Due
to saturated grounds, trees will be more prone to being uprooted as
the winds pick up overnight. More details can be found in the Wind
Advisory product.

.DAYS TWO THROUGH SEVEN...Sunday through Friday...

The cold front will continue to move across central Georgia Sunday
morning with showers and a few thunderstorms possible. A storm or
two could become strong to severe with damaging wind gusts or a
brief tornado possible. A brief period of locally heavy rain can be
expected with the cold front.

Behind the front, gusty northwest winds 20 to 30 MPH will occur.
With these winds, some trees will be more prone to falling due to
the saturated grounds from persistent heavy rains.
484-926-1848

Flood Watches & Warnings Extended

865-407-8883

The National Weather Service has once again extended flood related warnings for most of North Georgia.

Flood Watch:
1105 AM EST Sat Feb 23 2019

...FLOOD WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT THROUGH SUNDAY MORNING...

The Flood Watch continues for

* Portions of north central Georgia...northeast Georgia and
  northwest Georgia...including the following areas...in north
  central Georgia...Cherokee...Dawson...Fannin...Forsyth...
  Gilmer...Hall...Lumpkin...Pickens and Union. In northeast
  Georgia...Towns and White. In northwest Georgia...Bartow...
  Catoosa...Chattooga...Dade...Floyd...Gordon...Murray...Polk...
  Walker and Whitfield.

* Through Sunday morning

* Soil conditions remain saturated and river levels remain high
  across the area. The potential for locally heavy rainfall will
  continue through tonight. Rainfall totals up to 1 inch, with
  locally higher amounts possible in any stronger storms. This
  amount of rainfall will produce significant runoff and
  flooding of creeks and rivers.

* Periods of heavy rain can overwhelm or clog storm drains and
  ditches with debris and cause extensive street flooding and
  road ponding. Take time ahead of the rain to clear leaves and
  debris from drainage systems. Due to the extremely saturated
  soils, downed trees will be likely, even with sub severe
  winds.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A Flood Watch means there is a potential for flooding based on
current forecasts.

You should monitor later forecasts and be alert for possible
Flood Warnings. Those living in areas prone to flooding should be
prepared to take action should flooding develop.

Flood Warning 

National Weather Service Peachtree City GA
940 AM EST Sat Feb 23 2019

...The Flood Warning continues for the following rivers in Georgia...

  Chattooga River near Summerville affecting Chattooga County

  Oostanaula River near Rome US Hwy. 27 affecting Floyd County


...The Flood Warning continues for the following rivers in Georgia...
  Armuchee Creek near Armuchee affecting Floyd County

  Oostanaula River near Rome  affecting Floyd County

  Coosa River near Rome Mayos Bar L & D Park affecting Floyd County


GAC055-240439-
/O.EXT.KFFC.FL.W.0101.000000T0000Z-190225T0100Z/
/SUMG1.1.ER.190222T1237Z.190223T0030Z.190224T1900Z.NO/
940 AM EST Sat Feb 23 2019

...Flood Warning extended until Sunday evening...The Flood Warning
continues for
  The Chattooga River near Summerville.
* From tomorrow late morning until Sunday evening.
* At 845 AM Saturday the stage was 15.2 feet...and
  falling.
* Minor flooding is occurring.
* Flood stage is 14.0 feet.
* The river will continue to fall to below flood stage Sunday
  early afternoon.
* At 16.0 feet...Minor flooding continues and expands further into
  the woodlands and fields along the river upstream and downstream
  from the gage on U.S. Highway 27 or Rome Boulevard.

Arrest Report - Saturday - February 23, 2019

Here is the latest arrest report from the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office.

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Alabama Campground Residents Rescued

Photo Credit: WEIS Radio

At least two residents of the Money’s Bend Campground in Cedar Bluff had to be rescued from rising waters on Friday afternoon.

Marine units with the Cherokee County Rescue Squad in addition to Cedar Bluff Firefighters and Cherokee County Emergency Management Agency Officials responded to the scene. Floyd EMS units were also placed on standby as a precautionary measure. Much of the campground is completely under water, as is the case with just about every campground across Weiss Lake. Cherokee Electric crews cut power to the campground.

As of 2:52 p.m. Friday (February 22nd) the Weiss Lake level was at 567’ 7” – which is above Flood Stage.

Alabama Power says that they are projecting a peak right around 570 ft, subject to change with weather conditions. You can stay alert to changes conditions by visiting www.apcshorelines.com

 

581-497-6076

Trion High School Class Of 2009 Plans Reunion

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The Trion High School Class of 2009 is making preparations for their 10-year reunion later this spring.

The event is planned for May 11th.

There will be a 10 a.m. golf tournament at the Trion Golf Course and a pot-luck style family picnic at noon at the Trion Track Field. That evening, the class will celebrate together at Sweet P’s at the Tavern. Dinner, entertainment, and activities will be provided for only $25.

Please contact Natalie Jorges-Castellanos or Emily Evett through Facebook with questions.

Commissioner Threatens To Cut Jobs & Spending

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Chattooga County Sole Commissioner Jason Winters told the local newspaper this week that he may have to cut jobs and spending, because the county is not able to make ends meet.

On February 13th, WZQZ News reported that the county had already borrowed $2 million in the form of a tax anticipation note, after collecting over $6 million in property taxes at the end of 2018.  After that report Commissioner Winters told The Summerville News that expenses have gone up and that the county’s revenues are not keeping up with the rising costs.

Over the past several years, the county has used tax anticipation notes and those notes have been taken out earlier and earlier each year as the county’s revenues fall further behind.  The commissioner raised property taxes  nine months after winning the last election.  That tax increase was one of the largest tax increases ever for Chattooga County’s property owners.

Next month, voters will go to the polls to decide a “special local option sales tax” or SPLOST.  If voter approve the SPLOST it would be a continuation of the current one-cent sales tax that is used by the county government and local municipalities for roads, bridges and other projects.  Should the voters turn down the SPLOST, it could mean the commissioner will have to tighten the county’s financial belt even more than planned.

 

 

90% Of 2018 Property Taxes Have Been Collected

 

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Chattooga County Tax Commissioner Joy Hampton says that about 92% of the 2018 property taxes have been collected, and she has sent out notices for those who haven’t paid yet.

Hampton said that those notices should be reaching mailboxes soon.  The Tax Commissioner said, “Most property owners generally come in as soon as they receive one of these notices, as the letter states that a tax lien can be issued against the property if payment is not received. I generally issue liens the first week in March of each year to allow people who pay with their tax refunds ample time. I sent the notices out a couple of weeks earlier this year also to allow extra time to pay before any liens are recorded.”

Also, properties with outstanding bills for 2017 and earlier have by now received 4-6 notices and are subject to one of this year’s tax sales. Sales are currently scheduled for March, April, June, August, and September, with the possibility of adding more as the year progresses.

Payment plans are an option to help those who are struggling to pay all at once, and anyone wishing to sign up for a payment plan should do so immediately to avoid additional fees.