Athens-Clarke County Featured Stories News Northeast Georgia Weather 

UGA researchers concerned about far reaching effects of climate change

From thick forests to densely packed cities, from open farmland to the seashore, Georgia’s diverse ecosystems are at risk from the effects of climate change. UGA researchers in several departments have been studying the changing climate and it’s impact on our state. Here’s just some of what they’ve learned: cities are warming at a faster rate than surrounding countryside the coastline is receding due to rising sea levels forests are at increased risk from the spread of damaging insects and other pests livestock and crops are being exposed to more intense periods of drought…

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Athens-Clarke County Featured Stories Northeast Georgia 

Long-Awaited Firefly Trail Takes First Steps in Athens

After nearly seven years of planning, the much anticipated Firefly Trail is finally being built. The Firefly Trail, a proposed 39-mile rail-trail, will be constructed along the now abandoned historic route of the Georgia railroad running from Athens to Union Point. When finished, it will be the 3rd longest trail in the state of Georgia. Construction for the first .8 miles of the trail, which will run from East Broad Street all the way out to Old Winterville and Lexington Road, is currently underway in Athens-Clarke County. “Just yesterday the…

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Athens-Clarke County Featured Stories News Northeast Georgia 

Trail Creek Park Restoration Project Hosts Cataloging Workday for Volunteers

Volunteers with the Trail Creek Restoration Project will resume manual work after holding a different type of event this past weekend. On most volunteer days, community members remove plants, build soil beds, and plant trees. This past weekend they enjoyed a “fun day” where volunteers conducted an inventory of all plants, birds, and insects observed at the site. “Restoration work is never over, our forests were historically managed by native people for as long as they were here and we hope to continue to manage the land here,” said Christine…

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Featured Stories News Northeast Georgia 

Georgia Woman Arrested for Running Into Chicken Truck

A Georgia woman appears to have decided to recognize National Poultry Day in an unusual way. Police say Judith Armstrong was recently arrested after intentionally running into a chicken truck and fleeing the scene. After the unknown truck driver was hit, he called the police. The police report says once arriving on the scene, police noticed there was debris from the red car on the shoulder and part of a rear bumper in addition to the license plate. Police traced it to Armstrong and then tracked her down at her…

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Freezes a Bad Omen for Georgia Fruit Crops

Freezing temperatures throughout the state this week have caused short-term problems for farmers and long-term problems for consumers. Freezes damage fruit blossoms, which means there will be lower crop yields for fruits like peaches and blueberries going into the summer. Blossoms are a common sign of spring, but UGA Climatologist Pam Knox says it’s a bad sign that those blossoms have appeared so early this season. “The plants are developing almost a month ahead of normal,” said Knox. Jerry Thomas Jr., owner of Thomas Orchard in Bishop, says the mild…

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BCES calls for “behavior modification” to prevent wildfires

Barrow County residents are taking advantage of nice weather and trying to beat the May 1st statewide burn ban to burn their debris and other materials, says Lt. Blair Dunst of Barrow County Emergency Services. BCES has fought 40 wildfires in the past three months and those numbers will continue to rise until what Lt. Dunst calls “behavior modification” occurs. Three wildfires have scorched land on Old Hog Mountain Road in Barrow County since mid-February. One burned almost five acres of property and damaged a neighbor’s property. A second wildfire started…

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Madison County Jail Considers Changing Mail System

Madison County may change its mailing system for inmates after two officers have been exposed to drugs in some mail. Last month, Chief Deputy Jeff Vaughn said two Madison County jail officers were exposed to ecstasy while examining the inmate’s mail. As the officers picked up the mail, their fingers began to tingle and grow numb. “One of them accidentally touched their face, their face started tingling, mouth went numb, scared him half to death,” Vaughn said. Vaughn said the officers were taken to the hospital where they checked out…

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Featured Stories News Northeast Georgia Top Stories 

Sandy Creek Nature Center to Hold Tree Planting Day this Saturday

ATHENS, Ga.- Sandy Creek Nature Center wants residents to come out and plant trees this Saturday. The event is part of a long term Managed Forest Project at Sandy Creek Nature Center. The project will convert 30 acres of low-quality wildlife habitat into a managed forest. Over 25 years ago, Sandy Creek started the managed forest project using a group of volunteers and staff. This weekend, the project will continue its ongoing efforts to maintain a strong forest ecosystem by planting trees. One of the project’s main goals has been…

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Licenses for Noncitizens Athens-Clarke County News Northeast Georgia 

Georgia Bills Seek Special Licenses for Non US Citizens

Two bills in the Georgia State Legislature seek to visibly differentiate driver’s licenses held by non US citizens. SB 161, introduced by Senator Frank Ginn, proposes that non US citizens be issued vertically oriented licenses, while HB 324, introduced by Representative Alan Powell, proposes that the licenses of non US citizens be marked with the term “ineligible voter.” (The bill’s original version suggested the term “noncitizen,” but was revised after being unable to pass through subcommittee.) The bills’ proposal was shocking to immigrants like Ingrid Abisambra, a Colombian and Italian…

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Athens-Clarke County News Northeast Georgia 

Georgia Senate Bill to Protect LGBTQ Community

ATHENS, Ga.—Some Athens residents are speaking up about a newly introduced state senate bill that – if passed – could have a big impact on the LGBTQ community. Senate Bill 119, also called the ‘Georgia Civil Rights For All’ bill, would create full protections in public accommodations for LGBTQ individuals. The bill was introduced in the state legislature in an effort to extend protections to LGBTQ individuals. The state currently has no laws prohibiting discrimination against them. Athens For Everyone is an organization that advocates for state legislation they believe will…

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News Northeast Georgia Top Stories 

One New Animal Shelter, Many New Pet Homes

Jackson County’s first animal shelter opened on February 13, and in just over one week, rescuers and families adopted all 24 animals in the shelter. Brad Richards, the Director of Animal Control, says that the shelter is needed because of the increase in the population of Jackson County. People are moving into the county without spaying or neutering their cats and dogs, which results in more strays. Richards and his two Jackson County Animal Control Officers picked up more than 700 animals in 2016 alone. The officers go out into…

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Featured Stories News Northeast Georgia 

Investigation Update: Barrow County Deadly Plane Crash

UPDATE 3/2 10:23 p.m. – A preliminary report released Thursday into a plane crash that killed two people last month in Barrow County reveals “no evidence of any inflight structural failure.” The report from the National Transportation Safety Board adds that the NTSB is still in possession of the wreckage for further examination. The report adds that student pilot Shannon Ewing and flight instructor Henry Ewing were killed after takeoff on February 16, 2017. According to the preliminary findings, no one witnessed the airplane taking off. A pilot landing at…

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