Update on the School Shutdown

Having made numerous phone calls and had numerouse discussions with people, I have moved out of the “this was one step too far” camp on the Governor’s decision to shut down school.

It appears that, as reported by Insider Advantage, gasoline is not the reason for the school shutdown, diesel is. Apparently, as someone in the comments below noted, Colonial Pipeline shut down the supply, fearing damage. Diesel was already in short supply. Having assessed the situation, the governor made the decision to shut down school due to a pending diesel shortage.


  1. Romegaguy says:

    First of all, I am skeptical of things I read in Bill Shipp/Insider Advantage. Second, IF diesel is indeed the reason, then why were state DOT diesel powered tractors mowing the interstates and highways of our great state this weekend. I think they could have waited a few days or weeks to conserve diesel. And why werent state employees given a couple of days off. Could have save energy costs on closing the capitol down for a couple of days, too.

  2. UGA Wins 2005 says:

    The Governor does know the difference between gasoline and diesel. For whatever reason, he didnt speak on the real reason for the school shutdown. Farmers in Georgia are facing a crippling shortage of diesel in the near future, just as harvest season gets under way. By taking the only steps Sonny could to save diesel, he is making a statement that he understands that in times of shortages, the sectors vital to the state must have first priority on fuel. His mistake was not telling the people of Georgia the real reason and trusting them to understand.

  3. RandyFMT says:

    You said it, Rusty. Go to back to what he said on Friday, and it’s clear this is post-screw up spin. They’re trying to now paint this as a brave, politically courageous step. Not sure which is more pathetic — their original cockamamie idea, or this ham-handed spin.

    Learn from Roy, boys. When you screw up, just come out and apologize. Don’t wreck our week on one day, then insult our intelligence with a lame excuse the next. Aren’t there any adults over there?????

  4. waterboy says:

    Are people really upset that Governor Perdue was: initiating an effort to save diesel fuel at a time of an industry predicted shortage crisis….asking schools to take a two-day time-out while giving a 2.5 day notice….inconveniencing parents that might have to stay home with their own children…..helping conserve diesel for industries that drive our state’s economy by keeping school buses off the road????? REALLY????

    Naysayers, led by a lame effort by our SoS on this issue, are the real LOSERS in my book. Leadership requires taking chances – something blog armchair quarterbacks must never do.

    Gee Randy…so sorry your ‘week was wrecked’ AND THEN ‘your intelligence was insulted.’ Hope you can get over it while you enjoy the next two days with your kids.

  5. Romegaguy says:

    Again, if diesel is the real reason for this why was the DOT using diesel powered tractors to mow our states highways and interstates this weekend? Couldnt they have conserved that fuel for agriculture and trucking industry usage?

  6. RandyFMT says:

    Yep. After watching Perdue’s ever-evolving explanation for this whole thing I now have a whole new appreciation for the two words which will come to define the one-term Perdue Mis-Administration: Sonny Lied.

  7. waterboy says:

    Yes Randy, he lied. That makes perfect sense…it was a ploy to save diesel fuel for his buddies in Houston County. It would have been the perfect caper if not for you being such a genius! You must really study episodes of CSI to gain such insight – congratulations!

    As for DOT fuel use….good point Romegaguy, DOT could have voluntarily delayed their operations to save fuel. Although, halting the maintenance of roadside vegetation would not have resulted in saving anywhere near the 500,000 gallons of diesel as estimated for the early school holidays.

  8. Rusty says:

    A comment left on my site made me rethink this in an abstract way.

    Said commented wrote:

    If I were a public school teacher, I’d welcome the opportunity to get caught up on my grading. If I were the parent of a child in a public school who couldn’t afford to take a day off of work or to hire a babysitter, I’d be pretty pissed off right now.

    We all know the teachers aren’t much happier with Sonny than than they were with Roy. Perhaps less so. If I were a teacher, I might remember that Sonny gave me two days off. Since most other explanations defy any rational thought process, why not that one?

  9. Hissy Fit says:

    For me, this all goes back to the fact that the Governor listens more to the kids that work in his office. Closing schools on Monday and Tuesday on Friday afternoon at 3:30! Come on, Governor!! I had to drive my kids 60 miles away for my mother to watch them for two days. I am a single parent with no childcare options. My employer will not allow kids and I am sure the hell not going to leave them home alone. Regardless of the reasons, this could have been handled better. Much better.

    I am pissed off. Very pissed off. As are most of my friends.

    Rusty, the teachers have two days off but they will have to make them up at the end of the year. Plus, add in the true snow days and they will be staying an extra week in June when they would rather be on summer vacation.

  10. stephaniemills21 says:

    I really do not know how much i believe this whole running out of diesel stuff. He never mentioned it when it first happened. It is in none of McLagan’s comments, and I just watched him on the CBS early show and he did not say a darn thing about diesel. It makes it seem like he does not want anyone who knows what they are talking about (ie experts – not us) to hear him say that for fear of being called out. He has had all weekend to push the diesel stuff and yet, has not. Just saying it will save aprox 500,000 of diesel is not enough if that is the cause, he needs to say that the state’s diesel reserves or whatever are at a dangerous low level. Real leadership would mean that Perdue would tell the truth, not this piecemeal, lets see who I can call and ask, to find out the real reasons behind the two “snow days” in september.

  11. Hissy Fit says:

    Waterboy: Do you actually have kids? Did you have to scramble to find childcare for them for these two days?

    I am one of these people that are “….inconveniencing parents that might have to stay home with their own children” You know, I actually have to work. I have to provide for my kids and my employer doesn’t care if they are out of school for two days nor does he care if I have to find alternate childcare. One would think that the Governor would have this in mind when decisions are made. I have no options. None. I can’t stay at home for two days or I would be fired. That is such an arrogant comment that I want to puke.

  12. Rebel says:

    I don’t live in the AJC dominated zone. I have not heard one parent complain about schools being closed. No matter what he did, the AJC would be against it. I don’t watch the Bush Bashing national media, but the gang at Fox & Friends seems to think this is a good idea.

    Hissy is certainly having a fit over this. My question is what does she do with her kids in the summer; or on true snow days; or on MLK holidays; or on teaher workdays; or when they’re sick?

    I wish our Governor could have shut down other travel, but that would have been political suicide. Football is king in Georgia. I’m surprised that Bill is trying to get the Governor to throw the election. No I’m not! 🙂

    He is doing what he can. The real issue is when will our society that has to have both parents working, commuting to those jobs and owning an RV (some call them SUVs) to transport 1 or 2 kids come to its senses and conserve fuel?

  13. Hissy Fit says:

    My question is what does she do with her kids in the summer; or on true snow days; or on MLK holidays; or on teaher workdays; or when they’re sick?

    My kids go to a summer program in my area. True snow days, it depends. MLK holidays, teachwork days, etc, the same summer program. Any more questions about how I raise my kids or is that sufficient?

    P.S. I don’t live in the AJC region and people in my area are plenty upset.

  14. Decaturguy says:

    Comments heard from the upper deck “cheap seats” at the Braves games yesterday afternoon:

    “Sonny Perdue’s closing the schools was stupid”

    “He’s going to lose the election now”

    “The only person who is happy with this decision are the kids … and they can’t vote”

    Where I live, in Decatur, the whole city is only 4 square miles and we have neighborhood elementary schools where most of the students can walk to school. Instead, parents will have to drive their kids somewhere today, or stay at home and skip work. This makes no sense to me at all.

  15. Tater Tate says:

    At my office this morning I polled several parents. Most were very aggravated at having to deal with child care and one asked, “Why should savings for the school districts be pushed off on parents who will pay dearly for this.”

    I love Sonny, but this was dumb, real dumb.

  16. emily says:

    You know, Georgia would conserve untold amounts of hot air if the Governor shut down his own office for a day or two.

  17. Melb says:

    Rebel — step out of the bubble. And the comment about Fox and Friends makes me laugh. I don’t care what Georgians are saying cause my pals on a TV show say its a good idea?

  18. Bull Moose says:

    This move made no sense and has just caused parents a lot of stress. If there was a real need or crisis situation, there were other remedies available to him besides just cancelling school…

    This is what happens when you don’t have adults around to bounce ideas off of.

  19. A little discussed provision of the recent Voter ID bill is called the “Fox and Friends Electoral College Provision.” It updated Georgia election code so that statewide officers need not win a majority of the votes in the November “advisory” election, only a majority of panelists on Fox and Friends. If Fox and Friends cannot produce a majority vote, Brit Hume will choose the next governor.

  20. waterboy says:

    Crisis –

    You should know that the electoral college changes were not part of the voter ID bill as you suggest. They are in fact part of the continued fallout from global warming brought on by the Bush administration.

    Please get your facts straight before you add to the chaos already at hand as described in this blog…..some parents are already under enough stress as they were forced to spend today and tomorrow with their own children. I just hope we can all get through this immense challenge.

  21. Porter Bates says:

    I suspect a lot of business people were put off by employees who could not work today because they had to stay home with their children.

    This inconvenience to parents and their employers should not be underestimated.

  22. Bill Simon says:

    Right! And the solution should be to ban all children! After all, if this state didn’t have so many gawd-darned chillen’, we’d be someting on the order of 25th in the nation on SATs.

  23. Bull Moose says:

    Talked to many parents of many different income levels today — all said the same thing — it was pure stupid for the Governor to close schools for two days… Most were very inconvenienced with having to arrange childcare at the last minute…

    With leadership like this, we’re making it so easy for Democrats in Georgia to rebuild themselves…

  24. Romegaguy says:


    You forget that Bobby Kahn is still in control of coming up with strategies for the Dems so it isnt exactly easy for them to rebuild but I agree this doesnt help. Neither does having a President whose approval rating is on a downward spiral come out and say the move was brilliant.

  25. Bull Moose says:

    Romegaguy — are you being sarcastic or serious? Despite what the President said, I still think cancelling school was a bad idea… Good intentions, poorly executed…

  26. Bill Simon says:

    But, Bull, Romega is correct. The voters will have to be reminded of all these events by the Democrats. And, Bobby Kahn has a propensity for choosing either the wrong screw-ups from the opposition he highlights in an ad campaign, OR choosing the wrong vehicle to deliver the message.

    Demmies just aren’t too well prepared in the new communications environment. The majority of voters are not like they used to be for the Demmies to serve-up liberal pablum to them like baby-food.

  27. kspencer says:

    Bill, I have to agree. Even though the Demmies are about to be handed yet another prize – the October first stickershock at the gas pumps.

    It’s an ugly tradeoff for Purdue’s decision. Attempt to extend the gas tax exemption or not? If yes, look at the continued loss of money at a time when the economic growth has slowed if not peaked and unemployment is climbing. (And yes, Waterboy, both of those are using state of Georgia numbers, not the AJC or my wishfulness.) If no, can the governor bury the inevitable cries of disgust with good deeds or other actions before next November? Either way it’s a potential bonus for the Dems.

    Who have (in Georgia certainly) demonstrated an almost supernatural knack for seizing defeat from the jaws of victory.

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