Morning Reads for Friday, January 27, 2012

Larry Chadwick, Chairman of the CobbEMC board since 1988, has resigned. A couple days ago, the CobbEMC Board voted 7-2 to cease its support of a new coal-powered plant. The member-owned utility is out $13 million amid some speculation about the plant’s continuing viability. Dean Alford, a former state representative and newly-appointed member of the Board of Regents, spoke for the consortium building the coal plant, saying that plans for Plant Washington are still “full speed ahead.”

Georgia has been rated 34th most business-friendly state, which I hope will give some impetus to Gov. Deal’s Competitiveness Initiative.

Senator Curt Thompson (D-Gwinnett) has introduced a bill to impose a moratorium on HOT lanes.

Legislation introduced by Rep. Jay Powell (R-Camilla) would phase out the systematic plunder of special-purpose funds for other uses.

Senator William Ligon (R-Brunswick) has introduced legislation to require food stamp or TANF recipients to work toward a diploma, learn to read or attend “self-development classes.” Respectfully suggest this requirement be extended to the Senate.

The Cumberland CID has indicated that it would support spending Cobb County’s share of the regional TSPLOST on either transit or toll lanes on I-75/575.

Pentagon plans to slow military spending may affect the F35 program at Lockheed.

The Senate Natural Resources Committee approved Senate Bill 301, which would allow hunters to use sound suppressors in Georgia.

Legislation to create a transit agency within GRTA has been written but will not be introduced until lawmakers build support for the measure.

Forty percent of 2011 home sales in Carroll County were foreclosed properties.

A solar power plant in Dalton will be upgraded from 350 kilowatts to 700 kw as part of a purchase agreement involving Georgia Power, Dalton Utilities, and United Renewable Energy, LLC from Alpharetta.

December unemployment rates were up in ColumbusAlbany, Macon/Warner Robins, Coweta County, Atlanta, Newton/Rockdale Counties, Augusta, and Savannah/Hinesville. Douglas County held steady.

Ethics

Editorial Boards across the state are opining in favor of ethics reform.

Jay Bookman attributes the lack of co-signers for ethics reform to pressure from leadership. Kyle Wingfield believes ethics reform will enhance public trust.

Julianne Thompson and Rick Thompson (no relation) also opine on ethics in the AJC. As an aside, my personal congratulations to Rick and his wonderful and surely long-suffering bride.

The Athens Banner Herald suggests that lawmakers “come to Jesus” on ethics reform.

Columbus Ledger-Enquirer favors an independent ethics board with dedicated funding and suggests that the status quo represents “government by the connected, for the connected.” The CL-E also finds the silence by lawmakers deafening on ethics reform.

Music

After more than a week at The Medical Center of Central Georgia, Merle Haggard has returned home to California to recuperate. Haggard credit his Georgia medical team with saving his life.

Lyle Lovett will play the 2012 Savannah Music Fest on March 24th. No word on whether Atlanta’s Francine Reed will be joining Lovett, but she’ll play Blind Willie’s on February 3d and Smith’s Olde Bar on Feb. 4th. Ms. Reed is one of Georgia’s musical treasures and you should see her when she’s in your town.

Racing

The 50th Anniversary Rolex 24 at Daytona will run this weekend. Georgia’s US-headquartered Porsche will dominate the GT class, with 6 of the top 10 and 21 of 42 overall class qualifiers being GT3 Cup cars.

8 comments

  1. benevolus says:

    The F35 is already obsolete. We certainly don’t need 2400 of them. The future of air power is going to be primarily with unmanned vehicles.

  2. Scott65 says:

    As for why Gov. Deal stopped the 75/575 hot lanes…THEY DON’T WORK! Its painfully clear to anyone who uses 85 on a regular basis. I think these guys are grossly miscalculating the will of the public for these “Lexus Lanes”, as officials that rep the 85 corridor are finding out from increasingly angry constituents

    • Charlie says:

      Increasingly angry constituents no longer bother to address issues with facts, they just make statements like it’s painfully clear THEY DON’T WORK.

      The 75/575 lanes are not the same as Gwinnett. They will include additional, reversable lanes. But please, let’s compare every future project to the two days of adjustment where everyone in Gwinnett freaked out that they couldn’t get down I-85 to reach a jursidiction that is willing to tax themselves to have enough infrastructure to sustain employment centers.

  3. Dave Bearse says:

    It’s pitiful that the Board of a publicly owned utility like Cobb EMC conducts all of its business and casts all of its votes in secret. It’s no wonder that Dwight Brown was able to help himself to millions. And good riddance to the Board members oversaw Brown, that wanedt to manipulate voting, and continue to conduct business in private. Your days are numbered.

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