One of the highlights of the annual Bragg Jam music festival is Macon City Councilman Larry Schlesinger and his band of local performers, some of whom are recognizable because of their roles in the community.
Schlesingers sets during past Bragg Jams have leaned heavily on the songs of Bob Dylan, but Schlesinger usually keeps his set list a surprise.
Schlesinger will be joined by Mercer University law professors Sarah Gerwig-Moore and Gary Simson, as well as members of the local band Jubee & the Morning After.
Mayor Robert Reichert usually sings lead vocals on one song during the set, covering in previous years Why Dont You Love Me Anymore, Blowin In the Wind and Stuck In The Middle With You. On Thursday, Reichert posted a video on his campaign page of him and Schlesinger rehearsing Dylans The Times They Are A-Changin.
With a month until early voting begins for the Sept. 17 special election to choose the Macon-Bibb County consolidated government, Paul Bronson wont be on the campaign trail for a good part of it.
Bronson, who is running for the District 2 seat against current Macon City Council members Larry Schlesinger and Henry Ficklin, has to report to a National Guard unit in Virginia for a two-week training session beginning Monday.
Bronson, who was recently promoted to captain, is helping the unit train at Fort Pickett before it deploys.
Despite his absence, Bronson said he doesnt anticipate it having much impact on his campaign. Bronson said he thinks being a political outsider will help his campaign because voters are ready to see something new.
Its not hurting anything, he said. Weve got some very strong support.
Macon-Bibb County mayoral candidate David Cousino drew some attention when he dressed as a cowboy and rode in on horseback to pay his qualifying fee back in April -- and paying it partly with gold-colored dollar coins.
Cousino paid about $1,800 of his $3,000 qualifying fee with the coins, which are largely made from copper.
Bibb County Elections Supervisor Jeanetta Watson said the bag containing the coins was so heavy that she could barely move it. She quickly called the sheriffs office to have a deputy escort her to the bank to deposit the money.
In case youre wondering (and we know you are), a gold presidential dollar has a mass of about 0.26 troy ounces, and a troy pound (which is how precious metals are measured) contains 12 troy ounces, rather than the 16 oz. for a standard pound.
So, 1,800 coins equal about 39 troy pounds. That means Cousinos payment weighed just about 32 pounds, which might have cost the county an OSHA claim had someone dropped Cousinos payment on his or her foot.
Watson said she hopes future candidates decide not to pay their fees by gold coins.
Hitting his Peake?
After speaking at a Macon Exchange Club meeting Thursday, state Rep. Allen Peake, R-Macon, was asked if he would be seeking a higher office either at the state level or national level.
Peake said he doesnt have the fire in the belly at this point that a candidate needs to run for a higher office.
In fact, Peake said the next time he runs for the District 140 seat might be the last.
(If I win,) that would be 10 years, and thats plenty, he said. I dont see myself doing it longer than that. I think people should know when their time is up.
Middle Georgians named to state boards
Gov. Nathan Deal recently named some Middle Georgians to state boards.
Mitch Rodriguez, a Macon neonatologist, was reappointed to the Board of Public Health. He serves as regional neonatal medical director for the Macon region through The Childrens Hospital at The Medical Center of Central Georgia. He also works as a clinical associate professor at Mercer Medical School and as chairman of the board at Mount de Sales Academy. He has a medical degree from Universidad Nordestana in the Dominican Republic and a masters degree from Kennesaw State University.
Zell Shaw Blackmon III of Kathleen was reappointed to the board of the Technical College System of Georgia. Blackmon is president and CEO of National Bank Products, and formerly chairman of the Robins Regional Chamber of Commerce and Middle Georgia Technical College. He has a bachelors degree from the University of Georgia.
Jay Sanders of Forsyth was appointed to the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council. He works as the special assistant to the director of probation operations, having begun with the Georgia Department of Corrections in 1992 as a probation officer. He has also worked as a regional training coordinator, hearing officer and public safety training officer with master instructor certifications in firearms and defensive tactics. He has a masters degree from Georgia Southwestern State University.
Ben H. Hall Jr. of Dublin was appointed to the Board of Economic Development. He is chairman of Dublin Construction Co.; and B.H. Hall Ready Mixed Concrete. A graduate of Southern Poly Tech, he has served on the boards of Associated General Contractors of Georgia and the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, and has led the Dublin Rotary Club and the Dublin-Laurens Development Authority.
Singing praises in chorus
A group of Macon people set out again this week to sing the praises of the College Hill Corridor effort.
Alex Morrison, executive director of the Macon-Bibb County Urban Development Authority, said this weeks talk in Charleston, S.C., to the Community Development Society conference followed a national conference set in Washington, D.C. Preachers have included people from the College Hill Alliance and the Knight Foundation, who talk about using the Macon neighborhood as a model for civic engagement and neighborhood engagement.
Morrison said the Charleston talk went well, impressing the audience, which was mainly interested in how it got started, what the catalytic effects were, and the fact that theres been such private development in the area, from almost $40 million in investment -- most of that from the private sector -- and all that in an area that wasnt getting any private investment.
Writers Phillip Ramati and Mike Stucka contributed to this report.