Editorials

Editorials

Developing a road map for educational excellence.

The Georgia Milestones Assessment Test results were released last week and you’ll, no doubt be hearing a lot about the results. Some schools will have a lot to crow about, with good reason, because the tests are an indication of the level of education being delivered at the respective areas elementary, middle and high public schools. However, as the numbers point out, some schools have a lot of work to do.

Editorials

An untenable situation where no one wants to sit

The altercation between Chris Cashell and Houston County Sheriff Deputy Jonathan Lewis that led to Cashell’s death didn’t have to happen, but it is an example of the sort of situations deputies, police officers and others in law enforcement are called in to intervene when domestic situations get out of hand.

This week's circulars

Editorials

Is special era in Macon coming to an end?

It’s hard not to notice the passing of another musician who helped put Macon on the musical map. There was of course Otis Redding whose plane crashed in Lake Monona, Wisconsin almost 50 years ago. And there’s Little Richard, who is still going strong at 84, but something about Gregg Allman’s passing at 69 signals the end of a special era in Macon’s history.

Editorials

Avoiding the educational summer slump

Children are out of school for the summer, however, some will be starting summer school on Monday, so commuters, if you thought you wouldn’t be seeing yellow school buses on the roads for a while, think again and drive accordingly. If your child isn’t trying to get ahead on next school year’s classes, there is no reason to let them sit around all day watching TV or playing video games. Don’t let them fall into a summer slump that teachers will have to pull them out of come August. Here are some suggestions.

Editorials

Are we returning to the bad old days before Obamacare?

No matter your opinion of President Barack Obama’s signature legislative accomplishment, the Affordable Care Act, it has become increasingly clear, as Congress attempts to untie the Gordian Knot, how difficult it must have been to wrangle all of the health care players, lawmakers and various lobbyists to support the ACA in the first place.

Editorials

The slow, steady march of progress

If we could hop into a time machine and head back to 1996 — the year NewTown Macon began with funding from the Peyton Anderson Foundation — what would we see downtown? Abandoned and empty storefronts everywhere the eye could see. Blighted buildings — seemingly ready to fall in on themselves. Few signs of commercial life.

Editorials

How did we get here from there?

Who would have thought this day would come after such an inauspicious beginning. It was November 3, 2003 when residents in Richardson Estates in southern Bibb County, just north of Robins Air Force Base, learned of a Sept. 19 letter from then Bibb County Commission Chairman Tommy Olmstead to county planning and zoning officials that laid out a restriction for their community that would have prevented residential growth — and prevented them from adding to their current residences or rebuilding if their homes were ever destroyed.

Editorials

Good air quality news, however, danger ahead

It wasn’t very long ago, almost 14 years to be exact, that Macon leaders were wringing their hands, worried about non-attainment to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency air quality standards. Leaders in Houston and Monroe counties were worried as well. The EPA eventually took most of Monroe County and Houston County off the list of areas that were non-compliant with the eight-hour ozone regulation. Now, Bibb leaders were worried and puzzled. How could those areas be within the rules and Bibb not meet the standard? It’s not like there is an invisible wall at Echeconnee Creek that blocks ozone.

Editorials

Governor’s initiative has Georgia leading the nation

Gov. Nathan Deal was in town for a short while Tuesday morning to speak at the state’s first Reentry Summit. He also signed three bills into law while he was here. If anyone doubted the governor’s passion for the task of criminal justice reform listening to him speak would have changed that doubt into belief.

Editorials

Bibb drug testing resolution unnecessary distraction

Macon-Bibb County Commissioner Joe Allen is sponsoring a novel proposal. He wants the commission to pass a resolution that requests that, “All elected and appointed public officials serving in Macon-Bibb County shall immediately following the approval and adoption of this resolution submit to a voluntary drug test to determine if such officials have used a controlled substance; and for other purposes.”

Editorials

City administrator position needs more consideration

Monday’s Warner Robins City Council meeting proved right interesting. First, citizens attended (that’s a good thing) wishing to comment on an issue that wasn’t even on the agenda, and secondly, an issue that would invariably, if implemented, cost the city money.

Editorials

Atlanta shows off its traffic to the president

President Donald Trump was in Atlanta on Friday and so was Billy Joel. The president was in town to speak to the National Rifle Association’s convention that was expected to draw 80,000. While here he also did a fundraiser for 6th District Republican candidate Karen Handel. Neither event was easy on the pocketbook. The price for entry into the fundraiser was $2,700 per person or $25,000 to host. Joel, was up the street at the brand new SunTrust Park where the ticket price hit above $500 to hear him belt out “It’s Still Rock And Roll To Me,” in the 41,149 seat baseball stadium. In the meantime, the Georgia State Patrol on Friday afternoon, just as the afternoon rush was getting started blocked eastbound Interstate-20 at Capital Avenue and Interstate-75/85 northbound, south of I-20 to allow presidential motorcade to head to northeast Atlanta for the fundraiser.

Editorials

Gov. Deal finally gets his way — sort of

It’s official, Gov. Nathan Deal’s long night of educational discontent is over. Thursday he signed House Bill 338 into law, now known as The First Priority Act. This legislation allows the state to take over what it deems “failing” schools.

Editorials

What could go wrong that hasn’t already?

Everyone’s favorite government agency, particularly during the month of April, the Internal Revenue Service, is taking another step down into the dungeon on the likability scale, if likability and the IRS could reside in the same sentence. In this instance it’s not totally the IRS’ fault, it’s just following the congressional orders of its bosses. Hidden in a $305 billion highway bill was a small provision that required the IRS to outsource some of its debt collection.

Editorials

Hard to feel sorry for this congressional time crunch

It’s been pretty quiet in and around Washington, D.C. with Congress adjourned for the last two weeks. We should all be so lucky. But that peace is about to end when lawmakers once again fill the halls of Congress when they return Monday, and waiting for them is a full slate of issues all needing immediate attention. Health care is still on the plate simply because nothing can be done about tax reform until the health care conundrum is settled. But there is another more pressing issue that could turn ugly and put health care on the back burner along with several other congressional initiatives.