COMMERCE - Annie Ruth Stephens, 87, died Tuesday, August 19, 2014, at Northridge Medical Center. Mrs. Stephens was born in Maysville, the daughter of the late Hubert and Zelma Jacks Reynolds and was a homemaker. Mrs. Stephens was preceded in death by her husband, Arthur Stephens, Jr. Survivors include a son, Dennis Stephens, Commerce; ...
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Aleta Walley and Cynthia Layton looked forward to the sound of children’s voices this summer.
“The lunch bus is here! The lunch bus is here!” children would shout as the two showed up on in a Madison County school bus with sacked lunches.
Madison County’s Summer Meal Program provided nutritious meals throughout the summer to kids in need, summer campers and other youth at a variety of locales.
Walley and Layton were among several workers who distributed the food, which was prepared every weekday morning in the Madison County Middle School cafeteria. The food included entrees such as hamburgers and chicken sandwiches, as well as vegetables, fruits and milk.
Layton sat in the back of the bus and passed out the meals.
“It made me feel like I was accomplishing something,” she said. “They’d come running to the bus. They would sit there and wait on us to get there with the bus. It was just a joy for me. I rode in the back of the bus. It was just fun. I would learn who everybody was. It was just a joy to know those kids were looking forward to us coming through to take care of them.”
Layton said she felt a bond with the children.
“There were two little boys that touched my heart,” she said. “They were sort of the Opie Taylor type boys. They were just precious. They actually hugged my neck and told me they were going to miss me on my last day.”
Walley also enjoyed providing the meals to kids.
“They were polite,” said Walley of the kids. “Everyone of them said thank you. We had a good reaction to everything. They were just super kids.” [Full Story »]
Madison County commissioners plan to roll back their tax rates slightly in 2014, but the group may also need to dig into county cash reserves to balance the 2015 budget.
The board of commissioners has heard budget requests from county department heads and constitutional officer in recent weeks, with many asking for pay increases for their employees. However, the BOC has yet to finalize a budget and will meet again Aug. 20 and 22 at 9 a.m. both days in the county government complex.
As of this week, the 2015 budget includes an approximate $1.1 million shortfall between projected revenues ($13.1 million) and expenses ($14.28 million).
The county’s digest, its overall property value, is up slightly this year, which means the board would bring in increased property tax revenues if it leaves its tax rates the same as last year. By law, this would require three public hearings and advertisements to announce a tax increase. The school board is keeping its tax rate steady this year and is holding hearings to announce a tax increase due to the slight digest increase.
But the BOC plans to roll back tax rates for incorporated (within cities) and unincorporated (outside of cities) to slightly reduce its projected income from local taxes, from $6,64,159 last year to $6,558,771 this year. Tax bills are expected to go out in October and be due some time in December. This year’s tax revenue will be used to fund next year’s county budget. [Full Story »]
Madison County’s softball team is hitting the ground in a full sprint this week. The Raiders (2-0) shut down Lumpkin County 10-0 Saturday in the season opener, then blasted past Oglethorpe County 11-3 in the opening round of the 17th annual Athens Orthopedic Leadoff Classic. Now, they turn their sights on Morgan County at 6:55 p.m. Thursday ...
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It was 1970 when a Madison County High School senior class last graced the halls of a new high school. A few of the members of that class – the graduating class of 1971 – shared some of their memories of what was going through their minds, and what is undoubtedly similar to the thoughts of students beginning school in their own new high school building this week.
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Forget a new-car smell — how about a new-school scent?
Hundreds of people gathered at Madison County High School Sunday to celebrate a new day for MCHS.
The school has been transformed with a sales-tax-funded, three-story building, a grant-funded college and career academy and a new football field house, with the cost largely covered by a private donation.
“It’s a great day to be a Red Raider,” said Madison County School Superintendent Allen McCannon at the MCHS ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Local residents were handed maps before touring the new, three-story building, where they took in the large cafeteria, looked out from the top story over the football field and paced the spacious halls lined with red lockers.
“I know this community is proud of this facility and the support and opportunities it will give our students for many years to come,” said MCHS principal George Bullock at a ceremony in the renovated, brightly lit and air-conditioned gym. “There is a lot of pride here in Madison County and it is very much alive today.”
The school welcomed state school superintendent John Barge at the Sunday ceremony. Barge said he was impressed by what he saw.
“It’s clear to me that Madison County is serious about providing the best education possible for students by providing as many options as possible for students,” said Barge. [Full Story »]