Wednesday, May 27, 2009

GNB Update

It's Wednesday...the middle of the week. Here's the news.

The cutbacks strike again. This time Georgia's state parks are feeling the pinch.

The Associated Press reports that state parks face an upcoming round of budget cuts for this summer. They include a rise in fees, as well as a few sites cutting back their hours of operation. The Georgia Department of Natural Resources says the cuts are needed to address an almost 40 percent reduction in state approprations, and a projected loss of revenue totaling close to 25 percent. The DNR also plans to cut more than one-tenth of its workforce due to the cutbacks.

A middle Georgia healthcare facility is feeling the effects of the economic downturn. reports that Houston Healthcare is seeing the effects of the recession in terms of patients using emergency rooms and other related services. In April, emergency room visits were up almost 16 percent at Houston Medical Center in Warner Robins, while similar visits at Perry Hospital rose more than three percent. Additionally, medstop visits increased increased almost 25 percent. But there is some good news. Houston Healthcare CEO Skip Phillips says the facility exceeded expenditures by almost $2 million in April. That gave the system $7 million in positive revenues since the fiscal year began on January 1.

More positive national recognition for a small Georgia city. GPB News reports that Athens was ranked as the fifth-best place to live in the U.S. That's according to the U.S. Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine. It gets even better for the northeast Georgia city. Just last month, Forbes magazine ranked Athens seventh in its best cities for jobs rankings.

That's the news. GNB is available online at, and on Twitter at Enjoy your Wednesday night.

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