Thursday, April 30, 2009

GNB PHOTO EXTRA--College presidents discuss ways to boost economy

The presidents of Albany State University, Albany Technical College, Georgia Southwestern State University, and South Georgia Technical College recently visited the GSW campus in Americus. They discussed ways to jump start a sluggish economy. It's a challenge that's especially tremendous in southwest Georgia.
Photo caption: (from left to right--Albany Technical College President Anthony Parker, South Georgia Technical College President Sparky Reeves, Albany State University President Everette Freeman, and Georgia Southwestern State University President Kendall Blanchard)


With the first confirmed swine flu case in Georgia occurring earlier today...GNB is suspending its regular coverage...and devoting this post to coverage of the swine pandemic...

At around 7 a.m. this morning...the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta reported that a 30-year-old woman from Kentucky contracted the disease while on a trip to Mexico. According to the LaGrange Daily News, the woman was in west central Georgia for an unspecified function, and has been in the hospital since Sunday. Georgia has become the 11th state to have at least one confirmed of the swine flu, with one death in Texas so far.

More coverage...

WSB-TV Atlanta

WTVM Columbus (via Associated Press) (via Associated Press)

Emergency operation center set up in southwest Georgia

WALB Albany

Augusta doctor talks about swine flu

WJBF Augusta


NOTE: This is not meant to be a comprehensive list. Stay with GNB for further updates on the swine pandemic.

Georgia Division of Public Health Swine Flu Information Page:

Swine Flu Update on Twitter:

CDC Swine Flu Homepage:

Health & Human Services Disease Information:

WTOC Swine Flu Information Page: Click here.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

GNB Update

Halfway through the work week...Here's the news...

Top honors for prominent graduates of the Medical College of Georgia. The Augusta-based medical school honored eight of its distinguished alumni. Among those honored were Dr. Edward J. Green of Albany, Elberton native Dr. Lenette Burrell, and Dr. Lamar Fleming of Emory University in Atlanta. The awards were given out during MCG's homecoming ceremonies last weekend.

Do you want to know what's going on at your child's school? You can turn to Twitter for that information. That's what many Georgia school systems are doing, according to an article in today's Atlanta Journal-Constitution. They use the free social media service to inform parents of important developments that are going on in their schools. Forsyth County recently earned the distinction of becoming the first metro Atlanta school system to use Twitter. It started using the service in March, and now has 300 followers. The Georgia Department of Education has more than 60 followers of its Twitter page. That's about five times fewer followers than in Forsyth County, but around 20 more than last week.

And from the "blog files", SWGA Politics weighs in on the issue of a controversial ordinance in Albany. The link to the report from WALB-TV is here.

That's the news. GNB is available online at It's also available on Twitter, either by clicking the "follow me on Twitter" link, or by logging on to Have a good Wednesday night.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

GNB Update

Hope your Tuesday went well...Here's the news...

The spread of the swine flu has become a major topic of conversation worldwide. The University of Georgia has a list of experts available for comment on this latest pandemic. Click here for that list.

For more information on the swine flu, please visit the Centers For Disease Control's homepage by clicking here.

Also read: U.S. swine flu cases reach 68.

On Twitter: Swine Flu Update

Georgia schools are among the big beneficiaries from the federal stimulus package. In a unaminous vote, the state school board earlier today approved close to $670 million in stimulus money. The funds will be used to ease the budget shortfall for the state's 180 school districts. They're caused by massive cuts in state funding, as well as declining property tax collections. The money will be distributed to more than 1,300 schools throughout Georgia immediately. It's K-12 system will get up to $1.5 billion from the federal stimulus program over the next two years.

Also read: Middle Georgia schools get stimulus money

An east Georgia lake gets significant funding from the federal stimulus package. The Augusta Chronicle reports that Lake Thurmond in Lincoln County will get more than $16 million in improvements. They will speed up the start of projects that range from building a new campground to getting much needed repairs to the dam and powerhouse. The Savannah District will get more than $94 million total in total funding commitments.

That's the news. GNB is available online at, and on Twitter at Have a good Tuesday night.

Monday, April 27, 2009

GNB Update

Hope you got through your Monday...Here's the news...

Another Republican declared his candidacy for Georgia governor earlier today. WXIA-TV in Atlanta reports that state Senator Eric Johnson of Savannah announced that he would seek the GOP gubernatorial nomination in 2010. He originally chose to run for Lieutenant Governor, but changed his mind when Casey Cagle withdrew from the governor's race earlier this month. Johnson joins three Republicans running for the top spot in state government. That list includes Secretary of State Karen Handel, State Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine, and state Representative Austin Scott.

The continuing recession leads to furloughs at a Macon museum. reports that the Museum of Arts and Sciences will close on Mondays starting next week, with furloughs also in the works. Museum director Suzanne Harper says the moves are needed to reduce its operating costs. She also says that pay reductions for salaried employees could come by this fall. Under the plan, all full-time employees must take an unpaid furlough between now and the end of September.

And Carol Fullerton had an eventful first year as a state represenative representing House District 151. The Albany Herald has this report how it turned out.

That's the news. GNB is available online at It's also available on Twitter. Just click the "Follow Me On Twitter" link in the upper right hand corner of the blog. Enjoy your Monday night.

Friday, April 24, 2009

GNB Weekend Update

The weekend is here...Here's the news...

Add another person to the list of those not running for Governor in 2010. 3rd District Congressman Lynn Westmoreland earlier today announced that he will not seek the Republican nomination for Georgia governor, and choosing to stay in the nation's capital instead. He joins the likes of Cobb County Commission Chairman Sam Olens, state House Speaker Pro-Tem Mark Burkhalter, and Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle among the Republicans choosing not to run for the Peach State's gubernatorial nomination. Cagle pulled out earlier this month.

State lawmakers didn't use any federal stimulus money for education. That's what an education advocacy group charged earlier today. The Southern Education Foundation says the Georgia failed to allocate the $178 million available for education. It charged that those funds are desperately needed as schools struggle through an ongoing recession. SEF Vice President Steve Suitts says the money should be used to minizime the cutbacks on the upcoming fiscal year budget. The governor's office, though, says those funds aren't lost, but they won't be spent right away.

And if you're looking for something worth reading this weekend, consider the 401-page report released today by the Georgia Legislative Watch. It contains every bill that passed the Georgia House in 2009. The entire report can be read by clicking here.

That's the news. GNB is online at Have a good weekend.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

GNB Update

It's Thursday...Only one more day until Friday...Here's the news...

Another candidate has announced his candicacy for Georgia Attorney General. Former Dougherty Judicial Circuit District Attorney Ken Hodges announced Wednesday that he's running for the seat that current Attorney General Thurbert Baker is giving up next year. Hodges will face State Representative Rob Teilhet for the Democratic nomination, while Cobb County Commission Chairman Sam Olens is the only announced candidate on the Republican side.

A lawyer is making plans to visit the now-closed peanut plant in Blakely. The Associated Press reports that Attorney Bill Marler will take a tour of the former Peanut Corporation of America facility that's been at the center of the deadly salmonella outbreak. He's one of many lawyers representing the plaintiffs who have filed lawsuits against the company. In a visit to a similar plant in Texas, Marler saw openings that would animals to get inside that building.

An Atlanta television station is doing a series on the candidates in next year's governor's race. Fox 5 Atlanta recently did interviews with Republican nominees Karen Handel and Ray McBerry. Profiles of other declared candidates will follow on the Fox 5 website at SWGA Politics weighs on the series here.

That's the news. GNB is available at Enjoy your Thursday night.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

GNB Update

It's Wednesday...the halfway point of the week...Here's the news...

The drought may have disappeared...but the watering restrictions will remain...

That was the word from Georgia Environmental Protection Division spokesman Kevin Chambers regarding the current status of water levels statewide. He says that despite recent rains, Lake Lanier is still below its full level. That means the restrictions on when metro Atlanta residents can water their plants or wash their cars will likely stay in place this summer. Lake Lanier provides most of the water supply to the metro Atlanta area.

Some much-needed funds for a leading public transportation system. reports that the Bibb County Commission yesterday agreed to give the Macon-Bibb County Transit Authority $185,000 in reserves to keep operating through the rest of this fiscal year. But the city of Macon still do its part to keep the buses running, as it must give out a proportionate amount of those funds. In all, transit officials are asking for more than $460,000 both Macon and Bibb, as well as another $590,000 to cover a federal grant.

The CEO of one of Georgia's most visible companies has a positive outlook on an otherwise down economy. Coca-Cola CEO Muhtar Kent told shareholders earlier today that he sees an opportunity to increase its market share during tough times. He says that the company is focusing its efforts on selling its top brands in emerging market such as China, as well as in the U.S. and Mexico. Kent did say, though, that there was the possibility that Coca-Cola would miss its targets by at least one quarter this year. The Atlanta-based soft-drink manufacturer saw its shares drop more than 30 cents to almost $43 earlier today.

That's the news. GNB is available online 24/7 at Enjoy your Wednesday night.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

GNB Update

Hope you're enjoying Tuesday...Here's the news...

A landmark business in Athens is closing its doors after more than 50 years. The Associated Press reports that the family-owned Farm Electric, Inc. on Baxter Street in Athens will call it quits after 52 years of operation. Owner Joe Causey cited family reasons and long hours on the job as reasons for going out of business. Farm Electric will close its doors once it's remaining inventory is sold. That will likely come by the end of this summer.

Many counties throughout southwest Georgia could soon be declared disaster areas. That's according to emergency management officials in Albany. WALB reports that FEMA has a location within Dougherty County already picked out for flood victims to get financial assistance. Over 40 homes there have suffered damage due to flooding. Local emergency management officials say that southwest Georgia hasn't been declared a Presidential disaster area yet, but hope that will soon change.

An already crowded race for Georgia governor could become even more wide open by the end of the day. The Associated Press reports that Cobb County Commission Chairman Sam Olens is expected to announce later today whether or not he'll seek the Republican gubernatorial nomination in 2010. If he chooses to run, Olens will join three other Republicans already in the race. Three candidates are also running for the Democratic nation.

That's the news. For more stories like these, log on to Have a good Tuesday.

Monday, April 20, 2009

GNB Update

It's Monday...back from the weekend...Here are today's headlines...

One of southwest Georgia's leading universities is expecting one of its largest freshman classes ever. And that's creating a housing problem.

WALB in Albany reports that Albany State University held its first "lottery" over the weekend so students could register for spots in its on-campus residence halls. ASU housing director Bonisha Townsend told WALB that the amount of students enrolled isn't disproportionate to the amount of bed space available. Students who are denied a spot on-campus by the July 15 deadline should try to live off-campus.

Three candidates for the Republican nomination for Georgia governor paid a visit to Albany late last week. They were in southwest Georgia for the annual 2nd Congressional District Republican Chairman's dinner. Secretary of State Karen Handel was one of those potential nominees that spoke, along with Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine, and House Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Austin Scott. Oxendine told WALB that Georgia's executive branch needs a major overhaul. He says that it wants to be there to "help families and businesses" statewide. The race for the GOP nomination was thrown open last week when Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle dropped out of the race.

And if you live in northern Macon/Bibb County, you could see a significant in the way your neighborhood is zoned.

WMAZ in Macon reports that the Macon-Bibb Planning and Zoning Commission earlier today discussed building 350 apartments, 100 townhouses, and close to 300 nursing home units. Residents say those projects are too big for their neighborhood. Despite scale backs by developers, opponents say such changes would still make northern Bibb County too dense.

That's the news. But you can still keep with stories like these and more online at Enjoy the rest of your Monday.

Friday, April 17, 2009

GNB Weekend Update

The weekend is just around the corner...Here's the news...

The race for Albany mayor is officially underway. The Albany Herald reported in its Friday edition that local community activist Kirk Smith announced his candidacy for the mayor's office in 2010. He ran unsuccessfully for Dougherty County Sheriff in 2008. But his platform hasn't changed from last year, as Smith plans to take on an anti-crime stance in his campaign.

Georgia could soon get a boost from the railways. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that President Barack Obama announced plans for a high-speed that could connect both north and south Georgia via Atlanta on Thursday. The plan calls for a European-style rail system where the trains would run at 100 mph. The president is pledging eight billion dollars towards funding that project.

Another potential candidate for Governor drops out of the race. House majority leader Jerry Keen (R-St. Simon's Island) says he's not running for the Republican nomination next year. He told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Thursday his decision had nothing to do with who else running for governor. Keen's announcement comes one day after Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle announced that he wouldn't run for governor, citing nerve damage in his neck.

That's the news. GNB is online at 24/7. Have a good weekend.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

GNB Update

It's Thursday...One more day until Friday...Here's the news...

Tax season is over, and many people around Georgia celebrated with multiple "tea parties" last night. SWGA Politics has a review of what happened in southwest Georgia, has this report on late tax filers, and The Other Athens weighs on what took place in the Classic City.

As if that wasn't enough, close to four hundred people showed up at the "tea party" in Macon yestreday, showing their displeasure over paying increased taxes. Lucid Idiocy has this summary on what happened in middle Georgia.

Scratch one candidate from the governor's race. Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle announced yesterday he wouldn't run for Georgia's top post. He cited health issues as the reason for withdrawing his nomination. The announcement comes as early polls showed Cagle leading in the Republican primary.

That's the news. GNB is available online 24/7 at Enjoy your Thursday night.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

GNB Update

It's Wednesday...Hope you had a good mid-week...Here's the news...

Two billion dollars.

That's the amount of money the Gwinnett County School System will have in its budget for the next academic year. Georgia's largest school district will get the equivalent of ten percent of the entire state budget, an increase of more than five percent. That comes from a recommendation from J. Alvin Wilbanks. The huge numbers come despite continued cutbacks in state funding totaling over $25 million.

A northwest Georgia town is one of nine stops on a statewide tour. The 2009 Heart and Soul Bus Tour will pay a visit to Calhoun tomorrow. Participants will visit three separate downtown redevelopment projects there. It's part of an effort to inform and educate state leaders on the importance of downtown development and how it impacts overall economic development. The tour will also make stops in Dallas, Rockmart, Rome, Cartersville, Canton, Dahlonega, Toccoa, and Duluth.

And, from the blog files, SWGA Politics has a report on upcoming "tea parties" in Albany and Leesburg to celebrate the end of income tax season.

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

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

GNB Update

It's Tuesday...Hope it was a productive one for you...Here's the news...

A metro Atlanta man is convicted in a visa fraud case. The Henry Daily Herald reports that a federal jury found 54-year-old Hasmukh Patel guilty on 12 counts of fraud and bribery. He was also convicted of conspiring to encourage aliens to come to the United States. Patel could face up to 49 years in prison, and a fine of nearly $2 million, when he is sentenced in June.

Wednesday is the last day to file your income tax returns. But many people across the nation don't want any part in doing that. reports that hundreds of "tea parties" will be planned throughout Georgia tomorrow to express their displeasure over the recent bailouts, and the economic stimulus package. National radio talk show and Fox News Channel host Sean Hannity will carry his TV show live from the state Capitol in Atlanta from 9 to 10 p.m. Wednesday. Two radio talk show hosts from middle Georgia will also broadcast from separate locations throughout the area.

A county commissioner from metro Atlanta is close to deciding what plans he'll make for 2010. Cobb County Commission Chairman Sam Olens will decide by the end of this week whether he'll run for statewide office. He could either run for governor, or another office statewide. Olens' decision is expected to be announced on Friday.

That's the news. Remember to bookmark for the Georgia-related news you can't get anywhere else 24/7. Have a good Tuesday night.

Monday, April 13, 2009

GNB Update

It's Monday...Back from your three-day Easter Weekend...Here's the news...

More candidates for top statewide political office...

Former Dougherty Judicial Circuit District Attorney Ken Hodges tells the Albany Herald in its Sunday edition that he's close to deciding on a possible run for the Attorney General's Office. He says that he's "99 percent sure" that he would seek the position that current Attorney General Thurbert Baker is giving up in 2010. Baker recently announced that he'll run for governor next year. Meanwhile, state Senator Seth Harp (R-Midland) announced his candidacy for insurance commissioner late last Thursday. A formal announcement is expected to come sometime this week.

The race for Governor in 2010 is off to a fast start. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Attorney General Thurbert Baker, Secretary of State Karen Handel, and Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine are among those who declared their candidacy for the state's top post next year. The Georgia Legislative Watch has an updated list of who's running for governor by clicking here.

You soon could be paying more to fill your car tank with gas. AAA Georgia says that the price of gas in the state rose 12 cents in the last month. It said that Monday's average price was just under two dollars a gallon. Just last year, the statewide average was just below $1.50 per gallon. The auto club also says the price for midgrade gasoline in Georgia is just over two dollars, while premium costs nine cents more.

That's the news. Remember to log on to for the latest news 24/7. Enjoy your Monday night.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

GNB PHOTO EXTRA--GSW president signs agreement with Korean institution

Georgia Southwestern State University President Kendall A. Blanchard, and his wife Connie, recently returned from a trip to South Korea. That's where they signed an agreement with the Korean Digital University. KDU is the largest private online institution of its kind in Korea.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

GNB PHOTO EXTRA--UGA Business School gets State Farm Grant

The Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia recently earned a gift from the State Farm Insurance Company to start a new sales lab. It totals $96,000.
Photo courtesy of the University of Georgia.
Click here for the full story, courtesy of the UGA News Service.

GNB Update

It's Thursday...One day left until "Good Friday"...

Tax collections in Georgia have experienced a steady decline lately. On Wednesday, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that they were off for the fourth straight month at $167 million. That's down 14.5 percent from March 2008. The news came in the wake of lawmakers passing the budget for fiscal year 2010 last week. Still, tax collections have fallen every since November.

A few cities and counties in north Georgia have joined forces to save money and gasoline.

Georgia Public Broadcasting reports that 14 local governments there have teamed up to buy fuel in bulk for their government vehicles. The coalition includes select communities in metro Atlanta, as well as a few from northeast Georgia. They hope to save a few dollars by finding better prices to keep their vehicles running. Individual cities and counties, though, do have the option of pulling out of the arrangement if they find a better deal.

More good economic news for a Georgia public university. The Clayton News-Daily reports that Clayton State University generated almost $200 million for the Clayton County economy during fiscal year 2008. That's according to a recent study from the Selig Center for Economic Growth at the University of Georgia. Almost half the money generated by Clayton State came from students spending money in Morrow and surrounding areas. Also, the university was responsible for creating nearly 1,700 jobs within the region.

That's the news. Remember to log on to GNB at for all of your Georgia business and political news. Enjoy your Easter Weekend.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

GNB Update

Welcome to the mid-week...Here's the news...

There might be some signs of metro Atlanta's housing market moving in the right direction tonight. WXIA reports that there's a "ray of hope", despite the fact that foreclosures have reached record highs in Cobb County. One local realtor says that the foreclosures are factored into low-interest rates. That's creating the "perfect storm" to buy a new home.

A south metro Atlanta library could soon be open less often. The Fayette Daily News reports that officials in Peachtree City last week considered a proposal to close its local library one full day. But city leaders also want to extend hours on other days to meet the needs of individuals using the facility. The Peachtree City council trimmed the hours just a few short months ago to address budget concerns.

And from our blog files, SWGA Politics takes an inside look at the "Good, Bad, and Ugly" concerning Albany's city budget for fiscal year 2010.

That's the news. Remember to bookmark for all of the latest Georgia-related business, political, and other news all day, and all night. Enjoy your Wednesday night.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

GNB Update

Hope your Tuesday's been going well....Here's the news...

The controversy surrounding the possible consolidation of the city and county governments in Albany continues to fester. An article in today's Albany Herald dealt with questions on a potential merger between both local governments. At its regular meeting on Monday, the Dougherty County Commission had a concerned resident make his feelings known on the issue. He questioned whether or not a vote would be fair to county voters. In late 2006, county commissioners had a vote to consider a refenderum, but ended in a 3-3 tie. State Representative Ed Rynders (D-Leesburg) recently brought the issue back to the forefront, but state Senator Freddie Powell Sims (D-Albany) refused to sign off on it. That's despite the fact the Georgia House passed the measure by a huge margin.

A Savannah area hotel has a brand new look. $12 million worth of renovations at the Hilton Savannah DeSoto are almost done. It was re-done in a "Southern Contemporary" style setting. That includes public and meeting spaces, guest rooms, ball rooms, and even the fitness center. The original DeSoto hotel was built in 1890, torn down, then rebuilt in 1968 as the Desoto Hilton.

And with the start of yet another Master's golf classic near Augusta, the Augusta Chronicle has a nice photo gallery on how the golfers in this year's classic are braving the unseasonably cold weather.

That's the news. But remember to bookmark for all things Georgia news and views 24/7. Enjoy your Tuesday night.

Monday, April 6, 2009

GNB Update

A new week has arrived...Here's what making news in Georgia...

Who's going to run for office in 2010? That's a question many people will be answering for the rest of 2009, as the race for governor and other key offices take shape in the coming weeks and months. Georgia Legislative Watch has a list of declared and potential candidates for select offices here.

One state representative has tossed his hat into the ring for 2010. Rob Teilhet (D-Smyrna) announced his intentions to run for Attorney General earlier today. He earned his reputation as a "tough-on-crime" lawmaker, passing legislation that expanded the background checks on individuals working with children, the elderly, and adults with disabilities. Teilhet hopes to replace current Attorney General Thurbert Baker, who announced his candidacy for governor late last week.

There's more controversy surrounding the consolidation issue in Albany/Dougherty County. SWGA Politics explores whether race, power, or both play a role in diluting minority voting strength. The Albany Herald has an insightful article on the issue here.

That's the news. Log on to for all things business, politics, and more in Georgia 24/7. Enjoy your Monday night.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

GNB Weekend Update

The weekend is here...Here's what happened in Georgia news for Friday...

As the gavel banged one last time on the 2009 legislative session, lawmakers reached an agreement on Georgia's budget for fiscal year 2010. They agreed to that deal late Friday night, on the final day of the session. The teacher furloughs that were supposed to have become part of the budget didn't make it. Lawmakers also came to terms on the full funding of Medicaid. But that didn't come without a price, as funding for other state departments was slashed in hopes that Georgia would get more money from the stimulus package. In all, the total amount for the 2010 budget stands at more than $18 billion. That depends upon whether or not the state will get an additional $1.4 billion from the federal stimulus package.

Over $12 billion.

That's the amount of money the 35 institutions of the University System of Georgia brought in for fiscal year 2008. The information came from a report released by the University of Georgia released earlier this week. The $12 billion of revenue generated represents a more than $1 billion increase from fiscal year. That's about a $4 billion increase from 1999, the first year of the study. Georgia's public higher education system has created more than 108,000 jobs statewide. That accounts for more than two and a half percent of such positions.

From our blog files, Peach Pundit reveals the "biggest loser" of this year's legislative session: the Georgia State Senate. Read on to find out why. Also, Drifting Through The Grift will travel to a "destination unknown". And Mostly Media has a preview of a dinner honoring two former Georgia governors.

That's the news. Remember to log to GNB at for the Georgia-related news you can use. Have a good weekend.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

GNB Update

It's Thursday...Hard to believe the end of the 2009 Georgia legislative session is near...And now the news...

A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit against one of southwest Georgia's top hospitals.

Judge W. Louis Sands threw out the anti-trust lawsuit against Phoebe Putney Hospital of Albany. It happened earlier this week in federal court. The suit argues that Phoebe Putney used its dominance locally to coerce insurers into managed health care contracts. Officials at Palmyra Medical Centers also claim that Phoebe Putney failed to cancel its contract with the Hospital Authority of Albany/Dougherty County. That action alone, Palmyra believes, violated a portion of the Sherman Antitrust Act. But Sands found that argument "highly speculative", leading to the dismissal. In a written statement, Palmyra officials are reviewing the decision made by Sands, and considering its options.

An official with the Georgia Budget and Policy Institute says further tax cuts could do the state more harm than good in the long run. GBPI executive director Alan Essig in a column in today's Atlanta Journal-Constitution argues that lawmakers implementing such measures would hurt Georgia more than it helps. He also contends that the cuts to the state technical and university systems would hamper efforts to provide the educated workforce the state needs when the recession finally ends.

And local technical colleges and universities joined forces for educational partnerships in their respective communities. In Athens, the University of Georgia and Athens Technical College recently teamed up with the Clarke County School System to form a new career academy. That will help students to become prepared to enter workforce. In Albany, Albany State University and Albany Technical College celebrated their "Partnership Day" by having 12-15 Albany Tech students fill out applications to attend ASU.

That's the news. Remember to log on to for Georgia-related business, politics, economic development, and higher education news 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Enjoy your Thursday night.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

GNB Update

The mid-week has come and gone...Here's the news...

$224 million.

That was the total economic impact Columbus State University brought in to Columbus and surrounding areas last year. That's according to a new study from the state. The University System of Georgia's 35 institutions continue to have a major impact on the state's economy despite the ongoing recession. Together all of the state's public colleges and universities brought in more than $12 billion to Georgia's economy during fiscal year 2008. That's a growth of 57 per cent in almost a decade. Locally, the $224 million brings in almost 2,400 jobs either on off the CSU campus.

The rains that southwest Georgia got last weekend may put a damper on the plans of area farmers. WALB in Albany reports that those recent rains will put planting on hold, while also destroying crops for others. UGA County Extension Agent Doug Collins told WALB that his agency will wait for the rain to end before assessing any damage to crops. Farmers also say it could take weeks for the soil to dry out before planting.

Get ready for major changes for the Georgia's leading transportation agency. Georgia Public Broadcasting reports that the Georgia House narrowly approved changes for the Georgia Department of Transportation earlier today. Lawmakers passed the legislation by a vote of 91-84. But approval didn't come without an intense hour of debate. House Speaker Glenn Richardson cast the deciding vote after getting at least two lawmakers to change theirs.

That's the news for Wednesday. GNB is available online at Enjoy your evening, and stay dry.