Photo Credit: Mack Male/Wikimedia Commons
When student newspaper The Red & Black published "Is the grill hot? Inside a UGA freshman's grilled cheese empire" on Dec. 6, my first thought, like many people, was, "How long will it take the university to shut this down?"
The answer was five hours.
After all, 18-year-old Charlie Williams—who delivered $3 grilled cheese sandwiches and other tasty snacks to fellow residents of Oglethorpe House, aka O-House—was clearly operating an illegal business. I didn't go to UGA, but I'm pretty sure we weren't allowed to have hot plates at Ole Miss, and I'm very sure the health department would say that running what basically amounts to a Papa John's (minus the tomato sauce, garlic butter and racism) out of your home is not kosher.
Sure enough, the follow-up came Saturday: "Too hot to handle: UGA housing shuts down grilled cheese business."
Photo Credit: Davis Property Group
A Piggly Wiggly is seeking to open in the development slated for the former St. Joseph Catholic Church property at the corner of Prince Avenue and Pulaski Street, according to Athens Downtown Development Authority co-director Linda Ford.
The Piggly Wiggly will be a "small, urban" store, similar to grocery stores in Atlanta, with a "retro design" and will fulfill downtown and nearby residents' long-standing desire for a grocery store, Ford said at the ADDA meeting this afternoon.
"This is something downtown has wanted for a very long time," she said.
Photo Credit: Lee Becker
Oconee County officials are still waiting on Presbyterian Homes to indicate how much money it wants the county to borrow through bond sales to help finance construction of its Presbyterian Village Athens on U.S. 441 at Hog Mountain Road.
In the last two weeks the company began land clearance and construction of a chain-link fence along U.S. Highway 441 for its complex. The county issued a land disturbance permit for the 79-acre property nearly a year ago.
The fence is covered with signage promoting the continuing care retirement community, but county code enforcement officials say those signs will have to be removed because they are in violation of county code.
Photo Credit: Priority Ambulance
National EMS—the company local hospitals contract with to provide ambulance service in Clarke and Oconee counties—has been sold to Knoxville, TN-based Priority Ambulance, the companies announced last week.
Priority is much larger than Conyers-based National, with 2,600 employees, and consolidation is the name of the game in health care as all the players seek greater resources and leverage. Insurance companies keep merging. Smaller hospital chains seek refuge with bigger ones.
The sale comes at a time, though, when National EMS is under fire for what former EMTs and the activist group Athens for Everyone say are unacceptably slow response times. They’ve called for an independent audit and for National EMS to release its raw data. St. Mary’s and Piedmont Athens Regional, though, recently released a joint statement expressing satisfaction with National EMS.
Photo Credit: Greater Statesville Chamber of Commerce
The Athens Area Chamber of Commerce has named a North Carolina chamber executive as its new CEO.
David Bradley is currently president of the Greater Statesville Chamber of Commerce in suburban Charlotte. The Guillford College graduate has also worked in manufacturing and served as president of the chamber in Mount Airy, NC. In Statesville, he served on the downtown development, regional development, and convention and visitors' bureau boards, led the effort to create a strategic plan for Statesville and was involved in theater and fim.
Tweed Recording Academy, a new school offering "cutting-edge audio engineering and mixing programs," plans to open in downtown Athens in fall 2019, according to a press release. The school will occupy the former Lamar Lewis Shoe Store building, which spans the block from Clayton Street to Washington Street and also includes the former Copper Creek brewpub.
Last month the Oconee County Industrial Development Authority approved unanimously the spending of up to $375,115 on a contract to beautify Mars Hill Road and preliminarily approved up to $115 million in bond funding to Presbyterian Homes for construction of its Oconee campus.
Jerry Peterson, representing Presybyterian Homes, told the IDA he was asking for preliminary approval for the Authority to issue up to $115 million in revenue bonds for Presbyterian Village Athens, to be located on U.S. 441 at Hog Mountain Road.
He said the bonds would be repaid through funds potential tenants pay as entrance fees, through a U.S. Department of Agricultural loan for heath centers, and bonds sold to institutional investors and banks.
Photo Credit: The Expat via Facebook
The Expat, the fancy French-ish restaurant in the former Two Story Coffee space in Five Points, has been open for a few weeks now, with lunch Tuesday through Saturday, dinner Tuesday through Sunday and Sunday brunch. The Sunday supper menu changes weekly. The other one is here. Also: very serious cocktails.
Las Monarcas, at 645 Danielsville Road, has closed but was quickly replaced by Taqueria Mundos, which just opened and is cash only for the moment.
Sonny's BBQ on Atlanta Highway is closing as of tonight after 37 years in business, as its franchise license is not being renewed by its parent company. It will reopen as Malinda's Country Kitchen and Catering, which does not appear to be a franchise. The sign on the door describes it as, "an a la carte buffet featuring home cooking with a wide selection of proteins and vegetables that will change throughout the week... It will also feature a menu of sandwiches and side items for those who prefer a lighter meal." The management team and staff will remain.
Piedmont Healthcare and Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield finalized an agreement Monday for BCBS to continue covering treatment in-network at Piedmont hospitals and by Piedmont-affiliated doctors.
The contract between the health care provider, which owns Athens Regional, and insurance company ended Apr. 1 with the two sides unable to agree on reimbursement rates. Gov. Nathan Deal urged them both back to the negotiating table, and they reached a "handshake deal" on Friday.
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