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."
It’s been four months since Bird scooters began hatching around downtown Athens and soaring through the University of Georgia campus in August as part of the company’s nationwide “University Pop-Up Tour.”
After a week, university officials began confiscating Birds on campus, and ACCPD and UGAPD later started ticketing riders who did not obey the law. Now, Bird scooters are causing another problem for University of Georgia officials since the company has refused to pick up the impounded scooters or pay fines.
As of Nov. 19, the University of Georgia had confiscated a total of 1,096 Bird scooters since August and stored them in the Carlton Street parking deck. At that time, Bird owed the university $504,360, according to UGA spokesperson Rebecca Beeler.
Amidst a swarm of police and protesters, Donald Trump Jr. came to town on Tuesday. It was kind of a thing.
The conservative power couple of Trump and former Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle campaigned for Republican gubernatorial nominee Brian Kemp at 5 p.m., then headed across the hall at the Classic Center for a “Campus Clash” event with Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk and communication director Candace Owens.
The Classic Center was packed out with GOP supporters—and about 100 protestors who later walked out en masse. Meanwhile, a small group of protestors gathered on East Washington Street in a fenced-off area police set aside.
Scott Freeman is no longer chief of the Athens-Clarke County Police Department, but the circumstances surrounding his departure are unclear.
As an Athens Anti-Discrimination Movement town hall meeting about community relations with police was wrapping up, AADM co-founder Knowa Johnson announced that Freeman had been fired.
The Athens Banner-Herald broke the story at about 7:30 p.m., quoting Mayor Nancy Denson as saying that ACC Manager Blaine Williams had fired Freeman.
“I wasn’t surprised that he was let go because I know there were several issues,” Denson told the ABH. “Evidently he wasn’t a good fit for Athens.”
Neither Williams nor Freeman immediately returned calls seeking comment. But about 20 minutes later, the ACC government issued a news release saying Freeman had resigned effective today. The announcement said he is leaving to "pursue other opportunies."
Photo Credit: @hello_madison/Twitter
Several weeks ago, we began getting tips from readers that someone (or someones) had been inserting pro-GOP flyers inside random issues of Flagpole. The leaflets, which have been found at various distribution locations downtown and on campus, warned of the evils of antifa and the "Democrat Party" while admonishing readers to "VOTE CONSERVATIVE."
As Publisher Pete McCommons wrote in his column last week:
Last week, Bird Scooters began hatching around Athens and soaring through the University of Georgia as part of the company’s nationwide “University Pop-Up Tour.” But now, several Athens-Clarke County and University of Georgia officials are saying they’re becoming a big problem—so much so that university officials are confiscating the new scooters on campus.
According to university spokesman Greg Trevor and ACC public information officer Jeff Montgomery, Bird Scooters did not coordinate with the university or the county and do not have a business license.
Common concerns about the new scooters are riders ignoring helmet requirements, riding scooters on sidewalks, disobeying local and state traffic laws and leaving scooters abandoned on sidewalks, roads and other areas where could cause harm to bystanders.
The Georgia Secretary of State's office, which is responsible for elections in the state, does not know how many people voted in either the May 22 primary elections or the July 24 runoffs.
The 159 counties in the state filed that information with the Secretary of State's office shortly after each of the two elections as part of the certification process for elections.
Fran Davis, director of the Oconee County Office of Elections and Registration, for example, told the Secretary of State’s Elections Division that 7,815 ballots were cast in the county in the May primary and 5,973 were cast in the July runoff.
Robin Herron, an executive assistant in the Secretary of State's office, said it would take about 38 hours for staff to gather and review those records for the 159 counties and that the work would have to be spread across 30 business days.
Photo Credit: Screencap via Showtime.
In the middle of a summer chock-full of political hilarity, with Georgia taking center stage nationally with its candidates and their guns and pickup trucks, another Georgian sets a new low for the state.
On Sunday’s episode of Sacha Baron Cohen’s new project “Who Is America?” the intrepid host—who says he is “in Mossad, not in Moussad”—persuades naïve Georgia Rep. Jason Spencer (R-Woodbine) to appear on the show ostensibly to learn how to identify and intimidate terrorists. Spencer failed to catch Cohen’s clues that he is not what he says and proceeded to follow the most ridiculous instructions.
Cohen probably zeroed in on the controversial Spencer thanks to his public threat against a black former state representative who was calling for the removal of Confederate statues and his proposed 2016 bill banning burkas.
Photo Credit: Mccunicano/Wikimedia Commons
Or what’s down, rather. Many readers have noticed that trees on the Loop are being cut down and have asked who’s doing it and why. It’s the state Department of Transportation, and they say they’re thinning the trees for safety reasons.
“We are doing vegetation management along the corridor the last few weeks,” GDOT spokeswoman Katie Strickland said. “Trees can be a hazard for roadways in many instances. Winter weather, along with other storms, can take trees down across power lines and also block routes. We also have seen pedestrians and drivers injured by trees located too close to our right of way.”
Now you know, and knowing is half the battle.
Avid Bookshop shut down the annual book fair it holds at Athens Academy today after an administrator told booksellers to hide a book that features gay characters, according to owner Janet Geddis.
The director of the Oconee County private school's "lower" (or elementary) school told Avid staff to remove The Best Man by Newbery Medalist Richard Peck from display after a parent complained on Wednesday, Geddis said. The Best Man "tells the story of small-town life, gay marriage and everyday heroes," according to Avid's website.
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