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Local news for Screven County and surrounding areas.

Plenty of city decisions over the week

There have been two Sylvania City Council meetings since last week, and the council has approved a number of resolutions and decided to go forward on many projects.
During a June 11 called meeting, the council voted to approve an amendment to the memorandum of understanding with the Shrivallabh Pittie Group which moves the original July 7 timetable start to Sept. 30, 2014, after the EB-5 investing process and the bond process took longer than expected.

Going to school just got even more important

When the student handbooks come out for the county’s elementary, middle and high school students for 2014-2015, the attendance policy will be noticeably be more stringent.
If a student has more than five unexcused absences, the penalties for the student and the parent and guardian become tougher in the next school year.
The high number of unexcused absences in 2013-2014 forced the change, say school officials.

SCMS principal search continues

The Screven County Board of Education remains in search of a new middle school principal to succeed Brian Scott who has been tranferred to the high school. Superintendent William Bland recommended a candidate who was approved by the BOE by a 4-2 vote Monday evening. However, upon Bland contacting the candidate about the board’s approval, the candidate from North Georgia already had accepted another job offer. Voting against the candidate was Kevin Burns and Frank Johnson. Troy Lawton was absent from the meeting.

More jobs trending our way

The Georgia Department of Labor released its 2013 annual area labor profile of Screven and the surrounding counties in the area.
That report shows Screven County trending in the right direction toward a lower unemployment rate.
The Department of Labor includes Bulloch, Burke, Effingham, Jenkins and Screven into the “Screven area” and analyzes all of the employment numbers. The department found the region to have an unemployment rate of 8.9 percent. Georgia’s unemployment rate hovers just above 8 percent at 8.2 and the national unemployment rate is 7.4 percent.

‘Old Glory’ retirement, ‘Congress on Corner,’ identification kits & music festival Saturday

Multiple events are scheduled before noon Saturday and a music festival also is planned to be an all-day affair.
The Veterans of Foreign Wars  Post 7116 and the Brier Creek Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution will host an American Flag Retirement Ceremony June 14 for Flag Day.
The event will start at 10 a.m. behind the Sylvania Fire Department and Police Department.

Man arrested for molestation

A Screven County man was arrested June 6 and charged with child molestation and possession of a firearm by convicted felon after a several-month long, dual agency investigation.
Charles Ray Williams, 57, of 3952 Poor Robin Road, was the subject of an investigation that was launched after an October 2013 complaint to the Division of Family and Children Services, Investigator Brett Dickerson said. DFCS brought the case to the Screven County Sheriff’s Office after they discovered possible criminal charges could be brought up.

Jailer charged with obscene Internet contact with a child

A Sylvania resident who is employed as an Effingham County corrections officer and is a certified umpire has been charged with felony obscene Internet contact with a child when he allegedly used social media to inappropriately converse with a teenager.
Troy Bohannon, 45, of 1676 Newington Highway, was arrested Monday evening following an investigation that began in late April when Bohannon reportedly began contacting the girl who was 14 when the investigation started.

Eight state honors awarded to Telephone

The Sylvania Telephone won eight Georgia Press Association awards at the 2014 Better Newspaper Contest June 6 at the Jekyll Island Club Hotel during the group’s 128th annual convention.
Earlier this year, the Telephone received five GPA advertising awards for the 2013 calendar year to earn the Sylvania newspaper 13 state association honors.
This year’s GPA judges were from Virginia.

SPLOST funds enough Web-based Chromebooks for all middle schoolers

California Chrome has the chance to become the first horse to win the Triple Crown in 36 years Saturday at Belmont Park.
Whether that fleet-hoofed equine happens to champion over the other quality thoroughbreds remains to be seen. However, local school officials envision the purchase of a different version of Chrome may help champion Screven County students to a higher level of learning.

Vacant houses on Main Street up for sale

There are at least eight houses with “for sale” signs on North and South Main Street in Sylvania and that’s giving the impression Main Street is having some troubles.
Ben McKay, research specialist in the bureau of business research and economic development and full-time researcher at Georgia Southern University, said the housing market has cycles but keeping Main Street full is a must for small towns.

Getting more educated on those in charge

While the summer may be somewhat laid back for students, a lot of shifting and moving is happening in administrative positions in the Screven County School District as it readies for the 2014-2015 term.
The retirement announcement of Becky Martin as principal of Screven County Elementary created a vacant spot. When Brett Warren was tapped to switch from being the high school principal to handling the responsibilities of the elementary school principalship, that opened up a new vacancy at SCHS.

Man faces molestation charges

A Statesboro resident was arrested last week for child molestation after an investigation launched by the Bulloch County Sheriff’s Office found the alleged crimes took place in Screven County.
Wesley Alfonzo Murphy, 26, of 1214 Garden District #2, was charged with child molestation and arrested May 27 by Screven County investigators. Murphy was being held at the Bulloch County Jail during the investigation, and was moved to Screven after Bulloch County authorities found out the molestation occurred in Dover.

Moats Supermarket will sell Piggly Wiggly items

Moats Supermarket will now have Piggly Wiggly Alabama Distribution Company products on their shelves.
The store elected to buy stock in the co-op distribution warehouse for the products at what, William Moats said he feels are a better value.
“I feel like our cost and prices will be less, but you’ll have to ask me six to eight months from now,” Moats said.
Nothing inside will change: the meat will still be high quality, the barbecue sandwiches will still be offered, the supermarket will still cash personal checks, Moats said.

SCES RETIREMENT: Mrs. Martin is departing

Each year Becky Martin along with each of the elementary school teachers have honored the educators who are moving on to another school district or retiring from teaching.
This year  at the luncheon teachers Allie Scott and Lizzie Parker got to join Martin herself May 30.
Martin told the gathering of Screven County Elementary staff and others from the school system in the school’s front lobby they have to continue to think big.
“We have a lot of students here,” Martin said.

Development Authority renews Bacon’s contract

Screven County Development Authority Executive Director Dorie Bacon has had her contract renewed for three more years after an executive session Tuesday morning.
Bacon has been a boon to the county’s ongoing efforts to attract industries.
During the regularly scheduled meeting and Director’s report, Bacon said a request for information has been submitted for a “Project Delight” and would work in the future on projects Delight and Ross.

Our new K9 deputy has arrived

The Screven County Sheriff’s Office has a narcotic detecting dog thanks to a donation from American Canine, a company that specializes in training and employing dogs with handlers to various agencies.
Bersi, the dog, is a Belgium Shepherd and was last in Afghanistan before American Canine de-activated the dog from service due to conflicts oversees downsizing. His handler will be a past SCSO deputy and a handler for American Canine in Afghanistan and Iraq, Ken Kelley.

Wooten has perfect 'appearance'

It sometimes is not easy making it through a month of schooling without picking up a sickness bug from a classmate.
It is even more impressive if a student can get through a full year of school without missing a day.
But what about a student who has achieved perfect attendance for 14 consecutive years, dating back to pre-k?
Now that truly is amazing.

Masked gunmen rob store

A brazen armed robbery took place Thursday night between 10:30 p.m. and 11 p.m. at the Dixon’s BP station.
Law enforcement says three masked robbers entered the 2560 Burton’s Ferry Highway store – one carrying a sawed-off shotgun, one a pistol, and one with a pistol in each of his hands – and held up the store clerk taking an undisclosed amount of money.


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