Monday, January 24, Eyewitness News at 11

12:07 AM, Jan 25, 2011   |    comments
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   GOOD EVENING AND THANKS FOR JOINING US... I'M LEAH JOHNSON.
   AND I'M FRANK MALLOY.
  THIS IS EYEWITNESS NEWS AT 11.


     MACON MAYOR ROBERT REICHERT IS CONSIDERING A DEAL TO SELL THE  HISTORIC CITY AUDITORIUM... AND TWO OTHER BUILDINGS.
     ELEANOR LISSITZYN HAS BEEN FOLLOWING THIS STORY... SHE JOINS US NOW WITH MORE.
     THIS  DECEMBER FIRST LETTER TO MAYOR REICHERT OUTLINES A PLAN TO BUY THE MACON CITY AUDITORIUM... AS PROPOSED BY A NEW YORK COMPANY CALLED CLASS GREEN CAPITAL PARTNERS...  
     ACCORDING TO THE LETTER... THE COMPANY WOULD PAY THE CITY MORE THAN TWENTY TWO MILLION DOLLARS TO PURCHASE THE AUDITORIUM...  THE CITY HALL ANNEX... AND THE MACON TELEGRAPH BUILDING... THEN LEASE THEM BACK TO THE CITY AND EVENTUALLY GIVE THE CITY THE OPTION TO BUY THEM BACK...
THE COMPANY PROPOSES SEVERAL DIFFERENT  FINANCING OPTIONS... 
        ALL INCLUDE PURCHASING THE BUILDINGS FOR TWENTY TWO AND A HALF MILLION DOLLARS...
       THE CITY WOULD THEN PAY AS MUCH AS TWO POINT SIX MILLION DOLLARS A YEAR TO RENT THE FACILITIES... FOR FIFTEEN YEARS.
       THAT WOULD ADD UP TO A TOTAL COST OF AS MUCH OF THIRTY NINE MILLION DOLLARS... THATS SIXTEEN POINT FIVE MILLION DOLLARS MORE THAN THE PURCHASE PRICE.
       AT THE END OF THE LEASE PERIOD THE CITY COULD BUY BACK ALL THE PROPERTIES FOR AS LITTLE AS ONE DOLLAR...
       MAYORAL SPOKESMAN ANDREW BLASCOVICH SAYS THE PLAN COULD BENEFIT THE CITY BY PROVIDING IMMEDIATE ACCESS TO LARGE AMOUNTS OF CASH...
    THE COMPANY WOULD ALSO PAY THE CITY AN EXTRA TWO POINT FIVE MILLION DOLLARS TO DO ENERGY EFFICENCY UPGRADES TO THE BUILDINGS... WHICH BLASCOVICH SAYS THEY DESPERATELY NEED
"Any time you have a building that's over fifty years old...in the case of the city auditorium were getting close to its one hundred year anniversary and then the last time it's been renovated being thirty years ago you just start to deal with a lot of time scales and you know mounting issues."
    BLASCOVICH SAYS THE PROPOSAL IS FAR FROM A DONE DEAL... IN FACT THE CITY DOESN'T EVEN CURRENTLY OWN THE MACON TELEGRAPH BUILDING... 
    WHETHER OR NOT THEY LOOK IN TO PURCHASING IT... HE SAYS THEY STILL HAVE TO CRUNCH THE NUMBERS TO SEE IF THE PROPOSAL MAKES FINANCIAL SENSE FOR THE CITY . 
FOR MORE ON THIS STORY AND TO SEE THE ENTIRE LETTER TO THE MAYOR VISIT THIS STORY AT 13WMAZ.COM..


      MACON CITY COUNCIL'S PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE PASSED AN ORDINANCE THEY SAY WOULD HELP PROTECT THE PUBLIC FROM VICIOUS DOGS.
      COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN VIRGIL WATKINS SAYS THE RESOLUTION WOULD CLASSIFY DOGS AS POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS... DANGEROUS... OR VICIOUS.
      A DOG THAT HAS BITTEN SOMEONE IN THE PAST WITHOUT CAUSING SERIOUS INJURY COULD BE CLASSIFIED AS DANGEROUS.
      THE RESOLUTION WOULD REQUIRE OWNERS OF DANGEROUS DOGS TO PURCHASE 15 THOUSAND DOLLARS WORTH OF INSURANCE AGAINST FUTURE INJURY.
      A DOG THAT HAS SERIOUSLY INJURED A PERSON IN THE PAST WOULD BE CONSIDERED A VICIOUS DOG.
      THE RESOLUTION ALLOWS THE ANIMAL TO BE CONFISCATED BY ANIMAL CONTROL.
      THE RESOLUTION COULD GO BEFORE FULL COUNCIL NEXT TUESDAY...


THE G-B-I IS TALKING TO WITNESSES AND WAITING ON AUTOPSY RESULTS AFTER A HOUSTON COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPUTY SHOT AND KILLED A BURGLARY SUSPECT.
IT HAPPENED ON SWEETWATER DRIVE... JUST OUTSIDE THE WARNER ROBINS CITY LIMITS.
G-B-I AGENT CRAIG ROTTER SAYS DEPUTY STEVE GLIDDEN SHOT THE BURGLAR AFTER HE PULLED A GUN.
ROTTER SAYS IT STARTED UP THE STREET... WHEN A HOMEOWNER CALLED POLICE AFTER WALKING IN ON THE BURGLAR.
HE SAYS THE MAN RAN AWAY... BUT THE DEPUTY FOUND HIM BEHIND TWO HOMES.
HE SAYS DEPUTY GLIDDEN TRIED TO USE HIS TASER... AND WHEN THE SUSPECT PULLED A GUN...GLIDDEN SHOT HIM.
ROTTER SAYS NOBODY ELSE SAW THE SHOOTING... AND NEIGHBORS HEARD ONLY GUNSHOTS.
Shelton "Drinking a cup of coffee. I heard one gunshot and I stepped out the front door and I saw the deputies running between the house."
ROTTER SAYS THE BURGLAR'S AUTOPSY IS SCHEDULED FOR TOMORROW AT MACON'S G-B-I CRIME LAB.
HE SAYS THEY'VE ALREADY INTERVIEWED DEPUTY GLIDDEN..
THEY ARE NOT RELEASING THE NAME OF THE VICTIM PENDING.... AN AUTOPSY. 
FEAGIN MIDDLE SCHOOL... WHICH IS HALF A MILE AWAY... WAS PUT ON LOCKDOWN THIS MORNING.
ROTTER SAYS THE LAST TIME A HOUSTON DEPUTY SHOTING A SUSPECT HAPPENED LAST YEAR...IN SEPTEMBER NEAR BONAIRE.


THE ANNUAL MARCH TO PROTEST THE U.S. SUPREME COURT RULING THAT LEGALIZED ABORTION BROUGHT MORE THAN A HUNDRED PEOPLE TO MACON CITY HALL THIS AFTERNOON.
PEOPLE GATHERED IN THE STREETS IN FRONT OF CITY HALL TO VOICE THEIR CONCERNS AGAINST ABORTION.
THE CEREMONY BEGAN WITH A PRAYER... FOLLOWED BY A GUEST SPEAKER AND THEN THE MARCH DOWN TO CENTRAL CITY PARK.
THE PEOPLE MARCHED IN SILENCE IN REMEMBRANCE OF THE BABIES ABORTED EACH YEAR..
Angelia Greenfield, Macon "I have five beautiful children that God blessed me with and I think every child is a blessing from God"
Bill Bennett, Byron "Life starts at conception and we don't have the right to destroy life, God has that right"
Denise Malone, Macon "How many doctors have we lost, how many brilliant minds have we lost.  I firmly believe that God gives life and we don't have the right to take it"
TODAY'S MARCH WAS ORGANIZED BY SAV A LIFE CENTER IN MACON..
      SEVERAL CENTRAL GEORGIA CHURCHES ALSO TOOK PART.
THIS MONTH MARKS THE 38TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE ROE VS. WADE DECISION.


MORE THAN A HUNDRED ARMY RESERVISTS SHIPPED OFF TODAY... ON A 400 DAY DEPLOYMENT TO CENTRAL IRAQ.
THE 352-ND COMBAT SUPPORT BATTALION LAST DEPLOYED IN 2006... FOR 545 DAYS.
THIS MORNING... LOVED ONES SAID GOODBYE AS RESERVISTS GATHERED THEIR GEAR... HIT ROLL CALL... AND BOARDED THEIR BUSES.
FOR MANY... THIS WASN'T THE FIRST DEPLOYMENT... BUT SOME SAY IT'S HARD LEAVING THEIR FAMILIES.
Sgt. Earl shaw "I don't think it's really set in for them yet. It's going to. This one here's actually just starting to learn the concept of how long daddy's going to be gone. This one here is in denial. But they're going to do OK."
SPOKESPERSON SERGEANT THELMA MORSE... WHO'S ALSO BEING DEPLOYED... SAYS THE GROUP IS FLYING FROM ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE TO FORT BLISS TEXAS FOR TRAINING.
SHE SAYS AFTER ABOUT A MONTH... THE UNIT WILL BE READY TO GO ABROAD.
MORSE SAYS THEY WILL HANDLE SHIPPING AND LOGISTICS AS THE UNITED STATES REDUCES ITS FORCES IN IRAQ..


A FORMER STATE DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE MAILROOM WORKER WAS CHARGED WITH STEALING MONEY ORDERS INTENDED FOR PAYING TAXES.
AN INDICTMENT SAID LAWANDA HARKINS TOOK THE MONEY ORDERS PAYABLE TO THE DEPARTMENT IN 2008 AND CHANGED THEM TO MAKE HERSELF THE RECIPIENT.
SHE WAS INDICTED FOR SIX COUNTS OF THEFT BY TAKING... EACH A FELONY PUNISHABLE BY ONE TO 15 YEARS IN PRISON.
HARKINS WAS ALSO CHARGED WITH SIX COUNTS OF FIRST DEGREE FORGERY.
EACH OF THOSE COUNTS COULD CARRY A SENTENCE OF ONE TO TEN YEARS IN PRISON.


GROUPONS HAVE COME TO CENTRAL GEORGIA.
THE WEBSITE... GROUPON-DOT-COM...  FEATURES DAILY DEALS AT RESTAURANTS... RETAIL STORES... AND OTHER BUSINESSES.
IT SENDS OUT AN EMAIL WITH THE OFFER WITH DISCOUNTS UP TO 90 PERCENT OFF OF REGULAR PRICES.
MACON'S FIRST GROUPON LAUNCHED TODAY AND FEATURED INGLESIDE VILLAGE PIZZA.
OWNER TINA DICKSON SAYS THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE BUYING THE DEAL SURPRISED HER... BUT SHE'S WAITING TO DECIDE IF SHE'LL PARTICIPATE AGAIN.
Tina Dickson, Owner Ingleside Village Pizza,  "I am playing it by ear. I'm going to see how it goes and very well we might do it again, but very well we might decide not so much."
AS OF ABOUT 30 MINUTES AGO... 1,109 PEOPLE HAD PURCHASED THE GROUPON.
YOU HAVE UNTIL MIDNIGHT TONIGHT.


THE CLOCK'S WINDING DOWN TO PRESIDENT OBAMA'S STATE OF THE UNION SPEECH.
  HIS AIDES SAY...IT'S COMING TOGETHER  BUT THEY WON'T GIVE TOO DETAILED A PREVIEW.
SOME OF THE PRESIDENT'S IDEAS COULD FACE SOME STRONG RESISTANCE FROM REPUBLICANS STANDING FIRM IN THEIR PROMISE TO SLASH GOVERNMENT SPENDING. 
TERRELL BROWN REPORTS FROM CAPITOL HILL.
<<


President Obama huddled with his advisors Monday morning -- going over his State of the Union speech, line by line. His top aides say, it's coming together but despite reporters' best efforts, his spokesman won't reveal all of what's in it.


(SOT: ROBERT GIBBS / WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY) - "IT'S JUST, YOU KNOW, WE HAVE THIS WEIRD THING ABOUT THE PRESIDENT GIVING THE SPEECH."


White House aides 'did' say - the President will lay out his ideas on creating jobs -- and strengthening the economy.


(GRAPHICS IN / REID)
His plan is expected to center around 5 so-called pillars -- innovation, education, infrastructure, deficit reduction -- and reforming government.
(GRAPHICS OUT / REID)


(STANDUP BRIDGE: Terrell Brown / CBS NEWS / CAPITOL HILL) - "One of the key words to listen for Tuesday night when the President comes up here to Capitol Hill is 'investments.' That's how the President will portray his new proposals, Republicans say that´s just a new word for spending and they're against it."


(12.28.00 / SOT: REP. JOE PITTS / R - PENNSYLVANIA) - "THE BEST SOCIAL SERVICE PROGRAM IN THE WORLD IS A JOB. PEOPLE WANT JOBS."


Faced with a stronger GOP, the President will look for areas where both sides can agree. He gave a preview of that -- in video message sent to his supporters over the weekend.


(SOT: PRESIDENT OBAMA) - "THESE ARE BIG CHALLENGES THAT ARE IN FRONT OF US. BUT WE ARE UP TO IT AS LONG AS WE COME TOGETHER AS A PEOPLE, REPUBLICANS, DEMOCRATS AND INDEPENDENTS."


That sense of unity will be visible in parts of the House chamber. Several Democrats and Republicans have paired off -- agreeing to sit together for the speech... Instead of the traditional arrangement where they're on separate sides of the center aisle.


>> AMONG THE V-I-P GUESTS SITTING WITH THE FIRST LADY TOMORROW NIGHT WILL BE DANIEL HERNANDEZ.
HERNANDEZ IS KNOWN AS THE INTERN WHO HELPED SAVE CONGRESSWOMAN GABRIELLE GIFFORDS' LIFE AFTER SHE WAS SHOT IN THE HEAD EARLIER THIS MONTH IN TUCSON.


      GEORGIA SENATOR JOHNNY ISAKSON SAYS BANKRUPTCY COULD BE A GOOD SOLUTION FOR STRUGGLING STATES.
      THE IDEA IS PART OF A GROWING DISCUSSION ABOUT HOW STATES WILL CONQUER THEIR BUDGET WOES.
       THE REPUBLICAN SPOKE TO THE ATLANTA PRESS CLUB TODAY BEFORE HEADING BACK TO WASHINGTON FOR THE STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS.
       HE SAID BANKRUPTCY IS NOT A TERM TO FEAR... BUT CAN BE A FIX.
       ISAKSON USED EXAMPLES SUCH AS DELTA AIR LINES... WHICH FILED FOR BANKRUPTCY IN 2005 AND EMERGED FROM IT TWO YEARS LATER.
      THE 66-YEAR-OLD WAS ELECTED TO HIS SECOND TERM IN NOVEMBER.


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      THE MATCHUP IS SET FOR SUPERBOWL 45... THE STEELERS' 24-19 WIN OVER THE JETS EARNED THEM THEIR THIRD A-F-C TITLE IN SIX YEARS... WHILE GREEN BAY CLAIMED THEIR SPOT WITH A 21-14 WIN OVER THE BEARS...
      AS STEELERS QUARTERBACK BEN ROETHLISBERGER PREPARES FOR HIS THIRD SUPER BOWL, SOME PEOPLE REMEMBER THE INCIDENT IN MILLEDGEVILLE LAST YEAR WHERE HE WAS ACCUSED OF SEXUAL ASSAULT..
    HE WAS SUSPENDED BY THE N-F-L FOR VIOLATING THE LEAGUE'S PERSONAL CONDUCT POLICY FOLLOWING THE ALLEGATIONS... CRIMINAL CHARGES WERE NEVER FILED. 
     TODAY'S 13WMAZ DOT COM WEB POLL ASKS... DO YOU ROOT AGAINST ATHLETES WHO MISBEHAVE OFF THE FIELD?
   SO FAR... 68 PERCENT OF VOTERS SAY THEY DO... WHILE 32 PERCENT SAY THEY DO NOT.
    YOU HAVE UNTIL MIDNIGHT TO VOTE... LOOK FOR THE QUESTION ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF OUR HOMEPAGE.


ONE OF FIRST PRESBYTERIAN DAY SCHOOLS' DISTINGUISHED ALUMNI RETURNED TO HELP CELEBRATE THE DAY THE SCHOOL DEDICATED TO HIM FOR BEING A WORLD FAMOUS ARTIST.
IT'S A STORY THAT COMES STRAIGHT FROM THE HEART.
STEVE PENLEY GRADUATED FROM F-P-D IN 1983.
HIS WORK AS AN ARTIST INCLUDES LANDSCAPES AND STILL LIFE SUBJECTS.... BUT HE'S BEST KNOWN FOR HIS PORTRAYAL OF HISTORIC ICONS LIKE HIS LATEST BOOK ..."RONALD REAGAN AND THE AMERICAN IDEAL".
PENLEY SPENT THE DAY MEETING STUDENTS AND SIGNING AUTOGRAPHS..
HE VISITED CLASSES AND TALKED ABOUT ART.
HE SAYS HE WANTS STUDENTS TO REMEMBER THEIR HISTORY AND PROTECT IT.
THE MUSIC HALL OF FAME WILL BE DISPLAY PENLEY'S WORK OF FAMOUS GEORGIA MUSICIANS FROM NOW UNTIL JULY 9TH.




















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