Tuesday, April 12, Eyewitness News at 11

10:40 AM, Apr 11, 2011   |    comments
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     GOOD EVENING AND THANKS FOR JOINING US..
I'M FRANK MALLOY..
    AND I'M LEAH JOHNSON..THIS IS EYEWITNESS NEWS AT 11.


   AN ATTEMPTED ROBBERY LEFT AN ASSISTANT STORE MANAGER DEAD..
    THAT'S ACCORDING TO MACON POLICE SPOKESWOMAN JAMIE GAUDET..
    GAUDET SAID IT HAPPENED AROUND SEVEN-THIRTY TONIGHT AT THE FAMILY DOLLAR STORE ON HOUSTON AVENUE..
     BIBB COUNTY CORONER LEON JONES IDENTIFIED THE VICTIM AS 38 YEAR OLD GARY COLE..
      HE WAS PRONOUNCED DEAD AT A LOCAL HOSPITAL..   
      POLICE ASK IF YOU HAVE INFORMATION ON THE SHOOTING TO CONTACT MACON REGIONAL CRIMESTOPPERS AT 1-877-68 CRIME..AGAIN THAT'S 1-877-68 CRIME..


     MACON CITY COUNCIL GOT AN UPDATE TONIGHT ON CENTREPLEX FINANCES.
    THREE YEARS AGO...THE CITY OF MACON AWARDED THE NOBLE COMPANY THE CONTRACT TO BUILD THE MARIOTT HOTEL AND MANAGE THE MACON CENTREPLEX.
     ACCORDING TO ELEANOR LISSITZYN... THEY SAY IT WAS A STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTON. 
THREE YEARS AFTER THE CITY OF MACON DECIDED TO TURN MANAGEMENT OF THE MACON CENTREPLEX OVER TO THE NOBLE COMPANY... MARRIOTT HOTEL GENERAL MANAGER DAVID MCCARTNEY TOLD COUNCIL MEMBERS THEIR DECISION IS PAYING OFF. 
"I think it's a combination of reasons for the increased sales."
HE SAYS PROFITS FOR THE HOTEL AND COLISEUM ARE UP ABOUT HALF A MILLION DOLLARS .... FROM ABOUT ONE AND A HALF MILLION DOLLARS IN 2009 TO ONE POINT NINE MILLION IN 2011.
"The fact that theres a Marriott branded hotel connected to the Coliseum gives us great power."2;11
THE CONVENTION CENTER WAS LEASED TO THE NOBLE COMPANY IN 2010.. AND THE CITY DOENS'T PAY FOR IT'S OPERATIONS. 
NOBLE HASN'T MANAGED TO MAKE ANY OF THE BUSINESSES PROFITABLE YET... BUT  MCCARTNEY SAYS THEY'RE LOSING LESS.
IN 2009 THE HOTEL AND COLISEUM HAD A NET OPERATING LOSS OF ABOUT ONE MILLION ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS.
IN FISCAL YEAR 2011 MCCARTNEY SAYS THEY EXPECT A LOSS OF ABOUT THREE HUNDRED AND SEVENTY FOUR THOUSAND DOLLARS.
"It's efficency of personel, in between events the personel would be working more in the hotel then one of the event venues." 1:39
HE SAYS THEY HAVE MORE PLANS TO KEEP THE NUMBERS MOVING IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION.
MCCARTNEY SAYS A NEW COLISEUM SCOREBOARD AND NEW CENTREPLEX MARQUEE ARE JUST SOME OF THE UPGRADES IN THE WORKS.
STD
WHEN THE NOBLE COMPANY TOOK OVER.... THEY OFFERED ALL CENTREPLEX WORKERS A JOB WITH THEIR COMPANY.
MCCARTNEY TOLD COUNCIL.... THAT OF THE 143 CITY EMPLOYEES WHO TRANSFERRED.... ONE HUNDRED SIX ARE STILL THERE.


   MACON STATE SENATOR CECIL STATON GAVE UP HIS DUTIES AS MAJORITY WHIP FOR THE FINAL TWO DAYS OF THIS YEARS SESSION.
    HIS DECISION CAME AFTER REPUBLICAN ACTIVIST ARCH ADAMS SAID STATON SENT EMAILS ATTACKING LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR CASEY CAGLE UNDER AN ASSUMED NAME.
    ADAMS SAID HE TRACKED THE EMAILS BACK TO STATONS BLACKBERRY.
    THEY WERE SENT UNDER THE NAME BETH MERKLESON.. 
    ADAMS SAYS STATON ACCIDENTALLY SIGNED HIS NAME TO A MERKLESON EMAIL.
    IT SAID...       THANK YOU SO MUCH. PLEASE HELP SPREAD THE WORD TO THE FAITHFUL AROUND THE STATE.. WE CANNOT LET THE LT. GOVERNOR WIN... REGARDS.. CECIL STATON.
     WE WERE UNABLE TO REACH ADAMS OR STATON BY PHONE BUT A SENATE SPOKESMAN SAYS STATON DIDN'T SEND THE EMAILS.
     MEANWHILE... CAGLE ISSUED A STATEMENT THROUGH HIS SPOKESMAN... SAYING...
IT'S CERTAINLY A TROUBLING ACCUSATION AND THE LT. GOVERNOR HAS CONFIDENCE IN THE SENATE CAUCUS 
TO CONDUCT THE APPROPRIATE INVESTIGATION AND TO ADDRESS THIS CORRECTLY.
    STATON WAS ONE OF THE REPUBLICAN LEADERS WHO MET IN MACON LAST FALL AND STRIPPED CAGLE OF SOME OF HIS SENATE POWERS.


    A BILL THAT WOULD LET GEORGIA VOTERS DECIDE WHETHER TO ALLOW SUNDAY SALES IN THEIR AREA IS HEADING TO GOVERNOR NATHAN DEAL'S DESK TONIGHT.
     THE HOUSE AND THE STATE SENATE ALREADY PASSED THE MEASURE.
    THE BILL WOULD ALLOW LOCAL GOVERNMENTS TO ASK VOTERS TO DECIDE WHETHER TO ALLOW SUNDAY SALES.
     DEAL HAS SAID HE WILL SIGN THE BILL IF IT REACHES HIS DESK.


A TWO YEAR OLD NAMED LOGAN IS RECEIVING AN OUTPOURING OF SUPPORT FROM PEOPLE IN CENTRAL GEORGIA AND ELSEWHERE.. 
      HIS COUSIN WAS ROBBED THIS WEEKEND WHILE SELLING LEMONADE TO RAISE MONEY FOR HIM.
THE FAMILY SAYS OVERNIGHT PEOPLE OPENED UP THEIR HEARTS TO THEM..
LOGAN'S MOTHER APRIL VARNADOE SAYS LESS THAN 24 HOURS AFTER HER SON'S STORY AIRED... PEOPLE HAD DONATED THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS THROUGH THEIR WEBSITE.
SHE SAYS THEY WERE RAISING MONEY FOR A TRIP TO A CINCINNATI HOSPITAL.
THAT'S WHERE LOGAN WILL GET TREATMENT FOR A RARE INTESTINAL DISEASE.
SHE NEVER THOUGHT TWO THIEVES MAKING OFF WITH THEIR CASH WOULD BE A BLESSING IN DISGUISE.April Varnadoe "I've had people calling me left and right wanting to donate-- even if It's five dollars or ten dollars and twenty dollars. (Chokes up) You know they're thinking about my son..."
TODAY POLICE ARRESTED THE SECOND PERSON ACCUSED IN THE ROBBERY.
THEY FOUND 20-YEAR-OLD GAGE TURNER IN A VACANT APARTMENT.
21-YEAR-OLD AMBER UMBARGER WAS ARRESTED SATURDAY.


ONCE A WEEK A VICE-PRESIDENT AT GEORGIA COLLEGE TAKES HIS CHAIR OUTSIDE AND ROCKS AMONG THE STUDENTS.
AS AMY AUBERT EXPLAINS.... THE SEVEN YEAR TRADITION IS ONE THAT GIVES THE STUDENTS A SMALL TOWN FEEL IN A PRETTY BIG PLACE..
<<
Nats, "Hey Mary."


BEING ON A FIRST-NAME BASIS WITH A V-P AT A UNIVERSITY... ISN'T VERY COMMON... BUT FOR KIDS AT G-C-S-U... IT'S AN EVERYDAY THING.


Nats: "The SGA Conference Room is renamed every year."


JUNIOR ANDREW WHITTAKER SAYS HE CHATS IT UP WITH VICE PRESIDENT OF STUDENT AFFAIRS... BRUCE HARSHBARGER... REGULARLY.


Andrew Whittaker, Augusta: "I'll definitely stop by and say hi whenever I see him."


MANY STUDENTS SEE HIM... ROCKING OUTSIDE OF PARKS HALL... TUESDAYS AROUND LUNCHTIME.


Bruce Harshbarger, VP for Student Affairs: "I get the impression, sometimes, that they appreciate knowing someone's out here."


HE SAYS HE COMES OUT TO CHAT ONCE A WEEK WHEN THE SIDEWALK IS AT IT BUSIEST... AND BRINGS ALONG A FOLDABLE ROCKING CHAIR.


Nats


J.P. Davis, Albany: "For you to just be able to walk by and talk to him in an informal setting shows that somebody's been listening, somebody who cares."


J-P DAVIS STOPPED BY THE V-P'S ROCKING CHAIR TO ASK ABOUT PARKING TICKETS... AND SAYS IT ISN'T THE FIRST TIME... HARSHBARGER HELPED WITH A PROBLEM... ON THE SPOT.


Nats


WITH 7 YEARS OF ROCKING BEHIND HIM... AND MORE TO COME... FOR HARSHBARGER... IT'S JUST ANOTHER DAY ON THE JOB.


Harshbarger: "I just need to plan to have serendipitous meetings from time to time, so it's kind of become a tradition."


IF YOU'RE WALKING THE G-C-S-U CAMPUS AROUND LUNCHTIME ON TUESDAYS... YOU MIGHT SEE THE V-P... ROCKING NEXT TO A SIGN... ASKING FOR YOUR QUESTIONS.


AMY AUBERT... 13 WMAZ...EYEWITNESS NEWS. 


>> HARSHBARGER SAYS HE ORIGINALLY TOOK HIS WORK OUTDOORS TO ENJOY THE SPRINGTIME WEATHER... 
BUT WHEN STUDENTS BEGAN ASKING HIM QUESTIONS... HE MADE IT A TUESDAY ROUTINE.


A HOUSTON COUNTY TEACHER IS IN THE RUNNING FOR A NATIONAL TEACHER OF THE YEAR AWARD.
IKE THOMPSON OF VETERANS HIGH SCHOOL WON THE LOCAL BARNES AND NOBLE MY FAVORITE TEACHER CONTEST... 
WE TALKED WITH THOMPSON TO GET HIS REACTION...AND THE STUDENT WHO NOMINATED HIM. 
<<
nats; thank you for all that you've taught me mr thompson....


MADISON RALEY'S FAVORITE TEACHER IS MISTER IKE THOMPSON....
AND SHE WANTS TO MAKE SURE THE WHOLE COUNTRY KNOWS HOW GREAT HE IS.


madison: "He doesn't force it upon you to learn, he wants you to want to learn and that's what makes it so impactful on all his students." 


Thompson: It's simply to see that the kids want it, that I value this and try to make the content as enjoyable to them as possible.


THE ELEVENTH-GRADER WROTE AN ESSAY TO ENTER THOMPSON INTO THE CENTRAL GEORGIA MY FAVORITE TEACHER CONTEST, SPONSORED BY BARNES AND NOBLE.
OUT OF MORE THAN A HUNDRED ENTRIES FROM ALL GRADE LEVELS... JUDGES SELECTED THE  LITERATURE TEACHER AT  VETERANS HIGH IN KATHLEEN.


Thompson: It's just going to further help out that validation that I'm doing something right. You know, I'm where I'm supposed to be. It really means a lot that she felt so highly of me.

RALEY SAID SHE'S NOT ALONE IN HER HIGH OPINION OF THOMPSON.... AND THAT HIS CREATIVITY AND LOVE FOR TEACHING MAKES HIM A HIT WITH EVERY GROUP THAT ENTERS HIS CLASSROOM.


madison: "I am now self confident on both my writing and myself. I am determined to reado more books in one school year than i ever did in 9th grade. but most of all I am sure that the students who have been fortunate enough to be in your class would agree with me that you are certainly deserving of the title, my favorite teacher"


 >>
BOTH THOMSON AND RALEY RECEIVED CERTIFICATES AND PRIZES AT A LOCAL BARNES AND NOBLE THIS AFTERNOON.
THOMPSON MOVES ON TO THE COMPANY'S REGIONAL MY FAVORITE TEACHER CONTEST.
IF HE WINS THAT.... HE MOVES ON TO THE NATIONAL COMPETITION WHICH HAS A 5-THOUSAND-DOLLAR PRIZE. 


       IF YOU PLAN TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE WEATHER AND GET OUTSIDE WITH THE FAMILY... YOU PROBABLY WANT TO TAKE SOME PHOTOS OF YOUR FUN... AND THAT MEANS YOU NEED TO PICK OUT THE RIGHT CAMERA TO CAPTURE THOSE MOMENTS.
      WE SAT DOWN WITH C-NET EDITOR LORI GRUNIN TO CHAT ABOUT DIGITAL CAMERAS... IN THIS WEEK'S GEEK 13.
"Let's talk about technology wihen it comes to digital cameras. Lots of people have lots to choose from. What should they know before they buy a camera?
First they should always try before they buy. They should then check out the image quality. Also, is it fast enough? What kind of speed does the camera have to capture those special moments.
What is differences are there in cameras this summer verses last summer?
Not really a lot of hugh technology breakthroughs with digital cameras in this past year. But something to look for is called the BSI sensor. It stands for Backside Illuminated. That means that the camera can take better pictures in low light than the previous generations of cameras. But if you're looking for great photos then you want a DSLR. Right now, they still take the best photos that you can get."
       YOU CAN KEEP UP WITH THE LATEST TECH HEADLINES AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.
      JUST LOOK FOR THE GEEK 13 LINK IN THE "DON'T MISS" BOX ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF OUR HOMEPAGE.


     THE WEATHER KEPT US FROM IT LAST NIGHT... SO TO MAKE UP FOR THAT... 
     WE HAVE TWO FACEBOOK FANS OF THE DAY FOR YOU TONIGHT....
    FIRST.... LAST NIGHT'S FAN... Vanessa Fluellen!  
    AND TONIGHT'S WINNER.... MICHAEL PLATT!
     YOU'LL BOTH GET 13WMAZ COFFEE MUGS.
      IF YOU WANT TO BE OUR FACEBOOK FAN OF THE DAY... VISIT FACEBOOK DOT COM SLASH 13WMAZ AND CLICK THE "LIKE" BUTTON TO BECOME A FAN.
      JOIN THE CONVERSATIONS.
      WE PICK OUR FAN OF THE DAY RANDOMLY.






































































































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