HELLO EVERYONE AND THANKS FOR JOINING US. I'M FRANK MALLOY AND THIS IS YOUR LABOR DAY EDITION OF EYEWITNESS NEWS.
AUTHORITIES SAY ONE PERSON WAS INJURED IN A POSSIBLE TORNADO IN CHEROKEE COUNTY AS THE REMNANTS OF TROPICAL STORM LEE CROSSED THE STATE.
LIEUTENANT JAY BAKER WITH THE CHEROKEE COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE SAID THE STORM TOPPLED TREES MONDAY AFTERNOON AND SEVERAL LANDED ON HOMES.
WEATHER SPOTTERS ALSO REPORTED A POSSIBLE TORNADO IN POWDER SPRINGS OUTSIDE OF ATLANTA.
A STRING OF ACCIDENTS ALONG I-75 SOUTHBOUND IN MONROE COUNTY SENT 11 PEOPLE TO THE HOSPITAL.
THE MONROE COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE SAYS 18 VEHICLES WERE INVOLVED IN SEVERAL CRASHES NEAR MILE POST ONE-85.
HE SAYS THE 11 PEOPLE INJURED WERE TAKEN BY AMBULANCE TO HOSPITALS.
ACCORDING TO THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION... ALL LANES HAVE BEEN REOPENED.
MACON AND BIBB COUNTY LEADERS STILL HAVE TO DECIDE WHAT TO DO WITH A ONE AND A HALF MILLION DOLLARS IN FEDERAL MONEY THAT WAS TO BE USED TO REDEVELOP THE HISTORIC ATLANTIC CONTTON MILL BUILDING.
THAT BUILDING BEHIND THE KROGER ON PIO NONO AVENUE BURNED DOWN LAST APRIL.
TOMORROW CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS WILL DISCUSS USING THE MONEY TO REDEVELOP THE DANNENBERG BUILDING DOWNTOWN... BUT CANDACE ADORKA REPORTS... NOT ALL COUNCIL MEMBERS ARE ON-BOARD WITH THE IDEA.
WHEN THE ATLANTIC COTTON MILL BUILDING BURNED DOWN IN APRIL... THE SEARCH BEGAN FOR ANOTHER PROJECT THAT COULD USE A 1-POINT-5 MILLION DOLLAR FEDERAL GRANT.
TUESDAY AFTERNOON... CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS WILL CONSIDER THE DANNENBERG BUILDING ON THIRD AND POPLAR STREETS.
Nancy White "It is going to be converted into loft apartments with a little bit of retail down on the street level.
THE BUILDING USED TO HOUSE A THRIVING DEPARTMENT STORE BEFORE IT CLOSED IN THE 60'S.
THE PROJECT WOULD CREATE 69 APARTMENTS AND THREE RETAIL SPACES.
BUT COUNCILWOMAN ELAINE LUCAS SAYS THERE IS BETTER USE FOR THE MONEY.
Elaine Lucas: "The money should be used in the neighborhoods, it should not all be used either around Mercer or Downtown, which is where most of these large grants have been used."
Nancy White: "Well this grant that establishes a revolving loan has narrow specifications, you just can't go out and say oh I want to put this into this project it has certain criteria in terms of housing that it has to meet and this just happened to meet those criteria so lucky us."
LUCAS SAYS THE MONEY SHOULD BE INVESTED IN NEIGHBORHOODS INCLUDING EAST MACON, UNIONVILLE OR VILLAGE GREEN.
BUT WHITE SAYS THERE WOULD BE OPPORTUNITES FOR THAT IN THE FUTURE.
Nancy White: "I think all of us can agree its good to invest in this one loan the money will be repaid and in the interim maybe we can identify somethign else in the city that will be shovel ready that will allow us to do the same thing else where."
CANDACE ADORKA 13 WMAZ EYEWITNESS NEWS.
THE GRANT WAS AWARDED TO BOTH THE CITY OF MACON AND BIBB COUNTY... SO BOTH GOVERNMENTS HAVE TO SIGN OFF ON THE DANNENBERG PROJECT.
IF THEY AGREE THE MIDDLE GEORGIA REGIONAL COMMISSION WILL SUBMIT THE CHANGE TO THE GEORGIA DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY AFFAIRS FOR APROVAL.
TWIGGS COUNTY CHAIRMAN OF COMMISSIONERS IS FIGHTING A LAWSUIT .
RESIDENT OF JEFFERSONVILLE... WALTER ASHBY FILED A FORMER COMPLAINT AGAINST RAY BENNETT ALLEDGING HE USED COUNTY EQUIPMENT... PRISON CREWS... AND TAX PAYER MONEY TO FIX A CHURCH.
ASHBY SAYS HE WENT TO MULTIPLE OPEN COUNCIL MEETINGS DEMANDING ANSWERS AFTER HE SAW COUNTY CREWS WORKING AT THE OLD MARION BAPTIST CHURCH.
HE SAYS ACCORDING TO A FINAL ORDER MADE BY A TWIGGS COUNTY JUDGE IN 19-83... USING COUNTY EQUIPMENT ON PRIVATE PROPERTY IS ILLEGAL.
BENNETT DECLINED TO COMMENT BUT WALTER ASHBY SAYS HE FEELS STRONGLY ABOUT THE ISSUE.
Walter Ashby, Jeffersonville: "The chairman has called and referred to the citizens of this wonderful county as being stupid, we're far from stupid we're not rich but nevertheless we deserve to be treated as any other human being on this earth especially when we're putting the money in the coffers that he's out here misusing."
BOTH ASHBY AND BENNETT MET IN COURT THURSDAY BUT NO DECISION WAS MADE... THEY HAVE A WEEK TO SUBMIT THEIR BRIEFS.
ASHBY SAYS HE WANTS THE CHAIRMAN TO ADMIT THAT HE DID SOMETHING WRONG AND PAY THE TAX PAYERS BACK.
OLIVE GARDEN RESTAURANTS AROUND THE COUNTRY ARE SHOWING THEIR APPRECIATION TO THE MEN AND WOMEN WHO WATCH OUT FOR THE COMMUNITY EVERY DAY.
THEY DELIVERED FOOD TO HUNDREDS OF POLICE DEPARTMENTS, HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ROOMS AND FIRE STATION ACROSS THE NATION.
WE CAUGHT UP WITH EMPLOYEES AT THE MACON OLIVE GARDEN AS THEY PREPARED TO SERVE UP AN ITALIAN FEAST TO THOSE WHO SERVE..
Loyd Harrison "This event is basically what we call our hospitaliano visit. Every Olive Garden in the company goes out to a local police department, fire department or a hospital and we basically give a complimentary lunch to those that put their lives on the line for us each and everyday to make sure that people get taking care of and whatever services need to be done"
Loyd Harrison, "Being a family oriented restaurant, you have to reach out to the community and kind of thank the community in ways that will allow them to continue to come back and patronize us"
Today we are going to one of the local hospitals. It is the Medical Center and the goal is to feed the paramedics that work out there. They kind of do what they do to help everyone in need"
We give them complimentary lasagna, our signature salad, we give them tiramisu which is one of our signature desserts"
NATIONWIDE... MORE THAN 740 OLIVE GARDEN RESTAURANTS PARTICIPATED IN THE HOSPITALIANO LUNCH.
Debra Upshaw "They go to work everyday and put their lives on the line for us to protect us, to serve us so this is a little token of our appreciation"
MORE THAN TWO THOUSAND PEOPLE STARTED THEIR DAY IN STRIDE AT THE 35TH ANNUAL MACON LABOR DAY ROAD RACE.
THE 5-K RACE STARTED AT VINEVILLE BAPTIST CHURCH AND RAN THROUGH DOWNTOWN MACON TO CENTRAL CITY PARK.
OTHERS RAN THE 10K RACE THAT STARTED AT WESLEYAN COLLEGE.
VIDEO JOURNALIST ALLEN LINCOLN FOUND OUT WHY THEY LACED UP THEIR RUNNING SHOES INSTEAD OF SPENDING THE HOLIDAY MORNING IN BED..
SOUND:horn going off people running across the start line
Ann Patrick Milledgeville "Its the excitement of all the people being here and wants you start running you just want to improve your times better and better
SOUND: feet on the ground running people running past the camera
David Bearchell Macon "it is something about the it, the comradeer. so people hate running but it is just a little more fun when you are not alone"
SOUND: mother and daughters talking
SOUND: mother running say hi jackson
Ann Patrick Milledgeville "if i can do it anybody can do it there is plenty of programs out there to help you"
SOUND : people running
David Bearchell Macon :you could walk this if you want. I did program called couch to 5k i was about 35 pounds heavier and i just basically started walking and running and i got myself up to running a 5k about 2 weeks ago"
SOUND: People running "finish strong, finish strong"
Ann Patrick Milledgeville "it is a great way yo help lose weight and get in to shape and i have diabetes and things like that, that run in my family so I am always real concise about health and weight
Ann Patrick Milledgeville "it is just exciting to see what your time and trying to place in your age group and getting better and better with each race it gets addicting"
A FEW SPECIAL AWARDS WERE PRESENTED AFTER EVERYONE CROSSED THE FINISH LINE.
RONALD SHARPE AND FELTON WATSON BOTH RECEIVED AWARDS FOR RUNNING IN THE RACE EVERY YEAR SINCE THE EVENT STARTED 1977.
AS FOR THE FASTEST ON THE COURSE TODAY - MICHAEL STRICKLAND WON THE FIVE K WITH A TIME OF 15 MINUTES AND 32 SECONDS..
FPD STANDOUT GRACE TINKEY FINISHED THIRD OVERALL AND WAS THE FIRST FEMALE TO FINISH THE 5 K..
ALAN BLACK WON THE 10K AGAIN WHILE DEANNA MCCURDY WAS THE FIRST FEMALE FINISHER IN JUST OVER 39 MINUTES..
IN THIS MORNING'S EDITION OF THE MORNIN' GRIND... WE DISCUSSED THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN STRONG AND WEAK COFFEE.
AND THAT HAD DOZENS OF YOU COMMENTING ON OUR 13WMAZ DOT COM FACEBOOK PAGE.
TED WROTE... I LIKE MINE MORE MELLOW. I DON'T LIKE THE STRONG FLAVOR OF A CHICORY TYPE COFFEE, AND IF I WANTED WEAK COFFEE, I WOULD GO AHEAD AND DRINK WATER.
JONI SAYS... I PERSONALLY PREFER A GOOD STRONG COFFEE. I ONLY ALLOW MYSELF ONE CUP A DAY (CAUSE I LOAD IT DOWN WITH SUGAR AND CREAMER) BUT I WANT IT TO TASTE GOOD AND MOST OF ALL, WAKE ME UP!!
AND SHERI SAYS... NOT TOO STRONG BUT NOT TOO WEAK EITHER...I USUALLY HAVE COFFEE WITH MY CREAM AND SUGAR ANYWAYS
JOIN US AT FACEBOOK DOT COM SLASH 13WMAZ AND LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK.
CLICK THE "LIKE" BUTTON TO BECOME A FAN... THEN USE "SUGGEST TO FRIENDS" AND INVITE YOUR FACEBOOK FRIENDS INTO THE CONVERSATION.
AND REMEMBER... YOU CAN CATCH THE MORNIN' GRIND EVERY MONDAY MORNING AROUND 6:45.
NOW THAT SCHOOL IS BACK IN SESSION.. WE WANT TO HEAR ABOUT YOUR CHILD'S TOP TEACHERS.
TO NOMINATE A TEACHER.. .HAVE YOUR CHILD WRITE A ONE PAGE HANDWRITTEN LETTER TELLING US WHY HIS OR HER TEACHER IS THE BEST.
THEN... SEND THAT LETTER TO MY TEACHER IS TOPS... 1314 GRAY HIGHWAY... MACON GEORGIA... 31211.
THE LETTER NEED TO INCLUDE THE CHILD'S NAME.. YOUR CHILD'S TEACHER'S NAME AND THE SCHOOL.
AND REMEMBER NEATNESS COUNTS.
THANKS FOR JOINING US.... WE'LL BE BACK TONIGHT AT 11.
BUT REMEMBER...THE NEWS IS ALWAYS ON AT 13WMAZ.COM !
THE EVENING NEWS IS UP NEXT.
HAVE A SAFE NIGHT EVERYONE.