Monday, October 10, Eyewitness News at 11

5:49 PM, Oct 10, 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.

MACON POLICE CHIEF MIKE BURNS SAYS HE WANTS 300-THOUSAND DOLLARS TO HIRE SIX NEW OFFICERS... BUT TONIGHT... A MACON CITY COUNCIL COMMITTEE VOTED TO DELAY A DECISION.
TWO WEEKS AGO...BURNS ASKED THE COMMITTEE FOR THE MONEY TO FUND A NEW YOUTH INTERVENTION PLAN... IN RESPONSE TO A RECENT WAVE OF TEEN AND GANG RELATED SHOOTINGS.
CHIEF BURNS DID NOT ATTEND TONIGHT'S MEETING... INSTEAD DEPUTY POLICE CHIEF MIKE CARSWELL SPOKE TO COMMITTEE MEMBERS.
BUT AS ELEANOR LISSITZYN EXPLAINS... SOME MACON CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS SAY THEY'RE NOT READY TO SHELL OUT THE BIG BUCKS.
MACON DEPUTY POLICE CHIEF MIKE CARSWELL WENT BEFORE COUNCIL MEMBERS MONDAY NIGHT... TO DEFEND THE CHIEF'S PROPOSAL TO HIRE MORE OFFICERS.
THE PROPOSAL WAS TABLED TWO WEEKS AGO WHEN COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN VIRGIL WATKINS SAID HE WANTED MORE INFORMATION.
SPECIFICALLY, HE WANTED TO KNOW HOW THE POLICE FORCE WOULD MEASURE THE SUCCESS OF THE PROGRAMS.
HE SAYS HE REALLY DIDN'T GET AN ANSWER MONDAY NIGHT... AND THE PROPOSAL WAS POSTPONED AGAIN.
WATKINS ALSO SAYS HE WANTS A MORE COMPREHENSIVE EFFORT..
THAT'S WHAT RETIRED JUVENILE CORRECTIONS OFFICER BRUGE GRIGGS SAYS HE COULD OFFER THE CITY... AS PART OF A SEPARATE YOUTH VIOLENCE PREVENTION PLAN CALLED ALIVE AND FREE.
GRIGGS GAVE COUNCIL A BRIEF OVERVIEW OF THREE BUDGET PROPOSALS... RANGING FROM TWO HUNDRED TO ABOUT TWO HUNDRED AND SEVENTY THOUSAND DOLLARS A YEAR.
HE SAYS THE TEN WEEK PROGRAM ENGAGES CHILDREN AGES EIGHT TO EIGTHTEEN BY OFFERING THEM OPPOTUNITIES LIKE TRIPS TO RECORDING STUDIOS AND FILM CLASSES... AS WELL AS LIFE SKILL COURSES.
HE SAYS THE GOAL IS TO TARGET VIOLENCE AS A DISEASE... RATHER THAN A SOCIAL ISSUE.
"We identify violence as being social HIV... hood infectious virus."
HE SAYS IT'S A MORE EFFECTIVE WAY TO KEEP KIDS FROM BECOMING CRIMINALS.
"You can't work with them and implement change and then send them back into a negative environment. So what this program does, we work with juvenile court, we work holistically."
GRIGGS SAYS HIS PROGRAM WOULD TARGET KIDS BOTH IN AN EDUCATIONAL... AND RECREATIONAL SETTING.
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WATKINS SAYS BEFORE COUNCIL GOES ANY FURTHER IN CONSIDERING GRIGG'S PROPOSAL HE WANTS DEPUTY CHIEF CARSWELL TO COME BACK IN TWO WEEKS WITH A SCALED BACK POLICE PLAN.
WATKINS SAYS HE'D LIKE TO SEE THEM START OFF BY HIRING JUST TWO NEW OFFICERS... WHO COULD THEN DEVELOP A MORE COMPREHENSIVE PLAN TO TACKLE YOUTH VIOLENCE BEFORE ASKING FOR MORE MONEY.

THE PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE ALSO FAILED MONDAY NIGHT TO PASS A SMOKING LAW THAT WOULD RESTRICT SMOKING IN MANY PUBLIC PLACES.
COUNCIL FIRST PASSED THE LAW IN APRIL... BUT MAYOR ROBERT REICHERT VETOED IT.
TONIGHT... COUNCIL MEMBERS VOTED TWO TO TWO... FAILING TO GIVE THE LAW THE MAJORITY VOTE REQUIRED TO PASS IT ON TO FULL COUNCIL.
COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN VIRGIL WATKINS SAYS HE VOTED 'NO' BECAUSE OF A LACK OF SUPPORT FROM BAR AND RESTAURANT OWNERS.
BUT COUNCILWOMAN NANCY WHITE SAYS IT'S THE GOVERNMENT'S JOB TO PROTECT THE PUBLIC'S SAFETY.
"This is a public health issue. Deaths alone, 50 thousand deaths a year in America from secondhand smoke. Is it government interference when we ask workers to wash their hands and wear hair nets, is it government interference to have airbags?"
WHITE SAYS SHE EXPECTS SPONSORS OF THE LAW TO ASK COUNCIL TO VOTE TO DISAGREE WITH THE COMMITTEE'S DECISION AT NEXT TUESDAY'S FULL COUNCIL MEETING.
THAT'S THE TACTIC SUPPORTERS TOOK TO PASS THE LAW LAST SPRING WHEN IT FAILED COMMITTEE.
THAT MEANS IF COUNCIL GETS THE TEN VOTES NECESSARY TO OVERRIDE THE COMMITTEE... THEY COULD STILL VOTE TO PASS THE LAW.

BIBB COUNTY SCHOOL LEADERS... TEACHERS AND GUESTS SPENT THE DAY WORKING ON A PLAN TO IMPROVE THE DISTRICT.
THEY GATHERED AT THE MACON COLISEUM FOR THE SECOND STRATEGIC PLANNING SESSION TODAY.
DURING LAST MONTH'S SESSION... THE GROUP CAME UP WITH AREAS THE DISTRICT NEEDS TO IMPROVE... LIKE TECHNOLOGY AND PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT.
TODAY... SUPERINTENDENT ROMAIN DALLEMAND SAYS THEY CATEGORIZED THE FEEDBACK... AND WORKED TO COME UP WITH MISSION STATEMENTS THAT WILL GO INTO THE FINAL PLAN.
Romain Dallemand Bibb County School Superintendent "The segments that we are going to collect today will help to set the direction of where we go from here. A segment like having state of the art technology in the hands in every student will be what we take and sit down in order to determine the specific details"
DALLEMAND SAYS THE FINAL PLAN SHOULD BE READY BY THE END OF JANUARY.
THE DISTRICT WILL START TO IMPLEMENT IT NEXT FALL.

MACON AND BIBB COUNTY LEADERS CAME TOGETHER TODAY TO URGE SUPPORT FOR A PROPOSED PENNY SALES TAX.
THE SPECIAL PURPOSE LOCAL OPTION SALES TAX... OR SPLOST... WILL APPEAR ON NEXT MONTH'S BALLOT.
BIBB COUNTY COMMISSION CHAIR SAM HART HIGHLIGHTED SOME OF THE PROJECTS THAT THE 190-MILLION DOLLARS WOULD PAY FOR...
THEY INCLUDE PAYING OFF CITY AND COUNTY DEBT... REPAIRING ROADS AND IMPROVING RECREATION AND CULTURAL ARTS IN MACON AND BIBB COUNTY.
HART SAYS THERE'S A LOT AT STAKE IF THE SPLOST DOESN'T PASS... LIKE INFRASTRUCTURE IMPROVEMENTS IN THE CITY AND COUNTY.
"17 percent or 32 million dollars will be spent to improve our storm drainage system resurfacing and repairing city and county streets and roads, and new equipment for increasing efficiencies and reducing maintenance as we go forward."
TWO AND A HALF MILLION DOLLARS OF THE TAX MONEY IS SLATED FOR THE TUBMAN AFRICAN AMERICAN MUSUEM IN DOWNTOWN MACON.

SOME OF YOU ASKED US ABOUT THE INSTALLATION OF NEW TRAFFIC LIGHTS AND CAMERAS ALONG WATSON BOULEVARD.
YOU WANTED TO KNOW IF THOSE CAMERAS ARE INTENDED TO CATCH PEOPLE RUNNING RED LIGHTS.
KIMBERLY LARSON WITH THE GEORGIA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION SAYS NO.
SHE SAYS THE CAMERAS WILL SERVE SEVERAL PURPOSES... BUT MAINLY THEY'LL HELP SYNCHRONIZE TRAFFIC LIGHTS.
LARSON SAYS ENGINEERS WILL BE ABLE TO MONITOR TRAFFIC PATTERS AND CONTROL THE SIGNALS REMOTELY.
SOME DRIVERS ON WATSON BOULEVARD SAY THE ROAD NEEDS BETTER TRAFFIC CONTROL.
Dorothy Lear, Bonaire: (25:35) "If it's to monitor traffic, they will be able to see just how bad it is. What can be done about it? I don't know, but that would be a good thing."
WH Dudley, Warner Robins: (22:40) "I think it's a good thing. It will help the city. Probably got it in there to help alleviate the traffic."
LARSON SAYS THE CAMERAS WILL ALSO BE USED TO HELP POLICE LOCATE ACCIDENTS.
THE LIGHTS AND CAMERAS ARE NOT OPERATIONAL YET... AND SHE DID NOT KNOW WHEN THE PROJECT WOULD BE COMPLETE.

FIRE SAFETY IS THE FOCUS THIS WEEK AS FIRE DEPARTMENTS ACROSS THE COUNTRY PROMOTE WAYS TO KEEP YOUR FAMILY SAFE...
FIRE SAFETY SEMINARS GOT UNDERWAY TONIGHT IN CENTRAL GEORGIA AT ALL THREE FIREHOUSE SUBS RESTAURANTS IN MACON.
PARENTS BROUGHT THEIR CHILDREN OUT TO TAKE PART IN FIRE SAFETY LESSONS TAUGHT BY LT. DEMETERIUS ELLISON WITH THE MACON-BIBB FIRE DEPARTMENT.
HE SAYS THIS WEEK.... HE AND HIS DEPARTMENT WORK TO SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT FIRE SAFETY.
HE SAYS MANY PEOPLE GET COMPLACENT
AND DON'T THINK THAT A FIRE CAN HAPPEN IN THEIR HOME.....
AND SAYS GETTING YOUR HOME READY IN CASE OF A FIRE EMERGENCY IS KEY TO SAVING LIVES.
"We want to stress the dire need of working smoke detectors and a fire escape plan, and once you get that plan drawn up then practice that fire drill at home. Practice going out the door, practice going out the windows. These are some of the things and tips that we are trying to push out this week."
LATER THIS WEEK... THERE WILL BE A KIDS FIRE SAFTEY NIGHT OUT AT THE CHICK-FIL-A ON ZEBULON ROAD AND FIRE SAFETY EXHIBITS ON DISPLAY AT THE MACON MALL.
A LITTLE SOGGY WEATHER DIDN'T STOP SOME PEOPLE FROM ENJOYING COLUMBUS DAY AT THE GEORGIA NATIONAL FAIR TODAY.
IT WAS WET... AND WINDY BUT PEOPLE LINED UP TO GET INTO THE FAIRGROUNDS.
THE WEATHER DIDN'T STOP THESE FOLKS FROM GETTING ON THE RIDES.
ADMISSIONS WORKER PATRICIA COSBY SAYS PEOPLE SEEMED TO ENJOY THEMSELVES DESPITE THE WET WEATHER..

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A COPY OF STEVE JOBS DEATH CERTIFICATE SAYS THE APPLE CO-FOUNDER DIED OF RESPIRATORY ARREST THAT RESULTED FROM PANCREATIC CANCER THAT SPREAD TO OTHER ORGANS.
JOBS DIED LAST WEDNESDAY AT AGE 56.
APPLE DIDN'T DISCLOSE HIS CAUSE OF DEATH... BUT JOBS BATTLED PANCREATIC CANCER AND HAD A LIVER TRANSPLANT IN 2009.
HE RESIGNED AS APPLE'S C-E-O IN AUGUST.
THE DEATH CERTIFICATE... RELEASED TODAY... SAYS JOBS DIED AT HIS PALO ALTO HOME.
NO AUTOPSY WAS PERFORMED.

NETFLIX HAS ABANDONED ITS PLAN TO SEPARATE ITS DVD-BY-MAIL AND INTERNET STREAMING SERVICES.
C-E-O REED HASTINGS SAID TODAY IN A BLOG POST.... THAT SUBSCRIBERS WILL BE ABLE TO USE BOTH SERVICES UNDER ONE ACCOUNT AND ONE PASSWORD.
LESS THAN A MONTH AGO.... NETFLIX SAID IT WOULD SPLIT THE DVD RENTAL BUSINESS OFF ONTO A NEW WEBSITE CALLED QWIKSTER.
AFTER HARSH BACKLASH FROM SUBSCRIBERS... HASTINGS SAYS IN THE BLOG POST...
"IT IS CLEAR THAT FOR MANY OF OUR MEMBERS, TWO WEBSITES WOULD MAKE THINGS MORE DIFFICULT, SO WE ARE GOING TO KEEP NETFLIX AS ONE PLACE TO GO FOR STREAMING AND DVDS."
BUT HASTINGS SAID THEY WERE NOT ROLLING BACK THIS YEAR'S PRICE INCREASES.

TODAY'S 13WMAZ DOT COM WEB POLL ASKS... DO YOU SUBSCRIBE TO NETFLIX?
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AND IF YOU CAN FIGURE OUT THE CORRECT ORDER FOR THOSE THREE STEPS... YOU MAY ACTUALLY HAVE A CHANCE.

THE HEARTWARMING FAMILY FLICK "DOLPHIN TALE" TOOK THE GOLD AT THE BOX OFFICE LAST WEEK... BUT SOME PRETTY TOUGH COMPETITORS ROLLED INTO TOWN THIS WEEKEND... AND LEFT WINTER THE DOLPHIN FLOUNDERING.
THE FILM SLIPPED TO THE THIRD SPOT... BRINGING IN NINE-POINT-ONE MILLION DOLLARS.
IT FOLLOWS THE TRUE STORY OF A DOLPHIN WHO LOSES HER TAIL... ONLY TO HAVE A GROUP OF STRANGERS BAND TOGETHER TO SAVE HER LIFE.
GEORGE CLOONEY AND RYAN GOSLING'S POLITICAL SAGA "THE IDES OF MARCH" OPENED TO A SILVER MEDAL... WITH 10 AND A HALF MILLION DOLLARS.
THE MOVIE FOLLOWS A PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE AND HIS PRESS SECRETARY... WHO GET CAUGHT UP IN A SCANDAL.
GEORGE CLOONEY ALSO DIRECTED THE FILM.
AND THE HEAVY HITTER AT THE BOX OFFICE THIS WEEKEND... FITTINGLY ENOUGH... FEATURED ROBOT FIGHTERS.
"REAL STEEL" TOOK HOME 27-POINT-THREE MILLION DOLLARS... TO OPEN ON TOP THIS WEEKEND.
THE MOVIE STARS HUGHT JACKMAN AS A DOWN-ON-HIS-LUCK FORMER BOXER IN THE NEAR-FUTURE WHEN ROBOTS HAVE REPLACED HUMANS IN THE RING.
TO KEEP UP WITH ALL YOUR ENTERTAINMENT NEWS... JUST HEAD OVER TO THE SCENE 13 PAGE AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.
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THANKS FOR JOINING US.... FIRST MORNIN COMES YOUR WAY AT 5 A-M.
THE NEWS IS ALWAYS ON AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.
ON LETTERMAN TONIGHT: ACTOR TRACY MORGAN.
HAVE A SAFE NIGHT EVERYONE.


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