<<opening for eyewitness news at six>>
THANKS FOR JOINING US FOR EYEWITNESS NEWS AT SIX. I'M LEAH JOHNSON
AND I'M LORRA LYNCH JONES...
FRANK MALLOY HAS THE NIGHT OFF.
OUR TOP STORY AT 6... ABOUT 100 CITY OF MACON EMPLOYEES WILL LOSE THEIR SENIORITY WHEN THEY'RE TRANSFERED TO WORK FOR THE COUNTY NEXT YEAR.
IT'S PART OF THE NEW SERVICE DELIVERY STRATEGY... THE PLAN THAT LAYS OUT WHICH SERVICES ARE RUN BY THE CITY....OR COUNTY.
"it's important city employees know how they're going ot be treates, what they're going to be faced with so they do have time to make decisions instead of waiting till the last minute so even if they're not excited about the way things have been done, at least I think this is fair to them to give them time to be able to deal with their situation."
THE MOVE PASSED BY A FOUR-TO-ONE VOTE.
COMMISSIONERS SAY THEY'LL CONSIDER EACH WORKER'S EXPERIENCE... IN PLACING THEM ON THE PAY SCALE.
THE MOVE WILL ADD ABOUT 3 AND A HALF MILLION DOLLARS TO THE COUNTY PAYROLL.
SOME ARE ASKING WHY THE FIGHT BETWEEN WARREN AND HANCOCK COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL PLAYERS WILL BE TAKEN TO A HANCOCK COUNTY GRAND JURY.
AMY AUBERT SPOKE WITH DISTRICT ATTORNEY FRED BRIGHT... AND EXPLAINS WHY HE SAYS... THAT'S THE ONLY OPTION
THE AFTERMATH OF THE MID-OCTOBER FIGHT BETWEEN TWO RIVAL HIGH SCHOOLS... LEAVES SOME WITH QUESTIONS.
OCMULGEE JUDICIAL CIRCUIT DISTRICT ATTORNEY... FRED BRIGHT... SAYS THE ANSWER TO WHY THE CASE WILL BE TAKEN TO HANCOCK COUNTY GRAND JURY... IS SIMPLE.
Fred Bright, District Attorney: "The reason jurisdiction by law is in Hancock County is because that's the county where the crime ocured and there is no exception to that."
Amy Aubert, Eyewitness News: "I tried to talk to people here in downtown Sparta about what they thought about the case going to grand jury, but they either told me they didn't know too much about the case or they didn't want to be shown on camera."
Fred Bright: "People can question it, but that's the law it's that simple. And there is no exception to it."
BRIGHT SAYS BEYOND MISUNDERSTANDING THE LAW... AND A COUNTY RIVALRY... HE DOESN'T KNOW WHY QUESTIONS ARE BEING RAISED.
IN A NEWS RELEASE MONDAY... BRIGHT SAID G-B-I OFFICIALS WRAPPED UP THEIR TWO MONTH INVESTIGATION.
Fred Bright: "It consisted of 135 interviews, 12 volumes, we've sat down and we've talked about the case."
THE BRAWL HAPPENED AS WARREN AND HANCOCK COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL PLAYERS WERE LEAVING THE FIELD AFTER A WARREN COUNTY WIN.
IT LEFT WARREN'S COACH... DAVID DANIEL... WITH SEVERE FACIAL INJURIES... AFTER HE WAS HIT IN THE FACE WITH A FOOTBALL HELMET.
GRAND JURY... BRIGHT SAYS... IS THE NEXT STEP.
Fred Bright: "This is all we can do. Send it to a grand jury and they are the ultimate decision as to what will happen to the case, who will or will not be charged, with what or what not crime."
AMY AUBERT... 13 WMAZ... EYEWITNESS NEWS.>>BRIGHT SAYS THE CASE WILL BE TAKEN TO A GRAND JURY IN A FEW WEEKS.
HE COULD NOT COMMENT ON HOW MANY PEOPLE HE THINKS WILL BE CHARGED... IF ANY.
WE COULDN'T REACH COACH DANIEL FOR COMMENT TODAY.
TODAY'S 13 WMAZ DOT COM WEB POLL ASKS.. CAN A HANCOCK COUNTY GRAND JURY FAIRLY HANDLE THE FOOTBALL- FIGHT CASE?
SO FAR 28 PERCENT OF YOU SAY YES
AND 72 PERCENT OF YOU SAY NO
TO VOTE NOW.. VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT 13 WMAZ DOT COM.. AND LOOK FOR THE WEB POLL QUESTION ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF OUR HOMEPAGE.
MACON AND BIBB COUNTY HAVE NAMED A SEVEN-PERSON BOARD... THAT WILL OVERSEE HOW THE COUNTY SPENDS SPLOST MONEY.
LAST MONTH... VOTERS APPROVED THE PENNY SALES TAX THAT'S EXPECTED TO RAISE 190 MILLION DOLLARS.
THAT MONEY WILL GO TOWARD THINGS LIKE PUBLIC-SAFETY IMPROVEMENTS... CAPITAL SPENDING PROJECTS... STREET PAVING AND DRAINAGE... AND BUYING LAND NEAR ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE TO PREVENT ENCROACHMENT.
BEFORE THE VOTE.. BIBB COUNTY COMMISSION CHAIRMAN SAM HART PROPOSED THE OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE TO ADVISE THE COUNTY ON HOW THE MONEY SHOULD BE SPENT.
I would hope we would have some sort of dialogue between the oversight committee and hte advisory group to see how they can work together. Because I think that going forward what we want to do is make it as seemless in terms of support as we can.
TODAY....BIBB COMMISSIONERS APPROVED FOUR MEMBERS:
DAN SLAGLE... VICE PRESIDENT OF COX BUSINESS;
MONICA SMITH, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF THE MACON-BIBB CONVENTION AND VISITORS BUREAU;
THERON USSERY, A FORMER CITY COUNCIL MEMBER
AND BRUCE FREEMAN, PRESIDENT OF A COMPANY THAT OWNS FOUR MCDONALD'S.
MACON CITY COUNCIL NOMINATED THEIR THREE MEMBERS LAST WEEK:
THEY ARE FORMER MAYOR C. JACK ELLIS;
FORMER STATE REP. DAVID LUCAS;AND DENTIST-ACTIVIST LINDSAY "DOC" HOLLIDAY.
COUNTY COMMISSIONERS VOTED TUESDAY TO NOTIFY THE COMMITTEE AND ASKED THEM TO MEET.
IN RECENT DAYS.. COMPLAINTS OF OPEN RECORDS AND ETHICS VIOLATIONS SWIRLED AROUND MACON CITY HALL..
THE CONTROVERSY AROSE WHEN THE THREE-MEMBER COMMITTEE ON COMMITTEES PREPARED TO APPOINT MEMBERS TO THE COUNCIL'S REGULAR COMMITTEES.
SOME ALLEGE THAT COUNCILMEN LARRY SCHLESINGER AND CHARLES JONES VIOLATED THE STATE'S OPEN MEETINGS LAW DURING THE PROCESS.
POLITICAL ACTIVIST LINDSAY HOLLIDAY IS ONE OF THE CRITICS..
AND HE JOINS RANDALL SAVAGE NOW TO DISCUSS THE COMMITTEE CONTROVERSY.. AND HIS OWN RECENT APPOINTMENT TO THE SPLOST OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE
A HALF MILLION DOLLAR FEDERAL GRANT WILL HELP MERCER UNIVERSITY PLAN IMPROVEMENTS FOR PUBLIC SCHOOLS IN MACON'S UNIONVILLE AND TINDALL HEIGHTS NEIGHBORHOODS
A MERCER NEWS RELEASE SAYS THE PROGRAM WILL HELP MONITOR STUDENTS PROGRESS AND ACHIEVEMENT...FROM BIRTH...INTO THE JOB MARKET.
THEY'LL FOCUS ON FOUR SCHOOLS: INGRAM-PYE AND HARTLEY ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS, BALLARD HUDSON MIDDLE SCHOOL AND SOUTHWEST HIGH SCHOOL.
PETER BROWN...A MERCER UNIVERSITY PHILOSOPHY PROFESSOR WILL OVERSEE THE GRANT.
HE SAYS IT'S A COLLABORATIVE EFFORT WITH BIBB COUNTY SCHOOLS AND OTHERS.
BROWN SAYS THIS GRANT WILL GIVE STUDENTS ACCESS TO THE RESOURCES THEY NEED TO BE COLLEGE-BOUND.
Peter Brown, Mercer University: Students that are at risk will get services from one of the 34 partners kind of case management system, whatever they might need, whether it is tutoring, whether it is a mentor whether it is summer programs, or after-school programs whatever they are missing and it's not just the kids in the schools, it's early learning as well.
MERCER SAYS THE GRANT IS ONE OF 15 AWARDED NATIONWIDE.
MACON'S PEYTON ANDERSON FOUNDATION WILL CHIP IN 150 THOUSAND DOLLARS... RAISING THE GRANT TOTAL TO 650 THOUSAND.
MACON POLICE SAY A MAN FACES BRIBERY AND OTHER CHARGES FOR OFFERING A MACON POLICE OFFICER MONEY TO SET HIM FREE AFTER HE WAS CAUGHT WITH SEVERAL STOLEN ITEMS.
POLICE SPOKESWOMAN JAMI GAUDET SAYS POLICE FOUND 28-YEAR-OLD JOSEPH NEAL MOSER PUSHING A WHEELBARROW WITH LAWN MOWER ENGINES, AIR-CONDITIONING COILS, AND TWO LARGE PIECES OF CITY OF MACON SEWER PIPE.
THEY SAY HE WAS IN THE 4300 BLOCK OF BROADWAY ON MONDAY IN DOWNTOWN MACON.
SHE SAYS OFFICERS ARRESTED MOSER AFTER HE ADMITTED THE ITEMS WERE STOLEN..
POLICE SAY HE THEN OFFERED AN OFFICER MONEY TO RELEASE HIM.
HE'S CHARGED WITH OBSTRUCTION, BRIBERY AND THEFT BY RECEIVING STOLEN PROPERTY.
ONE PERSON WAS AIRLIFTED TO THE MEDICAL CENTER OF CENTRAL GEORGIA LAST NIGHT AFTER A FOUR CAR ACCIDENT IN DODGE COUNTY.
THE GEORGIA STATE PATROL SAYS THE CRASH HAPPENED AT HIGHWAY 87 NORTH AND DUBOIS CHURCH ROAD JUST BEFORE 6 P-M.
TROOPERS SAY ONE DRIVER REACHED DOWN TO GET SOMETHING AND HIT THE CAR IN FRONT OF HIM... TRIGGERING A CHAIN REACTION.
THE STATE PATROL SAYS THAT DRIVER WAS CHARGED WITH FOLLOWING TOO CLOSELY.
THREE PEOPLE WERE HURT.. INCLUDING 57-YEAR-OLD GEORGE FELDON SMITH.. WHO WAS AIRLIFTED WITH SERIOUS INJURIES.
WE'RE SHARING YOUR PICTURES FROM THE 13-W-M-A-Z DOT COM GALLERIES.
THESE ARE FROM THE ARENT MY KIDS THE CUTEST GALLERY
THIS IS SIX MONTH OLD LONDON RELAXING IN HER ROCKER.
AND THIS BABY IS ALL READY FOR BATH TIME.
SEND US YOUR PHOTOS... LOOK FOR PHOTO GALLERIES UNDER "FEATURES" IN THE MENU BAR AT THE TOP OF OUR HOMEPAGE AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.