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Pickens native named commander of Jasper State Patrol Post


Sgt. First Class Tim Nichols, a lifelong resident of Pickens County, now serves as commander of the local State Patrol Post.


Tim Nichols, a Talking Rock native with 22 years of service with the Georgia State Patrol, took over as the commander of the State Patrol post in Jasper this January.

Sgt. First Class Nichols comes to this post after serving as commander of a 26-trooper unit of motorcycle officers who patrolled mostly busy interstate roads inside I-285 in Atlanta. Nichols commanded that detail since its creation in May 2006.

Re-zoning narrowly approved despite Arbor Hills opposition

In an upsetting turn of events for many property owners in the Arbor Hills subdivision, the Pickens County Planning Commission narrowly approved the rezoning of a parcel at the corner of Talking Rock Road and Lumber Company Road from Rural Residential to Highway Business.

The owner of the property, Donal Dorsey, sought the Highway Business classification in order to build a convenience store or some other similar commercial endeavor on the parcel, he stated in his rezoning application.


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New mobile app helps Georgia outdoorsmen

PocketRanger(Social Circle, GA) March 7, 2011- Enhance your outdoor experience by

downloading the new mobile app from the Georgia Department of Natural

Resources.  The Official Georgia DNR Pocket Ranger® Mobile Tour Guide is

offered free and is on-target for all hunters, fishermen and outdoorsmen

according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife

Resources Division.

The Pocket Ranger® is an all-encompassing app that allows you to

explore the outdoors like you never have before. Pocket Ranger® gives

users full access to information for each of Georgia’s DNR

facilities-look up hunting regulations, retrieve facility maps, buy

licenses and permits and stay current on our events. The app’s

advanced GPS section allows users to track, mark, record and share their

explorations and discoveries easily with other Pocket Ranger® users as

well as family and friends.

This new app, developed for IPhone and Android platforms, uses some of

the most advanced GPS smartphone technology to provide users with

valuable features that will enhance their visits to Wildlife Management

Areas (WMA), Public Fishing Areas (PFA) and other state owned lands. The

app-developed collaboratively between Georgia’s Department of Natural

Resources and ParksByNature Network-is available for free to smartphone

users, and can be downloaded by visiting Apple iTunes, Android Market or

“The new Pocket Ranger® Mobile Tour Guide makes exploring Georgia’s

outdoor areas easier than ever,” said Dan Forster, Wildlife Resources

Director. “It has an activity search feature which allows you to find

the closest place to hunt, fish, ride horses, bird watch or just explore

trails.  It also includes detailed descriptions of each area with all

amenities available at the site, current weather reports and maps for

WMAs, PFAS and all state owned lands.”

GPS technology plays a pivotal role in the app’s safety functions,

including a safety alert feature that informs designated contacts on

your phone of your GPS coordinates in case of an emergency.

“I am very excited about the new safety alert feature which will

assist us finding your location if you are lost,” said Forster.

“This technology will aid our Conservation Rangers in providing

assistance if needed.”

This spring, Pocket Ranger® introduces GeoChallenge, a new feature that

includes geoquest activities as well as games. Enjoy the fun, new ways

to navigate, learn and explore your favorite areas by completing the

various challenges. The challenges and quests will be added and updated


With an extensive list of features, social sharing options and safety

functions, the Official Georgia DNR Pocket Ranger® Mobile Tour Guide is

one of the most highly developed, free apps on the market. Download it

today to begin the fun!


Statewide plastic bag recycling program has drop offs in Jasper

bagsrecycling‘A Bag’s Life’ Campaign Offers Education, Website, App

To Help Locate 750 Retail Drop-off Sites for Plastic Bags and Wraps Statewide

(Atlanta) – February 28, 2012 – Georgia today joined the “A Bag’s Life” recycling education movement which helps consumers find nearly 750 grocery and retail store drop off sites for their plastic bags and wraps statewide.  Legislators, recyclers, retailers and government officials gathered at the capitol to announce participation in the awareness campaign, which provides a website ( with a zip code locator app and social media outreach.

The site showed Kroger and Walmart, both in the Highway 515 corridor in Jasper as recycling spots here.

Georgia Department of Community Affairs Commissioner Mike Beatty joined State Senator Ross Tolleson and State Representative Lynn Smith, who each chair their legislative Natural Resources Committees, and students from metro Atlanta schools in kicking off A Bag’s Life. Officers with the Georgia Food Industry Association, the Georgia Recycling Coalition and Keep Georgia Beautiful also spoke in favor of the public-private partnership.

A Bag’s Life, through quirky messaging like “Don’t treat me like trash” and “Gimme a second chance,” encourages consumers to reduce, reuse and recycle their free grocery bags. It also reminds people that other bags like those used for dry cleaning, newspapers and bread, as well as wraps and films used on products like paper towels or bottled water also can be dropped off at many retailers for recycling.

“While recycling plastic bags and wraps is a shared responsibility, retailers recognize they must take a leadership role in the state’s recycling policies,” said Kathy Zuzava, president of the Georgia Food Industry Association. “Most of our members already have established plastic bag and wrap recycling in their stores. A Bag’s Life simply takes those efforts one step further by making it easy for customers to locate the nearest recycling opportunity at their favorite local retailer.”

Nationwide, plastic bag and wrap recycling is on the rise, reaching a record high of nearly 972 million pounds in 2010 — an increase of 50 percent since 2005 — according to a report released last month by Moore Recycling Associates, Inc on behalf of the American Chemistry Council. In the past five years, recycling of plastic film grew seven times faster than recycling overall, according to EPA data.

“By taking the extra time to bring our bags and wraps back to the store to be recycled, we are giving that bag a second chance to be made into something else like outdoor decking, park benches, or even new bags,” said Gloria Hardegree, executive director of the Georgia Recycling Coalition. “By remembering this simple step, we can make a significant difference in reusing and recycling these valuable plastic resources.”

The plastic bag icon on the website is designed to take on a life of its own, smiling when it’s happy, frowning when it’s not. Website copy suggests that individuals should step up and do their part to address litter and waste rather than blame the bag if it’s not being recycled or reused.

“This program demonstrates what public and private groups can do when they work together,” said Sarah Visser, executive director of Keep Georgia Beautiful. “Individually, if each one of us takes this extra earth-friendly step to remember to recycle our bags, we can reduce litter in our communities and yield tremendous results.”

About A Bag’s Life

A Bag’s Life is a public education campaign that unites non-profits, business, community and government organizations around the common goal of promoting the three R’s as they relate to plastic bags — reduce, reuse and recycle.  Partners include Keep Georgia Beautiful, the Georgia Recycling Coalition, the Georgia Food Industry Association, SP Recycling, Trex Company and the American Chemistry Council.

Caption, Georgia Department of Community Affairs Commissioner Mike Beatty joined State Senator Ross Tolleson and State Representative Lynn Smith, who each chair their legislative Natural Resources Committees, and students to kick off a statewide plastic bag recycling program.

Cat found at Canton Starbucks tests positive for rabies

Members of public should take precautions if they had contact with kitten


Canton (GA) March 8, 2012 ~ Cherokee County Environmental Health officials announced today that a rabid kitten, which reportedly was in contact with a variety of people in Cherokee County just prior to its death, has now tested positive for rabies.


The public is alerted to call their local environmental health office or medical care provider if they believe they may have been exposed to the kitten, described as being gray-striped with medium-length fur and located at the Starbucks at 1353 Riverstone Parkway in Canton during February 22 through March 1, 2012.


On Thursday, March 1, the stray kitten was picked up by a young woman at the Riverstone Parkway Starbucks, where it had been touched by an unspecified number of people. The woman took the kitten to her home in Canton that day, where several other people handled it.