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Inmate found hanged in Cherokee cell

     Canton, Cherokee County, Ga. July 11, 2015. A Cherokee County inmate died today at Northside Cherokee Hospital. Jose Castillo-Ramirez, 32 years old of Canton, was transported to Northside Cherokee Hospital after deputies found him hanging from a bed sheet in his cell Saturday July 4th at approximately 1:30pm. Ramirez was resuscitated and taken to Northside Cherokee but later succumbed to his injuries.

Rep. Tom Graves votes to repeal No Child Left Behind, stop Common Core

tom-gravesBill Empowers Local Communities and Parents, Limits Federal Role in Education

Washington, D.C. – Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA-14) issued the following statement today after voting in favor of the Student Success Act (H.R. 5), legislation that repeals and replaces No Child Left Behind (NCLB) while blocking federal funding for Common Core: 

“While well intentioned, No Child Left Behind is failed Bush-era policy that expanded the federal government's role in education with one-size-fits-all mandates. After hearing from parents, students and educators across the 14th District for several years, I firmly believe we must repeal and replace NCLB with legislation that returns power to our local communities. That’s exactly what the Student Success Act does.

“This bill prevents the federal government from coercing states into adopting Common Core, and allows states to develop testing curricula that best fits their needs with no strings attached. Importantly, the bill protects religious freedoms, and ensures private schools and those who are homeschooled are free from federal control. It also completely eliminates 65 ineffective or duplicative federal programs.

“Passing the Student Success Act is a step toward taking power away from the Obama administration and giving it back to states, localities, parents and teachers who really know what is best for their kids.”


Book binder keeps family treasures alive

book-binder 4185    Mike Grimes uses a press to adhere a new leather cover to a book in his Big Canoe workshop. As he spins the wheel the plate lowers and applies pressure to the book.
     In keeping with the motif of a trade that seems lost somewhere in the pages of history - tucked inside the same dusty chapter as shoe and boot repair - book binder Mike Grimes prefers his antique board cutter, book press and backing vice to modern bindery machines.

    “These work well for what I need to do with them,” says the Pickens resident and owner of TLC Book Restoration as he covers an old Bible with new leather. “Everything I do is handwork, so I don’t need the high-tech stuff.”
    Because he does things the old fashioned way Grimes’ workshop - the basement of his Big Canoe home - is much quieter than the National Library Bindery Company in Roswell where he worked for nearly 40 years.

Highly decorated K-9 “Flash” and handler join sheriff’s team


         It’s all business for the Pickens County Sheriff’s new K-9 Flash, pictured with handler Chris Tucker. Tucker and Flash relocated from Savannah to work at a more “community oriented” agency.

     Look, but don’t touch.
    Keep that in mind if you find yourself around Flash, Pickens County Sheriff’s new highly decorated K-9 just in from the Savannah-Chatham Police Department.
    “He’s not a social dog at all,” said Flash’s long-time handler Chris Tucker, a Pickens native who’s also highly decorated and also just in from the coastal law agency. “He doesn’t want to play or be a pet at all. He just wants to work.”
See this week's print or online edition for the full story.

County out third planning and development director in under a year

Pickens County Seal    While he would not release details at this time, Pickens Commission Chair Rob Jones confirmed Monday, July 6 that Alberto Torres is no longer employed by the county as planning and development director.  

     See this week's online or print edition for full story.