Get Adobe Flash player


Optimist STAR Banquet recognizes students and teachers


L-R:  (Students Seated/Teachers Standing) Brad Rutledge/Sue Gibbons, Kyle Watters/Bobby Timms, Johnson Collins/Joe Wright, Jesse Brooks/Christi Hobgood, Andrew Haygood/Michael Oubre (STAR Student & Teacher), Olivia Parker/Nikki Towery, Savannah Friedman/Gail Culbreth, Abygayle Gibson/Lisa Payne, Kari Henke/Robbie Cheatham and Ryan Evans/Lynn Cantrell. 


Submitted by Reeder Burch

      The 2015 STAR Banquet is set for Thursday evening, March 5, at Chattahoochee Technical College. The Optimist Club of Jasper is the local sponsor of the STAR Program. Andrew Haygood has been named the 2015 STAR Student of Pickens High School and he selected Mr. Michael Oubre as his STAR Teacher.

The PAGE STAR (Student Teacher Achievement Recognition) Program begins each year in participating high schools throughout Georgia when the STAR Student is named and chooses a STAR Teacher to share in this recognition. The students and teachers are honored by their schools and receive recognition in their communities from one of the more than 165 statewide civic organizations and businesses that serve as local sponsors for the STAR Program.  

State revenues up 3 percent in January


Gov. Nathan Deal announced today that Georgia’s net tax collections for January totaled $1.86 billion, an increase of $53.9 million, or 3 percent, compared to January 2014. Year-to-date, net tax collections totaled $11.47 billion, which was an increase of $570.75 million, or 5.2 percent, compared to the previous fiscal year, when net tax revenues totaled almost $10.9 billion through seven months. Year-to-date gross tax revenues, before refunds and distributions to local governments, totaled $14.88 billion, which was an increase of $834 million, or 5.9 percent, compared to the year-to-date total of $14.05 billion in January 2014.


The changes within the following tax categories made up the majority of January’s net tax increase:
Individual Income Tax:  Individual Income Tax collections for January totaled approximately $1.06 billion, down from $1.07 billion in January 2014, for a decrease of $12.75 million, or -1.2 percent.


The following notable components within Individual Income Tax account for the net decrease:

•      Individual Withholding payments were down $18.75 million, or -2.2 percent

•      Individual Income Tax refunds issued were up $41 million, or 221.3 percent

•      Estimated payments were up nearly $31.5 million, or 16.3 percent 
•      All other Individual Tax categories including Income Tax Return payments were up $15.5 million


Sales and Use TaxGross Sales Tax collections deposited during the month totaled $1.02 billion, which was an increase of $77.25 million, or 8.2 percent, compared to FY 2014. Furthermore, net Sales Tax collections increased nearly $45.75 million, or 9.1 percent, compared to the previous year, when net Sales Tax totaled $498.75 million. The adjusted distribution of sales tax to local governments totaled $474.75 million, which was an increase of $31 million over last year’s distribution. Refunds of overpayments increased just $0.5 million year-over-year.

Corporate Income Tax:  Corporate Income Tax collections for January increased nearly $2 million, or 13.9 percent, compared to last year, when Corporate Tax revenues totaled almost $14 million.

The following notable components within Corporate Income Tax combine to make up the net increase:
•      Corporate Tax refunds issued were down roughly $1.75 million, or -10.1 percent

•      Corporate Income Tax Return payments increased $2.85 million, or 119 percent

•      Estimated payments were down $4.5 million, or -16.8 percent

•      All other Corporate Tax categories, including S-Corp and Net Worth payments, increased $1.9 million


Fundraising in roads under council review


No street fundraisers while Jasper officials study safety issues



boot-drive kayla



Fundraisers like this one on Highway 53 have alerted city officials to safety issues they create. 

Civic organizations, sports teams and other groups will  not be permitted to hold fundraisers on Jasper streets until the city council works out a new permitting policy.

The new policy that will govern groups holding out boots, selling donuts or doing other things to solicit funds on city roads is expected to be in place before the spring sports season. 

Veterans Memorial Park in the works

Vet. groups meet to strengthen ties



Marine Corps League Det. #1280 Commandant Jacob Clark, American Legion Post #149 Commander Ron Wheeler and Wayne Poore (Marine Corps League and the American Legion) survey what they hope will be the site of a Veterans Memorial Park. The site is at the corner of Lee Newton Park, close to the Pickens County Senior Center. Inset: An artist rendering of the Veterans Memorial Park in the works.  


       For the men and women sitting around this particular table on this particular day, honoring veterans is serious business.

     Representatives of local veterans groups weren’t in uniform, but hats and sweaters with seals gave affiliations away. The Disabled American Veterans, the American Legion and the Marine Corps League were all bellied up, as well as the Jasper Lions Club - the civic group that has organized the Veterans Day

Weaver looks forward with enthusiasm




An enthusiastic Mayor John Weaver tells Rotary that paving will begin in the spring do to SPLOST funds and talks continue to improve traffic flow in the city using roundabouts. 

By Max Caylor

Rotary member

        “Come spring we are going to use our SPLOST funds to pave as many roads as possible in the city of Jasper,” said an excited Mayor of Jasper John Weaver speaking at Rotary. He is in his 22nd year of office.

Weaver and prominent local physician Dr. Carl McCurdy attended Shorter College during the same years.  McCurdy, introducing the Mayor, stated, “He worked full time and graduated with honors in school