General news and features
photo/Cherokee County Fire Marshall
Cherokee County Fire and Emergency Services responded to a fire this afternoon, shortly before 1:30, at 410 North Sharp Mountain Church Lane in Ball Ground.
Greg Erdely, Field Operations Chief for Cherokee County Fire and Emergency Services, said that the mobile home was fully involved when he arrived on the scene. The homeowner, 73 year old Harold Jones, said that he had gone to
The Pickens County Board of Commissioners look over numbers at a recent hearing on the proposed tax increase.
The public made it clear they do not approve of a proposed tax hike to give the county an additional 13 percent in operating funds during two meetings at the county administration building Thursday.
The meeting was required for any government seeking a tax increase, with a final hearing this Thursday, Sept. 15, at 5 p.m. and the commissioners expected to pass the increased millage in a meeting directly afterwards at 5:30 p.m.
This move would raise the county millage to 8.2, up from 7.22 last year.
See full story in this week's print or online edition, including a by-the-numbers interview with CFO Faye Harvey.
Click here to access the special Georgia Marble Festival publication, which includes everything you need to know about the weekend-long event.
During the first full weekend in October, Jasper, Georgia and the entire Marble Valley of Pickens County host the annual Georgia Marble Festival. Thousands of people throughout the U.S. come to experience the rich heritage of the area and learn about the marble industry. There are many activities going on during this two day celebration including a road race, parade, motorcycle ride & expo, fine arts exhibit, arts & crafts booths, food,
ATLANTA, GA – With thousands of Haiti residents recently devastated by Hurricane Matthew, well-meaning Georgians will consider donating to charities providing victim assistance. Secretary of State Brian Kemp encourages Georgians to research the organizations seeking donations for disaster relief efforts to avoid being scammed by fake charities.
“When a catastrophe of this nature occurs, con artists seize the opportunity to prey on donors by holding themselves out as legitimate charitable organizations,” stated Secretary Kemp. “Do not be fooled by these scams. There are several, helpful resources that will help you verify the existence of a charity and make sure your contribution will reach Haiti’s hurricane victims in a meaningful way.”
Secretary Kemp issued the following tips for charitable giving:
- Research charities before you contribute. A number of online resources can help you research charities. The Better Business Bureau, the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance, GuideStar, Charity Navigator, and Charity Watch provide detailed information about non-profit organizations. Also, take time to review the organization’s own website.
- Take the time to make sure that your money is really going to help those in need. Ask how much of your donation will go to the cause. The percentage of your contribution that a charity spends on fundraising activities, employee salaries, or expenses which do not directly support the charity’s stated mission varies greatly by organization.
- Be wary of telephone solicitors asking for contributions. If you are solicited by phone, ask the individual to put the request in writing and provide detailed information and material about the charity and its program. Also, ask if the person conducting the solicitation is a volunteer or a paid fundraiser for that charity.
- Never give your credit card, debit card, or bank account information to a telephone solicitor. Be particularly cautious of couriers willing to rush out to your home or business to pick up your contribution. Avoid sending cash donations. Donate by credit card or check directly to the charity. Do not make payments to individuals. If your contribution exceeds $250, you should receive a letter from the charity confirming its charitable status as well as the amount of your donation.
- If a tax deduction is important to you, make sure the organization has a tax-deductible status with the Internal Revenue Service. “Tax exempt,” “non-profit”, and “tax-deductible” are not synonymous. Only “tax-deductible” means your contribution is deductible on your income tax return. If you contribute to a charity, make sure you get a receipt which shows the amount of your contribution and states that the contribution is tax-deductible. The IRS has a searchable database (“Exempt Organizations Check”) of organizations eligible to receive tax-deductible charitable contributions.
- Not all organizations with charitable-sounding names are actually charities. Many organizations adopt names confusingly similar to well-known charities. Be sure you know exactly who is asking for your contribution. Sites like Charity Navigator can provide you a list of a charities that have a history of working on massive disasters. Here is a list of suggested charities from Charity Navigator:
Catholic Medical Mission Board
Children of the Nations
Haitian Health Foundation
Heart to Heart International
Hope for Haiti’s Children
Save the Children
Brian Kemp has been Secretary of State since January 2010. Among the office’s wide-ranging responsibilities, the Secretary of State is charged with conducting secure, accessible, and fair elections, the registration of corporations, and the regulation of securities, charities, and professional license holders. For more information about the office, go to www.sos.ga.gov or follow Secretary Kemp on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or YouTube.