Tuesday, January 21, 2020
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According to a story in the medical journal Lancet, it’s not what people are eating that is killing them, so much as what they’re not eating. Americans are not eating enough fruit, vegetables, nuts and whole grains. How are you doing?

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Visitor Comments

Submitted By: Aldo RosadoSubmitted: 11/13/2019
College is always the best answer. graduate from High School and go to College get your career fired up and I believe that is the best thing Fitzgerald can do for the students who are willing to learn more and move up the ladder in the world instead of girls getting pregnant and remaining single on welfare.

Submitted By: Steven ClarkSubmitted: 8/14/2019
I am concerned. Georgia’s population over the past 60 years has nearly tripled. Her economy is increased as well, with the 2015 median household income raising to $51,244, just below the national average. This is a great thing that shows the growth of the state I love. Fitzgerald however, has been stagnant for decades. Besides a growth spurt from 1970 to 1980, the population is nearly the same as it was in 1950. The economy has not faired any better. The median household income is only $20,805, less than half the national average. This puts over 30% of the population under the poverty line. Several factors come into play to create this situation. Lack of skilled labor, the cities rural location, only 34% of the population between 18 and 44 years old, and a lack of primary lines of communication. Do not get me wrong. Fitzgerald produces outstanding individuals that contribute greatly to their community. It is just that Fitzgerald ends up NOT being their community. These individuals leave Fitzgerald in search of greener pastures (ie; higher income, better homes, greater opportunities). I do not have a solution. So here I ask you. What can we do as a city to fix this? How do we bring in the businesses we need? How do we produce and maintain skilled labor? What infrastructure can we create to make Fitzgerald more appealing? Sorry for the pun, but, how do we make Fitzgerald Great Again?

Submitted By: Bobby WhitmanSubmitted: 8/4/2019
I miss Jerry Prior. A true editor who had his finger on the pulse of this community. Just goes to show you that nepotism, in some instances, can produce drawbacks that linger a quarter century or more. Who knew back then, that our once great paper would succumb to the constant erosion of wishy-washy liberal tripe... and 'this and that' bonehead blather...while our nation is on fire. Help us, O' Lord, in this trying times. We need substance, and not continual ad hominems against our current President. Anyone waiting to read just one paragraph in our paper of record--about a very real deep state, colluding with a very corrupt media, while walking hand in hand with the democrat national committee (aka hillary clinton AND barack hussein obama)...anyone waiting for just one sliver of news on that huge Elephant-In-The-Room front---will be waiting a long time...as our (herald) has laryngitis.

EDITOR'S NOTE: I miss Jerry Pryor too. I also miss civil discourse. I miss having a calm back and forth discussion with people who have different opinions. Instead we have Sean Hannity and Rachel Maddow rants, which are hateful and attack people personally instead of offering a substantive opinion. You make broad attacks on me to what point? I haven't respected a President since George H.W. Bush. I have said so and I have given my reasons. The fact that you are a Trump supporter, and I'm not, somehow makes me the bad guy. He is my President too. I don't disagree with everything he does, but with the way he disrespects many of the American people. If I don't like what he does, I can say so. If you don't like me for that, you can say so. Isn't America a great country! TCA

Submitted By: Steven W. ClarkSubmitted: 5/22/2019
I do love opening your pages and finding out what has been happening in the town I left some 20 years ago. Unfortunately, I find your pages lacking in substance. So many tragic and intriguing events have been going on in Fitzgerald and Ben Hill County over the past few months, closure in the murder of Tara Grinstead, the Colony Bankcorp and CFO Transition, movies and TV shows being filmed, and industry and commerce moving in… But I did not find this information in the Herald Leader. I found it in WALB News Albany, WXIA News Atlanta, American Banker NY City, GloveNewswire Los Angeles. When is the Herald Leader going to do more than just tell me how the chickens are doing?

Editor's Note: Steven, Thank you for your comments. While we may miss some things, we make very attempt to cover all the events in our community. We have covered movies, schools, local government and other events. We regularly have business news. We did a 56-page edition in April on local business and industry. We have covered associated Tara Grinstead events. There has been no closure, as there is currently a state Supreme Court appeal pending before trial can begin.  However, we are always trying to do better. Thank you for reading.

Submitted By: Steven W. ClarkSubmitted: 4/1/2019
Fitzgerald native actor Alexander Kane (Brandon Roberts) was seen again on the big screen in Unplanned, a pro-life story of former Planned Parenthood clinic director Abby Johnson. Kane’s success with the releases of Christmas Manger and A Country Christmas Album and his upcoming appearance in Hell on the Boarder (coming later this year) show that this actor is the real deal. As an out of state Fitz, I’d like to hear more about his success and future projects. I believe this will be fun for the readers and interesting and exciting news for the people of Fitzgerald to hear about. I grew up with this guy and now he’s an Actor!!! I just think I’d like to see more about it in the paper rather than IMDB. (P.S. Don’t judge him on Dawnseeker. It was a trash fire and every actor starts somewhere.)

Submitted By: Hurricane AlleySubmitted: 3/20/2019
There have been a number of violent demonstrations at some major colleges during the past year. Most of them were due to a group of students not wanting a certain speaker to be invited to speak, or due to something a professor wrote. Many of these students pay as much as $60,000 per year to attend college. The students believe that the college should support the beliefs of the students attending. These students are members of the (Iphone generation). These are the first kids that grew up with Iphones. Some experts believe that the constant use of cellphones and lack of free-play in early childhood are detrimental. Most experts agree that cell-phone use should be limited to two hours per day for children.

Submitted By: Hurricane AlleySubmitted: 3/20/2019

Of course, schools are not like industries. Industries have control over their raw materials. Schools have to administer to every child that enters the door. The average number of students with disabilities in the state of Georgia is 10%. Is there something in the water? The average cost to teach a student in Georgia for one year is approximately $8,000. For a student with a disability, the cost doubles. There are currently 300 special education teaching jobs open in Georgia.

Submitted By: Hurricane AlleySubmitted: 3/20/2019
So the new high school will be built south of Fitzgerald off highway 319 close to Ed Ward Road. We a owe a lot of gratitude to the construction committee for working so hard to make the best decision. There were scores of items to consider in order to make an intelligent decision. Building the school at a new location will prevent the student body from being divided and some attending class in mobile classrooms for two years.

Submitted By: Hurricane AlleySubmitted: 3/19/2019
Fitzgerald High plans to begin a "Hall of Fame" organization soon. Anyone can provide suggestions for the committee. For the first group of inductees, there are several names that come to mind easily. Lauren Hargrove or "The Flash" of the 1948 football team should be near the top as well as Alan "Snake" Dixon who played for the Minnesota Vikings. Most everyone remembers Jack Paulk No.41 that ran up and down the field for 48 consecutive high school games and played at Georgia Tech. Many remember Victor Perry, the massive 270 lb. tackle that started at Georgia for 3 years and played for the St. Louis Cardinals. There are many others to be considered including coaches. We have had numerous great wrestlers. We can also remember the great track athletes from the 90s. There are probably some great athletes that performed for Queensland and Monitor to be considered.

Submitted By: Hurricane AlleySubmitted: 3/19/2019
I think most experts agree that poverty has a great effect on student performance in school. Every school performance report I see displays economic data. According to Index Mundy, Ben Hill County is the third poorest county in Georgia. Our county has 38% of its people living at or below the poverty level. Our school system and our community really have our work cut out for us.

Submitted By: Hurricane AlleySubmitted: 3/19/2019
It saddens me to hear of Coach Rush Propst's demise at Colquitt County. He coached some great teams and has been one of the most successful coaches in Georgia. If he actually did what he is accused of,then probably ahouldn't be teaching and coaching in any high school. He will probably have to coach college in order to earn close to his current salary of $141,000 per year.

Submitted By: David CarterSubmitted: 3/13/2019
Here is another idea to help teachers to get students to behave. Allow teachers to have their cell phones on in class. When a student will not behave, just call the parent immediately. If the parent is at work, call the place of work and ask to speak with the parent.

Submitted By: Hurricane AlleySubmitted: 3/13/2019
A parent discussed with the Board of Education last night that our school system has a state performance grade of F. Also, poor discipline and behavior is a real problem. The speaker said that parents are pulling their children out of the Ben Hill School system. I suggest, at the high school school, that school uniforms be required next year, Also, all cell phones should be kept in the students book-bag all day except maybe for lunch.

Submitted By: Hurricane AlleySubmitted: 3/13/2019
The school construction committee submitted their recommendation at the school board meeting last night. The committee recommended to build the new high school on HWY 319 South of Turkey Creek and North of Mt. Olive Church. The new school will be located on the West side of the highway. Construction will probably begin summer of 2020 and take 2 years to complete at a cost of approximately $45,000,000.

Submitted By: Hurricane AlleySubmitted: 3/6/2019
The school construction committee meets today (Wed) at 6:00 at the board office. Anyone interested that cannot attend may view the meeting by going to the BOE website. The superintendent should return tonight with updated bids for new property purchase.

Submitted By: Hurricane AlleySubmitted: 3/1/2019
The new high school advisory committee really has a tough job. They have to decide what suggestions to make to the BOE. Currently there are 3 locations in mind.Two are near Turkey Creek and the other is the current location. The current bids are $20,000 and $12,000 per acre for 100 acres. It is difficult to imagine that $1,200,000 is only about 2% of the total cost of the new school.

Submitted By: Legal EagleSubmitted: 2/25/2019
Why has the Board of Education started paying for a safety deposit box at Colony Bank? There are safes at every school and the Baord Office. What is in this mysterious box? What secrets does it hold? Don't believe me? Check this month's expense paid report.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/19/2019
I have kids that live in my area and every time I look around they are out of school. Winter breaks? really? Spring breaks? then out for summer. Not to mention teachers days, Christmas holidays. So how many days to they actually go to school? No wonder a lot of kids are getting into trouble. They have too much idle time on their hands. It doesn't make sense. Most parents work so these kids are home alone getting into trouble. We need more school time and not so many break days.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/15/2019
There has to be some way to bring in a different grocery store. All we have is Wal-Mart and Harvey's. I think we deserve another option. Wal-Mart is so packed because there's not much choice.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/7/2019
I always wondered why it's alright or even allowed for 4-wheelers and dirt bikes to rip up and down residential areas just because they live out on dirt roads. They mess these roads up worse and actual vehicles travel on these roads. Maybe there needs to be a big area with lots of dirt and mud for them to get their amusement. Not our county roads.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/7/2019
If the town is so concerned with drugs around here then why are there certain areas around here still known for drug activity. A friend of mine lives out around the sturgeon creek area and I have heard that area was known for meth. If it's known for that, why isn't something being done about it?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 1/10/2019
What is the point of calling the animal control number if nothing gets done? All the woman says that answers the phone is "I'll make sure they are notified of your situation". Yeah right, she hung up the phone and went on about her business. I have called every week for the past month, nothing has happened. There are bulldogs running around my neighborhood and these owners don't even care. Something must be done.

Submitted By: Worried citizen Submitted: 12/18/2018

Most people as citizens of Fitzgerald and Ben Hill county go out of town to shop eat or whatever is because we don’t have anything. Also the fact that fitzgerald is putting way to much into the grand instead of putting up things that will draw attention. Put speakers up and down the streets not in just one area either. Have it where we can get a beer and have designated area to be to have a nice cold beer talk to other citizens. Everyone keeps referring to Helen Georgia as in they're trying to make Fitzgerald tourist attraction like Helen. So to reiterate we need some speakers up-and-down all streets downtown playing music we need area where we can sit and have an adult beverage and talk to other families and citizens of Fitzgerald we need less grand theater stuff and more activities for adults and children. plays and shows are Nice and all but to attract people you need things that they want and the things that they would want are areas that are clean and inviting to the children and thier families.

Submitted By: David CarterSubmitted: 11/8/2018
When all is said and done, the best idea is going to be to keep with the original plan for the new high school.More money will be available if that is done. Students in the new high school will benefit greatly. Safety and discipline will be much, much better provided. Currently, the halls are a maze in which the students can't help but bump into each other, among other problems.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/2/2018
I saw on the news where Tifton has already started their College and Career Academy. Hopefully we will see this come true to Ben Hill County.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 9/27/2018
The weirdest things happened the other day. Mind you I live 8-10 miles out of town. I was letting my dogs out and I heard sirens from a distance but they became closer. Suddenly 2 deputy cars come flying down our dirt road and flew into the neighbors driveway. Then 2 Georgia Med ambulances and a Georgia Med truck show up. By the time I got my dogs back in the house, they were all gone. It took these 5 vehicles longer to load up and drive out here than the amount of time they were there. I don't know what was going on but it looked like a waste of time and tax payers money.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 9/6/2018
In a matter of days, one young brought the elites of ben hill co. to their knees. he has them fearful for their job I hear.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/27/2018
I think the move to make Fitzgerald High School a College and Career Academy is a step in the right direction for education in Ben Hill County. I believe choosing a career early in life will set your goals for a brighter future. I mean, how much reading, writing and arithmetic do you really need? Then you could actually have something to put on a resume or possibly have recruiters come to the school looking for new people to hire. This is great news for this area.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/11/2018
So, I was driving down the Jacksonville Hwy. and low and behold; they are stopping traffic again for more road work. The highway looks fine to me. I wish they'd spend this much time on the side county dirt roads that really need attention. I've seen piles of crushing rock at the county farm; why don't they bring that to our roads?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 7/13/2018
I seriously wish people would stop littering. I live out in the county and travel several dirt roads to get to my house. I see trash everywhere. it's disgusting. I clean up anything that is close to my house. I'm constantly picking up cigarette packs, beer cans, etc. and that's just around my mailbox area. People don't respect other peoples property. I feel like if you throw trash in my home area that I am being disrespected.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/30/2018
I don't know if this will upset anyone or not. I think people should purchase life insurance. It doesn't cost that much and you can purchase at least enough for your funeral costs. I don't think people should set up a "go fund me" account for funeral expenses. We are all going to die one day, no one wants to talk about it but it is something you need to plan ahead for. The funeral homes need to get their money and it's not fair to them to do the nice work they do and not get paid.

Submitted By: Bobby WhitmanSubmitted: 6/26/2018
I will not purchase another newspaper until it gets another editor. The current occupant's anti-Trump leanings are so typical of left that can-not stomach that Donald Trump won the election fair and square...with over 300 electoral college votes. The last administration has caused this nation unfathomable pain...and the seeds of division were planted during his terms in office. (Leftist judges controlling the lower courts...FBI, DOJ, IRS, and State Department officials running rouge...a special counsel out there deliberately investigating the WRONG party...and a biased media running amok, to where it filters down to small insignificant rags-- like the Herald-Leader has become. It's now a ship adrift without a captain...or an original thought in its page. All he sees is Trump not playing nice...while ignoring all those Obama-and-Hillary-infested types out there pulling the strings of discontent. I may not be able to protest much. But I can stop buying al least one leftist rag.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Yes, you can. Mr. Whitman. The Herald-Leader is not required reading for anyone. If it offends you, I encourage you to read elsewhere. We will continue to offer a variety of opinions on our editorial pages, because our readers do not all think alike, and to report on the news of our community. 

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/9/2018
So, starting July 1st, it will be against the law to be on your cell phone while driving, texting, or anything else involving your phone. These cops around here better keep their eyes peeled because I see it now all the time and I doubt most people will abide by these rules. I mean, look how many DUI's still happen and everyone know it's against the aw to drink and drive. Let's see how many people gets points against their license.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/6/2018
Why would the people who repair potholes do a bad job of it? I mean, if you there with the right supplies, why botch it up? I was going to the dump on the Sturgeon Creek Church Road and there were two places that look like they TRIED to repair them but it looks like it's already turning into a pothole again.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 5/22/2018
I'm not sure who's in control of all this road construction but those people need to visit the roads around here that really need paving. I was going down the Jacksonville Hwy the other day and thought they were done with the re-paving but NO, they are re-paving what they've already re-paved....what? The Sturgeon Creek area is like a swamp when it rains. The County Commissioner needs to travel down it right after it rains and he'll see what we deal with.

Submitted By: Kimberly BlackstockSubmitted: 5/16/2018
I lost my grandmother to Alzheimer’s and I have worked in the senior care industry for over 15 years . I currently work with hospice and daily I see the effects that Alzheimer’s has on our senior population. I understand the disease’s impact / the physical and emotional costs of the disease. In June, I will be traveling to Washington D.C. with other Alzheimer’s Advocates from across the nation to meet with Congress to discuss this growing epidemic. Congress has a chance to take decisive action passing the Building Our Largest Dementia (BOLD) Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act (S. 2076/H.R. 4256). Endorsed by the Alzheimer’s Association, the BOLD Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act would create an Alzheimer’s public health infrastructure across the country to implement effective Alzheimer's interventions including increasing early detection and diagnosis, reducing risk and preventing avoidable hospitalizations Join me in asking Representative Austin Scott , Representative Sanford Bishop and Sen. Johnny Isakson and Sen. David Perdue to fight for the millions of Americans affected by Alzheimer’s by sponsoring the BOLD Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act. .

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 5/15/2018
@tlw:I agree with you completely. Just about everyone except for the landlords, banks and business owners are all one payment from being homeless. That's why children grow up and stay home because they can't afford to branch out on their own. But even for parents, it's hard to maintain a roof over your head. Basic living expenses get higher and higher; groceries, clothes, and if your lucky enough to have a vehicle, you have to have insurance or you can't buy your tag; which is another expense. No wonder there is so much depression and even people resorting to theft. People are hungry and need a place to live. But if they can barely keep the Christian Kitchen going, you know for sure there will be no homeless shelter. I pray everyone to finds their way.

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 5/14/2018
Fitzgerald is too small and poor to have a homeless shelter, but it needs one. This past week I've had four people ask if they could sleep on my couch. Since the city is so poor, how about planting fruit trees in the parks and putting out some benches for the homeless?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 5/3/2018
I know we have lots of people in and out of jail around here and there will continue to be more. It's not just here but everywhere. There will never be a short supply of people that made bad choices. But for the people around here that have to do community service; there is a short list of places that participate in this. How can they give hours to the community if there is no where for them to go? I think this would be a good housekeeping position, pick up litter around town, wash cop cars, make them sit with elderly at the nursing homes; anything to make them wake up and realize this is not the life they should be living.

Submitted By: Brittany JacksonSubmitted: 4/29/2018
You really don't understand those whom actually look forward to those meals everyday at twelve o'clock, because they don't know when their next one is going to be. Those babies who get those boxes whenever something may have went wrong in those renewals. Those families who once fought hard for a normal life and lost everything due to a fire and has to wear clothes donated to kitchen.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 4/26/2018
I know education is important; I myself graduated from high school. But there are still some young adults that don't have a diploma or GED. I know a young woman in this situation. She was told the hospital needed help in housekeeping, so she picked up a couple of outfits from the 2nd hand store and was told to be there at 6:00am, which she was. After showing up they asked if she had a diploma and she said no. They said they couldn't hire her without a diploma. Really? You need a piece of paper to push a mop or broom? And that GED is not easy either, I know someone that barely got through it. Everything on the GED has nothing to do with working in housekeeping anywhere. I'm not trying to promote quitting school but this girl has had a rough time. She just wants a job. It's just not fair. GED for a fast food restaurant, GED for housekeeping or GED for stocking shelves. I just don't see why this small town with hardly any jobs at all makes it hard on someone when they do find one. She's not trying to be a rocket scientist. She just wants to work.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 4/22/2018
I want to add more comments regarding Fitzgerald. Everyone that lives here has to admit this town isn't what it once was. There use to be several sewing plants, factories including Delco, Shaw, Modern Fibers & Coachman just t name a few. A person could actually quit a job and find another one. If you didn't have a GED, factories would still hire them. There aren't even bag boys anymore because they make the cashiers do this job. I mean, the only opportunity someone might have is going to Wiregrass and getting educated for a job out of town. It's hard for the average family to make it anymore. I am not the only one that sees this. Whether we blame Obama for sending jobs overseas and for all the cut backs is one thing but the bottom line is there are no opportunities here like before.

Submitted By: Aldo RosadoSubmitted: 4/18/2018
I've read comments from citizens about Fitzgerald. Let me say this from a personal perspective. Stanley Mitchell and myself are the only two Pro Bass Anglers from Fitzgerald. I suffered an accident with a severely torn rotator cuff after winning my fourth Consecutive tournament and it ended my career, but it all started in Fitzgerald at Paulk Park. Today I am retired living the American dream bought a huge house and still fish, but it all started in Fitzgerald and it set me for life. Fitzgerald is not a bad place to live if you got big hopes and dreams I am living proof and so is Stanley Mitchell were the only pro anglers from Fitzgerald. Seek your goals and one day you can spend a million dollars too.

Submitted By: Susan BarrineauSubmitted: 4/12/2018
The Christian Kitchen is in danger of closing. As you know, funds are all donations, and costs are kept as low as possible. This is a much needed community service and it does have the support of the wonderful folks in Fitzgerald. However, the largest cost is utilities and the word is that all city owned buildings pay only a nominal amount, whereas the Kitchen has to pay the whole charge. Why? The utility company will be the cause of the closure. Can you be generous and donate utilities at a very small cost like all the rest of city buildings?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 4/11/2018
I'm trying to figure out why they are building all these apartment complexes on the Dewey McGlamry Rd. I mean, there aren't any jobs around here, people are leaving Fitzgerald for a better life, so who's going to be living in these apartments? Don't you have to have a job to afford rent? Or are these going to be "based on income" apartments? If that's the case, there will be a lot of empty houses around here.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 4/3/2018
I want to know why roads around town are being repaved when there are so many dirt roads in dire need of pavement? The sturgeon creek area gets so bad when it rains and when they scrape them it seems to get worse, especially when it rains. We could use some of that asphalt around here.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 3/26/2018
@I Vote; I hear you on the animal control issue. I know people have pets but when you have bulldogs running freely and treeing your cats, things need to change. These dogs come in my yard and are scaring my cats half to death. I have dogs as well but they stay inside and when we go outside we can't even enjoy walking around the yard because of these other dogs. I called as well and as of today; still haven't seen anyone.

Submitted By: I VoteSubmitted: 3/25/2018
Animal Control in this town is a joke. If you want to keep bankers hours, get a job as a banker. My neighbors know your hours and turn their dogs loose as soon as you ride past our neighborhood on your way home. Called the mayor, made police reports, been there done that got the poop on my shoes to prove it.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 3/22/2018
So a strange dog started hanging around our area. I called animal control and they asked if it has bitten anyone, I said not yet. I mean, why is a dog allowed to just run freely around the neighborhood and nothing can be done? I keep my dogs in my yard and I think everyone else should do the same. What happened to being able to protect your own area? I will protect my family and this does of course include all my pets.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 3/15/2018
It is crazy to me that a property owner has to get their property surveyed again. So, why don't the surveyors put some kind of posts up that aren't easily hidden by the elements of weather? They put a steel rod in the ground and expect future land owners to find it. It causes arguments between neighbors when you have a defiant neighbor that pushes your limits about where their yard ends and yours begins. Then again if I get it surveyed, I don't know how to keep these neighbors plus their defiant kids off my property. I just don't have the funds for surveying or a fence. I use to love it out here in the county but not I feel like I made a mistake moving out here.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 3/8/2018
Why is it that a person reports for probation or monthly drug test and it can't be noted because ONE certain person isn't there. They need more than one person in this position. It's all at their convenience but I bet if that person didn't report on a certain day, they would come after them. I don't see how these offices and half of these businesses stay running. It's like there's too many chiefs and not enough indians. No one knows what do because of

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 3/8/2018
How in the world can a person fresh out of jail get a job when you know employers will do a background check? I don't think it should be allowed. People make mistakes, why judge them on past events? People learn from their mistakes and want to change and move on BUT not around this little town. Money is definitely being made off these people in jail, that's why the system doesn't want them to improve. Something has to change for these people. Then, they tell them they can't leave the area because of being on probation. Why not crawl under a rock? Life for these people is basically over because no one will give them a second chance.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/20/2018
I don't think the cops around here deputies around here should be allowed to publicly humiliate a person they've arrested when they see them again in public. It happened to a friend of mine, she was doing her community service when this person told everything about her to everyone at her job. Is this wrong or not?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/18/2018
@concerned; Maybe you could mention the particular roads you are talking about to the Sheriff Dept. They could let the men clean it as their community service.

Submitted By: a citizenSubmitted: 2/18/2018
We have a liberal media lapdog heading the only paper in town, who is personally jealous of President Donald Trump. His name is Tim Anderson. Sad.

Submitted By: ConcernedSubmitted: 2/16/2018
I am very disheartened by the sight of all the trash on the roads coming into Fitzgerald. Evidently, it is blowing out of people's trucks. This does not look inviting for people driving into our town. What can be done?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/13/2018
I watch cop shows all the time.I keep hearing stories of things being brought in to inmates by trustees and jailers. It happens everywhere; even in Ben Hill County. Not all people in authority can be trusted. This authority goes to their head and think they can do whatever they want. But they can lose their job just like anyone else. It takes the right person to get it taken care of.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/12/2018
I think the health department needs to check out the jail cells. I was told by a young woman that was in there recently that there was mold in the showers and on the walls and all they do in there is paint over it. You don't have to put peoples lives at risk just because they made mistakes in life.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 12/8/2017
It's such a shame that just because it rains out in the county, buses, delivery trucks and most people that live out there get stuck or can't get through the roads. They are really slick after just a little rain. I think roads that especially are traveled by the school buses should be paved or graveled or something driveable. During the winter months are the worse. It's cold, rainy and the people out in the county are just about trapped. Not everyone owns a 4-wheel drive vehicle or one that can drive through muddy, slicky roads. It's very bad in the Sturgeon Creek, Flint Dr & Plantation Rd. area.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/29/2017
I think the county should find the funds to pay counselors for inmates in jail. I know preachers sometimes go up to the jails but sometimes these people just need someone to talk to. Maybe the counselors could find the root to the real problem as to why they are in there. Sometimes just having someone to talk to could change these peoples lives. And it is not always blamed on a bad upbringing; they've just made bad choices. Can something like this take place?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/17/2017
I think the town committee should find a way to get people fresh out of jail a job. There should be program started with businesses around here. When someone gets out of jail there are so many negatives going against them right from the start. They also have fines to pay and how do they do this without a job? I think if you all put your heads together, you could come up with something. There's got to be a way for these people to become productive members of our society.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/15/2017
Dear Editor: So, your last sentence was "which is available to the public on request". So how is publishing it in the paper requested? I've heard so many people ask the same question, so I thought I'd post it. I can see obituaries being in the paper but still don't see why the whole town needs to know about people being arrested and why.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/14/2017
Like being arrested isn't humiliating enough when it's posted in the newspaper; but why does a persons address have to be listed as well? Maybe someone doesn't want everyone to know where they live or neighbors not knowing their neighbor will now know because they realize the address is in their neighborhood.


Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/7/2017
I know the whole world is getting worse but I pray our little town could rise above all this. If we had more good paying jobs for people and activities for families maybe our town would prosper and be an enjoyable place to live. If people that rental properties would have a decent price on their rent instead of trying to get rich off of people, maybe people would feel like they are living a good life in a home. I just feel like the people in charge should take action and sit back and look at the town they live in and see if there is something they can do for people instead of looking for ways to get rich. You can't take it with you when you die, so why not make peoples lives more enjoyable? I pray for this town and the people in it every single day.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 9/20/2017
Why can't Fitzgerald keep or even bring in new industries anymore? There are way less jobs around here than a few years ago. Something is always shutting down around here; then on the other hand, you have fast food places being built. How can people go out to eat when they can't find a job? So many vacant factory buildings that could have something in it could be used. I just don't get it. And you wonder why so many young people are getting in trouble and getting on drugs; it's because they can't find anything to do around here. Is Fitzgerald just a old aged, disability town?

Submitted By: Bobby WhitmanSubmitted: 9/5/2017
I sure am glad Donald trump is president. Such a refreshing change from all those people "acting" presidential. The media will never get it though. Their insanity has even trickled down to small town newspapers...who only regurgitate what they see on cnn. Apparently. Comparing Trump to the North Korean leader. But no mention of bill Clinton's role, who kicked that can down the road years ago (meaning north korea's nuclear capability. He said they only wanted it for energy purposes. Made a big speech about it and everything. The very same thing the oh-so-great Obama did with Iran.) Not one hint from our local paper about their parts in the matter. Our strident, local heralds seem only fixated on Donald Trump, the one who has to deal with these long-forming messes. Maybe he should just send them hundreds of billions of our taxpayer dollars, hoping kim jung will behave. He won't. Then they fawn over one of Trump's sternest critics, senator john mcCain. Who actually did vote to repeal Obamacare when Obama was president by the way. Yeah, took a whole lot of courage then, knowing Obama was waiting to veto it. No hint of any of that sort of news either--in that wonderful "This and That" diatribe. It's sad really, today's newspaper editors can't see through their own vainness. The GOP won. Like 'em or hate 'em. They're not worth much---but are miles ahead of hillary and her crowd. They won on the federal, state, and local levels. And are gonna win in 2018 too. So get over it...or don't. Many of us don't care. We're just glad Trump won. He's the man for these treacherous times. Don't need a president "acting" presidential right now. We need a steel spine in these trying times. Yall can have another pretty president when things get great again, and the economy comes back.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/21/2017
I hear all the time about loads of people around here being on meth, which some people refer to as (that stuff). Why is our law enforcement allowing this? Are they drug testing at jobs enough? Are they testing people on probation? And why do they turn their heads when they have to know how these people are getting it? What's in it for them?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/17/2017
So with all the news stories about confederate statues and monuments coming down; is Fitzgerald doing the same thing? We have streets named, we have a museum and I believe there is a house with a historic sign in front of it. I think it's all so sad, they are even talking about scraping the images off of Stone Mtn. I saw that story and it brought tears to my eyes, also because I had been there before. I hope nothing happens around here. Was that why Georgia changed it's flag?

Submitted By: A writer Submitted: 8/15/2017
Creative writing is something that has over the years been less and less of something that is encouraged in schools. There should be a section (even itf it's a small one) in the newspaper, so that children and teens in our area can share. Contact me

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/4/2017
I called the county about the roads in our area and they came out and went above and beyond what I was expecting. Sometimes it just takes a phone call and a good attitude to get something done. Thanks to the county road service.

Submitted By: DisapointedSubmitted: 5/20/2017
It is a sham how ppl that have rental property are allowed to rent some of the proerty that there trying to rent out in our community.Recently we where try to find something to rent in Fitzgerald ,and some of the places that was for 400 to 500 mth was not fit for animals to live in much less humans.Our commissioner and health inspector really needs to look into some of these places.This is why ppl are moved out our community

Submitted By: Bobby WhitmanSubmitted: 5/19/2017
Stock up your shelves, department stores. Looks like tim anderson of the herald-leader is gonna be crying about President Trump until he leaves office. That's why I like Trump, he shows you who everybody is. And tim's been outed...he's one of those bedwetting liberals. Read every one of his opinions with a grain of salt, especially you young folks. And if you don't know who Anderson is, he's the editor of own town newspaper...which, sadly, is the only one we got. He does that supposedly-cute This and That article every week...and also hides behind the tagline TCA on the left page of the opinion section. Trump's like a billion-times more talented than tim...and it obviously grates him.

TCA are my initials which I've used for over 20 years to designate my personal opinions. Not sure how that is hiding. But Whitman is entitled to his opinions as we all are. Tim Anderson

Submitted By: AlSubmitted: 5/17/2017
Why hasn't that eye sore of a mess at nicks auto been cleaned up,it sits in the heart of downtown. Let's take some pride in our downtown and around it neighborhood.

Submitted By: Bobby WhitmanSubmitted: 4/13/2017
Saw where a relative of a county commissioner was approved for one of those county-relief business loans. Smells fishy don't it?

Submitted By: Ed RobertsSubmitted: 3/8/2017
I recently read a story in which Georgia DOT is asking voters to create Regional Commissions in order to better facilitate the spending of what is designated as T-SPLOST funds. The Regional Commission in South Georgia will consist of 18 counties. A commissioner for each county will be appointed to the commission along with the mayors of the towns within said region. The idea is to four-lane highways such as SR 107 and SR 32 to I-75. Of the money raised for these (and other) projects, the Regional Commission will spend 75 percent of the funds accumulated. The remaining 25 percent will be returned to the member counties for their own personal uses. I don't about you, but this smacks of an Atlanta power-grab. Who appoints this commission? To whom do they answer? This makes me think of the European Union in which the countries of Western Europe were asked to subordinate their national sovereignties to a handful of non-elected officials in Brussels, Belgium. It reminds me of former President Barack Obama trying subordinate our Constitution as well as our Congress to the United Nations. Georgia citizens will have the opportunity to decide whether or not they want another form of socialism eminating from Atlanta when a special election will be held on March 21st to decide this issue. I, for one, plan to vote NO. I hope everyone else, who feels that elected officials have too long taken their constituents for granted, will vote the same. Thank you. Ed Roberts 149 Brunswick Avenue Fitzgerald, GA 31750-2326 229-423-3997

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 1/3/2017
So many employees don't take their job seriously. If you work in the public eye, you are representing that company. If you have a bad attitude or have bad hygiene, it makes the whole company have a bad reputation. It's not just about working your hours and going home, it's about being proud of the place you work for and making customers wanting to come back.

Submitted By: AlSubmitted: 12/28/2016
Why doesn't the town offer a large roll off dumpster so people can clean up our neighbohood and get rid of the large trash items in vacant lots and on porches. Someone needs to head project restore fitzgerald . Lets all take pride in our town.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 12/19/2016
Someone from the city needs to ride N. Sherman St. at night because a lot of the street lights and decorations are not lit up.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 12/1/2016
I saw a news story about local churches growing food for their members and the community. Why can't our churches do this? Most churches have land and could be growing some fruits and vegetables. We need to teach kids where food comes from and they need to stay away from fast food. Does anyone out there agree?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/23/2016
I always wondered why trash in dumpsters can't be burned? People who have to pay a high price each month for their dumpster to be dumped wonder the same thing. With it mainly being paper and plastic, if it was set on fire the only thing left would be cans. After all, it is in a medal container. People burn leaves and yard debris, so why can't this be done to eliminate trash?

Submitted By: Aldo RosadoSubmitted: 11/18/2016
Fish are in competition for food at Paulk Park Lake. During my recent dentist visit I spoke with a woman at Dr. Maris Dentistry that told me she had a hard time catching Bass at Paulk Park. I will tell you why. The Blues, Channels and Mud Cats have taken over the lake eating up the Bream and Crappie and Bass reducing their populations. It is the survival of the fittest. The species that have survived grow huge every year. On November 17, 2016 at 6:30 AM I seen huge 14 lb. Catfish feeding on the Breams...it was not Bass as some anglers would suspect. if you want to catch 30 lb. Catfish, just throw a bream on a bobber in the morning when their feeding or at night. As for the Bass it gets more tricky because they have also grown huge and feeding primarily on Golden Chubbs. The lake is loaded with them. So choosing the right color Rattle Trap will either make you feast on 10 and 12 lb. Bass or you will walk away from Paulk Park without a Bass on your stringer. I have fished this lake since 1996 and studied it very hard. I pulled out more 10, 12 and 14 lb., Bass than any other angler in Fitzgerald. The lake is over populated and the fish are in competition for food and that causes the differentiation and lack of other species in the smaller range. I hardly seen any Bass 12 inches feeding., but now when you move up in weight class the larger Bass are there and will snap 17 lb. test line I kid you not. Learning how to fish Paulk Park properly will land you trophies.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/17/2016
This might be something for the city council to check out but I heard one of the vap shops were serving plates and also running tattoos in their shop. Is this even legal? Don't you have to have like a food license and the person running tattoos to have a license. Just asking.

Submitted By: RWSubmitted: 11/9/2016
Despite the Herald-Leader's constant editorials bashing Donald Trump, this county overwhelmingly voted their hearts and minds for the person who can turn this country around. It's high time the editorial staff at the Herald-Leader provides commentary that reflects the conservative ideals of this county.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/8/2016
I heard a woman talking today and she was putting her kids on the bus this morning and the driver said that the bus was full and that they would have to stand. Is this even legal besides it's dangerous. I think Ben Hill County needs more buses instead of more police cars.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/3/2016
I was right about Shaw. The doors are closing Friday for good. I feel bad for all these people. They didn't even give them their end of the year holiday pay. Instead, they are giving them 6 weeks of regular pay checks. But after that, then what? The older employees are the ones I feel bad for. No one wants a person in their 40+ ages. Another business bites the dust. So sad for Fitzgerald and their residents.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/2/2016
Maybe I haven't kept updated on different laws around here but years ago I noticed Harvey's didn't sell beer and I asked why; they replied because the store was too close to a church. So, today I go to Harvey's and I see beer in the cooler; the church didn't move, so why are they now selling beer?

Editor's Note: City Council voted to change law about a year ago. It was a local law. There is no such state restriction.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/31/2016
Note to Editor: Thanks for that information. I know everyone will be pleased with some new roads. I've enjoyed driving on Joshlyn Rd. So good to drive on a smooth road without having to dodge potholes.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/30/2016
Since there are some roads being repaved, why don't they fix the road(sherman) that runs from the farmers market to the next red light. There are some really bad places in that area of the road.

EDITOR'S NOTE: DOT plans to pave U.S. 129 from Ocilla to north of Fitzgerald next year. That includes Sherman and Grant Streets.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/27/2016
I think we need a aspca around here to help animals when their owners are useless. I have a neighbor and he has like 7 or 8 bulldogs and I know for a fact that one of them hasn't had water for 3 days now. It's the only one I can see from my window. So, the others probably haven't had water either. Are they trying to make them mean by withholding food and water. My son says it's none of our business but they are tied up and don't have access to water. What can I do without getting myself in trouble with them?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/24/2016
Adding to Aldo Rosados comment: I think the population of Fitzgerald went down because of all the factories that closed down or left our area. People can't live in a town without jobs and the people in charge of bringing jobs in are not doing their job. This town is now a town of retired and disabled people living off their government checks. This town is becoming a run down town with no opportunities. All graduates are leaving because of this. Wal-Mart and the Dollar stores are our main stores, now that's sad. Tifton and Douglas are constantly building and bringing in new opportunities for their community. Someone needs to step up and look around.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/22/2016
I'm not sure if it's true or not but I heard Shaw was shutting down in less than a month. I hope it's not for all the employees sake. But I was told they told everyone they might want to start putting applications around; that's going to be the hard part. There's no where around here hiring, not with a pay rate like Shaw. I'll pray for everyone.

Submitted By: Aldo RosadoSubmitted: 10/21/2016
When I first moved to Fitzgerald it had a population of 26,000 people and today it is under 9,000. If I ever catch the huge Bass in Paulk Park that is a potential world record, Fitzgerald will once again grow. I love Fitzgerald, Georgia, I would not have become a Professional Bass Angler if it was not for Fitzgerald's Lakes and Ponds loaded with Bass.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/10/2016
I was taking down a couple of air-conditioners this weekend and didn't have screens to put in the windows. And guess what? There was no where in Fitzgerald to get screens or anyone that made them. So, I called around and found a guy in Douglas. And you wonder why people shop else where.

Submitted By: Lydia MercadoSubmitted: 10/6/2016
I totally agree about the roads around here are very bad. Pot holes everywhere especially the ones around the Middle school. The road right in front of Harvey grocerie store, and many more. It gives Fitzgerald a bad name. Instead of doing those color bricks they should had done them the regular way. They would've had enough to do more roads. I hate to say, I live here because of the way things look. Of course don't want to enter other obvious problem like all the junk and trash that people let accumulate. President Trump is right about taking America back. If he doesn't win we'll have a taco truck in every corner. Sorry had to express that.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/5/2016
I think trick or treating should be stopped. With all the trouble in the world today why continue this tradition? Let it be a thing of the past. Maybe more churches or schools can get together for kids to have fun if they insist on dressing up and celebrating Halloween. Why put children at risk, going around begging for candy? Buy them a bag of candy if they want some that bad. The world is just too bad and bad people live around here as well.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 9/28/2016
I rode towards the river because I haven't been there in quite awhile. The last time I went down there you could turn and go down to the trees, like a park area. Well, now there's a gate there that says "For Members Only". Do they own the river? I couldn't believe it. Such a shame when a group of people think they own the world and won't let others enjoy a little nature from time to time.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 9/24/2016
What is up with so many bad roads around town? The one-way by Planters First is awful. I know you are trying to preserve history but those bricks roads are getting pretty bad to drive on. There are pot holes everywhere. Also someone needs to call the person that fixes the train tracks. The same one way (Sherman) has a very bad track to cross. I can't afford alignment work on my car every week. What do tax dollars pay for? The city councils vacations?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 9/3/2016
I think the law around here has their priorities mixed up. My son was driving through town and forgot to turn his headlights on. He realized it and turned them on but some cop happened to pass him while they were off and turned around and pulled my son over. Why don't they worry about all the drugs being sold around here and people driving without licenses? It upset me when he told me he got pulled over and it wasn't even that late in the evening. And blue lights flashing and everything is embarrassing enough and for what?

Submitted By: CuriousSubmitted: 8/21/2016
Does Fitzgerald have tornado warning sirens? If so, are they in working order? Thank you for any information.

Editor's Note: No we do not. We do have a phone alert system Code Red that citizens may sign up for free of charge.Contact the County"s main office. It works very well.

Submitted By: taxpayerSubmitted: 7/20/2016
I agree that road crews from the police/sheriff's dept could and should be used to pick up trash around town and people who are working off community service sentences for misdemeanors should be used for this as well. I noticed a bunch of women picking up trash east of town last week before lunch. I also think it is part of all of our civic duty. If you see it - pick it up and trash it! This is our town too.

Submitted By: fitz_citizenSubmitted: 6/14/2016
I don't understand why the city members let our small town look so trashed. We have inmates that can work picking up trash or weed eating, we have city workers that do work within the city limits. I was crossing the tracks by Petros and my goodness, it looks like no one ever picks up trash and it's sad that people throw it out anyways. I went to Bacon county a few days ago and they had men from the PDC working and making that area nice looking. All these people that think they are high and mighty in their committee job need to start an actual committee that does something for this town. Do you want someone from out of town or out of state for that matter to only remember Fitzgerald as a trashy looking town?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/11/2016
Why can't Fitzgerald have water park for kids like some of the surrounding cities do? There are towns smaller than Fitzgerald that have them. Don't you want somewhere for kids to have fun? They get wet, meet friends and don't have to worry about drowning. You want people to spend money here but there's nothing here, everything is elsewhere. Bring something here and maybe people will soend here.

Submitted By: fitz_citizenSubmitted: 6/7/2016
I know there are lots of people around here having to pay fines for people that have been in jail. You can't pay at the office anymore. Now everything goes through something called J-Pay. It's so aggravating. Why can't all the monies just stay here? You know J-Pay has to get their cut. I don't understand why everything has to be outsourced or handed over to someone else. It use to be so easy just to walk in and pay and be done. Now it's a hassle. I even had a money order to come back because J-Pay couldn't find the ID I was paying on. Then flash foods wouldn't give me my money back. If they want fines paid, they need to make things easier. Then if it's not on record, they want to get you for a probation violation. I know lots of you reading this can relate.

Submitted By: fitz_citizenSubmitted: 6/4/2016
So, this past Saturday afternoon, I was driving through town. I noticed some teens washing cars for their organization to raise funds. Then I go a little further and see 6 cars waiting in line for that automatic car wash. Those people would rather waste a tank of gas waiting than to help these young people. I just don't get it.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 4/26/2016
Even though it's bad to see empty buildings around here, it does feel pretty good to see some of the being torn down. The lot on the corner of Sultana and Grant has had an empty store there for years. I remember when it shut down and it's been at least 10 years. It just sat there with nothing going on. Then today, I see it being torn down. Hopefully someone has bought that lot and have some future plans for this lot and this side of town.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 4/18/2016
Some woman was on WRDO talking about how many jobs were around the town of Fitgerald, really? My son has been everywhere and each place says they are not doing any hiring. What the heck is someone suppose to do for work around here? You need to post a job available section on here.

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 3/31/2016
Re: missing posts I've made...oh the joys of owning a small town newspaper ! you really can't afford to print anything that might anger an "important" citizen, can you? How 'bout this for a topic....the city charged me $200+ as the late fee for a $10 tax bill I didn't receive in the first place. Someone is making a good living.

Submitted By: RickSubmitted: 2/23/2016
I recently moved to the Fitzgerald area and was really disappointed to find that in the Lulaville Road area cable/internet is not available unless you obtain services from a satellite provider. Why can't we get cable service out this way?

Submitted By: Fitzgerald citizenSubmitted: 2/21/2016
I had no idea that there was a garbage dump sight at 307 delta rd Fitzgerald maybe it's not a real garbage dump sight because I seen the child that lives there playing in the garbage like a.child plays at the park

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/20/2016
These people that drive without license or insurance seem to think it's alright to drive around as long as it's at night. I've seen it happen, as soon as it gets dark, they drive around. Road blocks need to be set up at night and during the day. I know there's enough tax money for this, if not find a way to make it happen. I bet a lot of fines will be charged.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/14/2016
I think there should be more road blocks set up. I know quite a few people that are driving around without license or insurance. I abide by the law and so should everyone else. Why don't they have them anymore? In town or in the county?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/6/2016
If you are looking for a pet, I suggest helping a dog/cat leave the humane society. I just adopted the cutest little chihuahua mix dog from there. He looks to be around 2 years old and he is the sweetest thing. Pets from there appreciate you for rescuing them too.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/3/2016
If you want a haircut, perm or hair coloring, you should consider going out to visit the cosmetology department at WGTC. Those students are so nice and they need the experience. They have very reasonable prices.

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 2/2/2016
I was driving through town today, looking at the cracked "Blue and Gray" sidewalks beside the rundown, empty buildings. I thought it was a foolish expense at the time and haven't changed my mind.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 1/19/2016
I thought there was a city ordinance in place for trash in yards. There is a house right next to the under pass that looks like the city dump site. Why is this being allowed? I mean, when the underpass is used everyone sees it. Something like that should be out in the county where it can't be seen. Someone needs to do something about it.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 12/1/2015
I think the sign at the post office parking lot that reads "enter only" should be taken down. I almost had a front end collision because I was trying to turn in and this man was coming out and he thought he had the right of way. I pointed at the sign and he flipped me off. How rude and he was the one in the wrong. Take the sign down and then there would be no right or wrong way; people are not taking it seriously anyways.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/29/2015
I tried to call about a dog that had been abandoned. The people moved and just left the dog; it's the one I wrote about in an earlier article that is mean. I went over there myself and tied the dog up; plus gave it food and water which she had neither one. Why is it that you can't report anything anymore and get anything accomplished. I have dogs of my own which is the ones this big dog was attacking. I suppose I'll be in trouble for tying her up, that's about how the law works around here, isn't it?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/29/2015
Why is it when you call to report a dog biting people or other animals that no one does anything? All I hear is "there is nothing we can do", really? What are these people being paid for if they can't help when problems come up? Just because we live in the county doesn't mean the law shouldn't help us out.

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 11/28/2015
This site is not actually a " Public Forum " as there is no back and forth dialog between visitors.

EDITOR: That's up to the visitors.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/24/2015
I wonder why people from out of state can buy property here and then not keep it maintained. It's a shame that we live here and they don't but we are stuck with bad conditions. The roads in our mobile park aren't even a road at all. It's washed out and you have to drive at a slant and it scrubs the bottom of our cars. The county won't bring in any dirt because they say it's private property. Anyone know who I can contact to do something about this?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/29/2015
I think it was so sad that with all the advertising about having a Halloween thing uptown for kids, that my 2 year old had hardly any candy. He has mostly coupons, advertisements or calendars that end in 2 months. Kids want candy people, do better next time. Be prepared, buy some candy for the kiddos.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/22/2015
I saw a story on WALB about the city trying to stop business owners from putting merchandise outside their stores to draw business. You better be glad you still have businesses here willing to hang around. So what if they put a few things outside their doors, who is it hurting? They may make a sell and you get part of the business as well in one way or another. What a stupid story to put on the news for everyone to see. Making more businesses not want to come here, way to go city council.

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 10/16/2015
I would like to know if the Community Garden project was a success.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/1/2015
I remember back a few years ago when the Jaycees were always involved in having haunted houses around here during the Halloween weekend. What happened and why don't they have them anymore? I hate traveling out of town for a 10 minute thrill.

Submitted By: Fitz citizenSubmitted: 9/16/2015
Tim, I was riding through the downtown area a few nights ago and Noticed that three fourth's of our town's street lights are OUT. What has to be done to brighten up our town again at night. The4 major intersection at Grant and Central had only ONE street light on at dark. please respond asap thank you.

A call to City Public Works would be a good place to start.

Submitted By: Tommy MilnerSubmitted: 9/11/2015
I understand having the brick roads on Grant and in downtown. Why don't they do something with the road on Sherman before some ones car falls in the holes. I dought any visitors are going to be looking down that road at the brick.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/8/2015
I wonder if the Herald-Leader could start up some sort of dating page. So, single people could meet each other. I've seen it in other areas; people post something about themselves and put in an email address. It would be like looking in the "want ads" but it will be "dating ads". It would be nice to know if there's someone in our own area because not everyone likes the bar scenes.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/4/2015
I wish we had lots of opportunities in Fitzgerald. With another school year beginning means more graduates and no future possibilities after they graduate. The teachers don't even have places to talk about to encourage young teens to get jobs. I mean, everyone can't be a doctor or a lawyer. I guess, most will move on to better places like the whole towns populations seems to be doing. It's such a shame!!

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 7/31/2015
I wish they had've built a Krystals here instead of Zaxby's. Zaxby's is too expensive. We drive to tifton for a Krystal burger and it would be nice to have one here. Maybe one could be built here, is that a possibility?

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 7/21/2015
I read that the president will issue an order banning many senior citizens from owning guns. Guess Grandpa can't go hunting anymore.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 7/16/2015
I saw a ambulance flying through town with the emergency lights flashing and then when they reached the edge of town they slowed down. Are they really allowed to run through all the traffic lights for no reason. If there is no emergency then they can wait on the lights to change just like I have to. I couldn't believe what I was seeing. Next time, I will report it but knowing this town nothing will be done anyways.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 7/14/2015
I was reading the poll section on here and said a website named Fitzgerald as the 5th worst city to live in the state. The result was 57% saying "yes" it is. I agree. The young people have no job opportunities, if they graduate and go to college, they usually don't come back. The uneducated, disabled and old still live here. It's drying up if you ask me. How can a town keep thriving if no one contributes?

Submitted By: Philip MartinSubmitted: 7/11/2015
My name is Philip Martin. I was in the Marine Corps with a man from Fitzgerald by the name of Bobby E Garner. We deployed several times together including to Desert Storm. He was a groomsman in my wedding. I have lost contact with him. Me and my fellow Marines are planning a reunion and it will not be the same without Sergeant Garner. Can you help?

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 7/10/2015
Why should MY heritage as a Southerner be discriminated against by removing the Confederate flag from view ? It is a part of American history too.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 7/9/2015
I saw a woman at the post office say she locked her keys in her car. She called the cops and by the time her car was unlocked, their were 5 cops there. She said she was so embarrassed and afraid her church members would think she was involved in something bad. This is highly ridiculous.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/29/2015
Why is it allowed for a vehicle to park half in the road and half on a sidewalk. The church on Sherman St. had a vehicle parked in front. There wasn't even a parking space there.

Submitted By: BeepsSubmitted: 6/25/2015
Why are we publishing this in Ben-Hill? Leonard Pitts- Of course, very few everyday folks read these articles, but last time I read him was about Freddie Gray! My child was told in 1st grade that the white man was to blame for all slavery. I'm sure it won't end! He was told it was his fault why, because he is white. He felt so bad when he came home, because of what the white folks done to blacks. This is outrageous, because just like the AME committed no rapes as individuals, mine committed no racism. However, he is told at school to be shameful of who he is- a young, white male, and when he grows up-OMG he will be a white man. Why is this happening to our children? I ask where can we be white? This church was founded on racism, so should it be shut down as well? I'm sure everyday someone passes this church they know what it represents, a people brought down by slavery then rising again. I raised my children to be loving of others, but to only mate their race. It is sad I am brought to

Submitted By: BeepsSubmitted: 6/25/2015
Tim-Why did you even write that about THE DONALD & Oprah? You know that was old info, and a joke at that. Why not Trump? He did lose it, and bring it back! That is exactly what he did, oh yeah the family business might not make those extra millions this year if we build that wall with Mexico! America needs to be great again-Trump!~

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/9/2015
The road that runs along side of the tracks beside the post office is in bad need of repair. I don't think I've ever went down that road but when I left the post office, I was going to Harvey's so I went that way. It scrubbed the bottom of my car because of all the deep pot holes. Beware if you leave the post office and please don't turn left along the tracks.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 5/18/2015
Where are all these so-called committees? There are so many projects that need to be done to beautify our town. I always heard of either committees or clubs around here that the older or richer citizens have started; so get together and do what you do.

Editor's Note: Several hundred volunteers gathered on Saturday for the second Great Day of Service, completing more than 50 community service projects.

Submitted By: Barbara O'QuinnSubmitted: 5/16/2015
Wow....I guess now we know why Jay Roberts lobbied so hard for the "Transportation Bill" the Legislature passed. He's got a great new job with the DOT and we've got higher gas prices!

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 5/16/2015
If no one wants those potted flowers sitting by the water fountain on Main St. please let me know. They would be better off in my yard in actual soil than sitting in a pot and baking in the hot sun to die. I started to get some of them but I sure don't want to be in trouble for stealing flowers.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 5/13/2015
Our Post Office looks disgusting. There are so many weeds growing in the sidewalk cracks and even in the cracks in the wall. Whoever is suppose to to keep it up certainly isn't doing their job. There are also pot holes in the parking lot. Where are our tax dollars going?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 5/11/2015

I pulled up at that water fountain on Main Street the other day and I don't know if the several pots of flowers were put a there for photos or a quick way to pretty up the area. But for goodness sake someone has to water those flowers. They were all dried up and wilted over. Whoever put them there should take responsibility for keeping them alive and looking pretty. I felt bad for the poor flowers just baking in the hot sun but I live too far out to bring a water bucket.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 5/7/2015
Had such a fun time downtown Thursday when WALB came to Fitzgerald. I had photos taken with Ben, Tara and Yolonda. It was so nice to see them in person. They are much thinner in person than they look on TV. They were so nice. I'm glad they picked our town to come to. Enjoyed it so much.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 5/5/2015
Why do they even have "enter only" signs at the post office parking lot? People are always going out the wrong way. Can't people read around here?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 4/21/2015
Hope everyone knows that ALL Blue Bell ice cream is being pulled from stores freezers because of contamination. If you see any in any of our stores you should consult the manager at once. Hopefully all of our stores got the memo.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 4/7/2015
do you newspaper people read these stories before you print them on here. My last one had some errors that I didn't catch. I think you should edit where you see errors. People make mistakes typing, the least you could do is re-read each story before you print it on here. Maybe you could fix my last post. I'm sure you'll see the errors if not then you shouldn't be on the paper committee.

We read but do not edit public comments. They are your comments.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 4/5/2015
I agree with John Norris. If we want to encourage our youth to participate in sports then the least this town can do is keep our play areas up to date. Do you want out of town people taking about how bad our playfields are? If we are so about getting youths off the street then please make it a good environment to be in. I mean, who want to use a trashy, smelly restroom? Doesn't anyone maintain this place? Come on council have a meeting about what's important around here?

Submitted By: John NorrisSubmitted: 4/5/2015

I think it is time to rebuld the high school baseball field. The bathrooms are terrible, and we need a better presbox and concession stand and score board, and change out the stadium lights too

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 3/24/2015
Did anyone hear about the wreck on 129 this past Monday afternoon? I heard a loud boom and at first I thought it was thunder and later I was told it was the noise from that wreck. The bus had stopped at the old Hargetts Trailor park. The driver was about to let the first kid out and she looked in her rear view mirror and realized the semi approaching wasn't going to stop. She snatched the boy back into the bus and told everyone to hold on. The semi hit the bus on the right side and spun it around into the opposite direction. Several children went to the hospital with minor injuries. One little girl had to go to Macon. These big trucks are so dangerous. I am just so glad no one was killed. Praise be to God.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 3/17/2015
I saw on WALB that they are finally taking the check box off of applications that ask if someone has committed a felony. I have been writing to the governor for months and it has finally paid off. Maybe now people can turn their lives around without being condemned for the rest of their lives. So, they made a mistake in life, who hasn't? But people still have to make money to survive? Thank you Governor!

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 3/16/2015
I don't think the employees of "The city of Fitzgerald" should park across from the building. When you come up the alley from the library, you can hardly see the traffic coming from the one-way street. If you were going on across to the bank, you'd probably get hit because the vehicles block your view because they park so close to the road.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/25/2015
I have heard other towns starting to charge fines to these young men that think that pants below their butt is a fashion. Why don't they do that here? Maybe it would make this generation think twice. It's so disgusting to see pants being worn like that. Who want to see someones underwear?

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 2/21/2015
Is it true that there is an old car on the roof of the five story building ?

EDITOR: Urban legend.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 2/9/2015
I don't understand these drug/angermanagement classes. If two people were in a dispute or involved with drugs together; why in the world would they put them in the same class together. They have got to have classes on different nights. I think they are trying to make people fight.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 1/19/2015
If the Georgia Lottery is suppose to fund Georgia's education then why should they charge for the GED? If it were funded there may be more people trying to get it.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 1/13/2015
So, another question about the system. I have a friend and her brother is in and out of jail. He gets back in jail calling everyone to get him out, then all of a sudden he gets out. She was told they write tickets for people in jail and let them out. With no money? Really? What the heck? If the jail is that full, add on. Sell half of the vehicles that our taxes pay for. Just doesn't make sense to me.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 1/2/2015
I don't understand the system these days. A person can call defacs on someone for no reason but when the child support recovery is called they tell you there's nothing they can do. My friend is having a time getting help for her child. The young guys these days are always dodging responsibility.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 12/23/2014
You know egg nog is a seasonal beverage. I start getting some around Thanksgiving. Here it is not even Christmas yet and Wal-Mart says they won't be getting anymore in. What? Harveys didn't have any. I can't even enjoy the holidays. I look forward all year to get some egg nog and our stores are scrooges. Fitzgerald is so lame!

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 12/15/2014
I agree with Curtis. Something has gone terribly wrong in Fitzgerald. There are no new businesses here; which means there are no jobs. People are moving away. You can't even accomplish the american dream by living in Fitzgerald. Half the town is renting the homes they are in, the other half is the landlords. Why are you letting Fitzgerald dry up? Why?

Submitted By: Curtis KinnettSubmitted: 12/13/2014
I left Fitzgerald 10 years ago because local Politicians are for themselves , they know nothing about Business Recruitment . Several Industries have by-passed Fitzgerald because of local Government . Citizens do your homework , LOOK at what local people has done to what was once a thriving community.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 12/10/2014
This generation of young adults have no sense about what family is. These young men producing children and not caring for them. These young girls calling defac on each other is so stupid. They all need to raise their kids and quit trying to make problems for others. And if defac is called they have to follow through and it's usually a wasted visit. Grow up already!

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 12/4/2014
Did you know that the police/sheriff dept will go to someones house over an argument on facebook? It happened to a friend of mine. But my point is, really? Are they that bored that they have to help find battles on facebook? Go get the thieves and drug dealers. I mean this piddle paddle stuff is too stupid for cops to get involved with.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/30/2014
Well, I just found out that Fitzgerald has lost yet another restaurant. Carters Fried Chicken has closed its doors after years of serving our area. So, basically the north end of town has no eating places. Everything is on the southside. More jobs lost. It's a shame.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/18/2014
I don't see how half of what we have left restaurants get such a high rating? I think the health inspector isn't doing a very good job. I've seen roaches in some and just the other day I found a penny in my take-out dinner. Really? I might re-think eating out anymore and just cook at home.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/16/2014
They still have not found a teacher for the Wiregrass GED night classes. The students last day was 11/13/14. Some are unable to go during the day. Please, can someone spare a few hours for the sake of education? Contact Wiregrass today.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/13/2014
This is just an opinion statement. I think the GED should be like a license. You pay your money and get your diploma. Most of the subjects and tests required to complete the GED have nothing to do with everyday life.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 11/11/2014
I've lived here since the 10th grade and I'm 52 now. I ride through town with my son and I can just about tell him what use to be in alot of the run down buildings or what use to be here or there. I told him way back when they first built the old wal-mart and when we had TG&Y. It seems the town was better back in the day. It's just a dried up town now with no jobs for the young people around here. I'm pretty much stuck here but if more businesses don't start coming to Fitzgerald, all the young people will leave and then where will the doctors, lawyers, nurses, teachers, etc. come from?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/29/2014
I think the mayor needs to ride around once in awhile and take a look at the town he is a mayor of. There are so many run down buildings on the main streets in town. Closed business buildings and run down houses. Why can't you attract business to these buildings or take our tax money and make something out of these buidlings that would help our town?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/29/2014
There is an opening for a night class GED teacher if anyone is interested. My son goes to classes and now the teacher that was teaching it quit because she was driving from Douglas. We need a local teacher, please. Apply on the Wiregrass web page. The students are suffering. Please pass this on to someone, the classes are from 5-8pm. I know someone can spare a few hours for the good of education.

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 10/19/2014
Fitzgerald could use a homeless shelter. Not just for locals who are currently homeless, but for out-of-luck transients who need somewhere to sleep for one night.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 10/1/2014
I don't know who owns all the properties on N. Main St. just before you cross the tracks but that whole block needs to be leveled. Those apartment buildings, the old offices, the closed heating/air business building and the 2 houses are all eye sores. And yet new stores are being built else where. Do something about that block, please.

Submitted By: concerned/citizenSubmitted: 9/29/2014

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 9/28/2014
I am commenting with concerned citizens statement. The mayor and council are all about themselves, just like our government is. If it wasn't for the "little people" as they like to call us; they wouldn't have jobs. All these people trying to act high classed around here. Hey! You live in Fitzgerald just like we do. If you want to be high society move to a larger town where people can't see how you're wasting their money. We need someone to step up that wants to help Fitzgerald and not their own pocketbooks.

Submitted By: concirned citizenSubmitted: 9/28/2014

I agree with fitz/girl the city won't fix pot holes in our town but our mayor will give the opry 19,000 dollars to fix up a new building for them selves.We need more jobs in fitzgerald for our graduating students not a place to go listen to music.what has become of our city and why does our mayor and city counsil allow this .I see the police up there every Saturday night,Tell me what goes on up there .I see kids in the alley unsupervised.Our town is dying and we need to get back on the map and be a city agin where the citizens voice means something and tha means everybodies voice not just the chosen ones

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 9/26/2014
I heard on the news that while men/women were in jail/prison they were being encouraged to get an education. Instead of just sitting around being bored they were in classes and ones already having diplomas were taught a skill. That way when they were released they would have more of a chance to get a job. The jails are creating a resume for them so that employers would have to look at that and not the fact they had a past in jail. Everyone needs to be put on the right path. I think this should be a law for all jails/prisons to put into action.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 9/25/2014
I did hear some encouraging news from Wiregrass. I heard that now they base the price of the GED according to your income. This is great because so many gave up because they couldn't afford to go back to school. Now maybe more will begin to their GEDs. Thank goodness.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 9/24/2014
I go to the local farmers market all the time to get some fresh fruits and vegetables. I also give them my plastic grocery bags because I was told the local businesses won't give them any without charging them. really? I thought we were suppose to support local businesses. They always appreciate when I give them a large number of bags. Help the farmers market people. Buy from them and get better produce and better prices than at the stores.

Submitted By: fitzgirlSubmitted: 9/24/2014
I agree with James Purvis. All this town does is make an income by people they put in jail and some for stupid reasons. Then they go and buy a special forces tank vehicle for dangerous situations. I saw that on the news and started laughing. They can't fix potholes in roads around here but can buy something that's not necessary for this small town. We need some businesses around here to keep people from having too much idle time. Especially the teens that need jobs.

Submitted By: tl winnSubmitted: 9/22/2014
City property taxes are confusing. In July or August I asked at the office if any taxes were due on an address and was told no. Now in September I got a notice that the property was going to be confiscated for nonpayment and was given a tax-due price which includes penalties. Is this how the city is raising money this year ?

Submitted By: james purvisSubmitted: 9/1/2014

it is so bad around fitzgerald. this town doesn't want anything to come in here. the kids have nowhere to go and have nothing to do.you cant ride a golf cart or there scooters with out getting pulled over or going jail.it seems to me like they just want to lock people in this town unless your in the clique.i mean its bad when the town of Ocilla allows the kids there drive there golf carts around town. Ocilla is even tring to grow .this is all I have to say about this matter.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/26/2014
Why isn't there a haunted house set up in Fitzgerald anymore around Halloween? No funds? What? It would be fun, kids, teens and adults need something to do.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/15/2014
With this Michael Brown story on the news makes me realize the cops around here take their authority too seriously. Just because they carry a gun gives them no reason to harass someone for no reason. And they do. I've seen it happen.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/13/2014
I believe Fitzgerald is becoming a retirement and disability town. Unless you own a business or working in one of them, then that's all that's left. Most young people are leaving after graduation.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 8/1/2014
I heard from a Shaw employee that Shaw was closing and moving to Tifton. A lot of people may move with their job. I was told WL&B wouldn't give business discount on their electricity. Companies are about saving money; so they will use Georgia Power in Tifton.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 7/31/2014
Why are there so many streets in Fitzgerald without name plates? If someone comes through here; they would have no clue how to find an address.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 7/30/2014
All these empty houses for sale in Fitzgerald and I'm stuck in a run down trailor park because I can't come up with the down payment. Why is it so hard to get into a home? My rent has been on time for 8 years. My dogs need a yard to play in.

EDITOR: Go to City Hall. First door on left. Ask for help.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 7/26/2014
How can a sheriff come up in your yard and harass my sons and their friend as they were playing basketball in their own yard. Makes no sense to me at all. That's Fitzgerald for you. My older son said he was so glad he left from around here.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 7/23/2014
I thought comments on here were limited to 100 words. Longer ones are suppose to be sent to Letters-to-the-Editor. Wow! The previous comment by "concerned parent" was extra long. Why have a notice of limits?

The limit is to encourage posters to be brief, simply because readers will not read long posts. The referenced post should have been a letter. Please forgive out lapse.


Submitted By: concerned parentSubmitted: 7/23/2014

It has come to my attention that Ms. Angie (Dopson) at the Ben Hill Transportation Department has no concerns where our children are concerned. I called the BOE this morning to try and have my child's transportation plans in place before school started. I do not work in Fitzgerald and can not pick my child up from school everyday so I had contacted a local daycare to provide care to my child after school. They told me they did have openings in their daycare but that they had met the cap that was allowed to ride the bus to their daycare. I have no other options for my child. I have nobody who can pick him up or keep him after school. So I called the BOE and they transferred me to the transportation dept. I spoke with Ms. Angie there and I explained my situation and she told me there was nothing she could do if they had met their cap. that is wasn't her responsibility to get my child transportation that it was the parents responsibility. I then asked if there was anything we could do

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 7/21/2014
My son went to wiregrass for the GED orientation. He has to go to night classes. They don't even have a teacher, so classes postponed until they get one, really?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/26/2014
I know some teens mess up and quit school but why would they raise the price of taking the GED? I also heard the teachers just pass out workbooks and don't really teach the class. I was also told that what they do in class from the workbooks is nothing like the test. I just hear from teens saying the system is making it hard for them to acquire their GED.

Submitted By: JohnSubmitted: 6/26/2014
Here's an idea for a news story.Why is employee turnover so high in Ben Hill County? And which employer has the highest turnover rate?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/26/2014
I think the hill on hwy. 90 in front of the old school should be leveled out. That is a bad intersection at the bottom of that hill. When you are trying to get across, it's hard to see a car coming over the hill also during school times, you are lucky to get through there. Whatever committee takes care of this problem needs to have a serious meeting. How many people need to die at an intersection before actions are taken?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/22/2014
I would hope the Mayor could talk to surrounding businesses and encourage them to come to Fitzgerald. If there were more job choices around here maybe the teenagers would have something to do besides get into trouble.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/6/2014
The humane society always pushes the topic of having your pets spayed and neutered but why do vets charge so much? I live on a fixed income and have 3 female dogs, I had to take one per month at a price of over $100. That was part of my grocery money but I had to do it.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/6/2014
There are so many empty houses in Fitzgerald. If they are bank owned, why don't they rent them out instead of letting them rot. Also rent around here is awful. This is Fitzgerald people not Atlanta. I called about a house that a realtor had and it was $650 a month, really?

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/6/2014
I think the city works and county farm should have open positions for people that get out of jail and need jobs. People turn them away just because they've been in trouble. Sometimes they just need a break to get into the work force. If these people had jobs they would have less time getting into trouble.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/6/2014
Why can't the post office fix it's entrance and parking area? They have the worst of all in town, pot holes and when they are patched up, it is a done poorly. That's a government area; seems like it would be in better shape.

Submitted By: fitz/citizenSubmitted: 6/6/2014
I thought there was a noise ordinance in Fitzgerald. I get so tired of these young people blasting their rap music so loud when they pull up beside you in town or even while waiting for an order at a drive thru and most of the time the lyrics are vulgar. Please do something or I will take tag numbers and call these people in myself.

Submitted By: CANE FANSubmitted: 4/1/2014

Submitted By: ConcernedSubmitted: 3/17/2014
The parks in Fitzgerald are not being kept up like they should be! There is trash EVERYWHERE! Legion Park by DLS is one of the worst with its broken, dangerous equipment and filthy trash. I would rather take my kids to Ocilla to their more cleaned up parks.

Submitted By: Donna HarperSubmitted: 12/13/2013
I would like to express my thanks to all the Walmart employees that were involved in the recovery of my pocketbook on Friday night. I would especially like to thank Dameon for his alertness and honesty. It makes me feel proud to be a part of the Fitzgerald community. D.H.

Submitted By: Wayne MooreSubmitted: 10/6/2013
When the new football practice field was constructed I could not help but notice the " Compton Park " sign was removed. I often wondered why it was not replaced even if it had to be repositioned. In light of Coach Compton's passing away it seems the very LEAST we could do would be to replace the sign even though doing so now would be like closing the gate after the mule is already out !! It would be nice if it were placed against the fence facing Merrimac Dr. for all to see. thanks

Submitted By: FlatjwlSubmitted: 6/8/2013
No space for a lesson in common sense, but, if the announced 200 jobs are supported by the taxpayers the net is less than zero. If the jobs stand on their own----GOOD!! I would like to see ALL the facts before celebrating.

Submitted By: skeeterfitzSubmitted: 1/14/2013
No space for an economic development lesson, but you should know; four plant expansions and a new plant have been announced in recent months totaling well over 200 jobs. Your Mayor has been heavily involved in securing these jobs and a number of prospective deals still in the works. Join your Chamber and you not only will be better informed, but can play a positive role in reviving our economy.

Submitted By: HolmeySubmitted: 1/12/2013

What is your Mayor doing about the job situation in Fitzgerald? It is time for him to stop sitting around and start doing something about it!!!

Submitted By: T.L.WinnSubmitted: 1/9/2013
Regarding budget cuts, I don't believe vital services like the sheriff's department should be cut. I believe crime rates usually increase during bad economic times, making it even more important not to cut law enforcement budgets.

Submitted By: Deborah AndrewsSubmitted: 11/1/2012
The election is Nov. 6 and most people have decided on the candidate they will vote for. It is very important to vote, because much blood has been shed to protect that right and our many others; however, it is equally important to keep abreast of the issues facing our country and where the candidates stand. This is particularly difficult when our journalists are not reporting on all the stories. One of the biggest issues in this election is trust. No administration is perfect, but an honest answer is required in any instance of terrorism or scandal. There are not one, but two scandals the present administration is refusing to give honest answers for. The first issue is the border agent Brian Terry who was killed by guns that our government illegally smuggled into Mexico for an unknown reason. The second issue is the Benghazi attack that was a blatant disregard for the safety and rescue of American citizens by refusing to send requested assistance which resulted in their death.

Submitted By: GeorgiaSubmitted: 10/26/2012
I also have a request for Phoebe-Dorminy: When someone is bleeding pretty bad don't leave them to sit there for about 2 hours bleeding. 2 hours is a long time to wait for stitches.

Submitted By: LSSubmitted: 9/27/2012
Dear Phoebe-Dorminy: Please hire people who speak clearly to answer your phones. I had to ask a girl to repeat herself several times and still did not understand her. To make things even better, her attitude was terrible.

Submitted By: AnneSubmitted: 9/6/2012

Barb - I agree with you on the golf carts. More and more are running up and down the roads. One ran a stop sign at Lee Street last week and I had to slam on brakes to avoid hitting it broad side!!! On top of that, there were kids hanging out on the back of it (3 in there). Someone is going to be seriously hurt if the drivers of them don't be a little more careful and adhere to the rules of the road!!

Submitted By: BarbSubmitted: 8/21/2012
I would like to hear opinions on the recent surge in golf carts on the streets of Fitzgerald and Ben Hill county. I do understand how it is much easier on the pockets of our towns people to have a golf cart to get around to convenience stores and such places that may be close to home but too far for many to walk a mile or two.But I am also concerned about safety of those who are on a golf cart or those cars who do not see them while driving a vehicle. For one I do know that there are laws that golf carts need to abide by. One law is they are not allowed to cross or drive on a state hwy. Yet I have seen them cross over U.S.hwy 129 and Ga. hwy 90 as well as U.S. 319. I saw a guy last week driving one from the Chinese restaurant on U.S. 129 towards town .A 1/2 hour later I saw him driving down Merrimac Dr. headed N towards Arbor Church. Yet I see where law enforcement can park and scan vehicles for valid insurance or maybe even for speeders in town. Yet golf carts seem to drive everywher

Submitted By: Kenny Drew Fuller, SrSubmitted: 5/7/2012

Dear Editor, I want to praise Dorminey Mem. Hospital's ER Staff - ALL of them - and the rest of the hospital's personnel. Recently I took a homeless, indigent person I picked up who wanted to come to Fitzgerald because he had heard good things about the community and was hoping to find some farm work. But he was injured sleeping under a tree and seemed ill. After inquiring at the Community Bank they recommended the ER Room's Indigent Care program. They took this man in and treated him as if he were wealthy. He was constantly telling them as the performed various tests, "I can't pay you for this. I have no money." From the doctor on down they all assured him their concern was his survival. They persuaded him to stay until he got better and told him if he had waited another day he would not have survived. It would take a full page to list what they have been doing for him, including asking him what he would really like to eat and preparing a special sandwich. Thanks, also, t

Submitted By: bcg1Submitted: 4/18/2012
There would have to be an earth shattering event for us to be able to establish a real democracy in this country but one thing is for sure, if there were more people like yvonne wilson this country would be a prosperous and pleasant place for all Americans.

Submitted By: yvonne wilsonSubmitted: 4/16/2012
the achievement of social and economic justice for all americans is essential for the future stability of this nation. those who consider themselves leaders should set the example by providing and advocating for basic human rights for every citizen of this country. todays public and tomorrows growing diverse population will need a more sensitive climate if this country expects to alleviate the suffering and sense of hopelessness that threatens to destroy us all. racism poverty hunger and discrimination have sadly become as american as apple pie while creating a socio-economic nightmare for far too many people. Our president is a reasonable person who went to washington thinking he would be working with other reasonable people. instead he was met with opposition at every turn. our president is trying to stand for the mjority of americans. when will we learn? when people start dropping dead in the streets from hunger, homelessness,lack of healthcare and greed. when we recognize that mil

Submitted By: OatmealSubmitted: 4/13/2012
Hmm, Looks like there will be no more coal plant in Ben-Hill. K. Then lets not hear about the lack of jobs in Ben-Hill. Coal might be leaning toward a dead energy resource in the future, but so are the jobs in Ben-Hill. Dead, None, Nadda.

Submitted By: Just talkingSubmitted: 2/12/2012
The new dog law in Fitzgerald,if enforced is a good one it should be extended to the county also.But it should pertain to any dog.I once was told by a neighbor that my two little dogs were helping kill and eat his goats,I knew this was not correct it could not be they were to cute and gentle.One day i witnessed my dogs doing what my neighbor said they were doing .My point is any dog can be dangerous given the right time and place.Any dog owner should be held responsible for any damage that their dog does to someone or someones property.I paid my neighbor for 3 goats and we are still friends and good neighbors,I never could have paid him for a child nor could i have lived with it.

Submitted By: concernedSubmitted: 1/20/2012
i would like to know why cant there be more jobs . its already hard to get a job i feel like favortism and knowing someone is all a part of getting a job here . as a qualified 18 year old single mother i feel there should be more help

Submitted By: allen purvisSubmitted: 12/24/2011

i am writing this about the letter that was wrote about mr olivares.everything he is charged with is not all true.when mr olivares was pulled over yes he did leave the scene, but that was because he does not understand english. i know for a fact that he did not try to hit any officer. i am mr olivares boss man. Jed Clark from 911 called me and ask me would i carry him to the jail and i said yes. when we arrived there we met with the state patrolmen that had stoped him. they both told me and my wife that he was charged with no licence and leaving the scene. there are some lies being told on this man. this is a good man and he works harder than most people in this town. i feel that there are false charges being put on this man and if false charges will be allowed to be put on him than what about every other person in this town. if they did not have somebody at the jail that speaks spanish how could they even read his rights to him. if they want to catch somebody they need to spend mor

Submitted By: WonderingSubmitted: 12/6/2011
I want to know if the new law the city has passed banning “pit-bull” type dogs is going to be equally enforced or is this going to be another case of the city going after the property owners and letting the teens walking up and down the streets get away with keeping the dogs like is always done. Personally I disagree with the new law but I especially disagree with the selective enforcement that often seems to go on here. I have already sent my dog to a relative that lives in the county because I know I can’t afford to do the things required by the law to comply with keeping the dog in the city. Yet every day I see people walking pit bulls up and down the middle of the city streets (with no muzzle) and nothing is being done. So is the city going to make animal enforcement start picking up these dogs from the people walking them or are they going to be allowed to ignore the law and get away with it? I hope people will be watching and reporting so we can see if the law is equally enf

Submitted By: Katrina CampbellSubmitted: 11/26/2011
Seriously Cane Fans...to walk out on these boys before the game was over was so disrespectful...these boys lost a teammate before the season started...through all their pain and grief they practiced everyday...did their school work...and you want to walk out on these boys??? Disgraceful...A true fan is always with their team...win or lose...(another great lesson I learned from Daddy) Just when these babies needed us...you so called fans walk out on them...you should be ashamed... As for me and the other TRUE fans...Sweeties we're so proud of you and the awesome season you gave us yet again... Love my babies....

Submitted By: Wayne MooreSubmitted: 11/6/2011
Know how to recognize an out-of-town driver in Fitzgerald ?? They use their turn signals !!

Submitted By: An AnswerSubmitted: 10/27/2011
Dear Questioning, I saw in the newspaper and the shopper that Betsy was endorsing Kendall Adams for County Commission as an individual. I saw nothing that said anything about the Chamber of Commerce. Betsy has the right to endorse who ever she chooses. The logic that you seem to be imposing would suggest that if our local Dollar General Manager endorsed a Candidate that in fact it would be an endorsement by Dollar General. If you would like to publicly endorse a Candidate, might I suggest you take an ad and do so. See you at the polls!

Submitted By: QuestioningSubmitted: 10/26/2011
I find it offensive that the Chamber endorsed a candidate for the local election. Shouldn't they remain neutral? Especially when another one of their members is running? What kind of professionalism is this?

Submitted By: Mary ChapmanSubmitted: 10/20/2011
Having been a patient in your hospital this month, I want to sing the praise of Dr. Sutherland and the hospital staff! What a blessing they were to me at a very frightful and painful time. I was completely taken care of and made to feel like I was the only patient the busy staff had to take care of. I am so grateful for the hospitality and the wonderful staff at Dorminy Medical Center. Thank you Sylvia, Kayla and Nurse Jackie! Mary Chapman Fernandina Beach, Florida

Submitted By: PASubmitted: 10/5/2011
He said, she said, it's your fault, it's their fault, he's right, no she's right. If all of this energy was gathered up and focused on getting some jobs into our community and lending a helping hand to all of our fellow citizens in need, the progress we could make would be phenomenal. Communities have more problems now than we have all seen in a long time and when times get hard people get stressed. With our economy in the crapper and everyone at the top trying their hardest to keep us all poor and powerless, we need more than ever to pull together and give each other as much of a helping hand as possible. Don't continue to allow the haves to keep the have not's divided and helpless. We are strong, we are American's.

Submitted By: Angie RaySubmitted: 8/26/2011

Dear Whom It May Concern: I too, have had many confrontations with the (Ben Hill County Schools) transportation dept both this year and last concerning the poorly designed bus routes. With crime increasing due to the failing economy, and the teen pregnancy rate at an all time high, you would think the school system would attempt to ensure that each child is safely dropped off at a predetermined location of the parent's choice. Unfortunately, Ben Hill County Schools' transportation personnel believe that children can safely walk nearly a mile in freezing rain or extreme heat just so the school system can save a dollar. A personal issue I have with (Transportation Director) Angi Dopson is that she exaggerates the number of children who ride the bus to Little Lambs. She has been invited to the center on several occasions to verify attendance but she has not done so. Therefore, I'm assuming that it is easier for her to justify her actions based on her predetermined lies than it would

Submitted By: AprilSubmitted: 8/24/2011
For the comment in the paper from Mr. Jones, I agree to a point. I feel that help should be given to all not just some, but its not a black issue. There are many people that are having trouble paying there light bill whites,blacks,mexicans ect. Problem this time is not the mayor all tho he could bring more jobs to our town. The problem is the light companies FWL&B, Irwin EMC, Georgia Power ect. they are going up on the prices and pay is going down for employees. I do believe there should be a cut off point on how high electric companies can charge and extend due dates for those who try to pay there bill. This problem is not only in light bills but look around and its everywhere and everything. Im not being mean but everything is not about color anymore its about our government and how gready they have become. The richer get richer and the poorer get poorer. We have to stick together now and stop blaming things on color,reglion,education ect and blame it on the gready people in bussines

Submitted By: DavidSubmitted: 8/24/2011
My aplolgies, Mr. Williams. After looking over several more articles I did find a more detailed one that referred to Jessica Maples finding the burglars in Fitzgerald. It appears that my initial comments were based on confusing articles and news reports that I had found said that Ms. Maples had solved the crime “in Atlanta”. I do however have the utmost respect for the local law enforcement and have never found them negligent in their duties or responsibilities.

Submitted By: BobSubmitted: 8/24/2011

The break-in occurred in Fitzgerald on July 15. Police investigated, but since the house was empty, they had no way of telling what was missing. The family came on the July 21. They went to the pawn shop and recognized some of the grandmother's stuff. If the stuff wasn't in the house, how could police recognize it? If they had no list of items missing, how could they have found it? They reported that to police, who made one arrest that day and a second one the next day. The AJC did an irresponsible job of reporting just to make a little star our of the 12 year-old girl. Cute story, just not the whole story.

Submitted By: rickySubmitted: 8/24/2011
The article was in the Atlanta Journal on Thursday August 18. It does state that the break-in was in Fitzgerald and the 12 year old was from Atlanta.

Submitted By: DavidSubmitted: 8/23/2011
Mr. Williams, I think you must have gotten a misprinted copy of the Jessica Maple story. Unless there is another story that I am unaware of and have not been able to find, Jessica Maple tracked down suspects from a break-in in Atlanta, not Fitzgerald. (not sure that I would call this a “significant crime” but I guess that is subject to interpretation) This story has no connection to, nor any embarrassment for our city of Fitzgerald that I have found. I have always found our own law enforcement very diligent in pursuing leads and following through on investigations with thorough police work and in no way “sloppy”. That said I am sure that any law enforcement office would gladly welcome any help or information gathered by the public to ensure that criminals are not allowed to prosper from their crimes and are brought to justice.

Submitted By: David WilliamsSubmitted: 8/18/2011
Although not a resident of Fitzgerald, but I have enjoyed working there on many occasions. I just read the Jessica Maple story concerning how a 12 year old had solved a significant crime in Fitzgerld that implied that the local police did some sloppy investigation, and still have not acted in over a month even with clear evidence. This story is getting national attention and is an embarrasement to the city. Hopefully your paper will cover it and demand attention by elected officals. Thank you.

Submitted By: Maria HeathSubmitted: 8/18/2011
Several years ago, my son was in 3rd grade failing because the BHC school system was failing him. Skipping all the details - we moved out of the county and he progressed so much that he went from special ed. classes to regular classes. Three years ago our family left Georgia and moved to Indiana where he has been taking college courses and bringing home report cards he has been proud of! My son will be entering his senior year, graduating early and has enlisted in the United States Marines. I would like to thank Coffee County School district for breathing into him confidence and lending him the tools he needed to turn into such an inspiring young man!

Submitted By: TinaSubmitted: 8/16/2011
Sad that once again my child cannot attend the Boys & Girls Club because our transportation department sucks! Everywhere else in Ben Hill County gets a bus for their children but the Boys & Girls Club. Sad but also Ben Hill County is the only club in the region that has this problem also, Great Job Trans Department!

Submitted By: Citizen Submitted: 8/9/2011
If Fitzgerald High School would repave their parking lots it would also fix the pot holes too. They like spending money on other things so why not spend the money on something worth spending on.

Submitted By: David RingSubmitted: 8/7/2011
Can anyone at the County Road Dept. explain to me why we can call repeatedly to have St. Johns Rd. graded and are told that rain is coming in and they'll get to it soon? Yet we notice that the so called in-coming rain doesn't deter the road department from grading Flint Rd. which isn't a quarter mile from us. Is some one on Flint Rd. paying some one on the road dept. or does a road dept. employee live on Flint Rd and he likes a smooth road? Breaking News: We like a smooth road as well and the turn out at the end of our road is washing out. Is this what we pay our property taxes for ? Some one NEEDS to tighten up and do their job or find another job hopefully not with the county.

Submitted By: davidSubmitted: 8/4/2011
If by "breaking news" you are referring to the death of a child, then Thank You Herald-Leader for showing proper discretion and courtesy in the face of such a tragedy. This is not "breaking news", this is a family experiencing a great loss. There is absolutely no reason rush to post information about personal tragedies of this nature. The SHAME is the insensitive gossip hordes that rush to be the first to text and facebook such a tragic story.

Submitted By: PleaseSubmitted: 8/3/2011
I think it is a shame when our own local newspaper does not even report the breaking news in out town until a day later. I thought that was the advantage of having the paper online. We were reading updated info. on the Tifton Gazette online version a day before The Herald=Leader thought to put it in their breaking news section. What a SHAME.....

Submitted By: japSubmitted: 6/23/2011
my view has nothing to do with a story in the paper,but as a citizen of Ben Hill county. i would like to know why it is the people of the cotton mill, every time someone out there gets a horse they have to move it.because it is wrong to have an animal there. But the City of Fitzgerald will give people a building downtown to play music for free and let them drink and get drunk. The law is there more than anywhere. Maybe that's why things are getting so high in this town. I know people don't care about what i have to say but it makes me mad when kids in the mill enjoy riding horses and it keeps them home and away from drugsand drinking....something they enjoy, and it gets taken away from them. But it's ok for the city to give a building away for people to carry their kids and get drunk. It just makes me mad.

Submitted By: Jan Chaple CreganSubmitted: 5/28/2011
To the city of Fitzgerald, Recently my sister & I enjoyed a two night stay in your lovely town, while researching our family history. We spent time in the genealogy dept. of a very busy library, visited the Blue & Gray & Old Fire Truck museums. We just wanted to thank all the kind people we met while traveling around your lovely town. I am sure our Great grand parents, Mr. & Mrs. Henry Chaple, would have been very proud of how their town looks today. We really did love the colorful chickens.

Submitted By: S.W.Submitted: 5/5/2011
Why is it that when I drive the speed limit in town or out on the Highway, people pass me and look at me like I`m crazy for going the speed limit. Maybe I like conserving gas. They gripe about the gas prices, but are not willing to slow down to save gas.

Submitted By: Proud of Blue & GraySubmitted: 4/10/2011
The play last night was wonderful and my hat goes off to Mickey Foreman and the Jacobs for directing! Thank you for all you have done!

Submitted By: WWSubmitted: 4/6/2011

Submitted By: disappointedSubmitted: 1/11/2011
I don't know where the highway is city or state but someone please fix the hole at the red light coming in off the Jacksonville highway.Always meet another vehicle and run in this hole.

Submitted By: Donna PolkSubmitted: 1/6/2011
I am from Louisiana & my cousin Charlie Lewis Handley lived there & passed away Dec. 29,1010. Charlie's family here is looking for information of his death, anyone having information or the name of his boss at the time of his death please leave me a message here. Thanks so much.
Donna Polk

Submitted By: fitzgeraldSubmitted: 12/24/2010
This is to all the folks that are for and against the proposed coal plant in Ben Hill County. Establish a truce during the Christmas season from 12/24/10 - 1/2/11. After truce is lifted, go back to beating the brains out of each other. Merry Christmas!!!!

Submitted By: disappointedSubmitted: 12/10/2010
I hope BHC keeps on posting - he (or she) is making my point far better than I ever could.

Submitted By: chick tooSubmitted: 12/9/2010
Yes, I saw the program about Fitzgerald on National Geographic and was proud! Also, proud that our new utilities building is so nice and prettily decorated for Christmas!

Submitted By: BHCSubmitted: 12/8/2010
"Disappointed," you complain about how anti-coal plant letters in the paper sometimes sound "snide" and "mean-spirited," while your own comments sound snide and mean-spirited. So do the Chamber of Commerce ads. Just look below about WOW's comment about, "Quit whining because the coal plant is coming and you can't do anything about it." That sounds like something a thug would write.

Submitted By: BHCSubmitted: 12/7/2010
"Disappointed," the big question isn't about WEN, but about whether the coal plant should be built. WEN is a grassroots group of citizens alarmed about the coal plant for very good reasons. Your comment seems to assume WEN has control of everyone who writes a letter to the newspaper. That doesn't make sense. And why do you think WEN should WANT to have control of what everyone says and how they say it? This is America, where anyone is free to speak his mind, and other people are free to decide for themselves whether he makes sense or doesn't. And "Disappointed," I think you're mixed up when you talk about the anti-coal plant letters in the newspaper being snide. A few of them have been, but isn't it to be expected that when a lot of letters are written by different people that some of them are going to be better than others?

Submitted By: fitz chickSubmitted: 12/1/2010
Did anyone see the show on National Geographic about Fitzgerald and its chickens? It made our town look really nice :-)

Submitted By: disappointedSubmitted: 11/22/2010
The question is not whether or not Mr. Massee or anyone else "can take" the snide remarks. The question is whether it benefits the cause of WEN for its supporters to make them. I just think it turns more people off than it appeals to.

Submitted By: PatSubmitted: 11/21/2010
The letter that Massee wrote was pretty judgmental, too, and seemed to come straight from P4G website and Cambron's ads. If you dish it out, you've got to be willing to take it.

Submitted By: disappointedSubmitted: 11/19/2010
I hate to disappoint Pat Wright, but I was not referring to that particular letter in the first place. It was the first two that were so ugly sounding. Go back and read them.

Submitted By: WOWSubmitted: 11/18/2010
Quit whining ... the coal plant is coming and there is nothing you can do about it.

Submitted By: Pat WrightSubmitted: 11/18/2010
I hate to disappoint "Disappointed", but the letter you are referring to was written before Mr. Massee's was in the paper--the timing was that it came out in a later edition. In submitting it, she just added "with all due respect" because of his letter being in there the week before. You certainly don't think all those facts could be researched in a week, do you? Everyone has a right to speak out--the letter was not about Mr. Massee--it was about facts about coal plants.

Submitted By: Still Disappointed.Submitted: 11/17/2010
The responses were all obvious attempts to prevent others from having the audacity to speak out in opposition to WEN. Massee, Smith or Jones - it doesn't matter. We should all have a right to speak out on this important matter without subjecting ourselves to sarcastic, insulting insinuations from others. But if you think your cause is helped by doing so - go right ahead and dig that hole. You certainly won't be the first.

Submitted By: noo40Submitted: 11/17/2010
I would like to know what was shrill and mean spirited replies were made to Mr. Massee. When he wrote the letter, he knew there would be replies to it!! Mr. Massee is a good man, and I dont think anyone was attacking him.. However "disappointed",WEN being called emotional novice was not the least bit appealing either!!! His "reasoned arguments" were not backed by a single fact! And should we not defend ourselves just because he is a Massee?

Submitted By: disappointedSubmitted: 11/11/2010
The shrill, mean-spirited replies to Mr. Massee's letter in The Herald-Leader concerning the proposed coal plant do NOTHING to advance the cause of those writing them. Reasoned arguments, not petty personal insults, would be much more effective. Could it be that anybody expressing an opinion at odds with WEN's opinion will be subject to similar character attacks? That's really not very nice, nor does it make WEN'S arguments the least bit appealing.

Submitted By: WEN memberSubmitted: 11/3/2010
As promised in WEN's current ad comparing Appling County with Ben Hill County, here are the sources for that info (which we thought would take up too much room in our ad): http://www.doe.k12.ga.us http://www.doe.k12.ga.us/DMGetDocument.aspx/Graduation%20Rate%20by%20school.pdf?p=6CC6799F8C1371F69339FC4F7E1FF0B81778FE6348F4254DFB1964A5FF63B8D5&Type=D http://www.georgiastats.uga.edu/sasweb/cgi-bin/broker http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/13/13001.html

Submitted By: Nelson GainesSubmitted: 11/3/2010
Interesting to note the liquor by drink was passed by the city and county voters. Congratulations-you approve of the most dangerous and additivie drug over heroin and crack. Most are critical and condem other drugs but yet voted for this. All I saw was its about money. Love of money is the root of evil. More interesting is I never saw any opposition to this from the Churches. I recall past referumdums on the drink and the fierce opposition by the Churches. Its all in name of change I hear. BUT it is also about all the consequences and results of the use of Alchol that no one considers.

Submitted By: Dru HannonSubmitted: 10/29/2010
I heard this analogy this morning on the radio that was very interesting. The story goes that if one was to spread corn out in the wild (free) hogs would come to eat. After some time one could place fencing up on one side and spread more corn out. The wild hogs would still come and eat. After some more time had passed, one could add another section of fence and spread more corn. Allow more time to pass and add a third section of fence. Spreading more corn and waiting and allowing time the wild (Free) hogs do not seem threatened. After some time one would add the fourth and final section of fence which has a gate. However, when the corn is spread, leave the gate open. Allow the wild (Free) hogs to come and go. Continue for several days. The family of wild (Free) hogs is being trained for captivity. When the entire family is feeding and unaware, SLAM THE GATE!!! Our government is performing this same process on the American people by feeding us these supposedly (Free) Programs. Nothing

Submitted By: Robert BuiceSubmitted: 10/2/2010
Dear Tim With regards to the "Coal Plant" proposed for Ben Hill County, some of us are confused as to the location of the plant. How about printing a map of the county showing the proposed location. It would help me, and I know there are others who would like some information.

EDITOR'S NOTE: In eastern Ben Hill County, approximately half-way between the junction of U.S. 319 and River Road and the Coffee County line is Gull Road. Gull Road runs south of 319 to Dickson Mill Pond Road. The proposed plant will be in the area of Gull Road. Should a zoning request be made, we will publish the zoning map.

Submitted By: readerSubmitted: 9/23/2010
Wonderful news about the partnership between Dorminy Medical Center & Phoebe Putney. This will be great for our community!

Submitted By: KFowlerSubmitted: 9/21/2010
Can anyone tell me if there was a Dr. Pepper bottling company in Fitzgerald in the 1940's?

Submitted By: Pointing the finger?Submitted: 9/21/2010
So are you suggesting that Farmers quit farming? Because without them Farming i do not think you nor anyone else will be able to eat. If you havent looked at the cost of chemcials lately that go onto the crops that are grown in Fitzgerald and surrounding counties you would see that Farmers have it pretty bad when it comes to COST of chemicals. Most farmers are going back to the old ways. There are no other options for Farmers when it comes to spraying chemicals. Before everyone starts throwing all of this on Farmers maybe you should think about whats on your plate at Breakfast, Lunch and Supper. Without the Farmer we would all be starving. These Farmers are just trying to survive. There are no rewards in Farming anymore its a way of life for them, more like Gambling everytime they go plant a seed in the ground. Lets attack someone else please. Being a farmers wife i know for a fact that farming isn't easy..

Submitted By: Reality CheckSubmitted: 9/20/2010
The proposed coal plant has ceertainly mobilized a portion of our community who are concerned about the environmental effect. However, there are obviously some EXISTING situations in our county that are already having a much more devastating effect on our children, adults and environment. These problems are already here and not the result of a future coal plant. If the County Commission decides to call for a referendum, they certainly should add a noise pollution ordinance. In a few weeks, the peanut dryers will be roaring and a large portion of our population will be affected. Let us vote on an ordinance that the dryers should be turned off from 9 pm until 8 am. That would be a sweet relief! Ms. McMahan & Ms. Glenn pointed out that a serious problem ALREADY EXISTS. There are a group of people who are already spraying, dumping and distributing PROVEN carcinogenic chemicals into our air, land & water. These are pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, fertilizers, defoliants, etc.

Submitted By: Just MeSubmitted: 9/9/2010
I have said all I need to say about the coal plant except when we start having rolling blackouts, then maybe someone will get tired of that too and start complaining. We have swimmings pools, air conditioners, dish washers, washers and dryers, refregiators and many more things that aren't going to work. As for me, I will be okay without those things since I didn't have them once in my life. I know how to survive without them. Good luck on how ever this thing turns out to be.

Submitted By: WorriedSubmitted: 9/8/2010
Talk about cancer rate in BenHill county wonder why the old Delphi building was torn down hauled off earth removed and new soil brought in.We have already been sold a bad apple that will haunt us for many years.

Submitted By: JUST MESubmitted: 9/2/2010
Almost everyone is scared or the coal burning plant not being safe for the enviroment. The pollution it will cause, in the water we drind, the air we breath, in the food we eat, and who knows what else. Has anyone who is against all these things thought about all the chemicals that we consume in our food. Everyone is concerned about our obesity status, but no one hollers about growth harmone in our meat. This is not washed out, cooked out or filtered out in any way. We as citizens consume it everytime we eat any kind of meat and guess what, we get bigger and bigger and our children are doing the same thing and running up blood pressure, the rate of diabetes, cholestrol, cancer rate and numerous other disease. Why not campaign against things that have been done to us for years. This can be corrected easily, but no one cares enough because it is our farmers and cattlemen that are doing it to us. And that is a no-no in this farm belt.

Submitted By: Gant KangasSubmitted: 9/1/2010
On the front page of the September 1st. edition the police claim they confiscated 5000 dollars worth of drugs in a raid on the Southern Exposre club consisting of 47 grams of pot, 8.5 grams of cocaine and 9 vicadin pills. How did the police come up with this amount. 47 grams of marijuana has a street value of maybe 470 dollars if sold at 10 dollars a gram and the 8.5 gramsof cocaine has a value of 425-450 dollars at 50 bucks a gram. The pills at the high end might have a street value of 90 dollars which adds up to 1010 dollars. Was there a mistake made in the reporting of the confiscated material or are the police just exagerating the amount to make themselveslook better in the public eye. This is not the first time that I have noticed a discrepancy in the reported value of police confiscations. If the police are overstating the value of seizures, what else are they overstating? Above all else we ,the people, should know the the information given to us by the goverment is accurate and

Submitted By: Worried ParentSubmitted: 8/26/2010
What do you concered parents feel about recess schedules? One of our own school systems adminstrations, Irwin Elementary, feels as if there is no need. Do you care if there are over 100 kids on the playground at one time? If you attend IRWIN COUNTY, contact your local school and tell Donna Barker your views!! Our community educators are there for our children when we cannot be, and your child should feel like they are in a safe enviornment. As a parent if you are not able to home school, you are forced to send your babies out in the world. You have the right to feel good about the enviornment you are forcing them into. You would not think to ask this question, but it is very relevent. Especially when you choose Irwin County School, you think you are getting that small town enviroment you cherished as a young student. As a parent that is what I was looking foward to, more connection b/c you have few people. That isn't always the case. Without extensive research, I have discovered that t

Submitted By: WoodySubmitted: 8/24/2010
There is one aspect of the proposed power plant that has been totaly overlooked. It should be a bio fuel fired plant. About 6 months ago everyone was excited about using wood waste to make pellets to be shipped to Europe. What a great boom for the wood industry. The truth of the matter is that wood by products should be used to fire the power plant here and not coal. It is totaly absurd that our wood is being shipped to Europe and not used here. Now why would they ship our wood 3,500 miles to run a power plant. It is because they are over polluted with coal plants. Wood fired plants are pollution free compared to coal. And the ash and residue can be used agriculturaly rather than sit in large ponds or pits. And what has happened to the small (50MW) power plant that was to be built next to Gilman and So. Veneer?

Submitted By: LEGALSubmitted: 8/24/2010
I think that with a little help we can patch the holes in our city streets with something that will stay fixed.The hole at the red light coming into town from 319 at the red rooster is out again.How many times does it take to fix a little hole in the road?

Submitted By: fitzgeraldSubmitted: 8/24/2010
Thanks WEN for your response to my latest post. If all coal plants were shut down immediately, what is your proposed alternate energy source that would immediately take the place of the coal plants? Thank you.

Submitted By: WEN memberSubmitted: 8/18/2010
Dear fitzgerald, Thanks for your kind words about WEN. Also on the subject of WEN's not offering energy alternatives for Georgia's coal plants, you're touching on a point you should be skeptical about with the representatives who want to build Plant Ben Hill. They make it sound as though Georgia is in desperate need of electricity, but that's not so. Much of Georgia's electricity currently goes onto the grid and powers Florida. Florida has resolved not to build anymore coal plants because they're so unhealthy. That's good for Florida but bad for Georgia if Georgia keeps building those unhealthy coal plants up here to keep Florida in electricity. The demand for electricity in Georgia has actually gone down for a number of reasons. But when Georgia's demand rises, we have plenty of cushion because we could start using the electricity we're currently sending to Florida. We're living in a time when there are incredible advances being made in alternative energy, and we shouldn't build

Submitted By: fitzgeraldSubmitted: 8/12/2010
I commend the WEN folks for their noble opposition effort to the proposed Ben Hill county coal plant. However, WEN does not offer any alternate fuel sources that would immediately start if coal plants were eliminated. Based on the ad in the 8/11 edition of the Herald, the coal plant representative must be coming to Fitzgerald soon.

Submitted By: curious catSubmitted: 8/9/2010
Herald Leader, Just an idea... It would be interesting to see a quick poll on your website about the issue of the coal plant since voters have become more informed. Let's see where the majority stands.

Submitted By: WonderingSubmitted: 8/8/2010
How much of local taxpayers' money has gone to prepare for the coal plant already? They are working on the roads and looks like they have already spent alot...

Submitted By: fitzgeraldSubmitted: 8/2/2010
Hey ya'll.........it looks like the EPA wants to regulate farm dust. Nothing like adding this problem with the coal plant thing. All of you dust busters better get ready.

Submitted By: WEN memberSubmitted: 7/21/2010
fitzgerald, Probably not much about cap and trade will fit into 100 words. Until something shakes the fossil fuel industry's hold on our Congress I'm not sure any meaningful cap and trade will pass. There may be other things in the energy bill that will affect coal plants.But that would be a beginning for getting at the true cost of using coal. Other interesting possibilities: renewable energy standard to require more energy to come from renewable; greatly increased subsidies for renewable energy. Since fossil fuels now get more than 2x what renewable get that would change the equation.

Submitted By: WEN memberSubmitted: 7/21/2010
tlw, You’re not a "nobody." As a tax payer and voter your government is supposed to work for you. Talk to your commissioner (City/ County), anyone you can think of about the plant, why it's a bad idea, what can be done to stop it. If they don't know ask them to find out and get back to you. The County Commission will have an important role in rezoning. WEN doesn't have paid people to get out our views like P4G so we do rely on Facebook but try to do other things. Your help and ideas would be appreciated.

Submitted By: WEN memberSubmitted: 7/19/2010
To "fitzgerald": I assume you're talking about the energy bill. The version that passed the house did have a significant cap and trade portion but it's not at all clear the senate version will. I guess if it does it will likely focus on coal plant pollution but my understanding is that significant concessions and exemptions have been discussed just to the cap and trade part. Until something shakes the fossil fuel industry's hold on our Congress I'm not sure any meaningful cap and trade will pass. From what I understand cap and trade will likely increase the costs for coal plants to do business. It's an approach to figuring into the cost of coal the costs to our health and quality of life which the coal industry has gotten a pass on for too long. It may not be the best approach but it is the one most discussed. Building and operating coal plants is getting more and more expensive for several reasons. There's the cost of coal alone. Increasingly meaningful regulations on toxic polluta

Submitted By: fitzgeraldSubmitted: 7/18/2010
Is it possible that the cap and trade bill being proposed in congress will be the dagger that eliminates all coal plants, particularly new ones? Ironically, the cap and trade bill will help stop the one being proposed for Ben Hill County. Comments from Wiregrass Energy Network are appreciated.

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 7/15/2010
I am already sure that the proposed coal-burning plant is a bad idea, I don't need more convincing. But what can "a nobody" do about it? How will it help if I join a Facebook site? Shouldn't everyone in the county, even those without internet access know about this? Everyone will be effected sooner or later.

Submitted By: Lene HarrisSubmitted: 7/15/2010
In some large dairy farms, “factory farms,” newborn calves are immediately chained into crates so small that they cannot turn around. A few weeks later, they are often too weak to walk to the transportation truck for slaughter. Please call or write Secretary Tom Vilsack, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1400 Independence Ave., S.W., Washington, DC 20259, (202) 720-2791. Ask him to amend the regulations to ban slaughter of downed veal calves, and enforce the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act which requires no animal should be slaughtered while conscious.

Submitted By: Wiregrass Energy NetworkSubmitted: 7/10/2010
To tlw: We are a grassroots group of concerned citizens who are fighting the coal plant. We would love to have you join us. We have a Facebook page entitled "No Coal Plant in Ben Hill County!" and you can contact us at 229-423-8630.

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 7/7/2010
I'm against putting a coal-burning plant in Ben Hill County, but what can I do about it?

Submitted By: very concernedSubmitted: 7/6/2010
I'm sure that each of you have seen the hole in the highway at the Red Roster stop light .It has been there and getting bigger for Months, This is just one of the many holes that need attention. Take a ride in the county, some people have a very hard time getting in and out, it takes 4 wheel drive. My point is, our elected county Goverment is letting us down, then talking about spending over a million dollars on a swimming pool. A lot of people need help in our county before a swimming pool or anything else. Maybe we need to vote a little different next time, ride around and look at some of the work that our county is doing on our dirt roads it's terrible. We have the equipment and the money we are being taxed more and more and getting less and less for our money and accepting it. It is time for change.

Submitted By: Carlos C. CanadaSubmitted: 7/3/2010
Dear Editor, For too long, organ and tissue donation has been misunderstood because of the myths surrounding donation. One donor has the potential to save or enhance the lives of 50 to 60 people. My life has been touched twice by donation. My wife Karen died in 1995. Through donation she was able to help more than 50 people. With her eyes she was able to give the gift of sight. Her heart valves helped someone live. Her skin helped burn patients, her bones helped cancer patients, while her tendons and ligaments helped sport injuries. In 2002 I was diagnosed with fatty liver (NASH), which eventually progressed into End Stage Liver Disease (ESLD). In 2009, I received a liver transplant, and am now able to make a positive difference every day. LifeLink of Georgia provides facts about organ and tissue donation, and encourages people to register to be a life-saving organ and tissue donor. You can help save lives by designating your decision on the Georgia donor registry

Submitted By: Gina WigginsSubmitted: 6/30/2010
I believe that the coal plant in Crisp County was 12 megawatts. This one will be 850 megawatts. That is quite a difference-- on the environment and would require the use of much more water. We are continuously searching for info about the impact of PBH on the environment and on alternative sources of energy. I'd love to see windmills instead of smoke stacks!

Submitted By: fitzgeraldSubmitted: 6/30/2010
Dear WEN.......thanks for your response. I am skeptical of the power company that wants to buid a coal fired plant in Ben Hill County. I am as equally skeptical of what information that WEN has made public in opposition to the plant. There is a coal fired plant in Crisp County. Has anyone gathered information about this plant as to its impact on the environment? What is WEN's position on alternative energy rather than coal? Perhaps wind is the answer with hundreds of windmills dotting the Ben Hill County landscape. Please do have a great meeting tonight.

Submitted By: Gina WigginsSubmitted: 6/29/2010
We hope this to be the first of a series of informational meetings to educate the people of our community. These women will present information related to their areas of expertise (financial aspects of fossil fuel industries and pollution monitoring of rivers). They were free to come at this time and P4G was not as it is under litigation. P4G will have supporters there and everyone is free to ask questions. P4G will come the third week in September for a group presentation and Q & A's at that time. In the meantime, learn all that you can!

Submitted By: Mac MarineSubmitted: 6/29/2010
To WEN, why would you not let reps from Power4Georgians address your meeting, I have not made up my mind about the issue, but I would question anyone that only wants one side to be heard. Where is your expertise. I fill that the citizens of Ben Hill County should have an opportunity to hear from both sides, I realize that they have their own agenda and so do you at WEN. I have done a little research and your stated facts aren't always correct facts.. Lets do this civil and hear both sides and be open minded about what is being said.

Submitted By: Wiregrass Energy NetworkSubmitted: 6/29/2010
Dear “fitzgerald,” thanks for asking about our group of local concerned citizens who oppose Ben Hill’s proposed coal-fired plant and who call ourselves the Wiregrass Energy Network (WEN). Don’t you think you ought to be skeptical of what you’re told by someone trying to sell you something? Well, that’s what’s been going on for a long time in Ben Hill County. The only information about the coal plant has been put out by the company with deep pockets that would get a lot richer if they get the go-ahead to build the coal plant. That company is Power4Georgians. But WEN isn’t trying to get rich. We’re just trying to protect the health of our families from pollution and the huge amounts of toxic coal ash the plant would produce. And we want to protect our area’s water from being sucked up by the plant. We’re trying to put out the most reliable information we can, and we hope you’ll come judge about that for yourself at the information session you mentioned that WEN will present tomorro

Submitted By: fitzgeraldSubmitted: 6/25/2010
Will there be someone from the coal plant company at the 6/30 wiregrass meeting to give their views about the proposed coal plant in eastern ben hill county? Hopefully so, because those in attendance need to hear both sides of the issue.

Submitted By: EdSubmitted: 6/11/2010
The oil spill is certainly a tragedy without a doubt. I liken it to the time a bunch of wild chickens turned my back yard into their out house.I waited for the Mayor to come out and clean up the mess.The Governor also ignored me. Well,I went out and cleaned up the mess myself, after all it was in my back yard. I then decided to fence a small area for the chickens so that I could easily clean up the mess since I did need them for their supply of manure. Yes some environmentalist didn't like it because they could see the chickens but I was able to easily clean up the mess before it got out of hand. That taught me not to rely on any one else to be responsible for what goes on in my back yard.

Submitted By: Farmer SupporterSubmitted: 5/27/2010
How do you think the farmer feels as he has to be around the chicken manure all day? If you were a farmer I think you would realize the cost of spreading other fertilizer is way more expensive than the manure. Wouldn't you want to save any way that you could if you were a farmer? Next time you criticize the farmer, think about what you’re going to eat for breakfast, lunch, and supper. Without the farmer you wouldn't be able to eat. Just take it in to consideration. I am sure that the smell will pass, but what the farmer has I the ground is more important than the “stinky” smell isn’t it? Would you rather eat, or for everything to smell good? Don't bite the hand that feeds you, literally.

Submitted By: stinky tooSubmitted: 5/26/2010
Agreed, but at least the chicken manure smell is only occasional. Wait until they are burning coal 24/7. Then sulfur will be added to the air on a constant basis. Add pollen to that and we will all be looking for somewhere else to live so we can breathe. Saw on the news last night that jobs are coming to Fitzgerald--so we don't need a coal plant for that reason.

Submitted By: Stinky?Submitted: 5/23/2010
I am writing to address a problem here in Fitzgerald/Ben Hill county. It is the smell of chicken manure that is spread on the farmland. When the wind blows the smell is horrible and it even comes into your home even with the windows and doors closed. It makes us gag. There should be some city and/or county ordinance against this practice. If a farmer spreads the manure, it should be covered up, so that no odor is present.

Submitted By: Gina WigginsSubmitted: 5/21/2010
Many thanks to people like Greg Childre and Gerald Pryor for bringing in industries that use existing buildings and local workers NOW!! The coal plant will be years in the planning and building and then still will not use many local people.

Submitted By: No CoalSubmitted: 5/20/2010
First I thought a coal plant in Ben Hill was probably a good idea but have been doubting it more and more. The page in the Herald-Leader this week says it all. Yes, it would be good to have some more jobs in Ben Hill. But not with the problems the coal plant would bring. Definitely not. I'm going to get one of those NO COAL PLANT signs to put in my yard.

Submitted By: EdSubmitted: 5/16/2010
The Black Citizens that have to put up with that insanity from that "club" on Monitor are asking for help from the city to provide some semblance of peace and safety and what does the Great Chief Smallwood say ...." most clubs have fights and this is no exception and the poor Police can't get to the problem because of the parked cars ....." YOU HAVE GOT TO BE FOOLING !! How about having the cars towed that are blocking the road and preventing an ambulance from responding to the citizens cry for help. If the wonderful police can't get through then I have to assume that medical can't get through either. By the way Honorable Chief, I don't recall any shootings, drug dealing openly, prostitution, and blocked roads in regards to Bill's Place -- Colony Lounge -- White Horse Saloon. Sorry Black folks, ya lose again.

Submitted By: Joan LardinSubmitted: 5/12/2010
How low can someone go? My 73 year old cousin, Nellie Swearingen Sparrow, and her husband Ernest went to visit her parents’ (Hannah and Otis Swearingen‘s) gravesite at Evergreen Cemetery on Mother’s day and found that the bluebird box they had placed there had been stolen and the post pulled out thrown on the ground. They were dumbstruck that anyone could be so low as to take a birdhouse off a gravesite. Could it have been taken because it had a decorative copper roof? How much could someone make selling a little bit of copper to a recycler? A couple of dollars? What is this world coming to that people would steal a birdhouse from a cemetery?

Submitted By: reader45Submitted: 5/12/2010
Anyone else wish local law enforcement would stop focusing so much on seatbelts or sitting in a parking lot trying to clock someone speeding and start patrolling neighborhoods. You can't leave so much as a rake in your yard overnight without it walking off and you can't drive down most side streets for all the hoodlums hanging out in the streets. Not to mention the home and car break ins? Why don't they start giving tickets to hoodlums that block traffic and start protecting property owner’s rights?

Submitted By: Long Time SubscriberSubmitted: 5/10/2010
It's been said that you can judge a person's character by their choice to do the right thing when no one is watching. Tim, thanks for doing the right thing. It's good to know that our newspaper doesn't cooperate with those who would try to use their influence to do otherwise.

Submitted By: readerSubmitted: 5/8/2010
Kudos to Tim--I have to admit that I often wondered why some people made the police report and some didn't. Thanks for your honesty and integrity, Tim.

Submitted By: Angela BoothSubmitted: 4/27/2010
I think an aquatic center would be a great addition to the community of Fitzgerald. Our current pool was constructed before World War II, and because of its condition, needs to be replaced. An aquatic center could be used by people of all ages, from senior water aerobics classes to baby water safety classes and everyone in between. As far as serving a large cross section of the community, an aquatics center is a logical choice and a good use of tax payer money.

Submitted By: HoneybearSubmitted: 4/26/2010
The Aquatic Center will benefit all of Ben Hill Cty who care to partake in it. Yes, we have a community pool, but this is not accessible year round. We need a year round facility where you can excercise, have use for people who need this for therapy, DLS swim team, possibly FHS swim team. The pool would be heated and ready year round and not just through the few months of summer.

Submitted By: Dru HannonSubmitted: 4/25/2010
Dear voter, the pool issue on the table for DLS would not be self serving for anyone. It would a public pool for everyone. The issue was that we have enough gyms throughout the area and the current pool is the oldest in the state. For Economic Development purposes, a newer facility would generate the possibility for additional income and a feature which could attract business propsects (maybe?) By the way, I am a voter also, my name is listed.

Submitted By: voterSubmitted: 4/25/2010
So the same people who threw tantrums about the football stadium are now asking for a swimming pool? Does this seem a little self serving? Don't we already have a community pool?

Submitted By: Gina WigginsSubmitted: 4/23/2010
To all those who have requested, these links are where I got my info from for the letter to the editor this week. I recommend as many Ben Hill residents as possible go to these links to learn more about this disturbing situation. http://www.allbusiness.com/legal/torts-punitive-damages/12057181-1.html http://www.ajc.com/business/content/business/stories/2008/08/26/cobb_emc_judge.html http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/metro/cobb/stories/2009/04/22/cobb_emc_energy_search.html?cxntlid=homepage_tab_newstab http://www.cobbemctruth.com/ http://flagpole.com/Weekly/Features/PlantWashington-14Oct09

Submitted By: fitzgeraldSubmitted: 4/19/2010
I always thought the train noise was part of the sermon at Central Methodist Church. No wonder the sermons last so long.

Submitted By: Herald readerSubmitted: 4/19/2010
"Very Concerned" - Your logic is not sound, as the choice is certainly not between yard signs and a coal plant. I have a hunch that little signs in everybody's yard will not have a major impact on whether or not a coal plant is established here, and they do make the town look rather trashy. That being said, I have not actually seen any of the coal plant signs and was not referring to them in the first place. Thou doth protest too much!!

Submitted By: Methodist train loverSubmitted: 4/19/2010
If the Methodist Church couldn't get through a sermon without noisy train interruptions, we'd have moved years ago. Sounds like home to us!

Submitted By: Voice against CoalSubmitted: 4/19/2010
In response to nolenutt's comment that we "already have tons of dirty, nasty coal" railcars running through Fitzgerald, I checked with a CSX employee and was told that there are very few, if any coal cars coming through Fitzgerald now. The coal-fired plant in Jax, FL (the only one on the Fitz. line), has its coal delivered by ocean barge. But, due to salt-water contamination of the coal barges, the Jax plant is expected to switch back to railcar delivery. That means that in addition to the hundreds (perhaps thousands) of coal railcars per day that Plant Ben Hill will require, we would also have coal railcars going to and from Jax via Fitzgerald. That's an enormous amount of railcars, coming in full, and leaving empty, every day, 24/7, for the next fifty years. This is not good news for our town that is dissected by a train track. Our Library and Museum, places where quiet is important, are right on the tracks. The Methodist Church may have to relocate to get through a sermon without no

Submitted By: WorriedSubmitted: 4/19/2010
Tim, it's going to be impossible for you to post a quick poll about the coal plant that will produce reliable results. I want to let you know your quick poll definitely isn't going to be an accurate indicater this week. It seems clear some pro coal plant peson voted repeatedly Sunday afternoon. The pro coal plant response, after an initial big increase right after you posted the quick poll, had been hovering around 33 percent all week. On Sunday/yesterday when I voted "no" on the quick poll, the "yes" response was still at about that level. Then just a couple of hours later, I checked to see the status of the poll and discovered suddenly in, that couple of hours, large numbers of "yes" votes suddenly had driven up the "yes" responses to 50 percent. As my wife joked: so did all these people wait to vote "yes" after returning from the same Sunday evening church services? No, I don't think so! It was clear there had been some "sleight of hand." To check out how the quick poll worked

Submitted By: Very concernedSubmitted: 4/18/2010
"Herald Reader," you say you're tired of yard signs "cluttering up our town." If you're talking about the "NO COAL PLANT IN BEN HILL" signs, you should think twice about what would be worse for Ben Hill, signs protesting the coal plant's pollution and health concerns, or the actual pollution and health concerns. What will really hurt Ben Hill for the next 50 years is the coal plant.

Submitted By: nolenuttSubmitted: 4/15/2010
We already have tons fo dirty, nasty coal running through Fitzgerald every week. Those loaded coal trains are just going to fuel some other towns and fuel other economies. I am all in favor of a coal plant coming(if there is actually one on the way). It means jobs and we desperately need jobs. It is time to get our heads out of the sand.

Submitted By: Herald readerSubmitted: 4/15/2010
Is anybody else tired of all those yard signs cluttering up our town?

Submitted By: WorriedSubmitted: 4/14/2010
Regarding the proposed coal-fired plant, I'm concerned about how they plan to get the coal TO the plant site. If by train, that would require the construction of new railroad tracks and other infrastructure, and who will pay for that, us taxpayers? Will the county use eminent domain to run tracks on privately owned land? Also, can anyone imagine how awful it will be to have over 2000 railcars loaded with dirty, dusty coal running through Fitzgerald every day for the next 50 years?

Submitted By: Nearly BrokeSubmitted: 4/14/2010
You have to wonder what is really going on, when utilities in Fitzgerald cost three and four times what they do in other places around Georgia. Let's see that audit!! It could reveal error, fraud, waste, theft, or who knows what. Or it could reveal nothing. Get the audit done and let's see.

Submitted By: Another WLB VictimSubmitted: 4/12/2010
Fitzgerald Utilities' outrageously high charges have nothing to do with whether they use coal or not. They seem to be accountable to no one and charge whatever they feel like charging. They will continue until someone forces them to stop. Why don't our community leaders investigate? Who are they scared of? There was a letter to the editor a couple of weeks ago requesting that the WLB Commission have an outside audit done. Well?

Submitted By: curiousSubmitted: 4/9/2010
I wonder why Fitzgerald Utilities are so much higher than Irwin EMC? Do they buy their electricity from coal plants? I have read that coal generated electricity is the most expensive.

Submitted By: CitizenSubmitted: 4/8/2010
Before you agree for a coal plant ,think about your citizens who have lung disease.We can hardly breathe the air here now. Check out the cost of medication for lung disease. Do as much as you can for your people who are already sick and keep the air as clean as you can .

Submitted By: dru hannonSubmitted: 4/5/2010
I would like to thank the Mayor of Fitzgerald and his administration, the Chairman and the County Board of Commissioners, and the Fitzgerald City Council Members for allowing the public to voice their opinion on the recent 2011 SPLOST proposal. My greatest appreciation is the fact that you honestly listened. Regrettably, things were said, or implied which were hurtful. However, these are things felt by the people within this community, taxpayers and voting citizens. This leads me to believe there is a break down within the system which seriously needs addressing from both sides. I feel, as painful as it may have been, we, as a community have begun this process. Mayor Thompson, I apologize to you for the abruptness of my recent letter. I was only stating the concerns of a good percentage of citizens. Rather it is just or not, it is perceived. People feel that they cannot come to you and talk about a problem without there being an intimidation factor. People feel that their interests ar

Submitted By: Farmers WifeSubmitted: 4/5/2010
In regards to the "checmicals being fed through irrigation pipes and its in your water". Total bull! All you can feed through irrigatin pipes is fertilizer, nothing that will hurt a human more than anything else in your food or water. If one is really wanting to bite the hand that feeds America then go ahead and make it harder on the farmer. People do not realize that the farmer might not be producing what is on your plate, but without the farmer you wont have anything on your plate. Be careful to make comments about something before one thinks about all that the farmer does for one and his/her family. Trust me, checmicals in irrigation is the least of your worries. Plus, if no one has looked around at how high fertilizer/chemicals are to produce a crop, I doubt that anyone is putting that through their irrigation systems since they cannot afford it!

Submitted By: edSubmitted: 4/1/2010
Fly on the wall overheard ........ "We have some real educational problems we have to address. Teachers pay, new books, new equipment, the list goes on." "What can we do? we have no funds!" " Hold on, we just received 1.3 million dollars for school improvements." " Hot Dang !! What should we spend it on 'Bubba'?" " Don't be silly 'JR'. You know what we really need is FAKE FOOTBALL GRASS so we can provide the best for our up and coming young citizens" Just dreaming,,, that surely can't be true.

Submitted By: Hopeful Submitted: 4/1/2010
Kudos to Mayor Thompson for listening to the people and removing the turfgrass funding from the SPLOST. Now, let's hope that our County leaders will follow his example and vote against the proposed Coal-Fired plant. The vast majority of Ben Hill County residents are against this project, once they learn of the horrendous effect it will have on our health and water supply. To our County Commissioners, this is the single most important decision you will ever make for Ben Hill County. You can vote for the plant and leave a legacy of pollution and contamination, OR you can stand up and be a hero to our children and save them from fifty years of living in a county ruined by dirty coal.

Submitted By: appreciative voterSubmitted: 3/31/2010
Thanks Mayor Thompson!!!!! Also, thanks to the citizens of this town who care enough to speak out. Now let's join together and get SPLOST renewed for the betterment of this great community.

Submitted By: N. AnthonySubmitted: 3/30/2010
Against turfgrass. I have a huge problem when sports are more important than safe roads and public safety. I love football and soccer, but not at the expense of public safety. Some of our county roads are almost non-accessable when it rains a little, and if it rains a lot, forget it, you must have 4 wheel drive. We ask our county law inforcement officers to use older vehicles and pay higher and higher health insurance deductables, and the city and county want to put boatloads of money into astroturf. My how strange the priorities are after an election. Before the elections it was all for the citizens of Fitzgerald and Ben Hill county. Now it seems that a football field and turfgrass are more important. Wake up Fitzgerald and Ben Hill County. If we want to grow we have to have public safety and good roads. Lets spend our money where it should be. On Public Safety and Education. NOT on Turfgrass that has to be reinstalled on a regular basis. Oh, there is also the increase in

Submitted By: Citizens Against TurfSubmitted: 3/28/2010
The Meeting: I made a statement indicating that contrary to popular belief, I was not the leader of this group. I had and will continue to help organize things. However, this is a group effort with several hard workers who are dedicated to the best outcome for Fitzgerald taxpayers. Also, I am, and many others, are not against the SPLOST, we want it, we need it. However, if the "turf clause" stays: I will vote NO on SPLOST, I will talk against it and I feel the majority of the voters feel this way. 1. It was a calm and very productive meeting in my opinion. I felt like we made progress. Cam Jordon, the Community Developer and Philip Jay, Chairman- County Board of Commissioners were present. 2. We had about 20 people attend. Holley Lee took notes of the meeting. 3. Cam explained that the turf became an idea about 2-3 years ago when the drainage problem was being looked at. Because the field was going to be tore up, he (as Community Developer) felt that turf would help promote a bette

Submitted By: interestedSubmitted: 3/26/2010
Sure wish somebody would let us know what happened at the meeting last night. Has the wind gone out of the protesters' sails?

Submitted By: Citizens against turfSubmitted: 3/23/2010
Thursday 7 pm Harris House Also, please add: The Board of Directors/Business Owner of the Harris House does not publicly endorce a certain poltical view point, but agreed to allow this meeting at their facility so that the public could get information when other places were not available. Thanks

Submitted By: InterestedSubmitted: 3/23/2010
To the Citizens Against Turf group - you did not specify which day the meeting at the Harris House is.

Submitted By: EdSubmitted: 3/23/2010
This was e-mailed to me but I found it to be much too true... Wal-Mart for President 1 . Americans spend $36,000,000 at Wal-Mart Every hour of every day. 2.. This works out to $20,928 profit every minute! 3. Wal-Mart will sell more from January 1 to St. Patrick's Day (March... See More 17th) than Target sells all year. 4. Wal-Mart is bigger than Home Depot + Kroger + Target + Sears + Costco + K-Mart combined. 5. Wal-Mart employs 1.6 million people and is the largest private Employer, and most speak English. 6. Wal-Mart is the largest company in the history of the World. 7. Wal-Mart now sells more food than Kroger & Safeway combined, and keep in mind they did this in only 15 years. 8. During this same period, 31 supermarket chains sought bankruptcy. 9. Wal-Mart now sells more food than any other store in the world. 10. Wal-Mart has approx 3,900 stores in the USA of which 1,906 are Super Centers; this is 1,000 more than it had 5 Years ago. 11. This year 7.2 billion diffe

Submitted By: Citizens against"Turf"Submitted: 3/23/2010
There will be a meeting of all Fitzgerald & Ben Hill County citizens who have had enough and wish to be heard. It will be at 7 pm at the Harris House on Lee St. Topic of discussion will be signing of petition and counter proposal to be presented to the mayor and city council in response to our concern and disapproval of spending $600,000 of SPLOST funds for artificial turf. If you cannot make this meeting, there will be others up through July. You can sign the petition on Facebook Group Page "Fitzgerald Does Not Need Turf". STAND FIRM AND BE HEARD.

Submitted By: Tired of rattlingSubmitted: 3/22/2010
Would someone at City Hall give some thought, while they're figuring out ways to spend our money needlessly - to doing something about city streets? Riding on Central Avenue or, heaven forbid, Pine Street is like jolting over a rock pile - and Central is one of the most important streets in town, being a main artery bringing folks into Fitzgerald. Maybe we can put astroturf over it.

Submitted By: Food for thoughtSubmitted: 3/22/2010
The last SPLOST Proposal included $500K for Carnegie, $1,550,000 for City Hall, and $300K for Depot Renovation. Now, $100K MORE for Carnigie, $1,500,000 AGAIN for City Hall and the Depot still has not been done. But let's throw in some turf. WHERE IS THE MONEY GOING?????

Submitted By: Ralph FlattSubmitted: 3/21/2010
Does everyone realize that our farmers now can feed chemicals through their irrigation system,only one little check valve and it's in our water supply.Go check it for yourself.This to me is scary real scary ,since check valves fail very often.

Submitted By: Outraged voterSubmitted: 3/17/2010
Let's look at the origin of this SPLOST appropriation: It was first handed off to the County Commission, where Kathy Davis and Richard Goodman were the only members to oppose this tomfoolery. In fact, they were encouraged by other members of the council to not even bring it to the agenda. How useless! Now that it's back in the city's hands, where it should have been to start with, let's just remind the council members what an OUTRAGEOUS idea it is. Why should we appease Robbie Pruitt, who left Fitzgerald for bigger money a few years ago, only to return after he wasn't well-received in Houston County? He is the HIGHEST PAID member of Ben Hill County Schools' faculty other than adminstrators, and rest assured, his supplement more than buttresses his losses due to the furloughs that hurt other faculty members. The Christian thing to do would be to forgo the money for the stadium and share it with his fellow employees, who make nowhere near the $100,000+ he makes every year. His reasoning

Submitted By: SPLOST voterSubmitted: 3/15/2010
Have the "powers that be" on the board of education considered a performing arts center for our schools using the education sales tax? Have they seen the one at Irwin County High School? Seems like that would be a much greater benefit to more of our children than artificial turf on the football field like the City is proposing with its sales tax.

Submitted By: herald-leder readerSubmitted: 3/14/2010
What they are talking about putting on the football field is called sport turf (Sprinturf is a name brand for sport turf). It's way better than astroturf and saves the environment about a million gallons of water per year per football field, plus no chemicals, fertilizers, paint, lawn mower fumes, etc. Also, loved Tom Crawford's editorial this week--he is right on about those high salaries to the university people. Everyone needs to be outraged about that!

Submitted By: tlwSubmitted: 3/12/2010
I wonder if Govenor Purdue has taken a paycut? Any unpaid furlough days for our highest state officials? Also, it has irked me all my adult life that high school football seems more important than providing a decent education.

Submitted By: SPLOST voterSubmitted: 3/12/2010
Do the people of Fitzgerald feel like it is a good time for us to be taxed to pay for a half million dollar astroturf surface for the high school football team? Sounds to me like some of that "pork" our Congress packs their bills with. Do all of our city councilmen REALLY feel that this is a good use of our SPLOST money? Seems like at least one would have had the guts to question it. If any of them care to explain their decision here, I'd be interested to read it.

Submitted By: Education supporterSubmitted: 3/11/2010
I do not know where Herald Reader and Whynot are getting thier information. They need to understand that it is wrong information! Administrators, just as teachers, work very hard to educate our Children. Most of the time with out any Parental help at all! Administrators have been cut and furloughed just as the rest of the Staff has. I know that if the Employees talked about the Administration as much as the Ben Hill County Schools Staff does about thier leaders, if it were a private company, they would find themselves unemployed quickly! I think it is time that everyone starts working together to help on another to educate our Children. Yes, these are our Children, stop complaining about them and work the best you know how with them. The Parents are sending the only ones they have to send, they are not keeping the good ones at home! So, lets get with it and start working in unity and harmony to educate our Children. No, I am not an Educator, I am a parent of two school age Children tha

Submitted By: Herald readerSubmitted: 3/11/2010
Central office administrative supplements total around $200,000 and they don't work nearly as hard as teachers. The entire school calendar was changed to save $80,000. The Ben Hill County School System is way too top heavy.

Submitted By: WhynotSubmitted: 3/10/2010
Teachers have had their pay cut, why not the administrative staff? They are the ones who make the big bucks.

Submitted By: neighborSubmitted: 3/8/2010
A coal plant puts a shadow on a town. It is not only a metaphorical shadow, but a real one, a pall of particulates and ash. This ash is breathed daily by the residents of the town, and by all their neighbors for miles around. When a town invites a coal plant to set up shop, it is accepting a kind of devil to come in. This devil causes lung cancer, emphysema, asthma, and all kinds of health problems. This is a very serious decision that we have to make here. Do we want to pay for a few jobs with a town that people will not want to visit, or move to, and do we want to pay for this plant with our health? Coal is a dirty enemy of human health. Coal causes cancer. Coal causes crazy things to happen with the climate, like tornadoes in March. Breathing coal particulates is like deciding to go stand inside your chimney day after day. Living with a coal plant is like living in a chimney. We do not want this in South Georgia. We have to figure out better ways to bring jobs to Ben Hill and Irwin

Submitted By: Organic GardenerSubmitted: 3/6/2010
Has anyone considered the fact that if you live anywhere near a coal-fired plant, you will not be able to get organic certification for your farm? Organic farming and organic foods are the fastest growing market in our agricultural economy, and could provide a bright future for our area farmers and ranchers. A friend has plans to open our area's first Organic/Local Food Restaurant, which could bring in visitors from all over south Georgia. This coal plant could be the end of a dream for a lot of us who like to grow our own helathy food. Also, with the amount of water required to operate the plant, our farmers will be forced to dig deeper and deeper wells to irrigate their crops, and in a year of drought, all our wells could run dry. I do hope our county leaders will consider this nightmare scenario.

Submitted By: Very concernedSubmitted: 3/6/2010
I'm very concerned about the coal-fired plant proposed for Ben Hill County. Fitzgerald is a beautiful town, which I think is why its economy will benefit in the coming years as baby boomers retire and look for a town like Fitzgerald to settle in. Every time I drive through Jesup and smell the stink of its pulp plant, I wonder why anyone would buy property and live there. That's how Fitzgerald will become very unattractive to people after the coal-fired plant is spewing unhealthy contamination everyday.

Submitted By: DeeSubmitted: 3/5/2010
As a visitor to your lovely town, when I heard about this poll, I immediately put in my vote. Since yesterday, I spent a few hours on the computer, doing some research about coal-fired power. It's absolutely unthinkable this would be considered. My grandparents lived during the depression. The only jobs they had were coal mines. Black lung is not a pretty health issue!

Submitted By: deeSubmitted: 3/4/2010
Why would anyone want to look up into the beautiful sky & air here to see smoke & ash, almost like the smog the hovers over LA freeways? Aside from the fact that these plants do not seem to have a good plan for keeping the coal sludge out of the water system. Rat poison is a biproduct--how does that sound? Please not here where it is so beautful.

Submitted By: DanSubmitted: 3/4/2010
The EMC consortium is trying to build a coal plant in Fitzgerald because they think rural we Southernere are too backward to understand we should oppose such a dirty, unhealthy project. I believe most of the jobs to construct the plant will come from outside Ben Hill, and, once the plant is operating, it will provide very few jobs. Unless you like the idea of mercury and arsenic contamination, you should be upset and oppose Plant Ben Hill!

Submitted By: Submitted: 3/4/2010
The idea of a coal-fired power plant is ludicrous. First of all, it was only brought out at election time to prop up Gerald Thompson's chances for re-election. And he still only squeaked by on a razor thin margin. It brings to mind much more of the problem with the local economy. Quick fixes won't work. Besides the obvious environmental dangers, which are myriad (just check with all the other counties who have kept such facilities away), who profits from this? The employment figures are nothing more than hot air. Most jobs are construction related and therefore short term. Why doesn't the Herald-Leader divulge who owns the land? Nothing but questions... The mayor PROMISED lots of jobs and tech-based companies with Millenium Technology Pointe, but considering the local school drop-out rate, the lack of a qualified local population must have scared off any potential investors. Of course, we heard absolutely nothing from our leadership on this failure. Another case in point is the pet bed

Submitted By: County residentSubmitted: 3/4/2010
Why would anyone want a coal-fired power plant in Ben Hill County? Are a few jobs worth polluting our air and water? Our Ocmulgee River could dry up . . . wells could go dry . . . farmers unable to irrigate . . . thousands of railcars full of dirty coal hauled through Fitzgerald daily . . . higher rates of cancer and asthma . . smokestacks spewing toxic smoke . . . coal ash holding ponds that could break . . . It is NOT worth it.

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