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Long term thinking on state funding

The news is not good for Georgia on the economic front. It seems sales tax revenue is down approximately 10 percent from February 2009, and last year revenue was down ... well, let's say they were way down and leave it at that for now.

March 11, 2010 | Staff Report | Opinion


Deadline for homestead exemption is near

April 1, 2010 is the deadline for accepting applications for homestead exemption for tax year 2010. Applications can be accepted year round but those received after April 1st will be applied to 2011 taxes. You can file at either of the two offices of the Tax Commissioner: (1) 11 North College Street in Pembroke or (2) 185 Richard Davis Drive in Richmond Hill.

March 11, 2010 | By Debra Newman Guest columnist | Opinion


Tell me what you'd like to read

As a child who wanted nothing more than to grow up and become a journalist, I used to write stories for and draw out my own homemade "newspapers" to distribute to my family on Sunday mornings at breakfast. I tried to design my publications based on what I thought each of my family members might want to read. Dad's "newspaper" was about sports and my younger sister's often featured reports on Strawberry Shortcake and her social circle.

March 11, 2010 | By Hollie Moore Barnidge Editor | Opinion


There is no easy way to balance budget

For the past two weeks, the Georgia state legislature has taken a working recess to address our budget crisis. At issue are both the FY 2010 amended and the FY 2011 general budgets.

March 11, 2010 | By State Sen. Buddy Carter Special to the Courier | Opinion


Crowd, students nearly as impressive as president

The crowd gathered behind barricades in barely contained anticipation - and in some cases adoration - Tuesday prior to President Barack Obama's arrival at Savannah Technical College reminded me of Beatle-mania way back in the 1960s, when four charismatic musicians from Manchester, England, forever changed America's rock music scene.

March 08, 2010 | By Denise Etheridge Staff writer | Opinion


Grade schools like we do students

Editor's note: State Rep. David Casas, R-Lilburn helped write this column.

March 03, 2010 | By State Sen. Tommie Williams Special to the Courier | Opinion


Cuts alone unlikely to balance budget

The budget was the focal point and our top priority last week. Although the General Assembly was not in session, our time consisted of attending and giving input during the subcommittee meetings of the Appropriations Committee.

March 03, 2010 | By State Rep Ron Stephens Special to the Courier | Opinion


Want parents in charge of education? Then let government rate them

I am up to my gizzard with our governor and Legislature and assorted bureaucrats stomping around in public education with little regard for the consequences of their actions. Example: One school system in the state has been considering allowing the police to bring Tasers into the schools to quell unruly students.

March 01, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough Columnist | Opinion


First bill draws hazing

Editor's note: Carter (R- Pooler) is reporting each week during the Legislative Session. The session began Jan. 11, and is expected to last until the latter days of March.

February 24, 2010 | By State Sen. Buddy Carter Special to the Courier | Opinion


State budget cuts will be painful

The Georgia General Assembly adjourned last Thursday, after day 20 of the 2010 legislative session. The Assembly has decided to take a two-week break from the legislative session to work on the daunting task of balancing the Fiscal Year 2011 budget.

February 24, 2010 | By State Rep Ron Stephens Special to the Courier | Opinion


Warrior battled to make us all better

The body is a little frail and he walks with a cane but the man still has the look of a warrior. His name is Charles Ector. He experienced the uglier side of society and with dignity and determination took prejudice head on.

February 22, 2010 | By Dick Yarbrough Columnist | Opinion


Session suspended for budget work

The House and the state Senate voted Thursday to adjourn the current legislative session until March 8 to allow Appropriations Committee members to work full-time over the next two weeks on the budget proposal for fiscal year 2011, which begins July 1.

February 22, 2010 | By State Rep. Al Williams Special to the Courier | Opinion


House majority OKs more cuts to schools

A majority of the House of Representatives Thursday approved an amended state budget for the remainder of fiscal year 2010. Overall state spending is reduced by $1.2 billion to reflect that state revenues have declined for 14 consecutive months.

February 17, 2010 | By State Rep. Al Williams Special to the Courier | Opinion


State revenue continues to plunge

Day 14 (Feb. 8): As we head back into session today, we are greeted with the disappointing news. The January revenues are down 8.7 percent over those in January 2009. Combined with the losses from a year ago, this means January revenues are a whopping 23 percent lower than January 2008. More importantly, the governor's proposed amended FY10 budget called for a $1.44 billion shortfall with the expectation that the remaining six months revenues would be flat.

February 17, 2010 | By State Sen. Buddy Carter Special to the Courier | Opinion


Beam me up, Chip(s)

While you and I have been tending to the mundane matters of life like filing our taxes and paying our bills, members of the General Assembly have been watching too many science fiction movies.

February 15, 2010 | By Dick Yarbrough Columnist | Opinion


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Articles by Section - Opinion


Georgia icon still giving 'em 'zell'

Nostalgia is popular these days: Retro fashions, disco and '80s pop, "Throwback Thursdays" on social media. What's old is new again, what used to be hip turned square and then back to cool.

August 28, 2014 | Gainesville (Ga.) Times | Opinion


EPD marsh ruling creates a 'fine mess'

For many environmental organizations in Georgia, Earth Day will never be the same.

August 28, 2014 | By Buddy Carter Guest columnist | Opinion


Wounded Warriors don't help older vets

Editor, My hat goes off to the Tri County RC Flyers for their recent airshow and the thousands of dollars they raised for wounded veterans. Unfortunately, the Courier's story contained a description of the Wounded Warrior Project organization that was misleading and is inaccurate. It read "… which helps veterans wounded in conflict…"

August 28, 2014 | Staff Report | Opinion


A little help from one mother to another

Editor, My wife went grocery shopping the morning of Aug. 21 with our 2-year-old son. While shopping, she bumped into another shopper along the way several times and made small talk. My son started to get bored and upset, so my wife cut her trip short and headed to the checkout.

August 27, 2014 | Staff Report | Opinion


Teens, this is series -- text less, live more

It is a potential killer whose numbers rival the deadly Ebola virus and it doesn't get near the attention it should. Unlike the dreaded illness currently ravaging West Africa this is one with a quick cure.

August 27, 2014 | By Dick Yarbrough Columnist | Opinion


Show your 'recycle heart' at fair

I am fascinated by how other countries approach recycling. I recently visited a website called Recycle More from Ireland. Their approach, like so many European countries, is detailed. They expect their citizens to make the effort to recycle as many items as possible. And they certainly don't limit their recycling to plastic bottles and aluminum cans. There is no one-stop drop-off for many items. If you are Irish, you take electronics back to electronic shops, batteries to shops that sell them, etc.

August 26, 2014 | By Sara Swida Columnist | Opinion


Learn from those who've gone before us

As an unusually mild, rainy summer was melting away - or rather, frosting its way into autumn - I took to noticing signs that our mountain people always have used to judge the forthcoming severity of winter.

August 26, 2014 | By Ronda Rich Columnist | Opinion


Let children choose own interests

Football season is upon us. I'm sure some of you are thrilled about its arrival. I am not.

August 26, 2014 | By Hollie Moore Barnidge | Opinion


Journalist also face dangerous world

We are constantly reminded that the world is a very deadly place - not just for our military personnel - but also for members of the Fourth Estate. Some journalists working in dangerous regions in a globe full of conflict will not return home. The latest: 40-year-old James Foley. His gruesome death at the hands of ISIS has been available for all to see.

August 25, 2014 | Macon Telegraph | Opinion


State must get transportation in order

The regional transportation sales-tax referendum failed two years ago across most of Georgia. So it's encouraging to see movement again, in the form of a joint study committee on transportation funding that met Aug. 5 for the first of seven meetings around the state before the legislative session.

August 21, 2014 | By Benita Dodd Guest columnist | Opinion


Most recent Long Co. audit is a joke

Editor, I would like to respond to the Long County audit for the year ending June 30, 2013, which is - needless to say - a joke.

August 20, 2014 | Staff Report | Opinion


Not even the liberals want him

Rap! Rap! Rap: "The special called meeting of the Loyal Order of Liberals will come to order. Let's begin the meeting as we always do - with the Liberal Pledge of Allegiance:

August 20, 2014 | By Dick Yarbrough Columnist | Opinion


County employee was trailblazer, good guy

Editor, I lost a friend last week. I lost a longtime coworker. I lost an Army comrade, though we never served together nor did we share "war stories." And Liberty County lost someone who was a loyal, extremely dedicated and tireless worker until his "untriumphant" retirement last year.

August 19, 2014 | Staff Report | Opinion


Grab uncomfortable situations by horns

A while back, a messy problem loomed ahead. I don't like confrontation. If that makes me less than a person then consider me to be itty bitty. Life, I figure, is too short for squabbling. My motto is "whenever possible, step out of the way."

August 19, 2014 | By Ronda Rich Columnist | Opinion


Some things are tough to explain

My 2-year-old daughter, Reese, adores the Disney movie, "Frozen." I admit, it's a cute flick with plenty of catchy tunes and even a few good one-liners. There's one part, however, that I'm having trouble explaining to Reese, and I fear I'll have even more difficulty with it as she gets older.

August 19, 2014 | By Hollie Moore Barnidge | Opinion


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