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Local
10:47 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

DeKalb Ethics Board Proposes Alternative Spending Plan

The DeKalb County Board of Ethics wants to hire contracted workers – not full-time staffers – to investigate ethics complaints.

That is contrary to what Interim CEO Lee May proposed when he pushed forward more than $90,000 in additional funding for the board.

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DeKalb County
10:41 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Ethics Board Moves Forward with Boyer Complaint

Former DeKalb County Commissioner Elaine Boyer will be sentenced in December on federal mail and wire fraud charges.
Credit http://web.co.dekalb.ga.us/boc/district1.html

The DeKalb County Board of Ethics will push forward with a complaint against former County Commissioner Elaine Boyer even though she is no longer in office.

The board made that decision Monday night in a preliminary hearing for Boyer, who did not attend board's meeting.

Her attorney, Anne Lewis, argued the Board of Ethics is overstepping the authority given to it by the state legislature, saying, “I don’t think there’s any question that this board does not have any jurisdiction over someone who is no longer listed in the legislation.”

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Politics
7:33 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

A Fact Check on the Latest Ads in the Senate Race, with PolitiFact Georgia Editor Jim Tharpe

Jim Tharpe, editor of PolitiFact Georgia
Credit Atlanta Journal-Constitution

  With polls showing the race for Georgia's open U.S. Senate seat is very close, both of the major party candidates--and the outside groups that are helping them--have unleashed a blitz of media ads.  WABE's Denis O'Hayer got a fact check on some of the newest ads, with Jim Tharpe, editor of PolitiFact Georgia, the non-partisan fact-checking arm of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and myAJC.com.

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Local
6:28 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Georgia DNR: Army Has Yet To Address Toxic Vapor Found In Homes Near Fort Gillem

The U.S. Army is currently testing a number of homes near Fort Gillem.
Credit Evan Jang/WABE

State environmental officials say the U.S. Army has not fulfilled a commitment it made to help residents of 26 homes that have tested positive for toxic vapor near Fort Gillem. Officials say the Army agreed to install vapor mitigation systems within the 26 homes no later than Sept. 11 but has yet to act.

Susan Martin-Morgan lives about a mile from Fort Gillem. She said the Army sampled the air quality of her home and discovered it contains elevated levels of dangerous chemicals that could pose a long-term risk to her family’s health. 

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Politics
4:42 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Fulton Chair Seeking To Ease Tensions With Atlanta On Affordable Housing

Fulton Commission chair John Eaves
Credit johneaves4fulton.com

Fulton County Commission chair John Eaves hopes to pass new affordable housing legislation by the end of the year. Part of the aim is to ease tensions between the development authorities of Fulton and the city of Atlanta.

Eaves says "better alignment" between the two is needed.  

“We certainly have an open mind and we probably will be exploring this in pursuing some sort of policy change in the near future,” said Eaves.

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Local
4:00 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Obama Expected To Announce Expanded Ebola Aid Effort During CDC Visit

President Barack Obama
Credit whitehouse.gov

President Barack Obama is scheduled to arrive in Atlanta Tuesday afternoon, where he’ll be briefed on the Ebola outbreak in West Africa by officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

During his visit the president is expected to announce plans to increase U.S. aid to the region, where the disease has so far killed nearly 2,500 people.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest discussed Tuesday’s visit with reporters during a press briefing Monday.

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Local
3:57 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

George HW Bush Endorses David Perdue In US Senate Race

Former U.S. President George H.W. Bush, left, Monday endorsed Georgia Republican nominee David Perdue in the race for the state's open U.S. Senate seat. Perdue is facing Democrat Michelle Nunn, who heads the former president's nonprofit Points of Light Foundation.
Credit Office of George Bush

Former President George H.W. Bush Monday announced he is endorsing Georgia Republican U.S. Senate Nominee David Perdue.

In endorsing Perdue, Bush praised the former Dollar General and Reebok CEO’s business experience, saying it “gives him the kind of real-world experience that Washington, DC is sorely lacking today.”

The former president also said he’d lost faith in the Senate Democratic leadership, and called Perdue “an independent voice for Georgia.”

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Books
3:22 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Author Events: Charles Lewis, Tavis Smiley & More

Credit Bob AuBuchon / flickr.com/bobaubuchon

The AJC-Decatur Book Festival's Daren Wang dropped by WABE studios to tell us about the week in metro Atlanta book Events. He started by telling City Cafe host John Lemley about Chris Guillebeau and his new book the "Happiness of Pursuit."

Chris Guillebeau will be at A Capella Books tomorrow. Find full details here.

Charles Lewis will be at the Carter Center on Thursday. Check out that event here.

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Art
12:49 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

The Unconscious Personality of ACAC's Exquisite Exhibit

Detail of mural by Matt Haffner, Sarah Emerson, and Michi Meko, Exquisite Exhibit at the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center
Myke Johns WABE

The Atlanta Contemporary Art Center threw their Art Party on September 13, and along with the entertainment, the food and the crowds, they opened a new show called “Exquisite Exhibit: Parlour Games from the Studio Artist Program.” Knowing their first audience would be party-goers, the Contemporary made the exhibit kind of a game. Twenty one artists were tasked with working on seven works of art in the style of exquisite corpse drawings—a sort of collaboration where no one sees the whole picture until the end.

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Local
10:02 am
Mon September 15, 2014

Gas Prices in Metro Atlanta Dip Slightly

Metro Atlanta commuters are paying a little less to fill up.
Credit John Lorinc / WABE

Commuters in metro Atlanta are paying a little less to fill up.

The average price for a gallon of regular is $3.40, according to AAA.

That’s down about two-cents from last week and nearly five-cents from this time last year.

The state-wide average is $3.32---a three-cent dip from last week----and seven-cents below the national number.

Starting this week, refineries are now longer required to sell summer-blend gasoline.

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Health & Science
7:06 am
Mon September 15, 2014

Obama To Visit CDC Tuesday

Credit whitehouse.gov

President Barack Obama will be in Atlanta Tuesday. He’ll meet with officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A CDC spokeswoman says the President’s meeting will focus on enterovirus and the CDC’s response to the Ebola outbreak. The announced visit comes after President Obama mentioned Ebola last week at the end of an address focused mostly on the terror group ISIS.

  “It is America,” said President Obama. “Our scientists, our doctors, our knowhow that can help contain and cure the outbreak of Ebola.”

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Politics
7:51 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

AJC Poll Shows Tight Contests: A Look Behind the Numbers with the AJC's Jim Galloway

Atlanta Journal-Constitution political columnist Jim Galloway
Credit Atlanta Journal-Constitution

  A new Atlanta Journal-Constitution poll--the paper's first of the general election campaign--shows very close races for Georgia Governor and U.S. Senator.  Democrat Jason Carter and Republican incumbent Nathan Deal are statistically tied in the Governor's race; while Republican David Perdue holds a slim lead over Democrat Michelle Nunn in the Senate race.  In both contests, the Libertarian candidates are polling strongly enough to force runoffs, if the elections were held today.  WABE's Denis O'Hayer spoke with AJC political columnist Jim Galloway.

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Local
6:47 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Civil Rights Leader Reacts to Ferry's Leave Of Absence

Francys Johnson speaks Thursday at the Georgia Capitol on another matter.
Credit Michelle Wirth / WABE

Atlanta Hawks General Manager Danny Ferry is taking an indefinite leave of absence, effective immediately. The leave of absence comes after audio of a June conference call of Ferry speaking about free agent Luol Deng.

During the call, Ferry said words civil rights leaders and others describe as racially insensitive. This excerpt of the call was obtained by ESPN.

“He's a good guy overall, but not perfect. He's got some African in him."

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Education
5:32 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Will Voters Choose Issues Over Party?

State Sen. Jason Carter (L) and Gov. Nathan Deal (R) spoke to educators at the second annual Education Leadership Institute at Atlanta's Marriott Marquis Friday.
Credit Martha Dalton/WABE News

Nominees in some statewide races have insisted lately their elections are about issues, not politics. Some have made education a focal point. And it seems some voters may be willing to put Party aside when it comes to schools.

Republican Gov. Nathan Deal and his Democratic opponent state Sen. Jason Carter addressed a group of teachers at the Georgia Education Leadership Institute Friday.

Both struck impassioned tones. Carter spoke first. He claimed Deal hasn’t made education a financial priority and promoted his plan to create a separate education budget.

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Health & Science
4:30 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Georgia Rockcress Designated as "Threatened" by Federal Wildlife Officials

Arabis georgiana, also known as the Georgia rockcress, grows mostly along tall river bluffs.
Credit Michelle Elmore / The Nature Conservancy

The U.S Fish and Wildlife Service has given new status to the Georgia rockcress: the federal agency has put the plant on its list of threatened species.

It truly is a delicate flower. The Georgia rockcress looks a bit like a mustard plant. It grows to be only about 18 inches tall. It usually grows in shallow soil, most often on steep river bluffs.

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Sports
4:24 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Hawks GM Danny Ferry Taking Indefinite Leave of Absence

Credit (Photo: AP/The Atlanta Journal)

Update: Danny Ferry has released his own statement through the Hawks on his leave of absence.

"No words can adequately describe my remorse for the hurt that I have caused many people through the statements I repeated, most importantly Luol Deng.

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Politics
4:19 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Abrams Defends Her Voter Registration Group Against Fraud Allegations

Georgia House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams.
Credit Kerri Battles - Barbara Jordan Forum 2012

The state House’s top Democrat, Stacey Abrams, is defending her voter registration group against allegations of voter fraud. Earlier this week, Secretary of State Brian Kemp opened an investigation into Abrams’ group.

The New Georgia Project is one of the state’s largest voter registration drives. Its goal, as Abrams puts it, is to sign up Georgia’s 800,000 unregistered minority voters. So far the group has helped submit more than 85,000 registration forms. But Abrams says Kemp’s actions could have a “chilling effect” on those efforts.

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Local
4:14 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Atlanta Taxi Drivers File Lawsuit Against Uber

Credit Nathan Congleton via flickr

A group of Atlanta taxi drivers are suing Uber and 22 of its drivers, claiming they're violating the law and cutting into the livelihood of traditional cab drivers.

Rick Hewitt of Checkered Cab of Atlanta has a handful of drivers participating in the lawsuit.

“In order to drive a taxi cab in Atlanta you have to have a medallion," said Hewitt, referring to what essentially amounts to a cab driver license. "You have to vet your driver properly. Inspect the vehicle to make sure that it’s safe. You have to have the proper insurance. And Uber has not done any of those things."

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Health & Science
4:00 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Should Georgians Worry About Rare Enterovirus?

Dr. Anne Schuchat
Credit cdc.gov

A rare type of virus has hospitalized dozens of kids in the Midwest, but is it something Georgians should worry about?  

The virus is known as EV-68, a type of enterovirus.

Dr. Anne Schuchat, the assistant U.S. surgeon general and head infectious diseases at the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said enteroviruses themselves aren’t uncommon.

The CDC estimates about 10 to 15 million people are infected with such viruses each year, typically around this time.

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Atlanta Sounds
12:30 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

The Auto Enthusiast - Audio Slideshow

Danni Suskin of Sandy Springs.
Credit Evan Changhwan Jang / WABE

Many car enthusiasts are drawn to vehicles for their speed. They’ll pour time and money into their cars all to make them run as fast as possible.

But for Sandy Springs resident Danni Suskin, his love of cars has little to do with their horsepower. In fact, the ones that interest him barely make it past twenty miles an hour.  

Suskin collects and restores old cars, some of which date back more than a hundred years, as we learn in this Atlanta Sounds Audio Slideshow. 

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Education
8:11 am
Fri September 12, 2014

Superintendent Candidates Address Teachers

State schools superintendent candidates Republican Richard Woods and Democrat Valarie Wilson spoke at the Georgia Education Leadership Institute Thursday.
Credit Martha Dalton/WABE News

The nominees for state school superintendent spoke at the second annual Georgia Education Leadership Institute Thursday. The event, held at Atlanta’s Marriott Marquis, offers informational sessions for teachers.

Each candidate addressed the group of educators separately. They didn’t debate each other.

Republican nominee Richard Woods, a former Irwin County educator, spoke first. Woods said his priorities include ensuring a fair teacher evaluation process; addressing math performance; and giving teachers plenty of flexibility.

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Voices of 1864
7:35 am
Fri September 12, 2014

On This Date in 1864: 'War is Cruelty, and You Cannot Refine it.'

General William T. Sherman: 'You cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will.'
Credit Wikimedia Commons

What should happen to a surrendered city during war-time? This is the question addressed in today’s installment of our “Voices of 1864” series…by none other than Union General William T. Sherman.

On September 2, 1864, the city of Atlanta surrendered to the Union. Mayor James Calhoun wrote to Sherman, asking his army to protect the civilians still living in Atlanta, as well as their personal property.

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Mara's Music Mix
6:35 am
Fri September 12, 2014

Mara's Music Mix: September 12-14

Mara's Music Mix hosts Steve Goss and Mara Davis
Credit Evan Jang / WABE

For nearly two decades, Mara Davis was a well-known voice on Atlanta's FM airwaves, first on Z-93, and then on Dave FM.

Now she joins WABE's Steve Goss each Friday for a preview of weekend music events.

 

Mara's Music Mix for September 12-14:

Ed Sheeran at Gwinnett Center; Friday September 12

The Producers at Duluth Festival Center; Friday September 12

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Health & Science
6:00 am
Fri September 12, 2014

HPV Vaccine Rate Flatlining

Dr. Anne Schuchat
Credit cdc.gov

Public health officials say the rate of vaccinating teens against the human papillomavirus, or HPV, has plateaued, with Georgia lagging behind the national average in vaccinations for young girls.

Speaking at the Immunize Georgia conference Thursday morning, Assistant U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Anne Schuchat said since 2009 the HPV vaccination rate has flatlined since it was first approved in 2006.

She said that’s been a wakeup up call to the public health community to start doing more outreach with local health officials to get the vaccination rate up.

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Politics
7:52 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

After the President's ISIS Speech: Conversations with Sen. Saxby Chambliss and Rep. David Scott

Rep. David Scott (D-Atlanta)
Credit U.S. House of Representatives

  On September 10, 2014, President Barack Obama outlined his strategy for a counterattack on the terror group which calls itself The Islamic State (acronyms include ISIL and ISIS).  For a look at how Congress received the speech, and what will happen next, WABE's Denis O'Hayer spoke with Democratic Congressman David Scott of Atlanta, and Republican Senator Saxby Chambliss, the ranking GOP member of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

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Local
6:00 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Following DeKalb's Lead, Fulton Announces Weekend Voting

Fulton commission chair John Eaves.

Fulton County has announced voters will get the chance to cast ballots during two weekends before November’s election. It follows DeKalb County’s much-publicized decision to allow Sunday voting.

Fulton commission chair John Eaves says he’s gotten no pushback so far.

“I think we’re doing it in a very fair way. [Polling sites are] in North Fulton. They’re in the city of Atlanta. They’re also in South Fulton so there’s a distribution of sites accessible to people no matter what their partisan affiliation is,” said Ellis.

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Local
5:49 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Civil Rights Leaders Accuse Secretary Of State Of Voter Suppression

NAACP President Francys Johnson (middle) and other civil rights leaders speak in front of the Georgia Secretary of State's office Thursday.
Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

The Georgia State Conference of the NAACP and several other civil rights organizations are accusing Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp of trying to suppress voter rights. The organizations delivered a letter to Kemp today saying a subpoena issued by his office to a voter registration group is an attempt to keep minorities from voting.

The New Georgia Project, which was founded by State House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams, (D-Atlanta), calls itself nonpartisan. The group said it’s worked lawfully since January to sign up about 85,000 Georgians, particularly minorities.

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DeKalb County
4:29 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Metro Atlantans Remember 9/11/01

DeKalb County police and fire personnel stand for the approach of the color guard.
Lisa George WABE

Throughout Georgia – and the nation -- this morning, church bells rang, names were read, and most of all, there were moments of silence.

WABE was at DeKalb County’s 9/11 ceremony in Tucker. 

The ceremony's centerpiece: a sculpture that includes metal from one of the twin towers.

“So many of them went down that day,” remembered Mary Jane Shearer is from Tucker. “And going into those burning buildings, you cringed when you saw that. And when the buildings started to come down, it just made you sick. And I just think we need to remember and not forget.”

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Airlines and Aviation
1:08 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Delta, AirTran At Top of On-Time Performers

A Southwest Airlines B-737 taxis past a Delta jet parked at Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.
Credit Jim Burress / WABE News

Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines was among the best at getting passengers to their destinations on-time in July, the U.S. Department of Transportation said.

Delta was on time 86% of the time.  That’s second only to Hawaiian.

AirTran ranked fourth, at 83%. 

Southwest, which is in the final stages of absorbing AirTran, was next-to-last at about 69%.   

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Local
12:49 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Hackings Lead Retailers to Change Card Systems

The Home Depot hacking is leading many retailers to change the way it will accept non-cash payments.
Credit foxbusiness.com

There's a push to making paying with plastic less risky.

This comes after a number of recent security breaches reported at major retailers like Target and Home Depot.

Security analysts say these hackings happened because the current card system used by many stores is outdated and easy to penetrate.

They're calling for a move to a so-called chip and PIN method, which is currently used throughout much of Europe.

Customers would insert cards into a reader, just like at an ATM.

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