Local

Local
5:06 pm
Thu November 27, 2014

Hosea Feed The Hungry Serves 9,000 Thanksgiving Meals

Five-year-old Alex Banks helped place bread in the containers for the homeless at the Hosea Feed The Hungry Thanksgiving Dinner event. It was held at the Georgia World Congress Center.
Credit Tasnim Shamma

It’s an annual tradition in Atlanta. 

Hundreds of volunteers spend all night fixing about 9,000 meals for the homeless and working poor. It’s organized by Hosea Feed The Hungry, which was founded by a local civil rights leader – the late Reverend Hosea Williams.

In the cafeteria, volunteers are rushing in large aluminum trays to the serving tables.  

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Local
4:00 pm
Thu November 27, 2014

Millennials Stress Holiday Shopping Savvy

Credit usdailyreview.com

Five hundred billion dollars: That’s about how much industry analysts say the nearly 80 million U.S. millennials spend in a year.

And during the biggest shopping season of the year, millennials aren’t looking to spend those dollars blindly.

“What’s so interesting about millennials is that they’re incredibly savvy,” says Andrea Hershatter, senior associate dean at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School.

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Local
1:08 pm
Thu November 27, 2014

Consumers Reveal the Stress of Holiday Overspending

A Harris poll survey found nearly 40 percent of people said they feel pressured to spend more than they can afford.

The holidays are for giving, spending time with family and for many being stressed out about how to pay for it all.

In this two-part report, WABE’s Rose Scott reports that overspending is a stressful feeling for consumers and John Lorinc talked to shoppers.

There was a time when I just had to have a certain pair of jeans for Christmas.

Those Jordache jeans were pretty expensive, at least, according to my father.

Decades later, it appears consumers are still worried about spending too much this holiday season.

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Local
6:00 am
Thu November 27, 2014

Fighting City Hall to Save City Hall in East Point

East Point City Hall, built in the 1930s, was modeled on Mt. Vernon, George Washington's home. Preservationists are trying to save the building as well as the old City Auditorium and library sitting behind City Hall on the same block.
East Point Preservation Alliance

A group of residents in East Point is trying to save three government buildings from possible demolition.

They now have a statewide historic preservation group supporting that effort, but their biggest obstacle may be the city government itself.

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Local
6:00 am
Thu November 27, 2014

CDC Employees Spend Holiday Treating Ebola in West Africa

Credit CDC

With the deadly Ebola virus still spreading in West Africa, many employees of the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are spending Thanksgiving away from their families.

Dr. Mehran Massoudi lives in Atlanta, but he usually spends Thanksgiving with his wife and teenage son in his hometown of Pittsburg. He likes to pass the time with his and his sister’s family and says there are always a lot of people around during the holiday.  

But his year, Massoudi is in Liberia monitoring disease hot spots in the country’s rural areas.

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Local
5:07 pm
Wed November 26, 2014

Kasim Reed On Fire Chief's Suspension

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed Wednesday stood by his decision to suspend the city’s fire chief, Kelvin Cochran, for one month. It comes after a gay rights group called for the mayor to go further and permanently remove Cochran. The fire chief recently wrote a religious book that includes derogatory remarks about homosexuality.

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Local
4:38 pm
Wed November 26, 2014

Reed Responds Following The Arrest Of Some Ferguson Protesters

Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed held a press conference Wednesday after some protesters caused trouble in the city Tuesday night. The unrest came after a grand jury decided not to indict a Missouri police officer for the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown.

Atlanta Police made 24 arrests Wednesday night after protesters tried to block an Atlanta interstate. They also shattered the windows of a police vehicle, a taxi and a few businesses.

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Local
1:00 pm
Wed November 26, 2014

Coke Looks To Conquer Dairy Market With New Milk Product

Coca-Cola announced it’s launching a new line of milk called Fairlife.
Credit fairlife.com

Atlanta-based Coca-Cola announced it’s launching a new line of milk nationwide called Fairlife, and if that conjures images of cute kids with milk mustaches from the ‘Got Milk’ ads, think again.

The ads for Fairlife depict fit, 20-something women in revealing dresses made of milk.

“It’s not a family around where they’ve replaced the traditional milk with this new product for their breakfast cereal. It looks to me like it’s trying to get at someone who’s currently not drinking milk,” said Doug Bowman, who teaches marketing at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School.

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Local
9:36 am
Wed November 26, 2014

The Ferguson Protest Rally in Downtown Atlanta

In silence, Lisa Archer waits as the crowd begins to gather in Downtown Atlanta.
Ryan Nabulsi twinlensatl.com

Protesters marched and rallied in Atlanta to protest a grand jury's decision not to indict the police officer who fatally shot an unarmed 18-year-old in Ferguson, Missouri.

Protesters in downtown Atlanta peacefully chanted and waved signs. Several hundred people gathered yesterday evening in at Underground Atlanta, a shopping area in the heart of the city.

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Local
6:12 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Georgia Affected by Beef Recall

A Minnesota-based company announces a nationwide beef recall.
Credit National Beef Packing Company

Although turkey is on the mind of most Americans this week, there’s a nationwide beef recall underway.  

Ranchers Legacy Meat has recalled 1,200 pounds of its ground beef products for health-related concerns. 

Officials with the Minnesota-based company say the meat in question might be contaminated with E. coli. 

The products were produced on November 19th and include Ranchers Legacy Ground Beef Patties and OTF Manufacturing Chuck/Brisket R-D Patties.

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Local
7:47 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

Incoming Atlanta NAACP President On Communicating Over The Racial Divide

Richard Rose, president-elect of the Atlanta branch of the NAACP

On Monday, Nov. 24, 2014, a grand jury in Ferguson, MO announced it would not indict a white Ferguson police officer in the shooting death of an unarmed black 18-year-old. The August 2014 confrontation between Officer Darren Wilson and Michael Brown took only a couple of minutes.  

The grand jury announcement, and the unrest that followed in Ferguson, re-opened questions about how well Americans truly understand each other across racial lines.

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Local
6:59 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

Students Rally Following Decision In Michael Brown's Death

Michelle Wirth/WABE News

A grand jury’s decision not to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson is continuing to spark national reaction, including here in Atlanta. The controversy started in August after Wilson, a white police officer, shot 18-year-old Michael Brown, who is African American.

Students at several of Atlanta’s historically black colleges and universities rallied in the Center of Clark Atlanta University Tuesday in response to the decision.

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Local
5:25 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

LGBT Group Calls For Immediate Dismissal Of Atlanta Fire Chief

Atlanta fire chief Kevlin Cochran
Credit atlantaga.gov

A state advocacy group representing lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people is calling on Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed to sack the city’s fire chief, Kelvin Cochran.

Reed on Monday suspended Cochran for a month without pay after a self-published book surfaced in which Cochran writes homosexuality is a "perversion."

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Transportation
5:22 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

There's A Learning Curve With Streetcars

The streetcar will run a 2.7 mile loop between the King Historic District and Centennial Olympic Park
Credit Tasnim Shamma

The Atlanta streetcar isn’t even up and running yet, but cars are already crashing into it.

This weekend, the streetcar was hit during a test run. This was the second accident in just one week. 

Atlanta Streetcar officials are trying to help people get used to the idea of streetcars here. So they’ve held community forums, ran social media campaigns and even made a short video:

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Rally Against Ferguson Decision
4:32 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

Atlanta Police Department Says It's Ready for Ferguson Protest Tonight

Protesters gather in front of the Ferguson Police Department before the announcement of the grand jury decision about whether to indict a Ferguson police officer in the shooting death of Michael Brown.
Credit Charlie Riedel / Associated Press

Several grassroots organizations are gathering this evening at Underground Atlanta to rally in response to the Ferguson grand jury decision.

The rally is scheduled to get underway at 5 p.m. Organizers are calling it a “Community Speakout.”

Atlanta Police Department spokesman Ralph Woolfolk wouldn’t give details on plans for any increased police presence in the area.

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Local
12:31 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

Atlantans Comment On The Ferguson Decision

Although Ferguson is hundreds of miles away from metro Atlanta, some locals have been protesting the fatal shooting of Michael Brown.
Credit Candace Wheeler / WABE

The grand jury's decision to not indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson has prompted protests in Atlanta.

A group called Shut it Down Atlanta is holding a rally Tuesday night in Underground Atlanta.  The organization says the family of shooting victim Michael Brown didn’t get justice.  

Jonathan McCory is among those upset that Officer Wilson won’t face charges for the incident that took Brown’s life.

“I was disappointed, from what I knew.  From the information I knew, I was disappointed.”

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Local
12:30 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

Elementary School Students 'Spread The Word' In Buckhead

Books in the bin at Morris Brandon Elementary School.
Credit Reetika Nijhawan

Earlier this month, the students at Morris Brandon Elementary School took part in a book drive called 'Spread the Word'. The program was brought together by a former Morris Brandon student, 12 year-old Jahan Nijhawan.

Nijhawan thought it would be a good idea for kids to donate the books they love to other less fortunate kids right here in Atlanta. The elementary schoolers spent a week bringing their books to school and putting them in a large barrel. We recently visited Morris Brandon Elementary to find out more about the drive.

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Local
10:34 am
Tue November 25, 2014

Atlanta Fire Chief In Trouble Over Book Calling Homosexuality A "Perversion"

Firefighters break open a lock on a nearby storefront as they battle a blaze in downtown Atlanta.
Credit David Goldman / Associated Press

Atlanta's fire chief has been suspended after city officials say he violated policy by self-publishing a book that describes homosexuality as a "perversion."

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed says in a statement Monday that Kelvin Cochran will be suspended for a month without pay and will be required to complete sensitivity training.

Reed says he was "deeply disturbed" after learning about the book on Friday and will not tolerate discrimination within his administration.

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Ruling in Misdemeanor Offender Suit
5:40 pm
Mon November 24, 2014

Georgia's Highest Court Limits Power Of Private Probation Industry

The Supreme Court of Georgia
Credit The Supreme Court of Georgia

Thousands of Georgians are currently serving probation for misdemeanor charges. They are checking in each week with their probation officers; some are wearing ankle monitors. They are also paying fees for the probation services.

Many times, the probation officers work for private companies, and the fees go to those corporations.

Today the Supreme Court of Georgia cracked down on one company that, with the blessing of local courts, has extended probationers’ sentences when they cannot pay the fees.

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Local History
12:30 pm
Mon November 24, 2014

From Inter-Town Rivalries To Chain Gangs: The History Behind The Dixie Highway

Dixie Highway Arch
Courtesy of Tammy Ingram

Today, you can get just about anywhere in the U.S. by hopping on an interstate. But back in the early 1900s, the idea of traveling across the country by road was nearly inconceivable. Many people, especially those in the South, had access to little more than dirt roads that extended just as far as the nearest town. 

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Local
11:54 am
Mon November 24, 2014

Georgia Lane Closures Halted For Holiday Travel Period

Georgia Department of Transportation is suspending construction-related lane closures during the upcoming Thanksgiving travel period.
Credit AP Photo/David Goldman

State transportation officials say they're suspending construction-related lane closures during the upcoming holiday travel period.

The Georgia Department of Transportation says it'll suspend lane closures between 5 a.m. Wednesday and 10 p.m. Sunday on interstates, major state routes and roads near major shopping areas. The department says it'll give drivers the same reprieve during the Christmas and New Year's holiday travel periods as well.

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Local
9:33 am
Mon November 24, 2014

New Atlanta Streetcar Involved In Two Crashes Before Debut

The Atlanta Streetcar has been involved in two crashes, according to authorities.
Credit Atlanta Streetcar

Authorities say the Atlanta Streetcar has been involved in two crashes with vehicles while being tested before next month's expected launch.

Streetcar spokeswoman Sharon Gavin says a car and the streetcar collided Sunday near Centennial Olympic Park. She said the driver tried to pass the streetcar while it was turning during a test run. Last week, a driver was accused of hitting the streetcar on Ellis Street.

No series injuries were reported in either crash.

The streetcar's debut was recently delayed due to safety concerns.

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Local
6:34 am
Mon November 24, 2014

U.S. Gas Prices Hit Five-Year Low

The cost of filling up is still going down in metro Atlanta and the rest of the country.
Credit futureatlas.com / Flickr.com

Good news for the 41-million people driving out of town this holiday weekend: gas prices are still going down.

As for metro Atlanta, the average cost for a gallon is $2.79, according to AAA.

That’s about a five-cent dip from last week and 47-cents from this time last year.

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Local
5:38 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

Obama's Immigration Action Expected to Affect Thousands in Georgia

LAA President Jeffrey Tapia says President Obama's executive action is a critical step, but comprehensive immigration form is needed.
Credit Martha Dalton / WABE

Following President Barack Obama’s executive action on immigration, some local organizations are bracing for a flood of inquiries. The Latin American Association, for one, will hire extra attorneys to guide people through the process.

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Local
11:58 am
Fri November 21, 2014

Athens Makes "Best College Towns" List

Athens is among the 'Best College Towns' in the country, according to Travel and Leisure Magazine.
Credit StevenV / flickr.com/stevenv/

Athens is one of the Peach State’s bigger jewels. 

The “Classic City” is named one of “America’s Best College Towns” by Travel and Leisure Magazine.  

Athens is the only Georgia town to get the nod.

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Local
5:22 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Feds Say Atlanta Streetcar Not Ready Yet, Cite Safety Concerns

The Atlanta Streetcar during a test run in August.
Credit facebook.com/AtlantaStreetcar

Downtown Atlanta will have to wait a little longer for new streetcar service. Federal regulators say safety concerns still must be resolved.

City officials had been shooting to begin passenger service in mid-November, but they’re now aiming for an official launch date of December 6th.    

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Local
3:54 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

AAA Projects 46 Million Travelers This Thanksgiving

Long lines at the main security checkpoint at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.
Credit Jim Burress / WABE

AAA predicts more people will travel this Thanksgiving Holiday than in the past seven years, though numbers still haven’t caught up to pre-recession levels.  

The auto company says nationally about 1.3 million Georgians and 46 million people nationally will take a trip of more than 50 miles around the holiday.

In 2007, more than 50 million people traveled.

AAA’s Mark Jenkins says while this year’s still numbers don’t quite match those prior to the recession, this year still marks the biggest jump in the number of travelers in the past seven years.

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Food & Drink
8:20 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Progress by the Pint: Atlanta's Craft Beer Renaissance

Hefe-Weizen seasonal beers from Atlanta Brewing Company
Credit gomattolson / flickr.com/gomattolson

Craft beer brewing is on the rise, with nation-wide sales jumping 20 percent last year according to numbers from the Brewers Association, an industry trade group.

That growth can be seen here in Atlanta with new breweries opening and local beers being offered at more bars and restaurants all over the metro area.

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Local
8:10 am
Thu November 20, 2014

State Unemployment Rate Falls Slightly

Job hunter Bessie Soley, of Locust Grove, Ga., files out an application at the National Job Fair in Atlanta.
Credit John Bazemore / Associated Press

Georgia’s unemployment rate for October was 7.7%, according to the state’s Department of Labor.

That’s down two-tenths of a point from September and one-tenth of a point from October 2013. 

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Environment
5:30 pm
Wed November 19, 2014

Georgia's Forests' Leftovers Becoming A Major Source Of Renewable Energy

Georgia ranks third in the nation for its conversion of woody biomass (here, shown as wood pellets) into renewable energy. The pellets are burned to create steam and electricity.
Credit Alternative Heat / flickr.com/alternative_heat

After a timber company makes its plywood or paper, there’s leftover sawdust and wood shavings. These leftovers are called woody biomass and in Georgia, they’re becoming a big source of renewable energy.

A Pew study ranked Georgia third in the country for converting this “woody biomass” into electricity. 

Trees are a big deal here.

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