Athens News Courier (Newspaper) - August 17, 2005, Athens, Alabama
Hard to pleaseAthens quarterback finds coaching dad, grandfather biggest criticsRecalling old AthensRetired teacher Maggie Maione shares memories of 1930s, ’40s icThe News-Courier
Serving Athens and Limestone County: A Community of Tradition and Future
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_ Billy Shackleford of Athens
Subscriber of the day
Alabama’s ACT college entrance exam scores remain below national average, but more students tested.
Hey, Sound Off:
1 used to wonder why the speed limit on Lindsay Lane was 35 mph. It was then 1 learned from experience that there is good reason for it.
If you have occasion to try pulling out from Yorkshire, Hastings, Wellington, Saratoga or even Brookwood Drive while someone on Lindsay is doing 45 mph or more and you can fast appreciate the reasoning for the 35 mph.
Add to this the “give-’em-lO” philosophy that cops frequently allow for and we would constantly have people doing 55 mph over those hills that 1, for one, can’t see through.
More Sound Off Valley, 5A
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Daily Bible Moment
'^hus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place.
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Football experience aids officer in capture of suspect
By TaNJIE SCHRIMSHER
Years of experience being chased down the gridiron with a football tucked into the crook of his arm tvirned Randy Vickers into something of a fast runner.
On Monday that experience paid off when Vickers, now an Athens Police officer, found himself in pursuit of a drug suspect.
Vickers, who played tailback for Athens High School and later for the University of North Alabama, caught the suspect after a brief foot chase, which began on U.S. 31 and ended on Beaty Street.
Lt. Steve Moore said the chase began after officers were alerted to an alleged drug deal at the F3udget Inn.
“When officers arrived, the suspect was leaving and they stopped the vehicle and got him out of the car,” Moore said. “They had a hold of him by his shirt but he twisted and got loose. He actually tore his own shirt off” Officers Johnny Campbell, Wesley Little and Neal Muse gave chase, both on foot and in their vehicles.
“He ran across the field behind Wal-Mart there at Hector French Way,” Moore said. “From there he got over to Hereford Drive.”
A witness on Hereford Drive told officers the man had tlagged down and caught a ride with a motorist in a white pickup truck.
“Officer Vickers got behind the truck and followed It to Clinton Street,” Moore said. “When he stopped the vehicle the guy jumped out and the chase was on again. Officer Vickers gained speed on him so quick that the guy just kind of gave up there on Beaty
See Capture, Page 2A
Principal’s suit settled in favor of county BOE
Precedent-setting case decides Pat Gartman did not need 90-day notice of transfer
By Karen Middleton
net A local education case decision by Limestone County Circuit Court Judge Robert Baker could have far-reaching implications for the entire state.
On Aug. 11 Baker ruled in favor of the county Board of Education in a suit brought by former Piney Chapel principal, Pat Gartman.
Gartman contended that when the board voted unanimously to terminate her contract at the end of the 2004-2005 school year they violated the requirement to notify a principal of termination at least 90 days before the end of the school year.
Huntsville attorney J.R. Brooks, who represented the board, said Tuesday that Baker’s ruling was a “case of first impression,” that no other case had been decided such as this one.
“Judge Baker’s decision was based on legislation passed in 2000 that takes principals out of tenure,” said Brooks. “All principals appointed after July 1, 2000, never attain tenure. Instead, they are under contract with a probationary period. In the case of Dr. Gartman, the probation period was two years at the end of which she must have been terminated or given a contract. Under the law, the board did not have to give a reason.”
Brooks said that Gartman's suit contended that she should have been notified 90 days before the end of her probationary contract. The board contended that that stipulation only applies only to those non-probationary princi-
See Principal, Page 2A
No sign of relief
Consumers return to pumps despite prices topping $2.50
By Brad Foss
AP Business Writer Soaring gasoline prices are getting a rise out of many U.S. motorists, but by and large they’re not getting in the way of summer vacations, commuting habits or SUV sales.
What if gasoline prices, which have risen to
$2.55 a gallon, keep climbing?
Diana Amaro, of Denver, said that if gas reached S3 a gallon, she'd consider taking the bus. Ray Sykora, of Yuba City, Calif, said pump prices would have to exceed S4 a gallon before he
See Relief, Page 3A
News-Courier Alissa Clark
Why are prices really so high?
WASHINGTON (AP) — Soaring gas prices are threatening to produce political headaches and dampen the nation’s economic recovery, but neither the White House nor Congress seems inclined — or able — to intervene.
Some questions and answers on the subject:
Q: Why are gas prices so high? A: In short, there’s a tight balance of supply and demand, and jittery traders worry the market will tighten even further. The latest gasoline surge, which saw' prices at some pumps jump a dime a gallon overnight was blamed on crude oil prices that peaked at $67.10 last Friday, and a string of refinery dis-
ruptions amid continuing strong demand.
Q: How high could prices go?
A: The national average last week was $2.55 a gallon, a jump of 68 cents over a year ago, according to the Energy Department. Gas inventories have declined for the past five weeks, rejecting strong demand despite high prices.
Wholesale gasoline prices for September delivery have been increasing and no one is ruling out $3 a gallon gas before the end of summer. Prices are likely to ease a bit after Labor Day with a decline in demand.
Q: hat can the government
A; There is little either the White House or Congress can do that will reduce gasoline and other energy prices significantly in the short run, most analysts say. President Bush has said he wishes he had a magic wand to lower prices, but he has few options that
See Prices, Page 2A
Blaze guts Athens residence
Occupants escape fire Lininairec
Ncvvs-Courier Alissa Clark
Jeffery Carter of PCL Cable works to repair cable lines Tuesday morning following a Monday night fire at 512 N. Clinton Street in Athens.
B\ I VNIIK Sc HRIMSHER
Four people escaped injury Monday night when fire swept through their 512 N. Clinton Street home.
Firefighters with Athens Fire & Rescue were summoned to the scene of the bla/e on the corner of Clinton and McClellan streets just before 9 p.m., c hief Cliff Christopher said.
“It was pretty well gutted,” Christopher said. “There were a couple of rooms upstairs where most of the body of the fire was. There was heavy damage to the top Boor and heavy smoke and water damage to the first tloor."
The rental property owned by Jack i annon was occupied by Judith I hompson, i hnstophcr said.
“There were actually four adults who lived there,” Christopher said. "They said they had been having some electrical problems and the fuse in the switchbox blew out again and the next thing they
See Fire, Page 2A