Athens News Courier (Newspaper) - March 1, 2005, Athens, Alabama
Ardmore High senior Cheryl Llewellyn wins an American Idol talent contest during a weekend of competing
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Brown and Horton in new roles as Athens goes after 5A title i B
ounerTiJESD/W, Marc H 1, 2005Serving Athens and Limestone County: A Community of Tradition and Future
Do you know winch prominent Athens citizen is show n here as an infant? Find out in the Lifestyles section.
Hey, Sound Off:
Could The News-Courier please list the establishments that have gone to the no-srnoking policy? This would help the readers pick where they want to eat ahead of time instead of driving up to a place and then learn of that eatery’s policy.
My family eats out at least four times a week. We would prefer to spend our money at no-smoking places.
We applaud the city for making restaurants choose one way or the other. Maybe the drinkers and smokers will all hang out together and not mess up our family’s time eating out.
It might be a good idea to list the “Smoking Welcomed" places, too!
More Sound Off Valley, 5A
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False robbery report leads to drug arrests
By Sonny Turner
sonny(dj,athensne\\'s-courier.com What started as an investigation of an armed robbery in the Kmart parking lot Sunday ended in the arrest of three men and a 16-year-old boy in what police called a “drug deal gone bad."
“The juvenile and one of the suspects called us and reported they had been robbed at gunpoint, but our investigation showed it was nothing more than a drug deal gone bad." said Athens Police I.t. Moyd Johnson. “We arrested four people."
Arrested were Derrick LaShawn Lyle, 24 and Steven Smith, 21. both of Rosie Road Tanner; Terry Lee Holt, 29, of Poff Lane, Athens; and the 16-year-old Athens juvenile.
Lyle and Smith are charged with second-degree
theft of property and Holt and the teenager are charged with Tilse reporting to law enforcement
See Drug arrests, Page 2A
Residents oppose church expansion
By Phil VV ili.is
A horde of angry citizens filled the chambers for Monda> night's meeting of the Athens City Council, but the council had done nothing to raise their ire.
The group of approximately 200 people all were neighbors of Lindsay Lane Baptist Church. They attended the couiieil meeting to express their frustration at plans for the church to expand into their residential neighborhoods.
Residents discovered the church recently put together a inastei |4aii for future growth, included in the plan is a proposal to build a park ng lot on the current site of six homes on Hastings Road. The plan .apparently became public this week when the church puichased oin oi those houses.
“We're here to ask the council to help us preserve our staielv community," East Hampton Subdivision resident Pam JenningN said, "We
See Church, Page 2A
Open house held at new lai
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By Tashia Lo\ Ei.u
It was a busy weekend at the new Limestone County Sheriff’s Office and Detention Facility on Elm Street.
First, there was the Behind Bars Bed & Breakfast on Friday night, which was a fundraiser for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Fimestone County.
“We booked 59 people and made $10,000,” said Emily Page with the Boys & Girls Clubs.
Participants in the event paid a fee to spend the night in the facility before the real inmates are moved in. They were treated to a jailhouse meal, a lour of the jail, a concert and a buffet.
Prisoners will begin to be moved in by the end of the week. All prisoners are expected to be moved in by Monday.
An open house was held Sunday to give the public to come in and view the new facility.
■According to Limestone County Sheriff Mike Blakely, more than 2,000 people came to the open house.
He said about 300 people showed up early.
So many people attended that organizers ran out of food, as well as the specially-made medallions that were given as souvenirs at the open house.
“Tm jus.t glad they had that much interest in it,” Blakely said.
The $9 million facility can house 288 prisoners.
Photo Courtesy of Paul Cain
Directly above, Adam Davis talks to his mother, Karen, in the visitors’ section of the jail. They talk on telephones to communicate through the bullet-proof glass. In the top photo. Limestone County Sheriff Mike Blakely, left, accepts the keys Sunday to the new Limestone County Sheriff’s Office and Detention Center from Limestone County Commission Chairman David Seibert. Looking on are Commissioner Gerald Barksdale; State Rep. Tommy Carter; and Commissioner Tommy Raby.
City approves reorganization of Electric Deot
By Phil M ii i is
The refinancing of an $8-million Athens Electric Department bond issue appnwed b\ the Athens City Council Monday night wiil save the city more than $1 million an “unbelievable" 12 percent of the total amount of the bonds, according to F inance Director Kent Lewter.
Current low interest rates have made the refinancing of bond issues a common nvnc by government entities. The LiincAUine County Water and Sewer .Autlic-ritv apppwed a bond refinancing last w^-k with similar returns.
In a related matter, the council uppp.: o,l resolution to reorganize the El-ctn Department. The action will allow f lecinc Department Manager Gary Scroggins to coin-plete a four-man maintenance crew appp.ncd two years ago Two members alreadv have been hired. Due to training ret|Uiremcnis. Scroggins said, the decision was made to stagger the hirings. A third member of the crew will be added this year. -.miIi the fourth and final member hired in 2()(h).
Fees for water meter sets and tap installations will go up for customers of the Pulaski Water and Sewer Depurtment, By ordinance, the council must adjust those rates cveiv two years. According to Department Manager John Stockton, costs have increased significantly over the past two years, due nuiinlv li: the price of materials. In addition, he said, connections now require copper lines, which far outlast plastic pipe but cost almost fi\.
See Reorganization, Page 3A
urge hospita to keep cardio rehab unit open
By Tashia Lomu
tashia(Uutliemne\vs-counei.n)in “You made a decision to clo.se the center," fom Craven said Monday as he spoke in liont ol the Athens-Limestone Hospital Board regarding the hospital’s Cardio-Pulmonary Rehab I nit.
“We are really concerned about losing the ivha-bilitation center itself." he said.
He was speaking on behalf of his w ife and others present at the meet
ing who use the Unit.
The group is urging the board to keep the Cardiac-Pulmonary Rehab Unit, which will be operated, out of the Wellness Center in the future.
There has been a petition passed around with more than 640 signatures in favor of the current facility.
Several Cardio-Pulmonary Rehab Unit patients attended the Athens-Limestone Hospital Board meeting Monday. They are concerned about the facilities’ operations being moved to the Wellness Center.
“We understand that consideiation is beinvi
See Cardio Rehab, Page 7A