Local News

May 10, 2014

Candidate profile — Johnson: Schools can be safer

Jamie Johnson likes the fact that his kids don’t have a desire to go to Disney World.

He likes that Sawyer, 4, and Lilli, 6, would much rather camp with their dad near a spot in Florida where “you can hear the ocean 25 feet away from your camper.”

But he doesn’t like that parents often have to worry about how safe schools are, he said.

“I want to have that comfort to know, when I drop my kids off, that I feel confident they are safe,” he said. “Whatever safety measures we need should be in place. The more we have, the better.”

To that end, Johnson, a lieutenant with the Dalton Police Department, is running for District 2 on the Whitfield County Board of Education against incumbent Rodney Lock in the May 20 Republican primary. The district includes Cohutta and the northeast section of the county. No Democrats qualified.

Both of Johnson’s children attend Beaverdale Elementary School. And while Johnson says there’s no major security problems in Whitfield schools, he believes the board should invest in better front door security. Some schools, he said, are easy to access, while others have a “foyer” where you have to be buzzed in. He’d like more of the latter, he said.

He also wants to research alarm systems that would give teachers immediate access to 911 should something dangerous like a shooting occur.

“Security in our schools is something we really need to focus on,” he said. “I don’t think you’d find a parent who disagrees with that. Even though this is Dalton, things can happen. Some people think it won’t happen because it’s a small town, but it happens in small towns, too.”

Johnson said he knows additional security would cost money. He says he will focus on “tough choices” in the budget if elected.

“What we need to do first is to put the priority on students,” he said. “And we need to make sure teachers have the resources they need. That would be one of the first things I would do if I get elected — to familiarize myself with everything.”

Johnson said he also wants to focus on partnering with businesses in the community. He recently “graduated” from the Leadership Dalton-Whitfield program, hosted through the Greater Dalton Chamber of Commerce. The program, Johnson said, gives a tour of local businesses and trains citizens on how they can be more active in the community through leadership roles.

Johnson and his wife Jennifer have lived in Dalton for 14 years, Johnson said. He graduated from East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tenn., with a bachelor’s degree in criminology and later obtained a master’s degree in public administration from Columbus State University, he added.

(This article has been edited to reflect that Johnson is a lieutenant with the Dalton Police Department.)

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Bugs and Kisses 1 mlh.jpg Local stores expect tax holiday to create lots of sales

    Local retailers say Georgia’s sales tax holiday weekends mean big business for them, and they are gearing up to capitalize on this year’s tax-free shopping on Friday and Saturday.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Esme file mw 2.jpg Still fighting

    Ten-year-old Esme Miller was celebrated earlier this year for the way she’s handled a bout with osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Historical photos of Murray County needed

    Maybe you have a photograph of a well-known preacher from the 1940s. Or maybe you have a photograph taken of a church choir from the 1920s.

    July 30, 2014

  • State DOT wants your input on transportation needs

    As state and national leaders consider alternatives for funding future transportation needs, the Georgia Department of Transportation wants to know what Georgians would like in their 21st century transportation system and how they recommend paying for it.

    July 30, 2014

  • Jail for Justice Tour event here tonight

    The Moral Monday Georgia Coalition, the NAACP-led multi-racial, multi-issue advocacy group, will host an event in partnership with the Georgia Dreamers Alliance, Coalition of Latino Leaders (CLILA), Whitfield NAACP and the Whitfield County Democratic Party at Dalton’s Mack Gaston Community Center tonight from 5 to 9.

    July 30, 2014

  • Two charged with tampering with evidence in drug investigation

    Two people have been arrested and charged with tampering with evidence in connection with the synthetic marijuana bust in February involving a Dalton business owner.

    July 30, 2014

  • Beaulieu to close operations for one week for inventory

    Floorcovering giant Beaulieu of America will conduct a physical inventory of its buildings and facilities next week, with only salaried employees reporting for work.

    July 30, 2014

  • Green spot closing 1 mlh.jpg A part of the family

    Larry Green can’t remember the exact date. But he says it was about 54 years ago when his father Marvin took him to see the new store he and his brother Herman had commissioned Red Jennings to build at 309 W. Emery St. in Dalton.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • New high school?

    The only means for “staying small” and preserving “The Dalton Way” in Dalton Public Schools may be through expansion, Superintendent Jim Hawkins said Tuesday.

    July 29, 2014

  • Bond denied for man arrested in synthetic marijuana bust

    A Dalton business owner charged in a synthetic marijuana bust was denied bond Tuesday.

    July 29, 2014