June 14, 2014

Jamie Jones: Musings from around town

A real, honest-to-goodness public hearing broke out in Dalton this past Monday.

The Dalton Board of Education held its last of three public hearings for its proposed property tax increase.

A total of five citizens spoke during the evening, and board members seemed appreciative of the people who chose to attend and have their voices heard.

Although the citizens did not change the board’s ultimate decision — members voted unanimously to raise taxes later that night — it was refreshing to see the wheels of small town government in motion.

People spoke.

The board listened.

People spoke some more.

The board replied.

Everyone kept the debate civil. No one raised their voice. Both sides were respectful.

The anti-property tax contingent thanked the board members for their service to the community. Board members thanked the taxpayers for speaking.

The five people who spoke were not given a limit on how long they could talk. Nor did board members rush the speakers away from the microphone.

The scheduled one-hour public hearing even went over its allotted time by about 15 minutes. A meeting overrun is a reporter’s worst fear, but at least this overrun had purpose.

I wouldn’t mind seeing more public meetings exceed their set time — as long as the citizenry is being heard.


Love is heavy.

In a figurative sense, love can weigh on your heart and mind.

But in a literal sense, love is also sometimes heavy.

Take the Pont des Arts footbridge over the Seine River in central Paris.

The bridge is adorned with thousands of padlocks attached to its metal grills, placed there by amorous couples who signify their unyielding affection by snapping these “love locks” to the bridge and throwing the key into the river.

Their love is locked away. (Unless a scorned partner takes bolt cutters to their lock after a breakup.)

Earlier this month, the footbridge was shut down after one of those metal grills — burdened by the collective weight of metal locks — fell onto the walkway.

No one was injured, but city officials are keeping an eye on the mounting problem. Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo stopped short of outlawing the hulking symbols of love, asking to “open a debate around the phenomenon of ‘love locks’ with a view to finding alternatives.”

One lock doesn’t weigh much. Several thousand locks, that’s another story. Some news outlets estimate there are more than 700,000 love locks throughout the City of Love.

Dalton has its own “Locks of Love.” Hanging on the safety fence along the Tibbs Road bridge spanning I-75 are some 50 padlocks and combination locks. (Sure, a padlock isn’t exactly permanent, but a combination lock is so unromantic.)

The cynics among us (including Mr. Editor) view the padlocks as a cheesy display of love. Are flowers just not good enough anymore?

City officials have thus far allowed the locks to stay. But in light of the mishap in Europe, will public safety outweigh love?


There’s an old joke in our newsroom about how interns always come back to work at the newspaper.

Sometimes those interns who become full-time employees leave for a second time.

Misty Watson, a Daily Citizen reporter, photographer and columnist, has taken at job in the marketing and communications department at Dalton State College. Her last day at the paper is Wednesday.

Misty, a Murray County native (and proud of it!), came to us as a full-time employee in May 2003. She previously worked as a summer intern.

Through the years, she has been a reporter, a photographer and most recently a reporter/photographer.

She has a great photography eye and deft writing touch, evidenced by her skill with feature stories.

We will miss Misty. At the same time, we’re looking forward to seeing her writing and photography work with the Roadrunners.

Jamie Jones is managing editor of The Daily Citizen. Reach him at (706) 272-7723.

Text Only
  • Sacrifices worth honoring

    Members of the Dalton City Council were recently approached by representatives of the local chapter of the Military Order of the Purple Heart with a request to declare Dalton a Purple Heart City. Council members indicated they will approve the request.

    July 24, 2014

  • We must do better

    The numbers tell a sad tale.
    Registered voters: 36,843.
    Cards cast: 5,307.
    That means the turnout for Tuesday’s runoffs in Whitfield County was a measly 14.4 percent, according to unofficial results from the Whitfield County elections office.

    July 23, 2014

  • Letter: Control immigration

    Thousands are starting to pour into our country, and things are getting personal. Why would we end up the bad guys if we turn away children who aren’t ours? How does it make us better people to let one man steal from our children and stand by and do nothing?

    July 23, 2014

  • Helping with Book Blast betters the community

    The school test results are in, and students in Whitfield and Murray counties mostly improved from a year ago, mirroring or exceeding average scores of their peers.

    July 23, 2014

  • Mark Millican: Guns are already everywhere

    Though it happened over 30 years ago, the image is still vivid.

    July 22, 2014

  • Charles Oliver: Former officer works overtime improperly

    Stephen F. Hall has pleaded guilty to theft by deception and falsifying a government record.

    July 22, 2014

  • Dalton council should seek answers

    Judicial elections in this area are usually pretty staid. In fact, they are generally nonexistent, since most judges run unopposed.

    July 21, 2014

  • Letter: Something to think about

    It has been better than four months now since Malaysia Flight 370 went missing. During that time we have heard all kinds of speculation, conjecture and opinions as to what happened to it. The only certainties to emerge are that the Malaysians fumbled the ball early on and there are some understandably distressed loved ones left to deal with their losses.

    July 21, 2014

  • Don’t forget the runoff

    Most folks are either getting ready for or still recovering from their summer vacations. So it’s easy to forget that Tuesday is an election day. A runoff election day to be precise.

    July 20, 2014

  • Be excited about a new grocery store, but stay loyal to the Green Spot

    The Daily Citizen reported on the front page of the July 15 newspaper that Dalton could get a new grocery store.

    July 19, 2014