Georgia News Roundup
June 27, 2013 03:05 PM | 344 views | 0 0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Study: Fare cheats cost MARTA nearly $3.4M

ATLANTA (AP) — A new study estimates that people who don't pay for their subway or bus rides are costing metro Atlanta's transit agency nearly $3.4 million annually.

The estimated revenue loss represents less than 1 percent of MARTA's current budget, but officials said it still hurts.

MARTA's chief operating officer, Rich Krisak, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that spending an additional $2 million annually could reduce waiting times at rail stations by five minutes. Shorter waiting times could attract more riders, leading to more revenue for the agency.

The study concluded the rate of fare evasion on the rail system was around 2 percent. MARTA based its estimates on observations at rail stations and bus stops.

MARTA General Manager Keith Parker has formed a taskforce to study possible solutions.

Information from: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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FAMU lifts suspension of famed marching band

By Brendan Farrington, Associated Press

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida A&M University is lifting the suspension of its famous Marching 100 band following a fatal hazing incident in 2011.

The band known for its marching appearances at presidential inaugurations and Super Bowls had been suspended since death of drum major Robert Champion.

The hazing scandal led to the retirement of band director Julian White and contributed to the resignation of president James Ammons.

Interim President Larry Robinson announced the end of the suspension Thursday.

The school made several changes to fight hazing, including new academic requirements for band members and a zero-tolerance policy that has prompted complaints from some students.

The university last month hired Sylvester Young to rebuild the band. Young is a FAMU alumnus and one-time director of the Ohio University marching band.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens: Jekyll Island right to count marsh as land

By Russ Bynum, Associated Press

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens says Jekyll Island officials have correctly followed state law by counting marsh as land to determine how much of the island state park is open to development.

Olens issued an opinion Thursday that says excluding marsh when figuring the island's size would be an "inappropriate alteration" of the 1971 law that limits construction on Jekyll Island to just 35 percent of its land area.

A task force appointed by the Jekyll Island Authority concluded in an April report that the island long ago exceeded its maximum footprint for building hotels and other amenities because the authority incorrectly counted hundreds of acres of marsh as land. Olens rejected that interpretation.

He said the island's size should remain "status quo" without input from the public and lawmakers.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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Police probe possible murder-suicide in Hall County

GAINESVILLE, Ga. (AP) — Police are investigating a possible murder-suicide in Hall County.

Authorities were called to a home in the southern part of the county around 10 a.m. Thursday.

Sheriff's Office Sgt. Stephen Wilbanks told The Times of Gainesville that an initial investigation shows a man and woman were found dead in a home in what appears to be a murder-suicide.

Police were working Thursday to obtain a search warrant so they could continue the investigation.

Information from: The Times, http://www.gainesvilletimes.com

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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