Around Town: Sheriff says Obama’s 287(g) cuts to have little immediate impact
by Bill Kinney and Joe Kirby
Around Town Columnists
October 23, 2012 12:00 AM | 5230 views | 5 5 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
COBB Sheriff Neil Warren told Around Town on Monday that he believes the Obama administration’s pending phase-out of parts of the controversial 287(g) program aimed at illegal aliens in this country will have no immediate impact on the county.

The program delegates federal authority for immigration enforcement to state and local agencies, and Warren, the first sheriff in Georgia to take part, has turned over around 10,000 inmates to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency since 2007.

Warren told AT he thinks the administration is cutting another portion of 287(g), not the part that Cobb is employing.

“That’s what I understand, but with this administration, you never know if what they say is really what they mean,” he added.

The county’s 287(g) program has run for one-year increments in the past, and he last week signed an extension with ICE to keep the program running through the end of the year, he said.

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WHETHER it’s state Rep. Alisha Thomas Morgan (D-Austell) on the left or state Sen. Lindsey Tippins (R-west Cobb) on the right, Cobb’s legislators are pretty good about returning calls directly — and personally. The exception is state Sen. Doug Stoner (D-Smyrna) who is being challenged in the Nov. 6 election by Republican Afghan/Iraq War vet Hunter Hill.

Call Stoner and Liz Flowers with the Senate Democratic Caucus routinely calls back, asking to know what questions the MDJ plans to ask him.

So why does Stoner need his questions screened? Here’s what Melissa Pike, chair of the Cobb Democratic Party told us.

“The Senate Caucus has very, very, very stringent guidelines,” Pike said. “They are very firm that they are going to be united, they’re going to give a consistent response and that consistent response is going to come through Liz Flowers. She is the contact of the media for the senate caucus. Period. It’s something I really wish they would do with the House Caucus because then we wouldn’t have 800 answers to the same question, which makes it so easy to pick off our legislators.

“It makes it a lot easier for the caucus to remain unified, and that’s something that we’ve really got to work on with the House caucus. When you’re in the minority it’s important to make everyone as unified as possible. There’s a lot of lions and when there’s only a few gazelles you want to make sure that you’re a very tight group so as not to pick one off.

“If I want Doug to appear at an event I go to Liz and ask, ‘Is Doug available to go to XYZ event?’ because let’s say I get Doug to show up to a community forum that turns into an educational forum and there’s a whole bunch of pro-Amendment 1 people there, and they spin it to say, ‘See, Doug is pro-Amendment 1.’ She’s already vetted a lot of that to make sure nothing can be spun inappropriately, that we keep more control over that or that she keeps more control over that.”

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POLITICS: Gov. Nathan Deal will be the speaker at the Nov. 3 Cobb GOP Breakfast. The event runs from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at the Cobb GOP HQ, 799 Roswell St., Marietta. … Former Cobb Commission Chair candidate Larry Savage and two others have been named to the nine-member board of the Georgia Tea Party, which is based in Marietta. Savage is a retired exec with Loctite Corp. and ran this year and in 2010 without success for chair as a Republican.

Also named were paramedic and former Baptist seminarian Ronny West and former businessman Steve Covert, according to Tea Party spokesman Tom Maloy and Chairman J.D. Van Brink.

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THE GEORGIA COURT OF APPEALS has scheduled oral arguments for January in the case of Dwight T. Brown vs. The State, in which the former Cobb EMC CEO is appealing his second criminal indictment. The Court will then have until next July to make its ruling … Cobb EMC board member Rudy Underwood will be guest speaker at Saturday’s Madison Forum 8 a.m. breakfast at The Rib Ranch on Canton Road in Marietta.

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IT DOESN’T USUALLY TAKE LONG for those who visit Marietta to realize that the city puts a big emphasis on its history. And two more reminders of that history are due to be dedicated this week.

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THE LEMON STREET HERITAGE GROUP and the City of Marietta will dedicate a historic marker at 11 a.m. Thursday at the site of what was once the Lemon Street Elementary School at 350 Lemon St. The school opened in 1951 in the Fort Hill neighborhood as the only elementary school for blacks in Cobb County. It replaced a two-story, turn-of-the-century wood-framed all-grades school for blacks on the same site. Lemon Street High School, the city’s high school for local black students, was razed in the late 1960s shortly after the city’s schools were integrated. Cobb County, which had no schools for blacks, reimbursed the city for the costs of educating its black students in that era.

The nonprofit Lemon Street Heritage Group was formed in 2008 to consider ways of saving the old elementary and better utilizing it. Headed by George Miller Jr., it hopes to see the Marietta Housing Authority purchase the building from the Marietta City Schools for a nominal charge, then deed it to his group. Possible uses for the building include as a museum, computer lab, classrooms for after-school programs, job-prep courses and a library. The Cobb Library System already operates the small Hattie Wilson Branch in the building.

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COBB’S FIRST PUBLIC LIBRARY opened its doors Oct. 26, 1893 in a building that still stands on Church Street. Now the Marietta Historic Preservation Commission and the City of Marietta plan to unveil a historic marker in front of the building at 12:30 p.m. Friday to celebrate the opening of what originally was known as the Clarke Library.

The library took its name from Sarah Freeman Clarke, who started the first library in the county in 1882 when she began loaning books from her home in Marietta. When the city built the building housing the first public library in 1893, officials named the facility for Clarke.

The library later moved to the former Marietta Post Office (now the Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art) before eventually outgrowing that building as well. The new sign also commemorates the volunteer service of Mabel Cortelyou during the library’s early years, according to HPC spokeswoman Becky Paden. The public is invited to attend the unveiling and a reception following at K. Mike Whittle Unique Floral Designs, the building’s present occupant.

BTW, if you know which current local landmark was rolled on logs to a new site in 1892 to make way for the Clarke Library, you can drink a toast to your knowledge of Marietta history.

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SAVE THE DATE: This year’s Marietta Pilgrimage Christmas Home Tour will be Dec. 1 to 2 and feature homes in the Church-Cherokee Historic District, reports Teresa Jenkins. …The Extension will hold its 25th anniversary banquet at 6 p.m. Dec. 1 at the Marietta Country Club, with state Attorney General Sam Olens and his wife, Lisa, serving as honorary chairmen.

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MONDAY’S MDJ OBIT PAGE brought sad news of the passing of retired Dr. Pete Inglis at age 90. Inglis was a retired Air Force flight surgeon who flew aboard B-29 Superfortress bombers during the World War II/Korean War era and who was instrumental in helping find a B-29 in the late 1980s that was later moved to Cobb County. He chronicled the effort in a book he later wrote titled, “Restored to Honor: Georgia’s B-29 ‘Sweet Eloise.’”

The Bell Aircraft Co. assembled 668 of the B-29s in its Marietta plant during World War II, although the plane later renamed “Sweet Eloise” was assembled at a plant in Wichita. When located in Florence, S.C. by Inglis and the others working on the project, it was little more than “a pile of junk,” he later told the MDJ.

It looked even worse after barely surviving the winds of Hurricane Hugo, but was eventually trucked in pieces to Marietta and restored. It now graces the Cobb Parkway entrance to Dobbins Air Reserve Base.

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PEOPLE: A well-deserved “Congratulations!” to MDJ columnist Dick Yarbrough, one of 17 recipients of Common Cause Georgia’s “Democracy Awards.” The organization gives the awards to those who have worked to improve Georgia’s ethics laws or who have stood firm for higher standards and better government. Other recipients will include former state Attorney General Mike Bowers, who was lead investigator in the Atlanta Public Schools cheating investigation; and leading TSPLOST foe Debbie Dooley of the Georgia Tea Party Patriots. … Presbyterian College Class of ’58 alum John Knox Jr. M.D., of Marietta, is the latest recipient of the 2012 Alumni Golden P Award. Knox, an orthopedist, is team physician for Marietta High School and was inducted into the Marietta High Sports Hall of Fame in 2010. … Marietta woodcarver and author Ron Ransom will be displaying his famed Santa Claus carvings at the upcoming Glynn County Mistletoe Market near St. Simons Island.
Comments
(5)
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Watcher...
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October 23, 2012
It is very sad that Doug Stoner can not speak for himself.

After the election, Liz Flowers' workload should decline because there will be so few Democrats in the Georgia State Senate.
SG68
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October 23, 2012
Sounds like the Democrats want to make sure every one of their candidates is toeing the party line.

Demobots marching in lock step with each other.
GS69
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October 28, 2012
And you don't thnk Republicans do the same? If you do, you are just simply out of touch.
Drug Cartels Rule
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October 23, 2012
Thank you Sheriff for doing the difficult job of dealing with criminal aliens. The drug stash house recently discovered in our East Cobb neighborhood should have alarmed us all to the untold and undiscovered operations of the Mexican cartels on streets our children play.
Watcher...
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October 23, 2012
Neil Warren is the best!
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