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December 10, 2016
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Bands, floats and dignitaries join Valleywide Christmas Parade
Bands, floats and dignitaries join Valleywide Christmas Parade

Thursday’s Valleywide Christmas Parade was led off by Grand Marshal Crew Pitts, who rode in a convertible driven by Kenny Knox. Just behind him were the mayors of the three local cities, Kyle McCoy of Lanett (on the left) and Leonard Riley of Valley and Steve Tramell of West Point (at right). Participation surged in the final week of registration. The total number of units went from slightly more than 30 to 65. Bands from Valley High, Lanett High and Point University took part as did a group of 10 horses and riders. It was the first time for a Skyhawk band to march in the Valleywide parade. Hope

Former councilman Gilliam questions city leadership
Former councilman Gilliam questions city leadership

By CY WOOD

WEST POINT — A former city councilman told the West Point Mayor and City Council during Thursday morning’s work session that he sees “a storm coming” for the city.

Donald Gilliam covered a wide range of topics during the public comment portion of the work session. Gilliam served four terms on the city council.

He brought up issues surrounding previous city elections and questioned the validity of Mayor Steve Tramell serving as mayor (he was mayor pro tem when Mayor Drew Ferguson IV resigned his city office to run for U.S. Congress). Gilliam said he didn’t see how, as it was reported in the newspaper, Tramell could continue to hold his seat on the council and serve as mayor.

Tramell assured Gilliam he had no intention of running for council at the next city election and would instead be a mayoral candidate.

Gilliam raised questions about the city charter with regard to vacancies, and City Manager Ed Moon assured him that the city had followed the charter in filling the Ferguson vacancy after Gilliam mentioned an appointment to fill a council vacancy when Gary Harrison resigned. Moon pointed out that was a council vacancy, not the mayor.

Moon said the charter stipulates that if the mayor leaves office, the mayor pro tem serves as mayor until the next scheduled city election.

He said he would be happy to sit down with Gilliam and go over the charter’s provisions.

Gilliam also questioned the way the Virginia Cook Day Care Building, which the city recently restored, will be used, saying it’s difficult to find a place to have a gathering in West Point. He questioned the role of a committee in determining how the building will be used.

He also commented about tax money being used on segregated facilities, but didn’t explain what he was referring to.

Gilliam expressed concerns about snakes, rats and coyotes in the city. “The natives are getting restless,” he said. Gilliam said he was speaking at the meeting because people come to him with complaints because he is a former councilman.

“I’m just passing on what people say to me,” he said

He questioned a $250,000 item in the city’s proposed 2017 budget for police department camera and computer upgrades, suggesting the city could get more mileage out of $250,000 by repairing sidewalks and paving streets on the east side of town.

Mayor Tramell thanked Gilliam for his comments and said if he had any further questions of the city manager or city attorney, they would be glad to talk with him.

During the work session, John Giles, president of Electric Cities of Georgia, spoke to the mayor and council. He said ECG’s top two goals for 2017 are to grow load one percent by focusing more on local rather than statewide development and to implement more technology, like smart metering, into municipal electrical operations.

He commended West Point for instituting a rate schedule for distributive power generation (such as homeowners with solar panels) and said it was important that cities cover their distribution system costs when dealing with customer alternative energy resources.

Troup schools score above state average on CCRPI
Troup schools score above state average on CCRPI

By THE TIMES-NEWS

LaGRANGE, Ga. — The Georgia Department of Education released the statewide College and Career Ready Performance Index (CCRPI) scores Thursday. Troup County School System once again outpaced the state.

Out of 100 possible points and based on data from the 2015-2016 school year, over 70 percent of TCSS elementary schools scored above the state on CCRPI and each TCSS middle school increased its achievement scores. In addition, TCSS elementary schools outpaced state elementary schools by 5.8 points.

Troup elementary schools had a score of 77.5, compared to the state average of 71.7. Troup’s middle schools were just above the state average of 71.5 with a 71.6 score, while the county’s high schools trailed the state average, 70.2 to 75.7.

Combined scored had Troup with a 74.8 versus the state average of 73.6.

The CCRPI report is a complex comprehensive school improvement, accountability and communication platform for all educational stakeholders that helps promote college and career readiness for all Georgia public school students. It was implemented in 2012 to replace No Child Left Behind’s Adequate Yearly Pro- gress (AYP) measurement, after the U.S. Department of Education granted Georgia’s waiver from NCLB.

“There are some highlights we see within the scores and there are also areas of improvement which we are diligently working on,” Troup Superintendent Dr. Cole Pugh said. “We see the future of our students as being prepared for the college or career of their choice and our staff is doing a tremendous job in helping them realize their potential.”

Over the past year, the calculations have been re-evaluated to include changes in weight, assessment scores and performance targets. The weight for the three main components i achievement, 50 percent; progress, 40 percent; and gap, 10 percent.

“These results point to the need for continued intensive focus on the foundations in early grades,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods said. “However, I don’t believe the CCRPI captures all the great work happening in our schools. Through the process of developing Georgia’s state plan for the Every Student Succeeds Act, we are evaluating what changes should be made to our accountability system to better measure the overall achievements of our schools.”

Sports Sports icon 1 Sports icon 1 Sports icon 1 Sports icon 1

Springwood sweeps rival Edgewood
Springwood sweeps rival Edgewood

By Scott Sickler

Times-News Sports Editor

WETUMPKA — The Springwood boys and girls basketball teams picked up big region wins Thursday as the boys team (4-6) posted a 50-38 win and the Lady Wildcats (10-1) posted a 60-45 victory for the sweep.

•In the boys game, coach Drew Dorsey’s team continued its fine play in winning three of its last four in the victory over Edgewood.

“It was a good road win for us,” said Dorsey.

Springwood led 16-11 after the first and 31-17 at the half.

Gus Davidson led the Wildcats with 14 points, McLane Martin added 10, Christian Lancaster tallied seven and Daryl Moore had six.

•In the girls game, Tazsa Garrett-Hammett had a career-best game with 39 points and 21 rebounds to lead Rick Johnson’s team to the big win.

The win made Springwood a state-best 40-1 over the course of the last two seasons.

Langley Matthews added eight points, Maya Battle tallied five, Carson Leva chipped in with four while Andie Martin and Dee Williams each had two.

In the junior varsity game, Springwood lost its first game, 22-19 and dropped to 6-1 on the season.

•Springwood will host rival Chambers Academy Saturday at Boswell gym.

Lanett boys, girls sweep Horseshoe Bend
Lanett boys, girls sweep Horseshoe Bend

By Scott Sickler

Times-News Sports Editor

LANETT — Tuesday was a big evening for the Lanett High girls and boys basketball teams as they opened the home schedule with a pair of resounding wins over outmatched Horseshoe Bend here at the Panther Den.

In the girls game, coach Charlie Williams’ Lady Panthers (1-1) posted a decisive 69-32 win.

“It was a great team effort for our girls,” said first-year coach Williams. “We got a great defensive effort from Ambria Jackson and Jacy Howell, combining for 18 steals.”

All-state shooting guard Ataiya Bridges led the way with 22 points while Ambria Jackson tallied 12.

Other scorers for Lanett included Chasity Coty and Octavia Wright each had 10, Crystalyn Sprayberry added six while Jadyn Wynn and R’Tiana O’Neal each had five.

•In the boys game, the 2A defending state champions moved to 2-0 on the season after belting Horseshoe Bend by an 81-25 score.

Rev. Richard Carter’s team took control early and sealed the win in the first quarter in rolling to the impressive victory.

“We played a little better tonight,” said Rev. Carter. “I saw some improvement in our young players.”

Lanett is less than two weeks into training since ending the football season in the state seminfinals following an outstanding 11-3 season.

Jalen Madden led the way for the Panthers with 16 points, Terrion Truitt tallied 12, Manny Littles scored nine, Tifton Dobbs and Zameron Boozer each had eight and Braylon Harrington chipped in with six.

•In other high school basketball Tuesday, the Springwood boys team (3-6) defeated Calvary Christian of Montgomery and the surging Lady Wildcats (9-1) posted a 50-21 win.

“It was a big win against a big, strong team,” said boys coach Drew Dorsey.

Daryl Moore led Springwood with 18 points, Christian Lancaster had 12 and Gus Davidson added eight.

•In the girls game, Springwood rolled to a 50-21 win.

“We played a very solid game tonight in moving to 9-1 on the year,” said coach Rick Johnson.

Tasza Garrett-Hammett led the way for the Lady Wildcats with 23 points, Andie Martin tallied eight while Maya Battle scored six and Langley Matthews chipped in with five.

•Springwood is next in action Thursday at 3A-Region 1 rival Edgewood.

Valley's Meadows signs with Huntingdon College
Valley's Meadows signs with Huntingdon College

By Scott Sickler

Times-News Sports Editor

VALLEY — After a stellar career for the Valley High baseball team, Rams senior Ryan Meadows will play his college baseball for the Huntingdon College Hawks in Montgomery, the youngster announced at his college signing press conference last week.

Meadows has enjoyed a terrific career at Valley and will play a key role in the success of the Rams this spring as well as at Huntingdon.

“Ryan shows his love and passion for the game as he has a tremendous work ethic and wants to be great at his craft,” said new Valley baseball coach Patrick Shivers. “It’s exciting to see a young man work as hard as he did and take his game to the next level.”

Meadows honed his skills as a member of the Valley Thunder baseball travel team from age 8-12.

A four-year letterman for the Rams (2014-17), Ryan will take his talents to Montgomery to play college baseball for the Huntingdon College Hawks.

While at Valley High, Meadows was a multi-talented player as a righthander on the mound, also played second base and saw action at shortstop as well.

The son of Mike and Robin Meadows, Ryan is interested in a career in exercise science and physical therapy following college graduation.

Obituaries

Obituaries for Friday, December 9, 2016
Obituaries for Friday, December 9, 2016

MRS. BELL

VALLEY — Mrs. Dorothy Whatley Bell, 85, of Valley passed away peacefully at her residence and entered the loving arms of Jesus Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016.

Funeral services will be held Sunday, Dec. 11 at 2 p.m. at Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home Chapel in Valley with the Rev. Dino Atkins officiating. Burial will follow at the funeral home cemetery.

Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home in Valley is in charge of arrangements.

MS. FORD

VALLEY — Ms. Tawnya Renee Ford, 46, of Valley and a former resident of Opelika, Ala., passed away Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016, at Bethany House in Auburn, Ala.

A memorial service will be held Saturday, Dec. 10 at 11 a.m. at Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home Chapel in Valley.

Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home in Valley is in charge of arrangements.

MR. MOORE

OPELIKA, Ala. — Mr. Arthur Moore Jr. (Jr. Moore), 57, of Opelika passed away Thursday, December 1, 2016.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, Dec. 10 at noon at Greenwood Missionary Baptist Church in Lanett. Dr. James McTier is the pastor with the Rev. Keith Moore officiating. Burial will follow at the church cemetery.

Morgan and Sons Funeral Home in Lanett is in charge of arrangements.

MR. OLIVER

ATLANTA, Ga. — Funeral services are pending for Mr. James Oliver, 77, who passed away Thursday, December 8, 2016, at Select Specialty Hospital in Atlanta.

Silmon-Seroyer Funeral Home in LaFayette is in charge of arrangements.

MR. SPENCE

LaFAYETTE — Mr. Willie James Spence, 59, of LaFayette passed away Tuesday, December 6, 2016, at Midtown Medical Center in Columbus, Ga.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, Dec. 10 at noon CST at Pine Grove United Methodist Church in LaFayette with the Rev. Cecelia Broome, pastor, and the Rev. Kelsey Barnes officiating. Burial will follow at the church cemetery.

Silmon-Seroyer Funeral Home in LaFayette is in charge of arrangements.

MS. THORNTON

VALLEY — Ms. Brandy Carmichael Thornton, 43, of Valley passed away Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016, at her residence.

Funeral services will be held Sunday, Dec. 11 at 4 p.m. at Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home Chapel in Valley with the Rev. Thomas Moore and the Rev. Loren Sutton officiating.

Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home in Valley is in charge of arrangements.

MR. WILLIAMS

LaFAYETTE — Mr. Steve Williams, 44, of LaFayette passed away Tuesday, December 6, 2016, at Bethany House in Auburn, Ala.

Funeral services will be held Monday, Dec. 12 at 1 p.m. CST at New Mt. Sellers Baptist Church in LaFayette with the Rev. Terry L. Magby, pastor, officiating. Burial will follow at the church cemetery.

Silmon-Seroyer Funeral Home in LaFayette is in charge of arrangements.

Obituaries for Thursday, December 8, 2016
Obituaries for Thursday, December 8, 2016

MRS. BAKER

LANETT — Mrs. Willie Mae Asberry Wright Baker of Lanett died Thursday, Dec. 1, 2016, at Kennestone Hospital, Marietta, Ga.

Funeral services are scheduled for Friday, Dec. 9 at 2 p.m. at Pilgrim Baptist Church in Lanett with Pastor Fredrick James, Ph.D., officiating. Burial will follow at Pine Grove United Methodist Church Cemetery in LaFayette.

Davis Memorial Mortuary of Valley is in charge of arrangements.

MRS. BELL

VALLEY — Funeral services are pending for Mrs. Dorothy Whatley Bell, 85, of Valley, who passed away Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016, at her resi-

dence.

Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home in Valley is in charge of arrangements.

MS. DICKERSON

CAMP HILL, Ala. — Ms. Princella Dickerson, 74, of Camp Hill passed away Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016, at her residence.

Graveside services will be held Thursday, Dec. 8 at 10:30 a.m. CST at Mt. Traveler Missionary Baptist Church Cemetery in Waverly, Ala., with the Rev. C.W. Fielder officiating.

Silmon-Seroyer Funeral Home in LaFayette is in charge of arrangements.

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