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February 22, 2017
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LaFayette has big turnout for ATRIP-2 public meeting
LaFayette has big turnout for ATRIP-2 public meeting

The third and final local meeting regarding a proposed gasoline tax for statewide road and bridge improvements was held Tuesday evening in LaFayette. A near capacity crowd gathered at the county highway department to hear Chambers County Engineer Josh Harvill (shown above) discuss aspects of the plan and its impact on area roads. (Photo by David Bell)


LaFAYETTE — A near capacity crowd filled a meeting room at the Chambers County Highway Department Tuesday evening for the third and final public forum regarding a proposed gasoline tax for local road and bridge improvements. County commissioners hosted two previous forums last week in the cities of Valley and Lanett, but according to chairman Debbie Wood, LaFayette had the largest turnout of participants.

Known as ATRIP-2, the Association County Commissions of Alabama (ACCA) is seeking state ap-

proval during the upcoming legislative session to impose a three-cent-per-gallon tax on gasoline and diesel sales to support a statewide $1.2 billion bond issue for transportation infrastructure improvements. Based on the distribution formula, Chambers County would receive an estimated $12.7 million.

County Engineer Josh Harvill said a joint study by the Association of County Engineers of Alabama and the Alabama Department of Transportation indicated that Chambers County should be expending $5 million per year on a 15-year cycle to resurface its 437 miles of paved roads. And, an additional $1.1 million annual expenditure is needed to replace and rehabilitate the 146 county-owned bridge structures on a 50-year cycle.

“The current average per-mile cost to resurface a road with asphalt is about $200,000,” said Harvill. “The money that would be provided by this proposal is not a cure-all, but it would definitely make a positive impact.”

Harvill and his staff have developed a priority list of the roads in greatest need of improvement according to their current condition and the number of businesses/residences served by each.

“Out of our total county road system, only 92 miles are considered excellent by Department of Transportation standards, with the majority rated as average or below,” added Harvill.

As proposed, ATRIP-2 would cost the average driver approximately $1.50 per month based on average gasoline purchases. The bond issue would have an expected life of not more than 15 years, at which point the three-cent tax would end. But Harvill pointed out that the final version of the plan rests in the hands of state legislators.

“The 67 counties of Alabama have gotten together and said this is what we want. They each felt that three cents was an amount most people would be able to afford. That’s why it is absolutely critical for citizens to contact their local state representatives and express an opinion, whether it’s in favor or against,” said Harvill.

Several of those in attendance were representatives of the local timber industry, who said they could support the three-cent tax only if the money was divided among counties and none of it retained by the state. They said they would be reluctant, however, to support such legislation if the tax was set at a higher amount.

If approved by the state, Harvill said paving could begin in Chambers County later this year.

WestPoint Home donates thousands of towels to tornado victims
WestPoint Home donates thousands of towels to tornado victims


NEW YORK — WestPoint Home LLC has donated much-needed towels and accessories to people affected by a string of tornados that struck several southeastern states over the past few weeks.

Overall, 3,525 washcloths, 2,016 hand towels and 600 bath towels were distributed to those in need by local charities near Albany, Ga., one of the hardest hit communities.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to all the areas impacted by these devastating storms,” said WestPoint Home CEO Normand Savaria. “We hope our support can provide relief and be a stepping stone to full recovery.”

The donation was first delivered to Harvest of Hope Food Pantry in Americas, Ga., where volunteers assembled towel sets into individual bags. The sets were then apportioned among six local charities, including Boys and Girls Club, YMCA, Southwest Georgia Council on Aging, Sal-

vation Army, Albany Rescue Mission and Amerco Mission.

In the Albany area alone, more than 600 homes were destroyed and another 11,000 sustained major damage, displacing over 3,000 children.

WestPoint Home maintains offices and retail stores in Dawsonville and Dalton, Ga., Valley and Chipley, Fla., all within the path of recent tornados. The company is a leading supplier and retailer of high-quality bed and bath products.

With a legacy dating back to 1813, WestPoint Home continues to design and manufacture sheets, towels, blankets, quilts, comforters, decorative pillows and bath accessories for the retail and hospitality markets under the brand names Martex, Vellux, Grand Patrician and Nostalgia Home.

With corporate and design headquarters in New York City, WestPoint Home operates additional offices in Shanghai, China, Bahrain and Clemson, S.C.

Troup County will take hiring process in-house
Troup County will take hiring process in-house


LAGRANGE — The Troup County Board of Commissioners approved a request from County Manager Tod Tentler Tuesday to change the way applicants are hired for county positions.

For the past several years, the Georgia Department of Labor office in LaGrange has accepted applications and resumes for all job openings in Troup County government. But in the near future, that procedure will no longer be in effect.

“We will be doing all of our hiring in-house and online,” said Tentler. “Openings will be posted on the commission’s website with easy-to-follow instructions on how to submit an application.”

Even though the county still maintains a “hiring freeze,” positions occasionally become available when employees leave a job or are transferred elsewhere.

In other business, commissioners accepted a $100,000 grant from the Georgia Department of Corrections to implement new GED inmate training, welder training and a barber school at the Troup County Correctional Institute. Executive assistant Dexter Wells said the grant will facilitate special opportunities for inmates to become employable following their release.

The board also approved a request from parks and recreation to submit a grant application for continued operation of Troup Transit. Since 1999, the recreation commission has operated the transit system with funds allocated from the Department of Human Resources, providing transportation to elderly and disabled citizens. On average, the fleet of 10 transit buses handles approximately 3,500 trips per month.

The grant will provide $300,000 annually to supplement the transit program.

And, commissioners decided a special committee should be formed to consider Sheriff James Woodruff’s request to hire an additional patrol deputy. The request was made during a work session on Friday when Woodruff discussed the growing number of traffic accidents in the county.

According to the sheriff, deputies assigned to answer calls from citizens are being diverted to wreck scenes for traffic control with greater frequency than before, which leaves certain areas vulnerable in emergency situations. Therefore, he is seeking to hire one more patrol officer to assist with traffic-related incidents during peak daytime hours.

Commission chairman Patrick Crews asked County Manager Tentler to propose a recommendation at the next work session identifying specific individuals who will comprise the committee.

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

Lanett holds off LaFayette in 53-50 thriller
Lanett holds off LaFayette in 53-50 thriller

By Scott Sickler

Times-News Sports Editor

JACKSONVILLE, Ala. — It wasn’t decided until the final seconds of the game but the No. 4-ranked Lanett Panthers (23-7) are once again headed back to Birmingham with a chance to defend its AHSAA 2A state championship after a heartstopping and last-second 53-50 win over the rival LaFayette Bulldogs (20-9) to win the Northeast Regional here Tuesday evening at Jacksonville State.

With the win, Lanett will face the Barbour Co. Jaguars, Mon., Feb. 27 at 7:30 p.m. CT in one of the 2A semifinal games at Birmingham’s Legacy Arena.

It’s Lanett’s 11th all-time trip to the Final Four but the first time they’ll have a chance to repeat as state champions and also become the first Chambers Co. school to win back-to-back state titles.

The fourth meeting of the season between Lanett and LaFayette was the best and most exciting of the four-game series this year with the Panthers holding a 3-1 edge.

While the 53-50 win over LaFayette gave Lanett the Northeast Regional title, it also extended the Panthers win streak to nine games as Lanett has really elevated its game in the last two weeks.

Rev. Richard Carter’s team was 6-5 in January against a brutal schedule of 5, 6 and 7A foes from both Alabama and Georgia but it has made Lanett a battle-tested team now ready to take the next step up and meet the challenges that lie ahead in Birmingham.

It was an all-out war with a game and tough LaFayette team Tuesday that made comeback after comeback, rally after rally and had a great opportunity to win the game last night in the final and agonizing 3.4 seconds in the game. Give coach Obadiah Threadgill and his staff and players the credit they are due, the Bulldogs played a terrific, all-around game only to come up short on a series of plays in the final seconds.

LaFayette led 7-6 after the first quarter but Lanett held a 22-20 lead at the halftime intermission.

The action was fast and furious on both ends of the court and although Lanett would push its lead at times to as many as seven in the third quarter, LaFayette always made a rally led by three-sport, all-state performer JaTarvious Whitlow, who tallied 22 points in a brilliant showing in his final high school game.

Lanett led 38-31 after three quarters but LaFayette rallied once again as they did throughout.

In the game, Lanett led for 24:12 and LaFayette for just 2:02, the score was tied three times, the lead exchanged 11 times in the game, including six times in the fourth quarter alone.

With just :25 seconds left in the game, Lanett was up by one at 51-50 and anyone’s game for the taking.

The Bulldogs had executed their game plan very well as did Lanett. It was up to which team was going to make the big plays to pull out the win.

Jalen Madden nailed a pair of long-range 3s late in the fourth which put Lanett in position to win.

Tre Story connected on 1-of-2 at the free throw line for a 52-50 lead with :03 seconds left.

Story missed the bonus shot on the 1-on-1 but Anquavious Pollard made one of the key plays of the game, pulling down the rebound and was fouled with a 52-50 lead and :02 remaining.

Pollard hit one of his two shots for a 53-50 Lanett lead and Terrion Truitt tipped an in-bounds pass play by LaFayette, to deny the Bulldogs a last-second 3, which would have tied the game and held on for a thrilling 53-50.

Like all rivalries with the raw emotion and intensity of Lanett-LaFayette, it was euphoria for Lanett and a agonizing and numbing defeat for LaFayette.

Pollard led Lanett with 14 points and played a great, all-around game after not practicing all week because of sickness.

The other half of the Panthers twin towers was Manny Littles as the 6-8 big man tallied 10 points as the Pollard-Littles duo pulled down 25 rebounds as well.

Madden added nine points, Truitt chipped in with six points while Tre Story and brother Kristian Story each had five points.

The stats were all very close with the exception of Lanett holding a 38-26 edge rebounding, including 16-7 on the offensive end.

Whitlow led LaFayette with 22 points, three steals and five rebounds while My’Kale Trammell had 12, Chris Smith tallied six and Corey Boston had five.

Springwood baseball, softball earn Monday sweeps
Springwood baseball, softball earn Monday sweeps

By Scott Sickler

Times-News Sports Editor

Monday was a big day for the Springwood softball and baseball teams as both squads picked up sweeps.

Coach Alex Bryant’s softball team routed East Memorial Christian Academy (EMCA) 20-0 in Game 1 and 19-3 in the nightcap contest.

•In Game 1, Meg Parton, Emma Jennings and Haley Rogers all had two hits. McKayla Barber had a hit and two RBIs, Hayden Rogers added a two-RBI single and Bailey Morrison chipped in with three RBI.

Jennings earned the win in the circle, allowing one hit and struck out four.

•In Game 2, Parton had two hits and two RBIs, Hayley Rogers added two hits and one RBI and Jennings tallied a single.

Barber was the winning pitcher of record, striking out seven in six innings of work.

•In Wildcat baseball action, coach Jason Walls’ varsity team (3-1) and the junior varsity (2-3) both recorded wins over EMCA.

Springwood won the varsity game 15-0 on the mercy rule as Chandlor Champion picked up with the win on the mound.

Champion tossed a complete game of four innings in his first start of the season, noted coach Walls.

“It was a good outing for Chandlor,” Walls said. “He kept his pitch count low and threw a lot of strikes. He only faced only 15 batters, struck out four and gave up only one hit. The single hit came in the last inning with two outs — we've been giving him a hard time about it.”

Springwood banged out 13 hits in the win.

Noah West, Andrue Davis, Cam Hopkin, Grant Easterwood and Preston Messer all had two hits each. Dylan Anderson, Harrison Spivey and Jon Jon Davis all had one hit.

Andrue Davis’ hit was a two-run homer and Springwood hit for the cycle, Walls noted.

“Overall, I was pleased with our performance,” said Walls. “It's important (and difficult) to avoid complacency when you have a favorable lead. I believe our guys did a good job of staying focused throughout the game and executed every at-bat and defensive play the way they are suppose to. I was especially proud to see that after our guys suffered their first loss of the season to Calvary Christian in Columbus Saturday.

•In the junior varsity game, Springwood posted an 11-4 win.

Sam Bradfield was the winning pitcher of record with three strike outs, allowed one hit, gave up just one earned run and had two walks.

Trevo Williams and Corbin Piper each worked one inning as well.

Springwood had 11 hits in the win led by Hopkin with three markers, Ethan Plank and Piper each had two while Williams, Bradfield, Cooper Champion, James Dorminey all had hits.

Lanett, LaFayette by the numbers
Lanett, LaFayette by the numbers

By Scott Sickler

Times-News Sports Editor

JACKSONVILLE, Ala. — It’s showdown night at Pete Mathews Coliseum on the campus of Jacksonville State University today as the No. 4-ranked Lanett Panthers (21-7) and the rival LaFayette Bulldogs (20-8) battle for the Northeast Regional championship at 4:45 p.m. CT.

It’s also the fourth meeting of the season between the rivals as Lanett holds a 2-1 lead and defeated LaFayette at the Dog Palace a week ago for its 27th all-time area championship. LaFayette has 17 area titles to its credit as well as the two Chambers Co. schools have a combined 44 area championships.

Now in his sixth season leading Lanett and 46th year of coaching, Rev. Richard Carter has carved out an amazing 146-33 record with five area titles and one state championship (2016) with the Panthers.

LaFayette coach Obadiah Threadgill is also in his sixth year as the Bulldogs coach and has fashioned a

121-51 mark with one area title and one state championship (2015).

Lanett is 15-5 vs. LaFayette over the course of the six-year rivalry between the two coaches and the 21st meeting is tonight with a ticket to the Final Four and another chance at bringing home a state crown to Chambers Co. Lanett has recorded a sensational mark of 56-3 at home since the 2013 season and 90-13 at the Panther Den since the 2009 season. Lanett is 75-17 last three seasons while LaFayette has rung up a 66-20 mark.

•Tonight’s matchup is the second time in five years (2013) that Lanett and LaFayette have met for the Northeast Regional at Jacksonville St.

In 2013, after going 0-3 against Lanett during the season and area tourney, the Bulldogs ended Lanett’s season with a 51-43 upset at the Northeast Regional.

•Barbour Co. and R.C. Hatch both earned 2A Final Four berths Monday. The Lanett-LaFayette winner will play Barbour Co. Mon., Feb. 27 in Birmingham.


Obituaries for Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Obituaries for Wednesday, February 22, 2017


LANETT — Mr. Jimmy Roger Fears of Lanett passed away Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2017, at Diversicare in Lanett.

The family may be contacted at the residence of Mrs. Doris Fears Heard, 604 MLK Drive, West Point.

M.W. Lee Mortuary of West Point is in charge of arrangements.

Obituaries for Tuesday, February 21, 2017
Obituaries for Tuesday, February 21, 2017


LANETT — Ms. Helen J. Avery, 67, of Lanett passed away Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017, at East Alabama Medical Center in Opelika, Ala.

Funeral services will be held Tuesday, Feb. 21 at 1 p.m. EST at Greenwood Baptist Church in Lanett with the Rev. James McTier, pastor, officiating. Burial will follow at the church cemetery.

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


WEST POINT — Mr. Willie W. "Shagg" Hall of West Point died Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017, at his residence.

Funeral services are scheduled Wednesday, Feb. 22 at 1 p.m. at Bethlehem Baptist Church in West Point with the Rev. W.T. Edmondson, pastor, Bishop Donald Lancaster, officiant, and Dr. Tanda J. Canion, eulogist. Burial will follow at Westview Cemetery in West Point.

Davis Memorial Mortuary of Valley is in charge of arrangements.


VALLEY — Mrs. Celia Bowers Landreth, 86, of Valley passed away Sunday, Feb. 19, 2017, at her residence.

Funeral services will be held Wednesday, Feb. 22 at 2 p.m. at Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home Chapel in Valley with the Rev. Tim Bass officiating. Burial will follow at Oakwood Cemetery in Lanett.

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


LaFAYETTE — Ms. Lorene Clark Turner, 67, of LaFayette passed away Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2017, at Bethany House in Auburn, Ala.

A memorial service will be held Wednesday, Feb. 22 at 11 a.m. CST at Silmon-Seroyer Funeral Home Chapel in LaFayette with the Rev. John Clark officiating.

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

Obituaries for Monday, February 20, 2017
Obituaries for Monday, February 20, 2017


VALLEY — Mr. Charlie Will Butler of Valley died Sunday, Feb. 19, 2017, at LaGrange Hospice in LaGrange, Ga.

Funeral services and survivors will be announced by Davis Memorial Mortuary of Valley.


HUGULEY, Ala., — Mrs. Mary Jean Crenshaw, 69, of Huguley died Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017, at Midtown Medical Center in Columbus, Ga.

Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. CST Monday, Feb. 20 at Osanippa Baptist Church with the Rev. Claude Bennett and the Rev. Phillip Johnson officiating. Burial will follow at Cusseta Cemetery.

Jeff Jones Funeral Home in LaFayette is in charge of arrangements.


VALLEY — Mr. Jesse “J.L.” Johnson, 89, of Valley passed away Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017, at his residence.

Funeral services will be held Tuesday, Feb. 21 at 2 p.m. at Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home Chapel in Valley with the Rev. Chuck Anderson and the Rev. David Johnson officiating. Burial will follow in Hillcrest Cemetery.

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


VALLEY — Mrs. Celia Bowers Landreth, 86, of Valley passed away Sunday, Feb. 19, 2017, at her residence.

Arrangements will be announced by Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home of Valley.


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