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Rockdale Citizen Poll for May 4, 2014

“Six years without a raise, no match of contributions, worsening health care coverage, and counties all around us giving teachers bonuses and raises. We need to give this some serious consideration before signing that contract.”

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“Should a teacher with six years of experience still be making a first year teacher’s salary?”

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“I see so much negativity in these Polls that I would write some positive things I have observed in our county. First, I would like to thank the many people who contributed to our Conyers Lions Club road blocks. The Lions Club does not keep a cent of any monies collected. Everything goes toward helping the visually impaired. Beasley Drugs has gone well above what is expected on several occasions. Magnolias Senior Living is an caring place and gives family the peace of mind that their loved ones are being well taken care of, and Dr. Brian Allen with the Rockdale Hospital wound care center, who traveled to my wife’s assisted living facility to personally instruct the staff on care she needed. All is not negative in our county and I think some positives should be noted.”

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“With all due respect to Commissioner Van Ness, GRTA doesn’t come close to serving the transportation needs of this county. The only way that could change is if the routes were to run more than just the peak periods, but that would more than likely require a funding commitment from Rockdale County just like MARTA and would still be less than what we really need. People need a transit system that can get them home when they want, not when it wants, as is the case with GRTA. But MARTA has a solution working its way toward Rockdale County already. Planning is well underway on the I-20 East project, which would bring heavy rail service as far as Stonecrest Mall. From there, it’s less than 2 miles to the Rockdale County line. This service is still years away, but we must begin work on it now if Rockdale is to take advantage of it. MARTA rail doesn’t bring crime to an area. All the arguments of ‘look at Lithonia’ are wrong since Lithonia never had MARTA rail service. The better example is Dunwoody and Sandy Springs. Those areas have become highly desirable areas to live since MARTA rail began serving them, attracting the young and the family-oriented people, as well as major companies. All Rockdale will attract with its continued reliance on individual cars or token peak-period bus service is the kind of people looking for a cheap area to live to wait while things hopefully turn around for them. They aren’t necessarily bad people, but they aren’t the kind that will care a lot about the community they’re in. Rockdale declined greatly without reliable transit access. Not to say that transit access is a magic wand, but it can greatly help the community it serves and denying this avenue of advancement can only hurt us in the long run.”

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“I think these ‘juvenile’ thieves arrested after the car chase and a three-county crime spree need to be treated as adults. If you are old enough to kick in doors and steal items, you are old enough to do the adult time — and hopefully a very, very long sentence. It’s time to send a message. Stop with the hand slapping. I hope police are looking at fingerprints and circumstances in this county, as this MO sounds just like the one used in the robbery of my house last year.”

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“I hope to hear that the Salem student who punched a teacher is kicked out of RCPS. We should not put up with that. I’d also like to see a policy where any student arrested is also kicked out. We’ve got to clean up this county and this school system.”

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“Thank you to Rockdale Animal Control for finally choosing a cat for Pet of the Week. I hope you’ll continue to at least alternate species and give some of your homeless cats as much of a shot at finding homes as the dogs get.”

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“These teens in these crime sprees across all these counties need to be charged as adults. Your story said they’d been identified, then I read the story and see that three of the five aren’t identified, because of their ages. This is ridiculous. These aren’t juvenile crimes; these are grownup crimes that hurt a lot of people. I hope the charges are adult charges when this is all said and done.”

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“I just read the article detailing a 15-year-old student punching a teacher. I can’t help but wonder how many other behavior incidents this student has had and if the school system is not being tough enough on discipline. Most students don’t start by hitting a teacher. Most of the time, if they are bold enough to hit a teacher, they have already given the school many opportunities to correct their behavior. Also, If they are willing to hit a teacher, what are they doing to other kids?”

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“Dear Rich Autry and the school board, you can keep your scores! What are you doing about safety and discipline in our schools? I have never heard a family say they were sending their kids to private school because our public schools have bad test scores. The answer is always the same. They do not want to send their children to our schools for reasons of safety and bad influence. And guess what? If good families don’t want their kids in our schools, property values drop. And that is everyone’s problem.”