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Georgia House of Representatives

A Democratic state representative has entered the 2018 Georgia governor's race.

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Rep. Stacey Evans of Smyrna says her campaign will focus on how to protect and improve the state's HOPE college scholarship program.

Evans, who grew up in Ringgold, says she was the first in her family to graduate from college thanks to the program.

Scott Applewhite / AP

An estimated 720,000 Georgians could lose health insurance over the next 10 years under the revised Republican health care proposal that passed the U.S. House this month, according to an analysis of the Congressional Budget Office report.

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Bill Custer, a professor at Georgia State University, calculated the figures from the CBO report’s estimates. He said the CBO estimate is based on how states would react to the reduction in federal funding for Medicaid.

Courtesy of Emory University

The 40th Atlanta Jazz Festival kicks off tomorrow. The free festival brings national and local talent to the stage. Dwight Andrews is one of the local favorites but also nationally regarded performer and composer. He’s also a professor at Emory University and a minister.

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State Rep. Allen Peake, R-Macon, speaks before Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal, rear, signs an executive order requiring state agencies to start preparations now for the enactment of the state's medical marijuana bill Friday, March 27, 2015, in Atlanta.
David Goldman / Associated Press

Thursday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress":

From left to right: Carrie Tupper, Alan Tupper and Havana Nguyen, creators of Kamikaze
Brittany Wages / brittanywages.com

Thursday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Abraham Park / Georgia Health News

The tan bungalow on the Gilbert Elementary School campus in LaFayette, Ga. is scarcely bigger than a house trailer.

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Although it could easily be mistaken for a temporary classroom, the building is a clinic. It’s one of six local medical clinics in rural Northwest Georgia run by Primary Healthcare Centers, a nonprofit that is designated as a federally qualified health center.

Richard Vogel / Associated Press

Oprah Winfrey told students to live with purpose. President Donald Trump said to ignore the naysayers. Will Ferrell sang some Whitney Houston.

Those are a few of the speakers who have taken the stage at college graduation ceremonies this month to share their wisdom, joining a wide range of others in entertainment, politics, business and journalism. In their efforts to inspire the Class of 2017, they've elicited both laughter and tears and, in some cases, jeers.

There are big things happening on the west side of Atlanta right now. The city is creating large parks and a trail that will connect to the BeltLine, all part of the long-term cleanup of Proctor Creek.

Alison Guillory / WABE

Neighborhoods on Atlanta’s Westside are changing. Mercedes-Benz Stadium construction is wrapping up; the BeltLine is coming. And what has been a blighted creek could eventually become an amenity. But some residents are concerned that efforts to fix Proctor Creek could eventually price them out.

Jon Ossoff Meets Millennials And Emphasizes Young People Voting

11 hours ago
Andrea Ferrard / courtesy of Vox Atlanta

Without even realizing it, we are constantly projecting our opinion into the world whenever we click on the “like” button on Facebook or comment on an Instagram post. We have become professionals at typing our views of the world and sharing them with others on different social media outlets, but there is one aspect of inciting change in which young people’s participation is lacking: voting.

Peter Byrne / pool via associated press

Home searches across Manchester have uncovered important items for the investigation into the concert bombing that left 22 people dead, Manchester's police chief announced Thursday. A British official said Manchester police have decided not to share further information on the probe with the United States due to leaks blamed on U.S. officials.

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Rise In Property Value Affects Cobb Park Acquisition

12 hours ago
David Goldman / Associated Press

The Cobb County Board of Commissioners is running into trouble buying land to turn into public parks. 

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In 2009, Cobb voters approved a $40 million park bond, but the county didn't issue the bond because of the recession. Nine years later, it has access to only $27.4 million, a little more than half of the original value, because it waited to issue it. 

And Cobb constituents aren't too pleased with that. 

Stephen Morton / Georgia Ports Authority via Associated Press

President Donald Trump wants $108 million to deepen harbors for two U.S. seaports, including a project in Savannah. Meanwhile other ports scrambling to make room for larger cargo ships will benefit from a boost of more than $56 million already approved by Congress.

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Seth Wenig / Associated Press

More than half of food stamp recipients in 21 Georgia counties have been dropped from the program after the state instituted work requirements.

 

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State figures released this week revealed that 11,779 people considered able-bodied without children were required to find work by April 1 to continue receiving food stamps, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

 

Sixty-two percent were dropped after the deadline, whittling the number of recipients to 4,528.

Courtesy of Dark Side of the Room

An improv comedy troupe turns one this week. It’s called Dark Side of the Room and was formed by the African-American members of Dad’s Garage.

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Troupe member and co-founder Mark Kendall explained their signature game in an interview with Lois Reitzes: “We go out to the audience. We get the suggestion of a classic film like 'Jaws', 'Star Wars', whatever it is, and then we improvise a show where we show the deleted scenes of what the black characters are doing during that film.”

Stephannie Stokes / WABE

The number one filming location for box office hits wasn't California last year. According to a new study, it was Georgia.

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The study by FilmLA, the nonprofit film office for Los Angeles, looked at the top 100 grossing movies of 2016 and found that 17 were filmed in Georgia. By comparison, California had 12.

Kelly Gissendaner speaks at the 2011 graduation ceremony for the Theological Studies Program at Lee Arrendale State Prison, in Alto, GA. Gissendaner is scheduled for execution at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
Ann Borden / Emory Photo Video

Georgia inmate J.W. Ledford Jr. used his final moments to quote from the movie "Cool Hand Luke" and toss out an insult.

 

"What we have here is a failure to communicate. Some men you just can't reach. So that's why we have here what we have here today. I am not the failure. You are the failure to communicate," Ledford said just after 1 a.m. on May 17, before a lethal dose of the barbiturate pentobarbital began to flow into his veins.

 

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Atlanta Department of Corrections / Via AP

DeKalb County Sheriff Jeffrey Mann announced on Wednesday he will suspend himself for a week following his arrest earlier this month on public indecency charges.

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TAYLOR ALXNDR

Wednesday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes:"

Peter Byrne / PA via AP

Wednesday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress: "

Seth Wenig / Associated Press

Georgia's university system says campuses won't provide gun storage facilities or signs when a new state law permitting concealed handguns takes effect this summer.

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The guidance released Wednesday also makes clear that people will be able to carry concealed weapons during tailgates.

The law takes effect July 1 and allows people with state-issued permits to carry concealed weapons onto public campuses. Georgia previously banned guns on campuses.

Stephannie Stokes / WABE

Kids in low income neighborhoods tend to change schools more often than their peers. Studies show that can have a detrimental effect on their education.

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This past year in Atlanta, one public school tried to break that trend—by bringing in some lawyers.

At Thomasville Heights Elementary School in southeast Atlanta, Christal Reynolds and Ayanna Jones-Lightsy have just started their day.

Courtesy of Franklin Pond

An upcoming competition won't get ugly. But it might get Mozart. Or Beethoven. Or Dvorak.

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Because this is a chamber music competition, the inaugural one from Franklin Pond, a chamber music program for students.

The competition is open to all middle and high schoolers and will be judged by Western Michigan University Cello Professor Bruce Uchimura, Columbus State University Violin Professor Sergiu Schwartz and Christopher O’Riley of the NPR program "From The Top."

Taylor Alxndr

Southern Fried Queer Pride is an annual festival that celebrates Atlanta's queer and trans community. It is in its third year and has expanded to five days.

Find more events in the Atlanta Festivals Guide

“What we hold core to our beliefs if that if you are not giving space to the most marginalized in the community, it’s not really making any work or progress,” said Taylor Alxndr, one of the founders of Southern Fried Queer Pride and an Atlanta performer and activist.

Why Atlanta Ranks Only 50th In Public Parks Index

May 24, 2017
The lake in Piedmont Park in Atlanta, Georgia is a great place for a stroll on Tuesday, April 21, 2015. (Photo/Brenna Beech)
Brenna Beech / WABE File

Atlanta has a lot of work to do to catch up with public parks in other major American cities. 

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Alison Guillory / WABE

Proctor Creek flows from downtown Atlanta across dozens of neighborhoods to the Chattahoochee River. There has been ongoing work to address flooding and pollution the creek

There is also a new project aimed at connection people to the creek — and to each other. 

Alison Guillory / WABE

Proctor Creek has been a problem for residents of 35 northwest Atlanta neighborhoods for a long time. It’s polluted. It floods.

That’s changing, though. 

Billions of dollars' worth of upgrades to the city's sewer system and plans for a series of parks address the long-running issues with the creek. 

Gabbie Watts / WABE

Sean Fahie is an artist and graphic designer in Atlanta. His favorite spot is one of the benches on Carroll Street in Cabbagetown. Listen above to hear how the bench promotes camaraderie with new and old friends.

“City Tours” is an occasional series on WABE’s “City Lights,” where Atlanta artists and luminaries give a tour of their favorite spot in the city.

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Braves officials advised fans to buy their tickets and parking spots in advance, use its mobile apps to get to SunTrust Park and follow the signs when they arrive.
Tasnim Shamma / WABE

An alarm and an emergency evacuation message on a sign board during the Atlanta Braves game at SunTrust Park turned out to be a false alarm.

 

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An equipment malfunction during an altercation at a ballpark restaurant was the source of confusion in the top of the third inning, the Braves said Tuesday night.

 

Barnaby Wasson via Flickr / http://www.flickr.com/photos/barnabywasson/279913090/

A new report from the National Institute of Early Education Research (NIEER) concludes that Georgia does a good job educating the state’s four-year-olds, but there’s room for improvement.

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