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Attending the National Advisory Board meeting of the Salvation Army recently in Jackson, Miss., Lawrenceville's Capt. Andy Miller was asked to inscribe his new book, Holistic Hospitality: ""Andy, could you make that out to George and Laura?" Andy later recalled: "Completely humbled and aware of the security detail around I said, 'Yes, Mrs. Bush, I'd be honored to!'" Then he thought: "I have to come up with something to write!" His inscription: "To George and Laura, Thank you for all you have done for the Army, the Lord, and our Country. Forward to the Fight!"

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Issue 14.84 | Jan. 27, 2015

:: Suwanee college to become tobacco-free

:: Crummy commercial time on radio network

Two more comment on funerals

Snellville seeks labyrinth support, more

Gwinnett Tech educator honored, GGC wins

:: Crowell Brothers Funeral Home

:: Nothing wrong with being out of step

:: Bishop leads Episcopal diocese out in war

:: Green, gold, gray dominate

:: Peachtree Corners gets enforcement officer


Suwanee's GA-PCOM to ban all tobacco products as of Feb. 1

Special to Gwinnett Forum
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SUWANEE, Ga., Jan. 27, 2015 -- Beginning February 1, Georgia Campus - Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (GA-PCOM) will become tobacco-free. The move underscores the college's commitment to providing an environment that promotes and supports a healthy lifestyle.

The new policy bans both smoking and smokeless tobacco products completely on all PCOM properties. These include cigarettes, cigars, pipes and products such as chewing tobacco, dip, snuff and electronic smoking devices. February 1 was chosen as the launch date for the policy as it coincides with the start of National Heart Month. Smoking significantly increases the risk of coronary heart disease, atherosclerosis and peripheral arterial disease. The Georgia campus will implement smoke-free signage to enforce the rule.

Part of the revised policy's official purpose states that, "…As an academic institution dedicated to the training of healthcare providers, as well as a provider of healthcare services to the community, PCOM has a vital interest in maintaining a healthy, safe and hazard-free environment for our faculty, staff, students, patients, and visitors and is committed to offering positive and helpful intervention strategies and treatment resources in addressing this issue." In the wake of this decision, the College has encouraged the GA-PCOM community to participate in smoking cessation and wellness programs.

In October 2014, the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia (USG) adopted a new tobacco policy which prohibits the use of tobacco products on all USG properties and thus all public university campuses in the state of Georgia, according to the USG's official website.

By employing a tobacco free campus, GA-PCOM joins USG in addressing the harmful effects of tobacco use and promoting healthier communities.

Georgia Campus - Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (GA-PCOM) is a private, not-for-profit branch campus of the fully accredited Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, a multi-program institution with a 115 year tradition of educational excellence. GA-PCOM offers the doctor of osteopathic medicine degree, the doctor of pharmacy degree and a master's degree in biomedical sciences. The campus includes the Georgia Osteopathic Care Center, an osteopathic manipulative medicine clinic, which is open to the public by appointment. For more information, visit or call 678-225-7500.

Watch out for crummy content on Women's Radio Network
Editor and publisher |

JAN. 27, 2015 -- Let's turn our attention to radio today.

The call came from New York, from the Women's Radio Network, wanting to talk to me.


My immediate question: "Why would the Women's Radio Network want to talk to me? I don't know that much about women," thinking of my wife and two daughters. They are usually their own puzzle.

Turns out the Women's Radio Network wanted me to be a guest on their station, to talk to one of their hosts. "What would I talk about?" I asked, getting the reply: "Oh, they will move the conversation along."

That puzzled me. That first call came about two weeks ago. Then they scheduled me to be on the radio for eight minutes on January 22 at 10 a.m. Meanwhile, they told me that they had in Atlanta a station at 1100 on the AM dial. So in the last few days before the call, I listened to that station. The radio hosts were talking to people all over the country, a lawyer in Cincinnati, and to another lawyer in Philadelphia, a doctor in another town, and so on. Mostly they were talking about women's issues.

Then on Tuesday before going on radio on Thursday, I got another call from the network, getting some information on the two Internet publications that I publish, GwinnettForum and GeorgiaClips. On the day of the show, they called early in the morning to make sure I was ready to go on air at 10 a.m. Finally, here I am talking to a female host in Los Angeles, and the eight minutes went fast.

About 30 minutes later, another call from the Network. "Congratulations on how well you did this morning," the person from the Network said. "Most segments get a 2.5 rating, but you scored a 5.2, double what most do," I was told. Then they added: "So we want you to go on the air on our Network for 30 minutes now."

Granted, by this time, since after all I had done so well, here I am somewhat swelling in pride. "Wow," I said, "All I was doing was talking."

"Yes, and you were very good," I heard. Then came another sentence: "Of course, you realize there is a fee involved ...."

What I should have said, of course, was "Fee for you to pay me?"

But they did not mean that. It was nothing but a ruse to try to drum up revenue for the radio network. It made me feel like Ralphie in the movie, A Christmas Story, when he got a decoder ring from the Orphan Annie serial. The secret message that particular day was "Drink your Ovaltine." Ralph saw through it immediately, "Crummy advertisement," he muttered, or something like that. I felt the same about the Women's Radio Network.

So watch out what you hear on those 30 minutes segments on the Women's Radio Network. Crummy content!

* * * * *

On the FM radio dial, Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB) is airing during daytime on WRAS, FM 88.5, the station operated by Georgia State University. The other public radio station in Atlanta, WABE, FM 90.1, is upset that GPB is moving into their territory. As a result, WABE revamped its offerings, now having less classical music, and more talk radio themselves.

We like having two public stations giving us alternatives. WRAS is providing interesting national shows, such as On Point, The Takeaway, Here and Now, and Science Friday. It only broadcasts public radio during the day, while keeping the GSU alternative music lineup at night. Listen in to either. You won't hear any crummy commercials.

Crowell Brothers Funeral Home

The public spiritedness of our sponsors allows us to bring to you at no cost to readers. Crowell Brothers Funeral Home is located on Peachtree Industrial Boulevard in Norcross, Ga. It has been a family owned and operated business in business for over 30 years, and prides itself on caring, individualized service. The staff at Crowell Brothers works to help families properly honor their loved one, according to his or her own personality and life experiences. Many families follow their own traditions when arranging services; others seek something different, a way to celebrate an extraordinary life. Crowell Brothers strives to personalize each service and help those affected begin their healing process. Whether you are currently in need of our services, or are simply educating yourself about your choices, this site was established with you in mind. Crowell Brothers is here to help you through any questions or concerns that you may have.

Taking care of Mama, by returning her to colorful Barbados

Editor, the Forum:

I love a good old-fashioned funeral, lively hymns and honest-to- goodness tributes. Paying respect to the deceased and just saying those final goodbyes to the "body" are not the same as years gone by.

While at one of her many stays at Emory Hospital, my mother told me she wanted to go "home," and I knew exactly what she meant. I did everything possible including hiring a flying nurse to get her home to Barbados.

Once home, I called one of my friends and told her I needed her to keep a secret and be with me as I had to do one of the hardest things in my adult life: plan Mama's funeral. She asked no questions; it was "Let's roll."

I was in the right frame of mind to take care of Mama's final wishes, her hymns, her scripture readings, her casket and the pastor. I had the support of a trusting friend, and was able to take care of Mama's final wishes, down to the sea of color in the congregation; Mama wanted no mourning colors!

So yes, funerals have changed. In loving memory of Gwendolyn O. Johnson nee Inniss - 1930-2004, resting in Bridgetown, Barbados.

-- Arlene Beckles, Norcross

Remembers back when her father was a funeral director

Editor, the Forum:

I want to comment about the funeral business. I grew up around that business as a kid and understand how it used to be.

My Dad was a licensed Funeral Director working for a small town funeral home. In fact, if you were buried by Branam's Funeral Home, you knew you and your loved ones were in good hands because of Mr. Branam and my Dad. The two of them, with the help of their staff, made sure every little detail was taken care of and the people of Homestead, Fla. appreciated that service they provided.

I also remember when they used to have an ambulance service and they would go out on calls for heart attacks, babies being born, car wrecks and so on. Even the town drunk got a ride in an ambulance to the local jail.

That all changed when the government decided medical personnel needed to respond to emergency calls. So Branam's stuck to the business of funerals and pretty much a "mom and pop" operation until big corporations came in. Mr. Branam offered the business to my Dad when it was time for him to retire, but my Dad said no thank you and soon after he retired too. My Dad always kept his licensed renewed up until the time he passed away. So many memories.

-- Sara Rawlins, Lawrenceville

Send us a letter: We encourage readers to submit feedback (or letters to the editor). Send your thoughts to the editor at We will edit for length and clarity. Make sure to include your name and the city where you live. Submission of a comment grants permission for us to reprint. Please keep your comments to 300 words or less. However, we will consider longer articles (no more than 500 words) for featuring in Today's Issue as space allows.

Snellville seeking support for proposed labyrinth at city hall

Snellville's Arts Commission is looking for help to a proposed labyrinth on City Hall grounds. Since it was proposed in October, the diameter of the meditative structure has been cut down to 28 feet, while the need to fund the project remains.

The Snellville Arts Commission proposed the brick-lined labyrinth to be located between the Veterans Memorial and cemetery at Oak Road and U.S. Highway 78 near City Hall, an area now known as Veterans Memorial Park. A labyrinth are meant to be used as a meditation tool and are often found outside churches and hospitals. A labyrinth is not meant to confuse walkers like a corn maze, but instead give them a winding path on which to contemplate and relax.

The proposed labyrinth would be a seven-circuit model, or a Classical Greek structure. There would be no walls on the path, but a wall is being considered to block traffic noise on Highway 78. Donations are tax deductible and for a $500 gift, a plaque will be placed in the donor's honor.

To donate to the labyrinth, send funds to SAC Labyrinth Fund, Hamilton Financial, 2092 Scenic Highway North, Suite A, Snellville, Ga. 30078. For more information on the project visit

Time to sign up for Lilburn Relay-for-Life Rally, coming April 24

The Lilburn Relay-for-Life Rally is back in 2015 and is looking for participants and sponsors to support this American Cancer Society's Gwinnett Relay for Life fundraising event. Sponsored by the Lilburn Woman's Club, the event will take place on April 24 at 5 p.m. at Lilburn City Park.

Registration for the relay is free. In addition, there will be food, games, and prizes and Music on Main Street will be providing the music and entertainment. To be a part of this event, join as an individual, form a team, or make a donation here. For more information or to sponsor, contact Pat Swan or Gail Zarnik.

Grayson Methodist Church to host barbershop chorus on Jan. 31

The Stone Mountain Barbershop Chorus, led by director Dylan Oxford, will perform in four-part harmony at the Southeast Gwinnett Cooperative Ministry at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, January 31, at Grayson United Methodist Church, 555 Grayson Parkway, Grayson. The price for admission is donation of food to help restock the shelves of the food cooperative during a time of sparsely filled shelves. Doors to the Grayson UMC sanctuary will open at 3 p.m. and volunteers will be available to receive food donations at that time.

Laura Drake, director of the food cooperative, says, "January food donations are historically low, while the need for food assistance increases as families recover from the additional food needs resulting from having the kids home on winter school break. We especially encourage donations of meat, dried beans, milk, and fruit."

The popular Stone Mountain Chorus a cappella choral group is currently auditioning new singers in all voice parts for its 2015 performance calendar. Call the Stone Mountain Chorus information line at 770-978-8053 for additional information or visit the group's web site at

Gwinnett Tech's Dr. Robert Powers honored by Georgia Bio


Gwinnett Technical College faculty member Dr. Robert Powers, program director for Bioscience and Clinical Research, has been recognized by Georgia Bio for his substantial contributions to the state's life sciences industry.

Each year, Georgia Bio acknowledges individuals and organizations with its Georgia Bio Community Awards. This year's recipients will be honored at the Annual Awards Dinner on January 22, at 6 p.m. at Atlanta's Fox Theater.

Dr. Cathy Scholz, dean of Life Sciences, Gwinnett Tech, says: "Dr. Powers was on the forefront here in Georgia of championing life sciences in both educational and economic development circles. His commitment and passion to the field and to his students is truly commendable and has contributed to the growth of the industry in our region."

Dr. Powers has been a faculty member of Gwinnett Technical College since 2002. He initiated the Clinical Research Professional certificate and Bioscience associate degree programs at Gwinnett Tech in 2005.

Dr. Powers. graduated from Wofford College in Spartanburg, S.C. with a major in Chemistry. He earned his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston. Afterwards, Dr. Powers researched the role of intracellular calcium in pancreatic acinar cell function while working at Harvard and Beth Israel Hospital. When he moved to the University of South Carolina School of Medicine, he was awarded a five-year National Institutes of Health grant to continue his work on experimental models of acute pancreatitis. Dr. Powers continued his research on acute pancreatitis and was involved in studies about genotoxicity in gastric cancer when he relocated to Yale College of Medicine in New Haven, Conn.

GGC named top school for military advanced education

Georgia Gwinnett College has been awarded the designation of a Top School in Military Advanced Education's (MAE) 2015 Guide to Colleges & Universities, measuring best practices in military and veteran education.

Dr. Melinda Spencer, senior associate provost for Operations, says: "This designation is a true indicator of the efforts and dedication of the Office of Veteran Success at GGC on behalf of our students. This office provides support services and educational benefit programs to U.S. military veterans, national guardsmen, reservists and their eligible dependents and survivors who are enrolled at GGC."

In addition to certifying GI Bill benefits, the Office of Veteran Success at GGC also provides information from campus-related resources, links to local military support services and contacts for local VA facilities. The guide was released in the December issue of MAE, and is available online at

Snellville florist changes hands and name: BLOOM with Jenna

Gwinnett residents may have noticed a recent change at 2149 Scenic Highway in Snellville. After 40 years, landmark floral shop and greenhouse, A Daisy A Day, has been newly rebranded as BLOOM with Jenna.

First founded by Jim and Mary Guatney in 1975, A Daisy A Day was purchased by floral designer, Jenna Naylor and her business partners, Mike and Linda Byrne in 2012. After functioning under the original name and getting to know the customer base for a couple of years, the shop's new owners made the decision to rebrand the company with a new name, logo, website and company outlook.

With 17 years in the floral design industry to her credit, Naylor is an accredited Member of the American Institute of Floral Designers and Georgia Master Florist. She was most recently named 2014 Designer of the Year by the Georgia State Florists' Association and 2014 Mid-America Invitational Cup Winner. For more information about BLOOM with Jenna and its services - including delivery throughout the Metro Atlanta area -visit or call 770-972-3030.


An invitation: What books, restaurants, movies or web sites have you enjoyed recently? Send us your recent selection, along with a short paragraph (150 words) as to why you liked this, plus what you plan to visit or read next. --eeb

Georgia Episcopal Church joins separate unit during Civil War

(Continued from previous edition)

Episcopal Bishop Stephen Elliott continued to serve as head of the church in Georgia as the Civil War (1861-65) loomed. With secession, Episcopal leaders in Georgia joined with other southern Episcopal leaders to form the separate Protestant Episcopal Church in the Confederate States of America. Elliott accepted its members' request to provide leadership for this new body.

Its first formal convention, the First General Council, was held in November 1862 in St. Paul's Church in Augusta, pictured at right. Soon afterward the bishops of several southern dioceses sent out a pastoral letter stressing that only political, not doctrinal, differences called for their withdrawal from affiliation with the Union's Episcopalians. Their parishioners supported the Confederacy in numerous ways, including sending their sons into battle and housing troops in church buildings. Although clergy were exempt from conscription, a number of them joined their parishioners in active service.

Although he had led his colleagues and their congregations to form the Episcopal Church in the Confederacy, Elliott was just as active in persuading them to dissolve the organization after the war. This was accomplished formally in November 1865 at the Second General Council in Augusta, and as a result the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States welcomed the southern dioceses back.

The Civil War depleted the churches of numerous young men and, along with a subsequent national depression in 1870, severely reduced their fiscal resources. Despite these difficulties, leaders of the church in Georgia held to their humanitarian beliefs during Reconstruction. Survivors in many congregations formed guilds to help the unemployed find jobs and to provide charity for those unable to work, and they sometimes diverted donations from outside the South for the rebuilding of churches to the care of war orphans.

Following emancipation, the numbers of black Episcopalians grew in Georgia, eventually becoming large enough to populate several churches. In addition to gathering in a number of mission churches, some black communities were financially able to support their own operations, thus forming parish churches. The first of these, St. Stephen's Church (later St. Matthew's), was established in Savannah in 1855, followed by St. Athanasius Church, established in Brunswick around 1874. By 1910 the Diocese of Georgia formed the Council of Colored Churchmen to represent its African American congregations, which effectively kept black and white church leaders from working together for several decades.

Elliott died unexpectedly in 1866. His successor, John Watrous Beckwith, continued to urge Georgia's Episcopalians to provide newly freed slaves with religious training and other help. Mission churches for the freedmen and-women were supported by established congregations around the state, and the Episcopal Commission of Home Missions to Colored People opened schools (both for religious and industrial training), in addition to supporting a number of black clergymen in the South. Beckwith's death in 1890 left the state's Episcopalians without someone to perform crucial ceremonies. In 1892, after a difficult search, the diocese found its third bishop, Cleland Kinloch Nelson.

(To be continued.)

Green, gray and gold

CLUE: Today's mystery has three G's, green, gray and gold, dominating this photograph when it was taken. Now it's your turn to tell where this is located. Send your entries and hometown to

Last week's entry was very local, the setting of the gazebo at Berkeley Lake, adjacent to the community chapel. Ruthy Lachman Paul of Norcross easily recognized it, saying it was "Built in 1969 as a communal place for the residents of the City of Berkeley Lake."

Several others recognized its, including Dick LoPresti and Tom Merkel of Berkeley Lake, Robert Covington of Peachtree Corners; Dick Daneke and Judy Putnam of Duluth, who said: "That's an easy one. The gazebo and lake are located in the City of Berkeley Lake on South Berkeley Lake Road."

New code officer

Peachtree Corners has a new code enforcement officer. Officer Hersila Morrow joined Peachtree Corners on January 5 and will serve as one of two code enforcement officers for the city. She has worked in code enforcement for 10 years for the cities of Norcross and Doraville and most recently for DeKalb County. She was sworn in by Mayor Mike Mason. A 25-year veteran of the U.S. Navy, Officer Morrow most recently served in Kuwait. During her naval career she worked as a police officer and customs inspector.


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2015, Gwinnett Gwinnett Forum is an online community commentary for exploring pragmatic and sensible social, political and economic approaches to improve life in Gwinnett County, Ga. USA.

Feels Nothing Wrong with Being Out of Step

"I passionately hate the idea of being with it, I think an artist has always to be out of step with his time."

-- U.S. actor and movie director Orson Welles (1915 - 1985).


Prime professional office space

If you're wanting to relocate your professional office to the Peachtree Corners, Norcross or Johns Creek area, you need to see this space. It's located in Technology Park, offers 4,770 square feet, and has its own easily recognized, private entranceway in a well-maintained, attractive office location. There's plenty of parking, and the building is situated well back from the street, with the office overlooking a beautiful wooded area with lake. This office space should go fast, so call 770-925-0111 before someone else grabs it. Ask for Lisha Stuckey.




Georgia Cares Presentation, Monday, January 26 at 10:30 a.m. at the Gwinnett Council for Seniors office, 196 East Pike Street, Lawrenceville. Learn more about health insurance information, counseling and assistance for senior adults, and their families as well as other eligible individuals when they need help understanding Medicare. Call 770 822 5247 to make a 45 minute appointment.

(NEW) Duluth Art Workshop, Thursday, January 29 starting at 7 p.m. at the Stantec Meeting Room, 3160 Main Street (across from city hall). Come help write the Public Art Master Plan to define the city's unique character and translate it into public art throughout the city.

Fiddler on the Roof, the musical will be presented at Greater Atlanta Christian School on January 29, 30 and 31 at 7:30 p.m. at the Williams Fine Arts Center. Read more online.

Photographing Your Own Work Workshop: January 31, 10 a.m. until noon at Kudzu Art Zone in Norcross. Are you an artist or business owner who uses images of your work/product online or on a business card? This two-hour workshop is the perfect way to start your weekend! Local photographer James Sims will lead the workshop (using any camera or phone!) Cost is $20 for Kudzu members, $40 for non-members. Register here.

(NEW) Executive Lecture Series at Gwinnett Tech, Monday, February 2 at noon at the Busbee Center Auditorium. Speakers from the Securities and Exchanges Commission will talk of current issues related to fraud in the country, among other topics. For more information, visit or call 770-962-7580.

(NEW) Harlem Renaissance Cultural Festival, February 5-7, at Archer High School, at 2225 New Hope Road, Lawrenceville. Sponsored by the Snellville Arts Commission, the three day event is in honor or Black History Month, and will showcase "Cindy, the Musical," at 7 p.m. February 6, and 3 p.m. on February 7.
For more information, call 678 861-1815 or via email.

(NEW) State-of-the-County address, by County Commission Chairman Charlotte Nash, Thursday, February 19, starting at 11:30 a.m., at Gwinnett Center. Cost is $75 per person. To register, go online here.

Centuries of Childhood: An American Story, now at the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center, continues through April 30. Visitors connect the stories of American history to their own experiences by learning about the lives of five historical children and their families. A supplementary exhibit is titled Georgia's Sacred Soils. This exhibit blends science and history through the exploration of Georgia's geology and its colonial history. Both exhibits are included in the price of admission to the EHC. More info:


2/20: Acrimony between UGA, GSU
2/17: Two school proposals
2/13: GSU once university stepchild
2/10: Deal's bus drivers' attacks
2/6: Great series: Foyle's War
2/3: Innovative thinking on boxes

1/30: Remembering George Black
1/27: Crummy radio content
1/23: Funerals are changing
1/20: Think on Simpsonwood
1/16: Buford schools top list
1/13: Ga. needs real leaders
1/9: Gov's inaugural party
1/6: Our continuing objectives

12/31: Fun board game
12/23: Good news on Cuba
12/19: CIA's atrocities
12/16: Muddy, hilly roads
12/12: Drop box regulation
12/9: On philanthropy
12/5: Humor, writing contest
12/2: Simpsonwood save is good

11/25: Snellville bell tower
11/21: Remembering Carl Sanders
11/18: Talmadge House
11/14: Churchill paintings
11/11: Hudson cruise
11/7: Why it was a GOP year
11/4: Another election a possibility


2/20: Bohannan: Barbara Awards
2/17: Brown: Against domestic violence
2/13: Jones: GGC's 10th birthday
2/10: Durant: Jamaican restaurant
2/6: Norton: Excerpts from report
2/3: Myers: "Standardized patient"

1/30: Solomon: Black History Month
1/27: Myers: PCOM bans tobacco
1/23: Rawlins: Publishing a book
1/20: Arrington: Snellville marketplace
1/16: Wascher: Gwinnett CID
1/13: Bohannon: Les Mis is back
1/9: Jones: Black-eyed peas
1/6: Berlo: NLT's choreopoem

12/31: Leonard: Andersonville tour
12/23: Havens: Rotary club's charity
12/19: Aurora wins big
12/16: Yarber: Safe harbor bill
12/12: Arrington: Hunger challenge
12/9: Preston: Lilburn mural
12/5: Witte: Simmons Building
12/2: Putnam: PC's community study

11/25: Okun: Robotic bariatric surgery
11/21: Calmes: Special Nutcracker
11/18: Urrutia: Primerica scholarships
11/14: Jones: GGC's growth
11/11: Johnson: Tesla ownership
11/7: New Brenau joint degree program
11/4: Two shows of A Christmas Carol


Gwinnett Forum publisher Elliott Brack suggests that Gwinnett County needs a long-range list of continuing objectives for improving the county. Read more.

  • Development of a two-party system for county offices
  • Moving statewide non-partisan judge election runoffs to the General Election
  • Light rail for Gwinnett from Doraville MARTA station to Gwinnett Arena
  • Extension of Gwinnett Place CID area to include Arena and Discovery Mills Mall
  • Banning of tobacco in all Gwinnett parks
  • More diverse candidates for political offices and appointment to local boards
  • Creative efforts to support the arts in Gwinnett
  • Advancement and expansion of city and Gwinnett historical societies
  • Stronger regulation of late-night establishments with alcoholic licenses
  • Requiring the legislature to meet once every two years.
  • Development of more community gardens.

ABOUT US is a twice-weekly online community commentary for exploring pragmatic and sensible social, political and economic approaches to improve life in Gwinnett County, Ga. USA.

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