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Articles By Author - Gabriel Khouli


Covington to lower property tax rate

Editor's note: The article "City joins rail case, OKs budget" in Wednesday's newspaper contained a reporter's error regarding the millage rate, and this article was written, in part, to correct that error and clarify the situation.

June 21, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Covington's fire ISO rating improves

Covington residents could be seeing some savings on their homeowners insurance in coming years thanks to the city's fire protection rating improving.

June 21, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Homeless shelter could need $18K to replace ACs

Covington's homeless shelter has been staying open by scraping together enough funds to pay its monthly $6,000-plus utility bills, but now that three of its air conditioning units have failed, the shelter needs an even bigger cash infusion.

June 19, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Small part of Wheat St. to close

The part of Wheat Street between Industrial Boulevard and Hazelbrand Road will be closed to through-traffic for construction starting July 1.

June 19, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Hoax caller tells NCSO 5 hostages in apt.

Investigators are looking for the person who pranked called the Newton County Sheriff's Office Tuesday night and said five hostages were being held in the Summerset Apartment complex off Salem Road.

June 17, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Khouli's parting words: thank you, I'm sorry

I'm leaving The Covington News, and I want to say thank you. (People accuse me of writing long; how's that for a short intro?)

June 17, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


BOC still mulling budget options

A week after the Newton County Board of Commissioners seemed to be on the verge of reaching a budget consensus, concerns about public safety, particularly high turnover rates in both the sheriff's office and fire department, prompted the board to take another look at beefing up funding.

June 17, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


City joins rail case, OKs budget

The city of Covington is joining a group of landowners seeking payment for the property it owns along the abandoned Norfolk Southern.

June 17, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Business owners may opt in to self-tax

Does U.S. Highway 278 have anything that makes it special? Many people don't think so, at least, not yet.

June 14, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


City fires in supposedly vacant structures

The Covington Fire Department hasn't had to fight many house fires lately, but two of the most recent fires occurred in supposedly vacant buildings.

June 14, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Traffic delays possible for water line work

Covington residents could see traffic delays south of the square and in the Old Monticello Street area during the next year as work begins on replacing more than 26,000 linear feet of city water lines, some of which are more than 100 years old.

June 13, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Liquor store plan spurs talk about corridors

A proposal to put a new package store on the Covington Bypass Road has spurred an in-depth discussion about the future of the city's commercial corridors and what they will and should look like, with some officials' modern vision for the future clashing with others' views of what's realistic.

June 12, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Covington’s Wildwood subdivision purchased

The partially-built Wildwood subdivision off the Covington Bypass Road has been purchased by a developer who plans to move forward where other developers have stalled out.

June 10, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


BOC: Rental policy at Nelson Heights center should change

County commissioners agreed Monday night that extra steps need to be taken when the Nelson Heights Community Center is rented out to ensure there's no repeat of the May 30 "Bounce Dat Ass Part II" party that ended up with gun shots reportedly being fired in the air by a car passing by the center.

June 10, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


County nears budget consensus

County commissioners appeared to be close Monday to reaching a consensus on next year's budget, agreeing to lower the millage rate (informally called the property tax rate) from its current 11.54 rate to somewhere around 11, a change that would save a $150,000 property owner around $30 a year in county taxes.

June 10, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


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Archive By Author - Gabriel Khouli


County tightens laws for group homes

Newton County residents have consistently spoken out against efforts to open group or personal care homes in their neighborhoods, saying extra traffic and noise will ruin the peaceful nature of their neighborhoods and open the door for future unwanted development.

May 31, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


HBO's “Bessie” to film in Covington

Just weeks after the crew of the Martin Luther King Jr. biopic "Selma" filmed in Covington, another film about an African-American icon is coming to town.

May 31, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


City hires new transportation director

Covington's newest transportation director has built interstates and worked on the busiest stretches of highway in Atlanta, and he's looking forward to a chance of pace.

May 31, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Jazz by the River concert returns June 6

For the fourth straight year, locals are invited to sit by the river and enjoy a picnic with friends and family while listening to the sounds of a local jazz artist. And the proceeds go to a good cause.

May 29, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Another car title loan approved on Salem Road

Another car title loan business is coming to the Salem Road corridor.

May 29, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Students to learn to grow, prepare food

A pastor, farmer and chef got together one day and decided they were going to revolutionize how local residents think about and consume food. They also want to transform communities while they're at it.

May 29, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Kiwanis Club donates 702 books to preschoolers

Local Kiwanis Club officials wanted to help Newton County's youngest students became better readers, so they set out to place a book into the hands of every single preschooler in the public school system.

May 27, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Unemployment continues to drop

Newton County's unemployment continued its fall in 2014, dropping to 7.3 percent in April.

May 27, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Savannah port deepening boosts Newton Co.

Savannah's international shipping port is deepening, and while the coastal city is best known as a vacation spot for locals, its effects on Newton County's economy could be much larger.

May 27, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Sports bar, Jimmy John’s, 3 others coming

Covington is getting five new businesses, including three restaurants, a medical products company and a women's clothing boutique on the square, continuing an uptick in retail businesses for the city.

May 27, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Brick Store Overlay moves forward

The vision being carried out by Newton County's leaders is one of controlled growth and high-quality development; however, it's clear many large land owners are concerned about how this vision will affect their ability to sell their land.

May 24, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


County plans to professionally staff volunteer fire stations

Newton County's growing population is leading to more fire and medical emergency calls, and Newton County Fire Chief Kevin O'Brien wants to more effectively use the county's multiple remaining volunteer fire stations in the public safety fight.

May 24, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | LOCAL


Council Notebook: Legion Park plans questioned

Floyd Street resident Hugh Burnett presented the Covington City Council Monday with a list of questions he and his neighbors would like to see answered before the city begins work to turn Legion Field into a public park and event space.

May 23, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | Covington


Electric workers recovering from burns

Two Covington electric workers are recovering well this week after being injured on the job last Friday when a wire came loose, causing an arc flash – where electricity travels through the air between conductors – and burning the workers.

May 22, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | Covington


Voter turnout underwhelms; runoffs to ramp up

Newton County's voter turnout for Tuesday's Primary Election was the lowest it's been since at least 2008, as 18.45 percent of the county's 55,141 active, registered voters cast ballots.

May 22, 2014 | Gabriel Khouli | Election


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