The Town of Newborn celebrated the grand opening of its historical schoolhouse Oct. 2 with free lunch and music. Several residents from near and far came back to reminisce about their experiences as students, including Mary Formo, who traveled all the way from Washington.
Formo made the cross-country trip because she spent a few years of her childhood here on a 70-acre farm. She remembers skipping school and hiding in the honeysuckle with her best friend Anne.
Newton County governments might have to slash budgets by another 12 percent to 15 percent next year because of zero growth and a new state bill designed to have property tax assessment valuations reflect actual sales prices on homes.
Newton County Chief Tax Assessor Tommy Knight said Tuesday that a natural decline in property values will account for about 5 percent of the drop. An additional 7 percent or 8 percent decline will be caused by S.B. 346, which requires local governments to appraise property at the price it was sold, including foreclosures and short sales.
State officials said Thursday that they view Covington as the model of a film-friendly community and will be promoting Newton County more aggressively than ever as the state seeks to increase its entertainment market share.
Nearly a year after his first trial, convicted murderer Franklin Elliott Benson on Thursday went before Newton County Superior Court Judge Horace J. Johnson, Jr. to request a new trial, citing ineffective assistance of council and inefficiency of evidence.
Benson, 50, was convicted of the murder and dismemberment of 49-year-old Leslyan Williams, whose body parts were found off Georgia Highway 212 on Oct. 30, 2007. Williams' head and torso were never found.