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County finalizes form of gov't citizen panel
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Each of Newton County's commissioners and chairman have chosen a citizen to sit on a panel to review the county charter, which dictates the local form of government. 

The panel will have until August 1 to submit any recommended changes to the charter, which would have to be approved by the General Assembly. The board recently voted to restore powers that had been stripped from the chair, but the changes will not be effective until January, 2017. The intention of the citizens' committee is to update the language of the charter and clarify any vague points in it.

The panel is as follows: Ronnie Cowan representing the Chairman; Wesley Dowdy representing District One; Marcello Banes representing District Two; Gladstone Nicholson representing District Three; Junior Hilliard representing District Four; and Buddy Morgan representing District Five.