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Newborn to ban drug paraphernalia
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The town of Newborn is following Porterdale's lead in seeking to ban the sale of drug paraphernalia, and the town council is expected to approve the final reading of an ordinance at its March 5 meeting.

Mayor Roger Sheridan said the city is pursuing the ban because a resident complained about a local convenience store selling glass pipes.

The store owner moved the pipes to a back counter but did not remove them from the store.

"There's only two things people use them for, either marijuana or bubbles," Sheridan said Saturday. "With the complaint of the citizen, we decided the best thing to do would be to put an ordinance in place for paraphernalia for drugs and stop all the nonsense."

The proposed ordinance is modeled after one passed by Porterdale earlier this month and will prevent stores from selling objects used to inject, ingest or inhale illegal drugs, as well as those used to grow, process, analyze, package and store illegal drugs.

The ordinance specifically prohibits various types of pipes, including standard, water, chamber, electric, air-driven and ice, carburetion tubes and masks, miniature cocaine spoons and cocaine vials, bongs and chillers.

Georgia state law already prohibits the selling of any drug paraphernalia, but it doesn't specifically list items. Newborn and Porterdale's ordinances specifically ban pipes and other devices found in some local convenience stores.

Sheridan said the store will have 90 days from the final reading of the ordinance to remove any remaining pipes from the store. The Newborn council approved the first reading of the ordinance Feb. 20.

According to state law, a first offense is considered a misdemeanor, a second offense is a misdemeanor of a high and aggravated nature, and a third or greater offense is a felony punishable by imprisonment of between one and five years and a fine of not more than $5,000.

For the text of the Newborn and Porterdale ordinances go to

Newborn to pursue new parks this summer
In other town news, the city hopes to begin creating two new public parks this summer.

Landscape architecture students from the University of Georgia have been in Newton County this year working on planning issues for numerous local governments, including designing two public parks that will be placed at Newborn's Town Hall and the old schoolhouse.

Sheridan said he hopes the final park designs will be finished within two weeks, and he expects the city to bid out the park projects to contractors in June or July.

The town will break the park projects up into different sections so it can begin work shortly. The design and eventual building of the parks will be paid for with funds collected so far from the 2011 SPLOST; Newborn was allocated $336,840 from the 2011 SPLOST for recreation, transportation and renovation of the old schoolhouse.