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Union training center coming to Cedartown
• Heavy Equipment operators building new facility at 90 acre site in expansion move

Cedartown will soon get to be the new host city for a heavy equipment training facility that is making a move to upgrade and expand.

The Development Authority of Polk County released a statement that the Board of Trustees of the Joint Apprenticeship Training Fund and the membership of The International Union of Operating Engineers Local 926's training program will be relocating to Polk County in the months ahead.

Their move from their facility in Clayton County in the community of Rex will also be an expansion on a 90-acre site at the Cedartown North Industrial Park within the second phase.

Much of the site will be used to train apprentices on the use of heavy equipment, along with pipeline training, excavation and the use of cranes.

The expansion includes the construction of a new state of the art facility with classrooms, a simulator room and even shops where apprentices can learn repair work as part of the IUOE training site.

"We welcome this new training facility to Polk County," said Commission Chair Jennifer Hulsey. "Our board is committed to bringing positive economic development and opportunity to our community."

The members of the union who are accepted into an apprenticeship program will be required to attend regular training at the new facility.

"The value of this new training center will be as an attraction for corporate tourism. The members will come from all across the south east and stay in our hotels, eat in our restaurants and spend their money here before going home," DAPC Chair David Williams said in a press release from the economic development authority announcing the newest addition to Polk County's corporate community. "There is also potential for a partnership with Georgia Northwestern Technical College in the future. We are fortunate they chose to locate in Polk County."

The newest investor in the industrial park comes as the state is getting ready to take over the former Department of Labor office located also within the North Industrial Park. Georgia Northwestern Technical College will be in charge of operating a program for adult education and employment development skills within.

The International Union of Operating Engineers Local 926 first began training apprentices in heavy equipment operation in 1969, with their Joint Apprenticeship and Skill Upgrade program. The Atlanta-based Union chapter consists of members who operate a variety of equipment on construction sites, from excavators and bulldozers to cranes and more.

The release quoted Business Manager Mitchell Byrd as pointing to the good work of those in the community that union officials worked with locally to get the facility in Cedartown as one reason why they chose to relocate here.

"We looked at many sites to bring our program to a community that wanted to be a partner to continue to provide opportunities for the surrounding area," Mitchell Byrd, the Business Manager of The IUOE 926, said in the release. "The professionalism of the Polk County Development Authority and the Commissioners felt like a natural fit and we are excited about what our future holds moving forward."

The location of the facility in Cedartown was a joint effort of the Development Authority of Polk County, the City of Cedartown and the Polk County Commission.

Designs and more information about the new facility will be forthcoming as the project moves along.

ARC grant cut back for Cedartown
• York property clearing costs removed large portion of money city is receiving

The City of Cedartown won't have as much as they expected to use to clean up and get the York property ready to show off to potential investors after the grant they received was cut back.

City Manager Bill Fann informed commissioners of the decision to reduce the amount the city could reasonably claim as work on the York property that was given an OK back in February.

Despite the fact the city doesn't have equipment needed to do the work themselves.

"Vegetation clearing wasn't approved," he said. "They're theory is that the vegetation will just grow back."

He said because the vegetation at the moment is too thick to use regular city equipment on to maintain, they need the help to cut it back and make it presentable to investors. The project to clear the area and make it more enticing was estimated at $1,500 an acre, and for the full property would have cost around $360,000 to complete.

That made up around 65 percent of the grant money the city was awarded by the state on a preliminary basis for help with the York property. They received notification in the winter they were set to get $552,000 of the $600,000 requested.

"Honestly, it was a shot in the dark and hope you get lucky," Fann said. "What kind of threw me was that it got approved at the state level and turned down at the federal level."

He said that portion of funding request was removed, and the rest of it would be funded immediately so long as the clearing work request was taken out.

Following that, Fann said he tried to use the ARC website to see what changes were made to the project and the site was down, and wouldn't be back until the fall.

The 240 acres was purchased from the York family for $700,000 by the Cedartown Development Authority with financing from the city in hopes of gaining more area to expand the industrial park across Davis Road as acreage dwindles in the current business park.

Since making the 2016 property purchase, Fann said a number of people have been able to come out and take a look at the site. However, without existing water and sewer or access roads, it makes it a harder sale for investors looking at Polk County as a possible place to locate.

Not having the grant money to clear the property of vegetation – including trees – will make the process much harder since the city will have to now take on the burden of clearing costs itself, or seek other grant money for the work.

However the city's match of 30 percent will go down on their part of the final local cost of the ARC grant, since they have lessened the value of the amount of money the city is set to receive for York property improvements.

GBI investigation into police killing almost wrapped up

A GBI investigation into the shooting death of a Cedartown woman by law enforcement officers last month is expected to be closed within the next two weeks and handed over to the Floyd County District Attorney's Office for review, according to Greg Ramey, the special agent in charge at the Region 1 office in Calhoun.

"Not a lot has varied," Ramey said. "It was pretty much straight forward."

The details released by the GBI the day of the shooting on May 7, indicated 55-year-old Kimberley Rae McCann fired at police after crashing in to several patrol vehicles at the intersection of U.S. 411 and Ga. Loop 1 during a chase. She was killed by the gunfire returned by four officers, marking the 11th officer-involved shooting in Georgia over an 11-day span.

Agents have determined the number of times McCann shot — to be included in the case file provided to the DA's office,

office, Ramey said. But on Tuesday, he would only say she fired at least once. There were two handguns in her red Toyota pickup truck, a semiautomatic pistol and a revolver, he said.

McCann was struck multiple times by officers' gunfire while inside the truck, which she never got out of, Ramey said.

The officers involved — Floyd County police officers Leonard Whaley and Chris Shelley, Georgia State Patrol Trooper Jamie Mitchell and Floyd County Sheriff's Deputy Devin Womack — were put on administrative leave pending the results of the GBI's investigation.

The mental health of McCann was a subject of the GBI investigation, with investigators attempting to determine if she had any issues, Ramey said. However, he declined to comment if there was any evidence of her suffering from a mental illness or condition and whether it played into her actions the day of the shooting.

There were two incidents with Polk County police the day before the shooting when McCann displayed erratic behavior in dealing with officers, including verbal confrontations and having delusions police were out to get here, reports stated.

According to Polk County police and 911 reports:

A representative from the Veteran's Affairs crisis line told a Polk County police sergeant McCann had called and expressed a desire to commit suicide, also saying she had a mental disorder. In that same call with the crisis line, she said she would shoot officers if they came to her Harris Circle home.

On the day of the shooting, McCann was speeding through a school zone in Cave Spring when an officer attempted a traffic stop. But she did not stop and a chase began.

Riders in real life
• Cruisin for Critters helps Humane Society while documentary crew seeks to provide glimpse into biker culture

Men and women who sport helmets and leather were out this weekend helping out friends who are more comfortable with their fur in the second annual Cruisin for Critters ride.

Motorcycle riders gathered on Saturday at Cedartown's First Presbyterian Church to take part in the fundraiser for the Cedartown-Polk County Humane Society, raising money to help the organization and its mission to make the lives of local pets all the better.

Kelly Taylor represented the Humane Society for this year's ride, and said that all the money raised during the event is going right back to the efforts the organization puts into educating the community about the importance of taking care of their pets, and their spay and neuter program.

"The Humane Society has made huge strides in this county, as far as education to the public and our spay and neuter program has been extremely successful," Taylor said. "This is just another way that we can help our mission and give back to the community as well."

Riders might have enjoyed the beautiful day on the roads around

Polk County over the weekend, but they also got the chance to participate in another project going on involving motorcycles as well.

Sky Atkins and Sean Smith are working together to provide the world a glimpse inside of the culture of motorcycle enthusiasts in hopes of showing what those who are out on their bikes are all about.

"We're wanting to show the side of bikers that most people don't pay attention to, which is benefit rides, helping communities and various charity organizations, things like that," Atkins said. "Just because you see a guy wearing leathers, with a lot of clothes on and a big loud Harley, it doesn't mean he's a bad guy."

The perception of motorcycle culture is what Atkins and Smith are hoping to change. They've traveled around the area for the past months filming a variety of people, and one of their stops today was at the Cruisin for Critters ride as riders assembled in the church parking lot.

"We're here to show people the 99 percent (of riders)," Smith said.

"Also hopefully we'll intrigue a lot of younger people to get a motorcycle, and how they can have a lot of fun," Atkins said.

He added that much of the reason why people like himself ride are to enjoy the freedom of being on the open road. Atkins himself rides around on a Triumph Rocket III, which he said is the largest manufactured.

"It's not a beginner bike," he said. "But you learn to ride it."

Potential riders can find all sizes of motorcycles, and should get one they feel comfortable riding and can also tailor to their individual preferences.

"They are basically an extension of someone's personality," he said. "That's another thing we're showing too. There are reason things look and sound... not to be intimidating."

Elliot Rutledge, a Cedartown native, is one of the producers on the documentary that is still in production but being called "The Last Breath of Freedom."

Go to the online version of this story to see a trailer for the documentary.


Take part this weekend in a seminar at Bellview A.M.E. Church which focuses on keeping happy and healthy. Healthy Eating for Healthy Living is being held this Saturday, June 16 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 1181 Bellview Road, Aragon. Bellview A.M.E.'s Church Community Bible Study is putting on the event.

The Rockmart Youth Football Association evenings of drills and conditioning continues through the summer from 7 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday nights at Hilburn Field in Rockmart. Ages 5-12 are eligible to practice. Signups for all Polk County football players can also be completed while drills are being held at Hilburn Field. Call Ruben Galvan at 706-346-8682 or Dante Jones at

Jones at 770-878-8282 for more information.

The next spaghetti dinner at American Legion Post will be on Wednesday, June 20. Meal of spaghetti, meatballs, garlic toast and salad served from 5 to 7 p.m. $5 for all-you-can-eat. Join the American Legion for a good meal in a family-friendly environment. Everybody is welcome.

Looking for something to do this summer? Enroll your child now in Day Camps at the Bob Holcomb Family Life Center for four weeks this summer and join in the fun. First Baptist Church of Cedartown will have time in the gym as well as go on some local field trips during the week. Day Camps for students who have completed K-2nd grade will be from July 16 to July 20. Day Camps for students who have completed 3rd through 5th grade will be from June 11 to June 15 and from July 23 to July 27. Sign-ups will begin the first week of May. Spots are limited so make sure to sign-up ASAP. Cost is $10 per day. Register online at

Cedartown GROW Day camp is being offered July 2 through 6 at Cedartown First United Methodist Church in partnership with Anna Kresge Memorial United Methodist Church and Marietta Street United Methodist Church. Signups are underway now, and go to to learn more. Scholarships are available.

First Baptist Church of Cedartown's Vacation Bible School will be from 5:30 to 8:30 each night from Monday, July 9th to Friday, July 13th. They will have their VBS Celebration during Sunday Morning Worship on July 15th.

Aragon First United Methodist Church offers a food pantry for the community to use if they need assistance. They are open Mondays from 5:30 to 7 p.m. and Tuesday mornings from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. A picture ID is required to participate. Call 770-684-4855 for more information.

Rockmart First United Methodist Church invites the community to come out and join in worship on Sundays and Wednesdays at the church located at 135 W. Church St. Sunday morning worship begins with Bible study at 9:45 a.m., followed by Sunday school at 10 a.m. for all ages, and an 11 a.m. worship service. Wednesday night includes at 5 p.m. community meal on the last Wednesday of every month, 6 p.m. Bible study and choir practice at 7 p.m. Weekly children's events at the church include a 5:45 p.m. children and youth meal, 6:15 Children's music and MYF, followed by L.I.F.E. at 6:54 p.m. All are invited to join in. Call Rev. Martha Dye at 770-684-6251or e-mail for more information or questions. The church also updates weekly on their website at

The Youth Summerfest Committee will be having a meeting for the 20th Annual Youth Summerfest Olympics. The dates for the meetings are Saturday, June 16; Saturday, June 30; Saturday, July 14 and Thursday, July 26 (this meeting is at 6 p.m. in the Northwest Park gym) All meetings will be at Turner Street Center in Cedartown until June. Beginning in the month of June all meetings will be mandatory and will be at Bert Woods Athletic Complex Park (Northwest Park.) All Meetings will begin at 9 a.m. The 20th Annual Youth Summerfest will be on Saturday July 28th 2018 at Bert Woods Athletic Complex Park. For more information please contact Pastor Joy Fredrick at 770-713-5440, Pastor Kenneth Brown at 706-767-0874 or Courtney Ripoll at 770-689-7838.

Register now for the Rockmart Cultural Arts Commission Art Summer camp for ages 7 through 12. This year's theme is "Go West." The camp is scheduled or July 9 through July 13. For more information on price and to sign up call 770-684-2707 today.

Rivers of Living Water is hosting its 9th Annual "Your Best" talent show. The talent show will have two categories: younger children (ages 5-11) and older kids (ages 12-17). The winner will receive a trophy. The "Your Best" talent show will be Saturday June 23, 2018 at Rivers of Living Water at 5 p.m. There will be a $100 drawing at the talent show. Admission for the talent show is $10. For more information please contact Courtney Ripoll at 770-689-7838

The next West Georgia Spay/Neuter Clinic is coming to the Cedartown-Polk County Humane Society next Wednesday, July 11, 2018. Head over to the organization's office at 608 Adamson Road, Cedartown, on Fridays from 4 to 7 p.m. or Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to fill out an admission and prepay for the surgery. Those wanting more information can call 678-361-7304 for more information. Vaccines and tests are available for extra cost as well. Transports won't be scheduled again until July 25.

Members are invited to join the Cedartown Exchange Club weekly on Thursdays at 6 p.m. at the Cherokee Country Club for meetings and dinner. New members from across Polk County are encouraged to get involved by contacting club president-elect Edward Guzman at 770-546-2482 to take part in the organization that is involved in a wide range of community projects. Visit their website at to learn more. Annual dues are required to be a member.

Just Us Ministries Inc. Food Bank has distribution every Tuesday and Thursday at 904 Young Farms Road in Cedartown. On Tuesday the distribution is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and on Thursdays from 10 a.m. to noon. A picture ID is required. For more information call 770-687-1009 or 678-901-3354, e-mail, or visit

Harmony Baptist Church, 882 Little Harmony Rd, Cedartown (Esom Hill area) invites everyone to attend their weekly Sunday morning Services. First Sunday morning service begins at 9:45 a.m. with Sunday School followed by worship service at 11 a.m.. Our doors are open to all and we are looking forward to seeing you. For more information visit our Facebook page, Harmony Baptist chruch, Cedartown.

The Rotary Club of Polk County meets weekly at the Richardson Field Depot in Rockmart for lunch at noon every Tuesday and are encouraging members and potential new members to take part. Contact Missy Kendrick with the Rotary Club at 770-584-5234 for more on how to participate or become a member. Annual dues are required to be a member.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Cedartown, hosts a genealogy group that meets from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursday nights, except holidays. There are no fees for these sessions and they are open to anyone. Please bring all of your basic family history (if you have it) such as names, birth-dates/death dates of parents, grandparents, children, etc. Bring your laptop or tablet, if you have one. If not, we can still help. Questions? Contact us at 678-477-2861 and leave a message or visit our Facebook page at

The Sit and Stitch craft group that meets Wednesdays at Rockmart First United Methodist Church will not meet during June and July. The group will reconvene on Wednesday, August 8th 2018.

The Kiwanis Club of Cedartown encourages members to take part in weekly meetings on Fridays at noon at the Cherokee County Club. Potential new members are asked to get in touch with Rhonda Heuer, Club Secretary at 770-748-1016 to learn more about how you can take part in making the community a better place. Annual dues are required for membership. Visit to learn about the club.

Check out the Rockmart Farmers Market at the Silver Comet Trailhead behind Southcrest Bank on Thursdays from 2 to 6 p.m. after the holiday break. Visit for details about vendors and upcoming classes.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints are providing opportunities to local residents interested in hearing the message of Jesus Christ. For more information about how you can speak to local Elders, contact 687-852-7497, or visit their meeting house at 10005 N. Main St., Cedartown for worship services at 10 a.m. on Sundays.

The Ferst Foundation Community Action Team meets the first Monday of the month at 5 p.m., alternately in Cedartown and Rockmart. Call 404-862-1273 for the meeting location. Find out more about how to help improve childhood literacy in Polk County at

Shiloh Baptist Church would like to invite the community to come participate in worship services weekly at their sanctuary at 433 Shiloh Road. Join the church for Sunday school at 10 a.m., followed by 11 a.m. service or Wednesday nights at 6 p.m. Call Pastor Jamie Newsome for more information at 404-425-8510.

The Georgia Legal Services Program's Claire Sherburne will be on hand at One Door Polk in Cedartown every fourth Monday to help those in need with free civil legal services to lowincome persons. This will include all cases related to housing, employment, education, domestic violence, consumer fraud, wills, healthcare and other issues involved in the legal complications of everyday life. Call 404-206-5175 for more information.

The Cedartown Optimist Club meets on Thursday mornings at 7:30 a.m. for their weekly breakfast meeting and encourages members to join in and take part at the Goodyear Civic Center on Prior Street in Cedartown. Those interested in joining the Optimist Club and help local youth organizations can contact Ronnie Dingler by e-mail at

Cedar Lake Christian Center is a nondenominational community who invites anyone looking to find the holy spirit within them to come join in worship services on Sunday mornings at 10:30 a.m. with the Rev. Neil Hopper, along with Hispanic services as well to the community. Those interested in participating can join in at Cedar Lake Christian Center, located at 1890 Rome Highway, Cedartown. For more information call 770-608-0651.

The Polk County Alzheimer's Caregiver Support group will meet monthly on the first Monday at 11 a.m. at Polk Medical Center. Those interested can join for fellowship and lunch in the cafeteria. For more information call John Giglio at 678-246-8188.

Join the Church of God of the Union Assembly, 32 Prospect Road, Rockmart, for praise and worship weekly. The church welcomes anyone to come and worship regularly on Sundays and Wednesdays as well. Praise and youth services are held at 7 p.m. on Wednesday nights, and services start at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday following Sunday School at 9:45 a.m. Call Pastor Jesse Starnes at 678-757-4572 for more information.

The Polk County Beekeepers meets the first Saturday of each month from 10 a.m. to noon at the Cedartown Library, 245 East Ave. Whether you are an experienced beekeeper, new beekeeper or want to learn all are welcome. For details email or visit

Victory Baptist Church's Bread of Life Food Pantry is now open. One bag of nonperishable food, five items to pick from produce, eggs and milk and two items from frozen meats, breads and others will be available. ID is required. Limit of two IDs per address. Regular hours are Mondays, 1 to 3 p.m.; Tuesdays, 5 to 7 p.m.; and Thursdays, 8 to 10 a.m.

Need to get an item onto the Area Calendar of Events? Email today! All items must be in at least two weeks before the event to appear in the Standard Journal on time.