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Dutton Honored at World Forestry Center

On Oct. 24, 2014 The World Forestry Center inducted Daniel M. Dutton into its prestigious Forestry Leadership Hall. Dutton was recognized at a celebration attended by over 60 family, friends, and co-workers.

  • icon Posted: November 23

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Monday 11/17/2014
Why airfare keeps rising despite lower oil prices
Posted: November 17, 2014

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. airlines are saving tens of millions of dollars every week because of lower prices for jet fuel, their largest expense. So why don't they share some of the savings with passengers?

Simply put: Airlines have no compelling reason to offer any breaks. Planes are full. Investors want a payout. And new planes are on order.

In fact, fares are going higher. And those bag fees that airlines instituted in 2008 when fuel prices spiked aren't going away either.

In the 12 months ended in September, U.S. airlines saved $1.6 billion on jet fuel. That helped them post a 5.7 percent profit margin in the first three quarters of this year, robust for the industry but lagging behind the 10 percent average for the Standard & Poor's 500.

In the past six years, airlines have done a great job of adjusting the number of flights to fall just short of demand. As a result, those who want to fly will pay a premium to do so. Airlines are selling a record 85.1 percent of their domestic seats. Thanks to several mega-mergers, four big airlines control the vast majority of flights, leaving very little room for another airline to undercut fares.

With that in mind, here's a closer look at what's going on with airfare and the price of jet fuel:

— The average domestic airline ticket during the first nine months of this year rose 3.1 percent to $374.96, according to an Associated Press analysis of data from the Airlines Reporting Corp., which processes ticket transactions for airlines and travel agencies. That figure doesn't include another $56.32 in taxes and fees that passengers pay.

— In the 12-month period ending in September, U.S. airlines burned through nearly 16.2 billion gallons of fuel. They paid an average of $2.97 a gallon — down from $3.07 the prior year, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics. That 10-cent drop saved the industry $1.6 billion. Fuel prices have since fallen further. United Airlines estimates it will pay $2.76 to $2.81 a gallon during the last three months of the year.

— Put another way: U.S. airlines burn through 311 million gallons of fuel in a week. Lower fuel prices are saving them $31 million a week.

— Granted, with 751 million passengers carried last year that averages out to a savings of $2.15 for each leg of a trip a passenger takes: $4.30 on a roundtrip non-stop ticket or $8.61 on a roundtrip connecting itinerary.

— Fuel accounts for 34 percent of an airline's operating costs. The non-fuel costs include salaries and benefits, lease payments on airplanes, maintenance and fees for landing at airports. That doesn't include the cost of reservation systems, marketing or food and drinks.

— Airlines are also reinvesting in their planes, airport terminals and computers. In the first nine months of this year, U.S. carriers spent $10.2 billion on capital improvements, according to the industry's trade and lobbying group, Airlines for America. That more than $1 billion a month, the highest pace since the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

— Airlines are on the largest jet-buying spree in the history of aviation, ordering more than 10,000 new planes with manufacturers Airbus and Boeing in the past five years. Those orders are for new, fuel efficient planes. A temporary drop in oil prices shouldn't slow that process. New jets last 15 to 20 years and the buying is driven by cheap credit almost as much as high oil prices.

— Money is also going back to investors. American Airlines this year paid its first dividend in 34 years, while Delta Air Lines restored its payout last year. Southwest Airlines, which has paid one for more than 37 years, boosted its payout by 50 percent this spring. The airlines are all also buying back large amounts of their own stock.

— Airlines responded to high fuel prices by limiting the number of flights, giving them the power to charge higher fares. Now, Wall Street analysts are worried that lower oil prices are causing them to recklessly add new routes or extra flights where profits aren't guaranteed. Hunter Keay, an analyst with Wolfe Research, recently wrote in a note to investors that the beauty of high oil prices is that they "force airlines to make hard choices that are almost always good for the long term investability of the space, mainly around capacity decisions and fees."


Scott Mayerowitz can be reached at http://twitter.com/GlobeTrotScott.

Book signing held at Perch on Marble in Rockmart
Posted: November 17, 2014

The Perch on Marble, a new Rockmart business, has planned a “Holiday Open House” for customers.

Friday 11/14/2014
Film crew uses Haralson County farm to shoot Doritos commercial for contest
Posted: November 14, 2014

A film crew got just the right weather in Haralson County they needed to get their footage shot for a commercial they hope will be on during the Super Bowl. 

Thursday 11/13/2014
Holiday Open House coming this weekend for downtown Cedartown businesses
Posted: November 13, 2014

A holiday open house is coming to downtown Cedartown this weekend, with shops opening their doors over the two-day event organized by participating businesses and the Downtown Cedartown Association.

Officials gather to celebrate spec building completion
Posted: November 13, 2014

For Sale: a 100,000 square-foot industrial space just outside of Cedartown, Georgia. Price tag: negotiable.

Tuesday 11/11/2014
Rockmart Farmers Market to close until spring
Posted: November 11, 2014

The Rockmart Farmers Market is scheduled to close for the 2014 season on Thursday, Nov. 20.

Saturday 11/08/2014
Parker and Lundy adds new sign
Posted: November 08, 2014

Cedartown residents might have noticed a new sign in front of the law offices of Parker and Lundy on Main Street in downtown. Bill Lundy, a partner at the law firm, had the new sign installed to explain the firm’s history and to give potential clients an undertstanding of those who work in the offices today. The sign has been up now for the last few weeks at the law firm, and includes information about the Cedartown Theatrical Performer’s Company as well.

Friday 11/07/2014
Chamber teaming up with Standard Journal for holiday shopping guide
Posted: November 07, 2014

The Polk County Chamber of Commerce is teaming up with the Polk County Standard Journal to create a holiday gift guide for the Nov. 26 edition of the newspaper.

Polk Medical Center has smooth transition at opening
Posted: November 07, 2014

Well before the sun came up over Polk County, a historic change was made as one hospital closed and a new facility opened its doors.

Thursday 11/06/2014
Deal: October revenues up 5.9 percent
Posted: November 06, 2014

Gov. Nathan Deal announced today that Georgia’s net tax collections for October totaled $1.55 billion, an increase of $87 million, or 5.9 percent, compared to October 2013. Year-to-date, net tax revenue collections totaled $6.24 billion, which was an increase of $298.5 million, or 5 percent, compared to the previous fiscal year, when net tax revenues totaled $5.94 billion after four months. Year-to-date gross tax revenues, before refunds and distributions to local governments, totaled nearly $8.2 billion, which was an increase of $453.5 million, or 5.9 percent, compared to October 2013.

New Polk Medical Center to open today
Updated: November 07, 2014 - 1:40 pm

Polk Medical Center is slated to open the doors to its new 65,000 square foot medical complex at 6 a.m. today.

Wednesday 11/05/2014
Holmes Clothing considered landmark in Cedartown
Updated: November 06, 2014 - 9:40 am

Holmes Clothing, located at 235 Main Street, will celebrate 120 years in 2015.

Tuesday 11/04/2014
Voting ends Friday for Biz Builder People’s Choice competition
Posted: November 04, 2014

Awards to be presented at Nov. 13 graduation ceremony

Friday 10/31/2014
Mac’s Bakery keeps serving up sweets in Rockmart
Posted: October 31, 2014

Mac’s Bakery, founded in 1958, has relocated from 102 Sycamore Grove to a 1,500 square foot building at 258 West Elm Street, Rockmart.

Wednesday 10/29/2014
Biz Builder voting continues through Nov. 7
Posted: October 29, 2014

The Biz Builder People’s Choice Awards voting remains open following last night’s Shark Tank-style competition at the Cedartown Welcome Center, and so far hundreds of people have gone online to vote for their favorites.

Tuesday 10/28/2014
RBA decorating contest results in first place tie
Posted: October 28, 2014

Autumn colors are not only appearing across the landscape but in downtown store windows.

LakePoint announces partnership with United States Basketball Association
Updated: October 29, 2014 - 1:50 am

The United States Basketball Association has signed a deal with the LakePoint Sporting Community to bring its national championships to courts in Cobb and Bartow counties in 2015 and then to the LakePoint development in 2016.

Monday 10/27/2014
GDOL: Georgia continues to rank among leading states for job creation
Posted: October 27, 2014

ATLANTA -- Georgia continues to rank sixth in the nation and third in the Southeast in over-the-year job creation. The state gained 80,000 non-seasonally-adjusted jobs between September 2013 and September 2014, for a growth rate of 2.0 percent. The comparable national job growth rate for the same period was also 2.0 percent.

Wednesday 10/22/2014
Miller Insurance keeps customers covered through State Farm
Posted: October 22, 2014

“Good morning, may I help you,” said a smiling Anna Wright, receptionist at Mary Miller State Farm Insurance Agency in Rockmart.

Tuesday 10/21/2014
Rick Zoerb Ford hosts grand opening celebration
Updated: October 23, 2014 - 1:47 am

A celebration took place in Cedartown this weekend to welcome customers to the managers and staff of Rick Zoerb Ford as they conducted a grand opening day over the weekend.

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