ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

cloudy-day
67°
Rain
H -° L 36°
  • cloudy-day
    67°
    Current Conditions
    Rain. H -° L 36°
  • rain-day
    Today
    Rain. H -° L 36°
  • cloudy-day
    46°
    Tomorrow
    Partly Cloudy. H 46° L 29°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb news on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb traffic on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb weather on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

National Govt & Politics
Volunteer power during shutdown: “We’ve got to help take care of our [National] park.” 
Close

Volunteer power during shutdown: “We’ve got to help take care of our [National] park.” 

Volunteer power during shutdown: “We’ve got to help take care of our [National] park.” 
Someone's soggy, long-lost football was among the garbage collected along the Chattahoochee River Tuesday morning. Photo: Jennifer Brett

Volunteer power during shutdown: “We’ve got to help take care of our [National] park.” 

If the partial government shutdown continues much longer, a local conservancy group will likely organize volunteer teams to go out and pick up trash.  

There's not yet a serious problem of trash over-flowing containers along and inside the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area. But that could soon change says Sally Bethea, board president of the Chattahoochee Parks Conservancy (CPC). 

"With no end in sight for this shutdown we've got to help take care of our park,” Bethea tells WSB Radio. 

The CPC works with the National Parks Service to assist in programs and volunteers for the CRNRA.  

Over the past week, the Conservancy has been assessing all 15 park units within the Rec Area - which stretches 48 miles from Buford Dam to the city of Atlanta. Two of the most popular sites within the National Recreation Area are Paces Mill and Cochran Shoals.      

Close

trash

In the days since the shutdown began, there have been individuals who have taken it upon themselves to clean up areas where they hike. Bethea says her group has already lent support to local hiker groups in the trash collection effort, but a more organized effort could soon be forthcoming. "We'll be finishing our assessment here in the next couple of days and seeing where we need to really allocate volunteers to help,” says Bethea. "We'll assume that there will be more cleanups going on in the next week and certainly if this lasts into February, we'll be working very hard." 

WSB Radio
On January 9, 2019, the visitor's center parking lot at Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park remains closed during the partial government shutdown.
Close

Kennesaw Battlefield park

Photo Credit: WSB Radio
On January 9, 2019, the visitor's center parking lot at Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park remains closed during the partial government shutdown.

The Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area is not the only recreation tract in metro Atlanta affected by the gridlock in Washington D.C. In Cobb County, access to the visitor’s center parking lot at Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park is closed. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports trash cans in that park have been sealed-off. And one handwritten sign left behind reads: “The government is currently shut down. To keep our park beautiful, PLEASE TAKE YOUR TRASH WITH YOU.”

Bethea understands the emotional tug by many who make park and recreation area visits part of their routine – to pitch in to help. "This is one of the areas in which people do get emotional about this shutdown, is not being able to access some of their parks." 

Bethea’s message to anyone using the parks and rec areas: “Do the right thing. Leave no trace. That means take everything out of the park except your footprints."

As for what is – or is not happening in D.C. "Hopefully the shutdown will end soon. It's...it's sad." 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read More

News

  • After helping broker an end to a teachers strike that marooned more than half a million students, Mayor Eric Garcetti said Wednesday the deal shows that government is solving problems in Los Angeles while Washington remains hobbled by a lengthy shutdown. The Democratic mayor, who is considering a 2020 White House run, called the pact a national model that shows how deeply divided factions can find common ground. The teachers union in the nation's second-largest school district ended a walkout Tuesday after winning higher wages and cuts in class sizes. 'All politics in this country seem to be about pulling each other apart. This is what we can get when we pull together,' the mayor said in an interview. 'I believe Americans do want great schools wherever they are, in the same way that Americans want a Washington that functions and isn't in the longest shutdown in our history.' The strike that began Jan. 14 threatened the mayor's argument that local government is where progress is made in America, while highlighting the risks of launching a presidential campaign from City Hall. No sitting mayor has ever been elected to the White House. Garcetti suspended consideration of a 2020 candidacy with teachers on the picket lines, but indicated Wednesday a decision was not far off. 'Stay tuned,' he said. Garcetti said the resolution of a strike that once seemed insoluble — along with improvements for teachers and students — 'shows what kind of leadership we have here. ... Accomplishing things is always better than dividing one another.' Political scientist Jack Pitney said the end of the walkout will free up time Garcetti needs to make a 2020 decision, though it's unlikely to add much luster to his resume. Outside of Southern California, where the mayor is little-known, 'not many people are paying attention,' said Pitney, who teaches at Claremont McKenna College. With the Democratic field growing larger each day, the mayor faces increasing pressure to make a decision because he could fall behind in crucial fundraising. Even on his home turf he would be competing for those dollars with another Californian, Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris, who entered the race on Monday. If he gets into the race 'he needs to establish his unique selling proposition, what sets him apart from the other candidates,' Pitney said.
  • A Hilton Head fisherman said he tagged the largest great white shark in the Atlantic just a few miles off the South Carolina coast last weekend. >> Read more trending news  The owner and operator of Outcast Sport Fishing, Chip Michalove, posted about his record-breaking discovery Saturday on his business Facebook page. 'It's such a massive fish, it's like hooking an elephant and then putting the brakes on it,' said Michalove. Michalove has worked with researchers to hook and tag great white sharks in the Atlantic Ocean for the past four winters, according to WCIV-TV. >> Related:  Crew catches 2 great whites in 5 minutes off South Carolina coast Michalove said in a Facebook post that he hooked seven great white sharks and tagged four of them in one day. 'Can't believe this place is so loaded,' he posted. Michalove said he's tagged a total of 20 great white sharks in his 20 years of fishing. 'We put the highest level of technology tags on them—these tags monitor the water depth, the water temperature and the shark's track—it just gives you a ton of information,' he said. >> Related: Great white sharks seem to love warmer ocean waters, not cold, surprising scientists Michalove names some of the sharks he tags. He said he named the second shark he hooked Saturday Charli, after a great friend’s 11-year-old daughter who died in a car accident last summer. The fisherman also said people should not be hesitant to swim because the sharks are always found several miles offshore.  All of the sharks are released.
  • A Georgia pastor, his family and the community are mourning his two sons who died in a car accident. >> Read more trending news  Josh and Kahlil Royston were killed when their car left the road and crashed into trees around 1 p.m. Sunday afternoon in Newnan, according to Georgia State Patrol. Josh Royston, 16, was pronounced dead at the scene and Kahlil Royston, 17, died from his injuries after being taken to Atlanta Medical Center. Both were students at Newnan High School, WSB-TV reported. Pastor Kevin Royston told Tom Jones of WSB that he had just watched his sons leave OutReach Church before the crash happened.
  • Update 4:48 p.m. EST Jan. 23: At least 5 people were killed when a suspect identified as 21-year-old Zephen Xaver, opened fire in a SunTrust Bank in Sebring, Florida. 'After an assessment of the scene, we're sorry to learn that we have at least five victims -- people that were senselessly murdered as a result of this act -- in this bank,' said Sebring police chief Karl Hoglund. Hoglund said Xaber was taken into custody after SWAT team members negotiated with him. Earlier: Sebring police commander said there was a report of an armed person at the SunTrust Bank in the Florida town, WFLA reported. The Sheriff of Highlands County confirmed the incident saying that the armed person contacted dispatch, telling officials that he had opened fire inside the bank. Police and deputies responded and tried to negotiate, but those talks were not successful, according to the sheriff’s office.  When they failed, the Highlands County SWAT team entered the bank to continue negotiations with the alleged gunman, who eventually surrendered, the sheriff’s office said. WFTS reported that the front of the bank appears to have been damaged with doors ripped off their hinges. A police commander had said “several people are down,” WFLA reported.  The Highlands News Sun reported that county officials said that five people had been injured. County officials told WFTS several people were taken to an area hospital. There is no word on their injuries. >> Read more trending news  The sheriff’s office told coworkers and family members of those who could be in the bank to go to a local hotel to await the latest news, WFLA reported. Several ambulances were at the scene and businesses in the area of the bank were in a lockdown status, WTSP reported. The News Sun reported two schools in the area are on conditional lockdown. Check back for the latest on this developing story.
  • Proposals by a U.S. judge to prevent Pacific Gas & Electric Co. equipment from causing any more wildfires would create safety risks, cost too much money and interfere with the work of federal and state regulators, the utility said Wednesday. PG&E said in a court filing that it's committed to system upgrades and wildfire mitigation, but it contends that a criminal case being handled by U.S. District Judge William Alsup is not the right forum to address such measures. Earlier this month, Alsup proposed ordering PG&E to remove or trim all trees that could fall onto its power lines and to cut off power during certain wind conditions. He is also considering whether to order the utility to reinspect its entire electric grid. PG&E is facing hundreds of lawsuits from wildfire victims over catastrophic California wildfires in the past two years that killed scores of people and destroyed thousands of homes. The utility announced on Jan. 14 that it will file for bankruptcy protection in the face of at least $30 billion in potential liability claims from the suits. PG&E said in its court filing Wednesday that complying with all of Alsup's proposals could cost as much as $150 billion and require massive rate hikes. The proposals would require the utility to remove an estimated 100 million trees, causing significant environmental consequences, it said. In addition, the measures would interfere with the 'role of state and federal regulators without fully accounting for the risks that some of those actions may create' or assessing whether those costs are necessary, PG&E said. The court filing adds that shutting down power affects first responders, critical medical care and essential services such as water delivery. U.S. prosecutors urged Alsup on Wednesday to work with a court-appointed monitor to determine ways PG&E could prevent its equipment from starting wildfires. In its court filing, the U.S. attorney's office in San Francisco said Alsup should refrain from immediately imposing new requirements on the utility. Alsup is overseeing a jury verdict against PG&E involving the deadly explosion of a company gas pipeline in 2010. The judge is eyeing the wildfire requirements as part of PG&E's probation in the criminal case. Alsup has noted that California fire investigators have determined that PG&E caused 18 wildfires in 2017 — 12 of which could result in criminal prosecution.
  • A gunman opened fire inside a Florida bank Wednesday afternoon, killing five people before surrendering to negotiators, police said. Zephen Xaver, 21, was arrested after the shooting at a Sebring SunTrust Bank branch, Sebring police Chief Karl Hoglund said at a news conference. 'Today's been a tragic day in our community,' Hogland said. 'We've suffered significant loss at the hands of a senseless criminal doing a senseless crime.' The victims were not immediately identified. A man called police dispatch Wednesday afternoon to report that he had fired shots inside the bank, Hoglund said. Initial negotiations to get the barricaded man to leave the bank were unsuccessful, so the Highlands County Sheriff's Office SWAT team entered the bank to continue negotiations, and the man eventually surrendered. Police didn't say what charges Xaver would face or indicate a motive. Gov. Ron DeSantis was in the region for an infrastructure tour and traveled to Sebring after news of the shooting broke. He said the Florida Department of Law Enforcement would assist Sebring police and the Highlands sheriff in any way possible. 'Obviously, this is an individual who needs to face very swift and exacting justice,' DeSantis said of the gunman. SunTrust Chairman and CEO Bill Rogers released a statement saying the bank is deeply saddened by the tragic shooting. 'We are working with officials and dedicating ourselves to fully addressing the needs of all the individuals and families involved,' Rogers said. 'Our entire team mourns this terrible loss.