Thursday, July 28, 2011

Doggie Lost Their Home!

Bischon found yesterday off Hopewell road near Hamby Hospital. White,
Male, no chip, neutered

Laura Ramsey

Milton hires new parks director.

By Patrick Fox
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

John Rebar of Doral, Fla., has been hired as the City of Milton's new director of parks and recreation.

Rebar, who served in Doral for just under four years, will start Aug. 15, replacing Cyndee Bonacci, who left to spend more time with family. At Doral, Rebar oversaw a system of parks and programs while managing a staff and the department's budget.

He received his bachelor's in health and physical education from Marrywood College of Scranton, Pa., in 1996 and his master's in teaching and learning from Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Believing In Our Youth - Zack Eller.

Double Click To Enlarge Screen.

By Tim Enloe;

With the Milton Market rolling into Fall mode after this weekend, Market President Zack Eller has had to step down until next Spring due to school being around the corner.

To say that Zack made this year's market a success is a given as he brought more
creativity and insight than many would have guessed.

I found it very fitting that Zack, not only being a natural born leader but also a very talented baseball player, hit a line drive home run this past week. (Please see the above video for more.) Proof that if given the proper guidance and nurturing, our Milton youth can be successful both on the field and off.

See you next year Zack and keep swinging for the fences!

Milton welcomes new Parks & Rec. Director.

Courtesy City of Milton

John Rebar managed Doral, Fla.'s department

MILTON, Ga., July 26, 2011 - Milton City Manager Chris Lagerbloom today announced Doral, Fla.'s John Rebar has been hired as the new director of parks and recreation.

Rebar, who served in Doral for just under four years, will start with the city Aug. 15. He will replace outgoing Director Cyndee Bonacci, who left the post to spend more time with her family.

Rebar had previously lived in the Atlanta area and jumped at the chance to move back.

"I'm excited about the opportunity to join the team in the City of Milton," said the new parks director. "Being part of a young city provides the unique opportunity of having a role in shaping a city's future."
At Doral, Rebar oversaw a complex system of parks and programs while managing a staff and the department's budget. He will be particularly vital to Milton's efforts because of his experience in completing parks system master plans, negotiating joint-use agreements with private and public schools, guiding parks from county to city control, and building programs and events from scratch, said Lagerbloom.

"John Rebar is a natural fit for Milton because he's been through the specific and intricate planning and programming issues we deal with every day," said Lagerbloom. "He joined Doral, which, like Milton, was only four years old at the time, and built an award-winning system of parks and programs. I have full confidence he'll be able to bring his demonstrated success to our city and will capitalize on the incredible progress we've made under Cyndee Bonacci's tenure."

The City of Milton Parks and Recreation Department has tremendous potential, and I think we've just scratched the surface of what we are capable of achieving," he added. "I am looking forward to seeing where John will lead us."
Rebar is no stranger to recreation, having started his career in 2002 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. In five short years Rebar rose through local government ranks to department director, eventually turning Doral's young parks system into a powerhouse recognized at state and local levels for accomplishment.

Rebar received his bachelor's in health and physical education from Marrywood College of Scranton, Pa., in 1996. Five years later he earned a master's in teaching and learning from Nova Southeastern University of Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Rebar is currently completing a master's in public administration from Florida International University and is a seven-year member of the National and Florida Parks and Recreation associations.

"I am eager to be involved in the planning and development of a parks system that will both reflect and enhance the quality of life the residents of Milton have come to expect," said Rebar. "I can't wait to move forward with a system of parks, programming and events that are sustainable and provide recreational opportunities for all ages and abilities."

Monday, July 25, 2011

Milton's basketball skills camp for August.

Courtesy Maggie West; The Examiner

The second Up With Kids Sports (UWKS) basketball skills camp will be held from Aug. 1 through Aug. 5 at Hopewell Middle School. This is the last opportunity to sign up for this particluar camp for this year.

The camp is offered to children ages 6 through 17. The cost for Milton residents is $135. Moreover, half days are available for a smaller fee of $100. Non-residents are charged $202.50 for full days, and $150 for half days.

Samuel Hines, an International basketball star, and founder of UWKS, coaches the camp. Hines said that the experience of bringing basketball to Milton's children has been tremendous. "Watching them learn the game and hearing their parents' reaction has been great," he added. "To see the support from the community for this program means so much to me. I can't wait for the winter league to watch these kids grow even more."

Click here for more=>

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Property tax lien bill gains ally.

By Chris Joyner and M.B. Pell

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Legislation that would change the way Fulton County handles property tax liens gained a powerful new ally when House Speaker Pro Tem Jan Jones discovered this spring that a lien had been placed on her Milton home over an $88 late fee.

Fulton County filed a lien against Jones and her husband, Kalin, on their home in December for the charges and sold it a few weeks later to Vesta Holdings, a private company that collects on tax liens.

Jones said her husband mixed up the due dates on two tax bills, inadvertently paying the Fulton County bill a week late. But she said the check was cashed and they were never informed their payment was late until much later, when they heard from Vesta about the charges.

“It is very frustrating. We’ve never received a tax lien in our lives,”
Jones, R-Milton, said.

Jones said she has paid the lien but is upset that the county didn’t notify her of the lien or its decision to sell it to a private company.

“They can afford the postage on a lien, but they can’t afford to service their customers,” she said.

Fulton County Tax Commissioner Arthur Ferdinand said his office notified Jones of the lien and the system worked as intended.

“I don’t think this should be a big issue for her because she paid her taxes, albeit late, and it was resolved,” Ferdinand said. “It was a very small fee for an admittedly late payment.”When a company purchases a lien, it can usually add an initial 10 percent penalty and then a penalty of 1 percent a month after that. These are the same penalties municipalities are allowed to charge. In Jones’ case, Vesta bought the lien for $87.98 Dec. 22, 2010. It cost Jones $104.62 to satisfy the lien, on March 3.

The alternative, Ferdinand said, would have been for Fulton County to begin foreclosure proceedings against Jones.

Poor residents also benefit from the sale of liens because companies that purchase overdue bills can set up payment plans with taxpayers, the tax commissioner said.

“I would be very disappointed if the Legislature takes this ability away from people who are less fortunate and don’t have the ability to pay,”
Ferdinand said.

But taxpayers who have had their liens sold often complain the county does not make a concerted effort to contact them about their outstanding bills, knowing it can collect the money by selling the liens.

Taxpayers who claim the county did not contact them typically do not receive notification from their lien purchaser until two months later, as required by law. By this time the lien purchaser has added the 10 percent penalty and a point a month in additional penalties.

Now that she has been on the receiving end of one of these liens, Jones said she will take a personal interest in Senate Bill 234 when the General Assembly reconvenes for the 2012 session. The measure would prohibit counties from selling tax liens until a bill is 60 days overdue and prohibit counties from selling a lien for a bill that has been appealed. SB 234 unanimously passed the Senate in March but stalled in the House.

“The AJC has written about this for years, but I guess nobody brought it to my attention,” she said. “When you experience something you realize it’s more than just me. It has to be happening to Fulton County residents across the county.”
Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers, R-Woodstock, who introduced the bill, said he’s glad to have Jones’ support.

“Now that she’s seen firsthand what these private companies and what Fulton County can do to the taxpayer, she understands how important this is,” Rogers said. “There are a lot of taxpayers who get a raw deal when Fulton County is in cahoots with a private company.”

Friday, July 22, 2011

Update On Flag Debate Via



The following is the Avensong Flag story including video. Also, according to the updated article, Alan Tart has said that the HOA will not fine the family=>

Milton woman arrested after allegedly striking cyclist then fleeing.

Photo courtesy of the Marietta Police Department.

By Mike Morris
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

A North Fulton woman was arrested Friday after allegedly striking a bicyclist in Marietta and fleeing the scene.

The cyclist was struck at about 12:25 a.m. Friday while riding along Roswell Street at Aviation Street, Marietta police Officer Michael Gardner said.

The cyclist was thrown from his bike and sustained serious injuries, Gardner said. The man, whose name has not been released, was taken to Wellstar Kennestone Hospital in critical condition.

Gardner said the driver fled the scene, but police tracked the suspect vehicle, a 2005 Lexus ES380, and its driver to a Milton address and arrested Judy Mae Petrovsky, 67. She was charged with DUI and felony hit and run, and is being held in the Cobb County Jail on a $10,000 bond.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

HOA Mistakes Military Flag For Towel, Fines Homeowner.


FULTON COUNTY, Ga. -- A fight over a military flag has one North Fulton County family at odds with its homeowner's association.

John and Rosana Klein's son, Brendan, is serving in the Marine Corps.

To honor him, they hung a Marine Corps flag in a window facing their Aven Court home.

"A week after we put it up, we got a notice from the HOA," Klein told Channel 2's Mike Petchenik.

The notice told Klein that the HOA had received complaints about a "towel" hanging in the window, and asking him to remove it because it was in violation of the Avensong Community's covenants.

“I’m not sure how you mistake any military flag for a towel," said Klein. "We want to make it clear it’s not a towel; it's Marine Corps flag."After Klein informed the HOA of the misunderstanding, he said he received another email telling him to remove the flag from the window and to put it into a proper flag holder.

Avensong Community Association president Alan Tart sent Petchenik a statement about the flag flap:

"The HOA made it very clear to Mr. Klein that it had no problem with him displaying the flag. The HOA is grateful to Mr. Klein's son and his service to our country, and we certainly understand the love, pride, and appreciation Mr. Klein and his wife must have for their son. The HOA only asked Mr. Klein to please display the U.S. Marine Corps flag in the same respectful manner required under the American Flag Code for the National Flag - in a flag holder or bracket on his front porch or any other befitting manner, not hung as drapery. Alternatively, the HOA asked Mr. Klein to please provide evidence suggesting that he was, in fact, displaying the flag in a respectful manner."
Klein took exception to the characterization that he's disrespecting the flag.

"Unless you’re a military family and unless you’ve been through what we’ve been through, you don’t have a lot of latitude to accuse us of something like that," he said.

Still, Klein told Petchenik that he will likely remove the flag instead of paying the $25 per day fine the HOA will levy if he doesn't. When asked if he'll put the flag on a pole, he said he'd rather send it to his son.

“It might be disappointing to other military families or Marines to hear we might take the flag down, but that’s what we plan to do because money spent for a fine is better spent elsewhere," he said.

Senator Albers To Speak August 14th @ 2:00 pm.

Please join us to support
GA District 56
Sunday, August 14th - 2:00 pm
Martin Estate
5020 Heatherwood Court
Roswell, GA 30075
Suggested donation - $250.00
Maximum donation per person - $2,500.00
Please join our growing host committee.

Community Kickoff to be held July 31.

Courtesy City of Milton

Yearly event brings movie, food, games, rides and more to Milton Stadium.

MILTON, Ga., July 21, 2011 - For the second year, the Milton High School Touchdown Club and the cities of Milton and Alpharetta present the Milton High School Community Kickoff Sunday, July 31 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the school's football stadium.

The free, family-friendly event features a "Flick on the Field," food and information from the program's Community Partners, games and rides for the kids and a perfect opportunity for everyone to see friends missed over the long, hot summer months.

This is the second year the cities have partnered with the non-profit booster club to open up what was once team photo day to the community as a whole, said Milton Communications Manager Jason Wright.

"Last year the Touchdown Club approached us about turning the team's event into a community event to officially end the summer," said Wright. "We immediately jumped on this opportunity. We help with logistics and promotion, and all of Milton and Alpharetta are invited to this great family event."

Touchdown Club officer Lee Jenkins said after last year's 1 p.m. start time and 100-plus degree heat, it was decided that the Community Kickoff might be more popular as an evening event.

"On Friday nights in the fall, this stadium is the place to be," said Jenkins. "So it just made sense."

The Community Kickoff takes the place of Milton football's photo day, which routinely drew more than 200 families to the school. Organizers stress everyone is invited, regardless of affiliation with the team. And there should be a crowd. In addition to the nearly 400 families in Milton's high school and feeder programs, the 900 families involved in the Alpharetta Youth Football Association have also been invited to take part.

"Milton High School is an important and vibrant part of the community and touches [virtually everyone]," said Melody Cookson, a Touchdown Club member helping to plan the event. "Join us to celebrate the importance and contributions of Milton High School to the community, and the important role Milton Football plays in uniting and rallying the student body and the community in general."

First-year head coach Howie DeCristofaro said the team has been working hard on a program the community can be proud of. This is the first opportunity residents and parents will have to be introduced to the new faces.

"We look forward to collaborating with the community to make Friday nights special for all involved," he said.

For more information about the Community Kickoff 2011, contact Melody Cookson at 678-234-5801 or

Second basketball skills camp held Aug. 1-5.

Up With Kids Sports again offers affordable summer fun.

MILTON, Ga., July 20, 2011 - The second and last of the City of Milton/Up With Kids Sports (UWKS) basketball skills camps will be held Aug. 1 through 5 at Hopewell Middle School.

This camp, for children ages 6 through 17, will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and cost $135 for Milton residents. Half days are available for $100. Cost for non-residents is $202.50 for full days and $150 for half.

International basketball star Samuel Hines, who founded UWKS and coaches the camps, said the experience of bringing basketball to Milton's children has been tremendous.

"Watching them learn the game and hearing their parents' reaction has been great," said Hines. "To see the support from the community for this program means so much to me. I can't wait for the winter league to watch these kids grow even more."

Parents can sign up for the league by clicking here. Choose "City of Milton - UWKS Camp June 13-17 & August 1-5," download the registration form and mail it with payment to:

P.O. Box 1201
Alpharetta, GA 30009

For more information on Up with Kids Sports, this camp or its UWKS Academy, which prepares players for feeder program tryouts, visit its Web site,, or contact coach Samuel Hines at or 678-481-1749. You may also contact Tom Gilliam, Milton's Recreation Programs Coordinator, at 678-242-2519 or

Time To Laugh...

Double Click To Enlarge Screen.

Many thanks to Melissa of Milton for sharing this laugh with readers!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Milton declares July Parks and Rec month.

By Jonathan Copsey / Appen Newspapers

MILTON, Ga. - At its July 6 meeting, the Milton City Council honored the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board by proclaiming July "Parks and Recreation Month."

Members from the board accepted the proclamation with Parks and Recreation staff.

"Parks and recreation are vitally important to establishing and maintaining the quality of life in our communities, ensuring the health of all citizens and contributing to the economic and environmental well-being of a community and region," read Mayor Joe Lockwood from a proclamation.

Lockwood called the newly renovated Bethwell Community Center on Hopewell Road the "symbol of Milton's parks and recreation."

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Teens can participate in girls' slow-pitch league.

Games will be played across North Fulton.

MILTON, Ga., July 19, 2011 - Milton girls ages 13 to 18 can now sign up for a fall, slow-pitch, recreational softball league offered in partnership with the City of Roswell Recreation, Parks, Historic and Cultural Affairs Department.

Online registration is available here. It is also always available from the City of Roswell's Web site,, by choosing the "Recreation Program Registration" button from the left of the home page. Please note this is a two-step process involving setting up an account, then creating the team. For full directions on signing up, see below.

This teen league allows girls to form their own teams and play with friends for an entry fee of $500, which includes a 10-game regular season, a tournament and game jerseys, said Tom Gilliam, Milton's recreation program coordinator. Games will be played throughout Roswell, Alpharetta and Johns Creek. As field space becomes available in Milton, the program will likely expand.

"The teen program is the first step in bringing a regional slow-pitch league to North Fulton," said Gilliam. "We appreciate the combined efforts of all the parks and recreation departments involved in bringing this opportunity to our children."Recently, the cities of Roswell, Alpharetta, Milton, Johns Creek and Sandy Springs organized a public survey in order to gain information on the interest in slow-pitch softball in the area.

"Through the responses we determined there is still a demand for [a league]," said Roswell League Supervisor Joel St. Vrain. "There may not be enough for a full league in each city, but there appears to be enough interest to warrant offering a combined league."
Next spring, the coalition will offer recreational slow-pitch softball for girls in two age groups: 9 and 10 year olds and 11 and 12 year olds. In Milton, these games will be played at the Hopewell Middle School diamond, which the city has agreed with Fulton County Schools to maintain in exchange for use of the facility.

More information on this program will be available as registration nears.

For more information on this, or any Milton program, contact Gilliam at 678-242-2519 or

Monday, July 18, 2011

Man charged in wreck that killed 2 teens.

By Alexis Stevens
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

A Hall County man faces vehicular homicide charges in a July 4 wreck that killed two metro Atlanta teenagers.

Tony James Delong, 19, also is charged with driving too fast for conditions and was cited for having three passengers who were not wearing seat belts, Lt. Paul Cosper with the Georgia State Patrol told the AJC Monday.

Delong was driving a 1993 Jeep Wrangler on Whelchel Mill Road when the vehicle left the roadway, struck an embankment and overturned several times, Cosper previously said.

Brandon Hodges, 14, of Lawrenceville, and Christian Walker, 16, of Cumming, both died after being ejected in the single-vehicle wreck. Delong and two other teenage passengers were injured.

In a twist, south Fulton tax dollars were spent on the north.

By Johnny Edwards
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

North Fulton residents regularly complain of their tax dollars being siphoned to the southern part of the county, but because of an oversight south Fulton residents can say the same thing about a contaminated park in Milton.

For the past five years, the South Fulton Special Services District been paying for grounds maintenance at the shuttered, 42-acre Providence Park in Fulton's northernmost city. The tab totals $12,500, paid for out of the extra tax rate unincorporated property owners pay for city-type services, such as police and fire protection. All county park maintenance is funded by the special service districts; parks within city limits are funded by that city.

The discrepancy has reignited arguments over whether the county should pay more than $1 million for environmental cleanup, then hand the park over to the city. Milton expects eventually to buy it for $100 per acre, the same deal given to all newly-formed cities for park space since the mid-2000s.

But south Fulton Commissioner William "Bill" Edwards said that since pollution closed the park before Milton's incorporation, it should be sold as surplus property.

"It's not a park," Edwards said. "That's where the confusion is."
If sold at fair market value, buying Providence could cost the city millions. The county tax assessors office values it at $6.2 million.

“The city of Milton has no independent knowledge of any change of position of Fulton County regarding Providence Park,"
City Manager Chris Lagerbloom said in an email. "It is the city’s expectation that once the environmental remediation of Providence Park is completed, that Fulton County will make good on its repeated commitment to convey the park to the city at the previously established price.”
According to Lisa Carter of the county manager's office, Providence remains in Fulton's parks inventory, so parks maintenance crews assumed mowing the grass and securing it was still their responsibility. The property has been closed to the public since 2004, when tests found lead, chromium, petroleum byproducts and other contaminants in soil near a walking path.

Before the land became a park in 1972, it was an unofficial storage site during a county road-building project. It turned out buried drums had been leaking toxic chemicals into the soil.

Milton incorporated in 2006, joining Sandy Springs and Johns Creek. Those areas had been paying into the special services district, too, and state legislation passed in 2008 required the county to cut refund checks to Milton and Johns Creek for unspent taxes. Amid much haggling over what to do about the polluted park, the county withheld $1.02 million from Milton for environmental remediation.

State Rep. Lynne Riley, R-Johns Creek, said she agrees with Edwards that south Fulton residents shouldn't have been paying for park maintenance in Milton.

Edwards put a stop to it earlier this month, telling County Manager Zachary Williams he wants the $12,500 refunded.

However, Riley said she doesn't agree with Edwards that Providence shouldn't be sold to Milton as a park. If the county takes that position, she said, it should return Milton's $1.02 million.

Woman charged with driving drunk with grandson.

By David Ibata
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

A 53-year-old grandmother from Alpharetta told Channel 2 Action News she’s embarrassed and remorseful after police arrested her for allegedly driving drunk with her 3-year-old grandson in back seat of her car.

Police said Glenda Ferguson admitted to officers she had beer at home before getting behind the wheel Tuesday night. Officers said she blew a stop sign at an intersection in Milton, and when she was stopped, she reeked of alcohol.

In an interview with Channel 2 Action News on Friday, Ferguson denied being drunk but apologized for her actions.

“I’m very embarrassed about it. I’m very remorseful for it. I wish I hadn’t done it. But people make mistakes,” she said. “You can’t tell me there’s not one person that drinks alcohol that’s never had their child in the car from dinner.”
It was the latest case in recent weeks of an adult allegedly driving drunk with children in the vehicle.

On July 7, Maria Michelle Baylor, 35, of Jackson, Tenn., was arrested and charged with driving more than 90 mph on I-75 southbound near Delk Road in Cobb County. She had her four children, ages 7 to 13, in her 2004 Chevrolet Impala at the time.

Baylor admitted to having alcohol earlier in the day. She failed field sobriety tests and refused a breath test, an arrest warrant states. As she was being arrested, Baylor allegedly threatened a Marietta police officer and his family, leading to an additional charge of terroristic threats.

Last month, a Clayton County woman was charged with driving drunk and child endangerment after she allegedly wiped out a neighborhood picnic area while her two children, ages 4 and 6, were in the car with her.

Cierra Baughcum, 28, had a blood-alcohol content of .392 percent -– nearly five times the legal limit -- when she was arrested June 21 after crashing her Camaro in the Mill Mobile Home Park in Rex.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Kokopelli Bakery & Cupcakes Opens In Milton Georgia!

Double Click To Enlarge Screen.

MILTON - As Crabapple continues to figure out what it wants to be, another new business has opened it's doors at the busy crossroads.

Kokopelli Bakery & Cupcakes now sits next to Just for Giggles across the street from the Olde Blind Dog Irish Pub.

This bakery offers an assortment of goodies to satisfy even the sweetest tooth. Fresh deli sandwiches, cheesecake, cupcakes, and various types of coffee keep this bakery's door swinging!

So if you happen to be in Crabapple, why not stop in for a visit at Kokopelli's Bakery and Cupcakes? You will be more than glad you did!

N. Fulton cities brace for possible billboard blitz.

By Patrick Fox
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Some 50 new billboards sit ready to take up residence in four north Fulton County cities that just lost a court battle to keep them out.

While the cities are barred from openly opposing the signs, most are looking for ways to gain as much control as possible over their placement. One sign company owner says any resistance skirts the state Supreme Court's decision.

Johns Creek, Milton and Sandy Springs are wrestling with a recent ruling from the high court precluding them from regulating billboards that companies had applied for before the cities incorporated several years ago, before they drew up their own sign ordinances. Alpharetta must also recognize applications for the signs in an area it annexed from Fulton in 2004.

Johns Creek, which has 31 billboard applications pending, is drafting an ordinance that could essentially freeze a property's use once a billboard is erected, making it nearly impossible for the landowner to make future alterations.

The proposal would expand the requirement for a "fall zone" to include all property within Johns Creek. A fall zone is a safety clearance, usually 85 feet, surrounding a structure to provide enough room in case of collapse.

The court ruling allows businesses to contract for a billboard on their property. But under the Johns Creek proposal, if a structure is within the fall zone of the billboard, that business would not be permitted to expand, renovate or apply for a zoning variance because it is in violation of the city ordinance.

"Anything already built is grandfathered," Johns Creek City Attorney William Riley said.
"They have a right to have what they have in there now, but they don't have a right to replacement."

The city has another legal impediment to billboards. Its sign ordinance limits commercial properties to one free-standing monument sign per frontage area. If the owner allows a billboard, he or she cannot replace an existing monument sign if it falls into disrepair, Riley said.

Morgan Hudgens, owner of KH Outdoor, a sign company, said he's not surprised by the city's move.

"The cities are doing everything in their power to try to impede the ruling of the court," he said.
"They're grasping at straws. They continue to do this, and I think the court's not going to look too kindly on this."

Other cities are studying their options.

Sandy Springs, with 17 potential billboard sites, is studying county zoning ordinances that were in effect at the time of the applications, City Attorney Wendell Willard said. It is checking what limitations may have been in place for setback requirements or nonconforming zonings that could be applicable, he said.

Alpharetta has four sites subject to billboard placement, but City Attorney Sam Thomas expects fewer may be constructed. The city will comply with the Supreme Court decision while it also studies old county zoning laws, he said.

"Based on our review so far, we may be able to avoid one or more signs and not run afoul of the court’s decision," he said.

The city will soon meet with the sign companies' lawyers to try to resolve the matter, he said.

Nowhere would the signs be more apparent than in Milton, where passions run high for protecting country settings.

Resident Laura Bentley said the city has worked hard to preserve its hometown feel.

"Billboards are not consistent with Milton's vision and will not enhance the lives of the people that live here," she said.

The city has 10 billboard applications pending.

"My expectation is that they may propose a narrowed list of billboards -- a lesser number than was actually applied for -- so long as they have an agreement with the city of no further legal challenges," City Attorney Ken Jarrard said.

The only north Fulton city not affected by the court ruling is Roswell, which has won and lost its share of scrapes with sign companies and has accumulated a city code that is virtually billboard-proof.

The city has a law barring off-premises signs -- those advertising businesses not located at the site. It also has ordinances limiting the size and height of signs to something much less than a billboard.

"We stop them," Roswell Mayor Jere Wood said,
"we don't just dissuade them."

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Milton considers pawn shop restrictions.

By Patrick Fox
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The City of Milton is considering adding restrictions on pawn shops as a preventive measure against marketing of stolen goods. Currently, Milton has no pawn shops operating within the city limits.

At a work session Monday, the City Council discussed some proposals, including requiring operators to photograph the customer and not accept unopened items without a purchase receipt.

The measure could come up for a vote later this month.

Milton buys old landmark for parks system.

By Patrick Fox
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Milton just got the perfect emblem of its dream of preserving a rustic lifestyle for residents.

The city, not quite 5 years old, has purchased what may be one of the oldest structures in Fulton County, a building so old it has had nearly a dozen names.

It has gone by the Hopewell House, the Stagecoach Inn, the McClesky-Day House and other names, mostly those of former owners. City officials estimate it was built in 1805.

"I believe it's the most historic structure within our city limits," said Patti Silva, a member of the Milton Historic Preservation Commission. "I screamed aloud when the city bought it."The building, which sits on 3 acres near the corner of Hopewell and Birmingham roads, originally had four main interior rooms. A two-room extension was used overnight by Moravian preachers as they passed through in the 1820s. Three more rooms were added in recent years.

The house was listed for $350,000 by Branch Banking and Trust, which owned the property through foreclosure. The city paid $250,000 for the property as part of its recent drive to bolster its parks and recreation portfolio.

In its first three years Milton spent a total of $51,000 on parks and park improvements.

But the city has been busy. So far this year, it has sunk $224,042 into restorations at the Bethwell Community Center, parkland acquisition and improvements at Bell Memorial Park off Hopewell Road. It also has budgeted $65,000 to develop plans for its parks and recreation department, its trail system and the yet-to-open Birmingham Park.

Overall, there are $1.85 million in capital expenses budgeted for parks and recreation this year, although it is likely most of that will carry over to 2012.

City officials said they were concerned Milton might lose one of its most historic landmarks when the house went into foreclosure about a year ago.

"The house was vacant and it was deteriorating," City Manager Chris Lagerbloom said. "Frankly, we got the bank down to about as low as they could take."
City crews have been out this week clearing dead trees and working to stabilize the structure.

No firm plans have been made, but City Councilman Bill Lusk said he would like to see the building restored for use as a culture center, much like Alpharetta's Mansell House.

It also could double as an archive for local memorabilia and documents from old Milton County, he said.

"I think it ties in well with the vision of the city as being interested in its history and promoting the rural character of the city," Lusk said.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Freemanville Road closed after accident.

Courtesy City of Milton

Power lines in street south of Providence Road.

MILTON, Ga., July 12, 2011 - Freemanville Road south of Providence Road is closed for several hours as crews clean up after an automobile accident that occurred shortly before 2 p.m.

Fire Marshal Matthew Marietta said the road will be closed for several hours as crews repair power lines. He said both Providence Road and Freemanville Road north of the accident site are passable. Drivers looking for an alternate route should use Ga. 372 (Birmingham Highway) or Mayfield Road to Providence Road.

English Only In Milton?

Business signeage such as this is commmon in Gwinnett County.

By Tim Enloe;

The Milton Market is becoming more popular every weekend. Word is spreading fast regarding this community focused event. While vendors are selling everything from homemade bracelets to dog biscuits, my tailgate focuses on tomatoes, squash, sunflowers, Accessmilton horse car magnets, etc.

A couple of weekends ago a couple stopped by having just moved to a subdivision off of Providence Road from Gwinnett County. Both husband and wife appeared as though a gigantic weight had just been lifted off their shoulders. The husband especially was more excited than the average tailgate visitor.

As I inquired to his current mindset, he replied that he was so happy to now be living in Milton. He would continue stating how he had raised his family in Gwinnett and had lived there for over 31 years but said "We couldn't take it anymore." As I pushed for more information, he said he was tired of "pressing one for English" as well as being exposed to "foreign non-English" languages on business signs throughout the county.

We continued to talk and I relayed to him that I too had experienced much change in
what is now Milton since I was eight years old and more was on it's way. He countered saying he hoped that the change wouldn't be as drastic as the evolution his family experienced in the county to the East. "You don't realize what you have here," he continued.

He returned this past weekend, still living on cloud nine and speaking about how he enjoys seeing the deer and horses graze as well as the gardens that speckle the landscape.

With all this in mind, a question came to me that deserved to get input from the tax payers of Milton. That question being: Should our city pass an ordinance stating that business signs and phone systems should be in English only?

With the recent school redistricting and push for more affordable housing in Milton coupled with many land owners eagerness to sell out, it is only a matter of time before our population demographic shifts. With such, certain pressures will no doubt arise.

Have your say in the comments section below. Gracias...

Monday, July 11, 2011

July 11 City Council work session notice.

Monday, July 11, 2011 Work Session Agenda 6:00 p.m.

1. Discussion of Impact of the 2010 Census on Redistricting Requirements for the City of Milton.

(Paul Frickey, Jarrard & Davis, LLP)

2. Discussion of Proposed Text Amendments for Pawn Shops and Gem/Gold Buying Businesses as Conditional Uses.

(Paul Frickey, Jarrard & Davis, LLP)

3. Discussion of Intersection Improvements at the Hopewell Francis Cogburn Intersection.

(Carter Lucas, Public Works Director)

4. Discussion of the Mayfield Mid-Broadwell Project.

(Carter Lucas, Public Works Director)

Milton Community Director Resigns.


Milton Community Director Lynn Tully has resigned. She is going back home to Kingsport TN and heading up the Development Services Department there.

Mrs. Tully has accomplished much with her time in Milton including getting the comprehensive land use plan approved among other things.

The position will be officially open as of July 22nd.

Friday, July 08, 2011

On A Historical Note...


Thursday, July 07, 2011

Milton Teen Exposes Himself At Local Pool; Arrested.


The Milton Police arrested a juvenile for exposing himself to two others at the Wyndham community pool on July 3rd.

When a resident noticed what was taking place, they called the authorities and the suspect left eventually being found at his home.

After he was identified by witnesses, he was taken into custody for child molestation with a trial pending.

The Westbrook Garden: Vol 2.

Double click to enlarge screen.


MILTON- We are back again to visit with legendary Milton resident and gardener Mr. Paul Westbrook and his wonderful garden.

This time around, he gives an update on how things are going this season in addition to showcasing some new and popular items.

Be sure to come out to the Milton Market each Saturday in Crabapple from 9am to 12 noon and meet Mr. Westbrook and his wife Barbara. They never meet a stranger and are always sporting a great smile!

Milton suspends annual cell tower fees.

By Patrick Fox
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Less than a year after passing one of the area's toughest cell tower laws, Milton is taking a step back.

The Milton City Council on Wednesday night voted unanimously to suspend the annual fees and registration requirements within the ordinance for nine months -- or until they survive a legal challenge in another jurisdiction.

The action comes in the wake of a lawsuit filed this year against Liberty County that claims the county's licensing and zoning laws restrict telecom companies from doing business.

Milton's ordinance, passed last August and based on the Liberty County law, requires companies to pay an annual operating license fee of $1,000 per tower and $1,000 per antenna array.

Representatives from AT&T, Verizon Wireless and the Georgia Wireless Association opposed the fees at a public meeting last August, insisting the companies could perform and certify many of the required administrative functions.

The city council action does not change the bulk of the ordinance. Still intact are portions governing the application process and policies regarding location and height of cell towers. Companies are required to pay a $2,000 application fee, plus actual consulting costs up to $7,500.

Wednesday's vote was encouraging news to Jonathan Campbell, government affairs counsel for the Wireless Infrastructure Association, a national trade group representing the wireless telecommunications industry.

It gives both sides an opportunity to sit down and discuss how they can address each others' concerns, Campbell said.

"As a whole, the fee structure they have proposed we feel is not really related to the actual regulation of wireless facilities ... and we have some concerns it may be counter to Georgia law," he said.

Milton City Attorney Ken Jarrard said placing a moratorium on the annual requirements makes sense until the Liberty County case is resolved. Milton is already in litigation with T-Mobile over denial of permits sought for two cell towers in April last year.

While telecom companies often pay landowners for use of the property, several local governments have stepped up efforts to restrict their growth. Most require a series of public hearings. In recent years, governments have added application fees to cover administrative costs to ensure the structures meet specifications.

Cobb County School District and others consider the towers a financial resource. The district receives $900,000 per year from the 30 towers allowed at 24 of its schools. More than half of that money stays at the school.

Schools spokesman Jay Dillon said the district has five pages of rules governing cell tower construction on school property. Schools hold public hearings and notify parents before a decision is made. The construction must also make it through two board meetings, Dillon said.

Residents of Powder Springs convinced the district to vote down a tower planned for Compton Elementary last spring.

"We have had some resistance in certain areas of the county and we've not built a tower as a result," Dillon said. "But we do have 30 that are in place, and they're doing great things for those schools."

Puppy Needs A Home!

MILTON- Active teen and Milton Market president Zack Eller is always on the lookout to help animals.

Recently, a friend of his found a puppy and needed to help find her a home. Zack writes "My friend found this dog and he cannot keep it. It is a five pound black lab puppy. Its about two months old. She will be at the market on Saturday."

If you or someone you know might be interested, please reach out to Joey Santoro at 770-543-8125.

Purchasing Spirits On Sunday Left To Voters.


In an area of the country long known as "The Bible Belt", certain things have always been a given. Good Barbeque, manners, and no booze on Sunday. The later, however, might soon change in Milton Georgia.

Earlier this month, City Council agreed to allow voters to have their say come November on whether or not alcholic beverages could be bought on Sundays. The available time to purchase would be from 12:30pm to 11:30pm.

So what are your thoughts? Do you agree with this option being presented to the populace or do you believe that Sundays should continue to be dry?

Have your say in the comments section below.

Post July 6 City Council meeting wrap-up.

Post July 6 City Council meeting wrap-up


1. Approval of an Ordinance of the City Council to Authorize Fulton County to Conduct Election.
(Agenda Item No. 11-133)
(First Presentation at June 20, 2011 Regular Council Meeting )
(Ken Jarrard, City Attorney)

Approved 5-0

Councilwoman Karen Thurman and Councilman Burt Hewitt were absent

2. Approval of an Ordinance to Amend Chapter 7, Alcoholic Beverages, of the City of Milton Code of Ordinances to Authorize the Package Sales of Malt Beverages, Wine and Distilled Spirits by Certain Retail Package Licensees during Certain Hours on Sundays; to Provide for the Repeal of Conflicting Ordinances; to Authorize a Referendum on the Package Sale of Alcoholic Beverages on Sundays; and for Other Lawful Purposes.
(Agenda Item No. 11-134)
(First Presentation at June 20, 2011 Regular Council Meeting )
(Ken Jarrard, City Attorney)

Approved 5-0


1. Approval of City of Milton Strategic Plan 2012 to 2015.
(Agenda Item No. 11-144)
Discussed at Work Session of May 9 and June 13, 2011
(Chris Lagerbloom, City Manager)

Approved 5-0

2. Approval of the Purchase of Property at 15690 Hopewell Road, Milton, Georgia 30004.
(Agenda Item No. 11- 145)
(Chris Lagerbloom, City Manager)

Approved 5-0

3. Approval of a Resolution of the City of Milton, Georgia Establishing a Moratorium on the Enforcement of the Telecommunications Operating License Fee Associated with Annual Registration for Owners and Users of Telecommunications Facilities.
(Agenda Item No. 11- 143)
(Lynn Tully, Community Development Director)

Moved by motion and vote from First Presentation to New Business
Approved 5-0

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Concert in the Park brings out hundreds.

The City of Milton’s second Concert in the Park featuring Nashville’s Sarah Peacock was a rousing success, bringing more than 200 to Birmingham Park for a relaxing summer evening of music.

Don’t forget that the next concert in the series will take place Aug. 5, also at Birmingham Park. It will feature Milton mother Mandy Gawley. For more information, click here.

Milton may ease cell tower restrictions.

By Patrick Fox
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The City of Milton is poised to back away from portions of its newly revised cell tower ordinance.

The Milton City Council will consider placing a moratorium on fees and annual registration requirements for telecommunications companies operating cell towers. The city's ordinance was revised last August following a five-month moratorium on all new cell tower construction.

The ordinance calls for a more detailed application process and more restrictive policies regarding location and height of cell towers, primarily for aesthetic purposes. It also requires companies pay a $2,000 application fee, plus actual consulting costs up to $7,500.

In addition, companies will pay an operating license fee of $1,000 per tower and $1,000 per antenna array. Finally, the city charges a $250 legal processing fee and $50 administrative fee for lease applications.

Representatives from AT&T, Verizon Wireless and the Georgia Wireless Association opposed the fees insisting the companies could perform and certify many of the administrative functions.

Telecom companies have hinted they might pursue legal action to ease some of Milton's restrictions, City Attorney Ken Jarrard said. The city based much of its revised ordinance on a similar measure passed in Liberty County, which has since been sued over the restrictions.

"We thought it might be prudent to see how that litigation concludes before proceeding," Jarrard said.

Milton already faces a suit filed by T-Mobile last year after the city denied two of three applications for new cell tower construction. The third tower was approved with conditions.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Entrepreneur, 16, revitalizes Milton Market.

Zack Eller shows packages of his dog biscuits at the Milton Farmers Market.

By Patrick Fox
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

A late Friday thunderstorm put a crimp into 16-year-old Zack Eller's Saturday. There was a youth baseball game to make up by noon and another later in the day. But first, he had to supervise more than a dozen vendors at an open market in Milton's Crabapple community.

What was formally known as the Milton Farmers Market, a summer Saturday mainstay the past three years, is now the Milton Market. The shorter name is deceptive.

"We've definitely grown, mostly because I changed the name ... just to expand it, not just to fruits and vegetables but to baked goods and scarves," said Eller, a Milton High School junior. "We've also tried to expand it to the youth, and that's been one of my main goals."

Eller, himself a vendor at the market, sells homemade "Woof ‘em Down" dog biscuits from a center stand on the community grounds near the corner of Broadwell and Mayfield roads. The non-profit business he founded with his brother while in middle school has raised more than $12,000 for animal rescue groups over the years.

From his seat behind a vendor's table Saturday, Eller scanned the panorama of other vendors. There was a girl selling friendship bracelets, agroup of teens selling freshly squeezed lemonade.

"That was the main reason for the name change," Eller said, "to get the youth involved."Until this year, the market was almost exclusively a retail hub for fruits and vegetables. There were also few, if any, young people.

Tim Enloe, who ran the market from its inception in 2009, said he couldn't have found a more qualified successor. He knew Eller as a vendor who set up his dog biscuit stand every Saturday, always on time, always dependable.

This year, Enloe said, he didn't have the time to devote to the farmers market that it needed, so he reached out to Eller's parents, Tom and Traci to take over. Instead, they suggested their son.

"I was not only floored, I was wowed to know that a young man, hardly 16 years old, would be willing to take on this responsibility," Enloe said.

It wasn't the teen's first experience as an entrepreneur. The "Woof ‘em Down" biscuit venture grew from his childhood love of dogs. His first word was "dog," and he began asking for dog food for his birthday when he was 6 so he could contribute to shelters. At 8, he volunteered at animal shelters on weekends, bringing treats to the wayward canines. That's when the idea first occurred to him to start up his own business to benefit animals. With younger brother, Thomas, he formed the non-profit.

Once he took charge of the market, Eller's first act -- changing the name -- surprised Enloe.

"I never would've thought of that," Enloe said. "I'm jealous I didn't think of it but happy he did. What a great idea."

The new name signaled a new lineup. Eller spread the word at school and called, emailed and spoke with potential vendors. He created a website for the event,

Eller's second decision was to move the market from a parking lot near The Olde Blind Dog Irish Pub to its current location, which affords more space. To maneuver through the permitting process and follow all city codes, Eller went to the top.

"I met Zack Eller a few years ago and was impressed not only how he stepped out as an entrepreneur, but also his work with charities," Mayor Joe Lockwood said. "I'm proud of him."
Attendees at the market were no less impressed.

"I kind of thought, ‘Wow,'"
said David Neal of Alpharetta. "It's good for a youth to take the initiative."Paul and Caroline Dunn said they like the new location.

"I think it's cool, very entrepreneurial," Caroline Dunn said. "It's something to do during the summer."The Milton Market runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays through the end of July. After that, Eller plans to get back to baseball and biscuits.

Monday, July 04, 2011

On An Inspirational Note...

Many thanks to Steel Magnolia for sharing this with visitors.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Cities, candidates prepare for election season.

By Rachel Kellogg
Neighbor Newspapers

North Fulton cities are gearing up local elections and have announced qualifying dates for candidates.

Alpharetta's qualifying dates will be Aug. 29, 30 and 31 for candidates running in the Nov. 8 election.

City council Posts 4, 5 and 6 will be up for re-election, and the mayor's seat will be vacant due to term limits.

Two candidates — City Councilman Jim Paine and former City Councilman David Belle Isle — have announced their intentions to run for mayor.

According to City Clerk Sue Rainwater, two referendum questions will also be on the general election ballot regarding Sunday alcohol sales and the downtown redevelopment project.

Johns Creek's qualifying dates for the Nov. 8 election will also be Aug. 29, 30 and 31.

Posts 4 and 6 will be up for re-election, and Post 2 will be vacated with Dan McCabe choosing to not seek re-election to council.

Tim Jennette, who unsuccessfully ran for City Council last year, has announced that he is running for McCabe's vacant post.

Roswell's qualifying period is from Aug. 29 to Sept. 2. City Council Posts 1, 2 and 3 are up for re-election. Mike Nyden, head of The Roswell Organizing Committee, has declared his intent to run for Post 1 — Councilman Rich Dippolito's seat.

Milton's qualifying period for City Council candidates opens Aug. 29 at 8:30 a.m. and closes Sept. 2 at 4:30 p.m.

The districts for the Nov. 8 election are currently occupied by City Council members Julie Zahner Bailey in District 2, Burt Hewitt in District 4 and Alan Tart in District 6.

Engineering consultant Lance Large has announced his intention to run for election in District 6.

Happy 4th Of July From The Beverage Depot!

To Find Out More About The Beverage Depot, click here=>

July 6 City Council meeting notice.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011 Regular Council Meeting Agenda 6:00 p.m.

INVOCATION - Pastor Nancy Evans, Community of Christ Church, Milton, GA



2) PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE (Led by the Mayor)

3) APPROVAL OF MEETING AGENDA (Add or remove items from the agenda)
(Agenda Item No. 11- 138)



1. Approval of the May 16, 2011 Regular Minutes.
(Agenda Item No. 11- 139)

(Sudie Gordon, City Clerk)

2. Approval of the May 25, Special Called Work Session Minutes.
(Agenda Item No. 11- 140)
(Sudie Gordon, City Clerk)

3. Approval of a Parks and Recreation Event License Agreement between the City of Milton and Eagle Stix Lacrosse, Inc. to Offer a Girls Youth Lacrosse Program.
(Agenda Item No. 11- 141)
(Cyndee Bonacci, Parks & Recreation Director)

4. Approval of a Construction Services Agreement between the City of Milton and Horticultural Gardens for the Embankment Restoration Project at Bell Memorial Park in the Amount of $9,107.00.
(Agenda Item No. 11- 142)
(Cyndee Bonacci, Parks & Recreation Director)


1. A Proclamation Recognizing July is Parks and Recreation Month.
(Presented by Mayor Joe Lockwood)


1. Approval of a Resolution of the City of Milton, Georgia Establishing a Moratorium on the Enforcement of the Telecommunications Operating License Fee Associated with Annual Registration for Owners and Users of Telecommunications Facilities.
(Agenda Item No. 11- 143)
(Lynn Tully, Community Development Director)




1. Approval of an Ordinance of the City Council to Authorize Fulton County to Conduct Election.
(Agenda Item No. 11-133)
(First Presentation at June 20, 2011 Regular Council Meeting )
(Ken Jarrard, City Attorney)

2. Approval of an Ordinance to Amend Chapter 7, Alcoholic Beverages, of the City of Milton Code of Ordinances to Authorize the Package Sales of Malt Beverages, Wine and Distilled Spirits by Certain Retail Package Licensees during Certain Hours on Sundays; to Provide for the Repeal of Conflicting Ordinances; to Authorize a Referendum on the Package Sale of Alcoholic Beverages on Sundays; and for Other Lawful Purposes.
(Agenda Item No. 11-134)
(First Presentation at June 20, 2011 Regular Council Meeting )
(Ken Jarrard, City Attorney)


1. Approval of City of Milton Strategic Plan 2012 to 2015.
(Agenda Item No. 11-144)
Discussed at Work Session of May 9 and June 13, 2011
(Chris Lagerbloom, City Manager)

2. Approval of the Purchase of Property at 15690 Hopewell Road, Milton, Georgia 30004.
(Agenda Item No. 11- 145)
(Chris Lagerbloom, City Manager)



14) EXECUTIVE SESSION (if needed)


(Agenda Item No. 11-146)

Support your local businesses.

As a small business owner I can relate with the tough times a lot of our business owners are experiencing.

We’ve heard on the news that the “Great Recession,” as its being called, ended in June 2009 (even though I’m not in the room, I can almost hear your groan). But those are just numbers being crunched by the people who crunch them. Anyone who owns a business can tell you it’s still going and the tough times are probably far from stopping completely. But there’s certainly light at the end of the tunnel.

I know personally I’ve seen things pick up slightly, and I’ve heard from others in businesses across all sectors that it’s slowly getting better. In Milton, we’ve responded by working even harder with our businesses toward success.

I know we’re not going to please everyone with our position or the way we accomplish this mission. But we’ve got to fight for our local businesses to keep this city strong, and we’ve got to protect what makes us unique. We’ve got to keep those store fronts on Ga. 9, at the Birmingham Crossroads and in Crabapple profitable, and if nothing else, viable. This city is a living thing, and if we lose this vital part of our support system, we could wither and die.

So now I’m going to ask for your help. Please support our great local business owners. Eat in our restaurants – we’ve got a great selection that includes pretty much anything you could ever want. Shop in our local stores – be they chain or mom and pop. Procure services from our local providers – building these relationships is what makes life great. Every bit helps, and I’m sure you’ll be proud you stuck close to home once you start to see these efforts paying off.

If you’ve got ideas on how Milton can sustain these entrepreneurs while protecting what makes us the beautiful jewel of North Fulton, come see me. If you are looking for ideas on how to make your city better, stronger and more welcoming to everyone, whether they are businesses or residents, come see me. My door is always open, and so is City Hall. We’re here to serve you, and would love to hear from you.

Mayor Joe Lockwood

Leave fireworks to the pros July 4 / REMINDER.

Personal safety, well-being of animals at risk.

MILTON, Ga., June 28, 2011 - In Milton, using consumer fireworks to celebrate the Fourth of July holiday puts more than just people at risk, so please use the utmost caution and work with your neighbors to minimize the danger.


City of Milton Fire Chief Robert Edgar warns residents that every year thousands of people, most often children and teens, are injured while using consumer fireworks. Despite the dangers of fireworks, few people understand the associated risks - devastating burns, other injuries, fires and even death.

According to a 2009 report by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission there are about 200 fireworks injuries a day during the month surrounding the Fourth of July holiday. The National Fire Protection Association also reports more fires are called in on Independence Day than other day of the year. More than half of these fires are caused by fireworks.

The City of Milton Fire Department hosts a full list of the U.S. Fire Administration's summer safety tips, including how to safely and properly handle the small explosives. On this page, you'll also find tips on safely barbecuing and a wealth of information on protecting your home against common fires.


Equestrian farm owners in Milton have long contended with horses spooked by fireworks, not to mention the fire danger of dry pastures or barns filled with hay.

This year, the Milton Horse Council, a local non-profit group, is trying to raise awareness of the situation.

"We all like fireworks," said Laura Bentley, one of the founders of the group. "We understand it's just a lack of awareness and are willing to be flexible and understanding with our neighbors."

MiMi Sullivan of the Milton Horse Council owns a farm on Bethany Way. Each year, she tries to prepare her animals for the inevitable explosions late into the night.

"Horses are fight-or-flight animals, so they will run at the first sign of danger," she said. "They hurt themselves or people - they'll jump a fence or sometimes just run right through it. It's a very scary situation."

Roger Brown, who owns Brownwood Farm on Wood Road, said often his neighbors, who live in residential neighborhoods, don't realize how close they are to full-scale farming operations. On New Year's Day, Brown lost a foal when its mother panicked, ran and miscarried.

"Even in stalls, the horses still can be injured when they get panicked - and you don't get close to a panicked horse," he said. "The best thing I can tell people is to just let your neighbors know - we can plan for this sort of thing - and help us create a safer situation for ourselves and the animals."

July 4 parade in Crabapple.

The Crabapple Community Association, an non-profit organization of local businesses and residents, will hold a parade at 9:30 a.m. to celebrate Independence Day.

Click here to download a pamphlet for the event.

Everyone of all ages and abilities is invited to participate -- bring your friends, children, dogs, bicycles, wheelchairs, wagons and strollers and join in. And make sure to dress patriotically and decorate whatever you bring, because there will be prizes for best bike, best vehicle, best pet and most enthusiastic.

Milton City Councilman Bill Lusk and his wife Janie will serve as the parade marshals. Organizers said participants should meet up at 9 a.m. at the Braeburn Commercial buildings on Birmingham Highway. Parking is available at Crabapple Baptist Church.

There will be free T-shirts, flags, water and freezer pops until supplies run out.

After the parade, a fire truck, police car and ambulance from Children's Healthcare of Atlanta will be available for children to explore.

For more information, call Sally Rich-Kolb at (770) 448-3860.

Parks and Rec. opportunities for summer.

The City of Milton Parks and Recreation Department has a host of activities this summer, including day camps, a basketball league and skills camps, fitness camps for children and adults, a concert series and the 2nd Annual Community Kickoff at Milton High School.

For more information on the city of Milton's programs and activities, click here. For more information on the city's special events, click here.

2012 Model Year Roll Out and Gala Aug. 25.

Milton Friends of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta will hold a 2012 Model Year Roll out and Gala benefiting Children's Healthcare of Atlanta on Thursday, Aug. 25 from 7 to 10 p.m. at RBM of Atlanta North, 345 McFarland Parkway in Alpharetta (click here for directions).

There will be food from local eateries, music, video games, a live and silent auction and a raffle drawing. Sponsorships are available.

For more information, please contact Amanda White at 404-217-4643 or

Monthly crime prevention tip: Neighborhood safety tips For parents.

By Dennis Nelson

Unfortunately no neighborhood is completely immune to crime. We all want to make certain our family members, especially our children, are safe in our neighborhoods. You can take the following steps to help keep your family and your neighborhood safe:

  • Know where your children are. Have them tell you or ask permission before leaving the house and give them a time to check in with you or be home. If they do not have a cell phone, have them leave a phone number of where they will be.
  • Help your children learn important phone numbers. Have them practice reciting their home phone telephone number and address, as well as your work and cell phone numbers. If they have trouble memorizing this information, write it down on a card and have them carry it at all times. Always let your children know where you will be and the best way to reach you.
  • Set limits on where your children can go in your neighborhood. Do you want them to cross a busy road? Playing in abandoned houses, construction areas or shopping centers? Are there certain homes in your neighborhood that you don't want your children to go to?
  • Get to know your children's friends. Meet their parents before allowing your children to go to their home and keep a list of their phone numbers. If you can't meet their parents, call and talk to them. Ask what your children might do at their house and if they will be supervised.
  • Choose a safe house in your neighborhood. Pick a neighbor's house where your children can go if they need help. Point out other places they can go for help, like nearby stores, libraries and, if close by, police and fire stations.
  • Teach your children to settle arguments with words, not fists. Role-play talking out problems, walking away from fist fights and what to do when confronted with bullies. Remind them that taunting and teasing can hurt friends and make enemies.
  • Work together with your neighbors. Watch out for suspicious and unusual behavior in your neighborhood and get to know your neighbors and their children so everyone can look out for each other.
  • And lastly, have your neighborhood join the Milton Police and Citizens Together (MPACT) program! Click the link below for more information.

Click here for information on becoming a part of the MPACT program.

Milton boasts 28 adopted road segments.

Milton residents should be very proud to know they have surpassed other, much larger, cities in participation in the volunteer Adopt a Road clean-up program.

Led by Julie Pinckney, Milton Grows Green's Adopt a Road volunteer coordinator, the program has grown to 28 roads adopted, which totals more than 28 miles of roads being cleaned.

Adopt a Road volunteer groups clean up our roadways about four times per year and help to keep the community looking great. Special thanks to our adopters: Crabapple Beds and Bones, oXYGen Financial, Stages Premier Realtors, The Foody Family,, Locum Leaders, Windward Law Group, Blue Ribbon Pet & Equine Services, Boy Scout Troop 3000, Re/Max Realtors, Milton Friends of CHOA, One of a Kind Homes, Inc., The Martin Family, Lusk Homestead, AlphaNova Group, D'Aversa Family & Milton Milers, Verizon Wireless Corporate Billing, Milton Business Alliance, Core Physique, Patti Silva in memory of The Walker Family, Hopewell Middle School, Sumrell & Associates, Olde Blind Dog, Crabapple Landscape Experts, Hunters Tree Farm, Young Men's Service League and Pattie Blohm.

Milton awards 5 grants to local schools.

Northwestern Middle School Life Science Teacher Dr. John Bartlett, kneeling, collaborates on Permaculture Project he created with Andrew Butler, a recent graduate of Milton High, Jack Lindon, Chairman of Milton Grows Green and Julie Burroughs, Environmental Club sponsor of Centennial High. The City of Milton recently awarded Northwestern a $500 grant for the installation of phase 2 of the school's outdoor learning center.

Five Milton schools were the recipients of grants designed to enhance

Five Milton schools were the recipients of grants designed to enhance environmental education.

The winning entries included:

Milton High for a pollution awareness education week
Birmingham Falls Elementary for the establishment of an outdoor classroom
Crabapple Crossing Elementary for outdoor classroom grade-level gardens
Hopewell Middle for recycling bins to enhance their recycling program
Northwestern Middle for the development of phase 2 of their new "Permaculture" outdoor classroom.

Funds were provided by Milton's storm water budget (NPDES) and will also include a storm water and water pollution/conservation component for the schools.

Additional grant applications can be submitted for those schools not already receiving grants, with a deadline of Sept. 15, 2011. Both public and private K-12 schools located within the city limits are eligible.

Great American Clean Up a success.

This spring, the City of Milton and Milton Grows Green accomplished a lot during Keep America Beautiful's "Great American Clean Up," held this year from March 1 to May 31. Residents and businesses helped beautify our city in the following ways:

Tree plantings at Bell Memorial Park and Bethwell Community Center
Renovation of Bethwell Community Center
Bulky Trash event in partnership with Alpharetta and Roswell
Milton Master gardeners-designed bioswales at Bell Memorial Park
Trail blazing and bridge construction at Birmingham Park
Recycling Rally at Verizon Wireless
Earth Day Festival hosted by the City of Milton and Milton Grows Green
School environmental grant program launch
Water pollution classes at Hopewell Middle School
Rain barrel workshop
Adopt a Road training, recognition and clean-up blitz
These activities resulted in 185 volunteers donating 550 hours of time and 975 people participating representing seven community groups.

Here's some more numbers:, 300 pounds of litter and 6,000 pounds of bulky trash were collected; a playground was installed; two miles of nature trails were cleaned; 7,200 pounds of electronics were recycled, and 225 students learned about non point source pollution.

Thanks to the entire community's help in making such a difference in the beautification and conservation of Milton!