Don't redevelop doomed neighborhood

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City Administrator Fred Russell's idea to use taxpayers' money to redevelop the Bethlehem community is outrageous!

That community was destroyed by generational welfare lowlifes, crack-cocaine users, alcoholics and the like -- the kind of people who blast loud music from their cars and homes which disrupts decent peoples' lives. There were many fine, outstanding people in Bethlehem, but by far the decline was because of the bad apples. Now we are all supposed to pay to rebuild it so their lowlife descendants can destroy it again? We don't approve.

Augusta Commissioner Betty Beard, who lived in the Bethlehem community, told me that when she lived there it got to the point that the crack cocaine problem was absolutely uncontrollable, and that Richmond county law enforcement would not "do anything." We do not believe her. We think that what happened was a culture of decline. It was mostly a community of people who were used to turning their heads on wrongdoing -- Betty and the late Commissioner Lee Beard included. The "culture" was the problem.

Unfortunately, their "culture" has not changed. The generational welfare, ghetto-project mentality is a class unto itself. The people who come from it are not content until they have trashed their surroundings. We have watched them time and time again. These people's votes are easy to manipulate, and the Beards' manic political drive proved to be a lethal combination that further stagnated the Bethlehem community.

Enough is enough. Spend some money to restore the historic bricks under the asphalt on Crawford Avenue. Raise the stakes in Harrisburg. Make Harrisburg attractive to black and white upwardly mobile people. Push the riff-raff out of Harrisburg so that we will not have to battle generational welfare people who are not content until their surroundings are trashed, and we all have no decent community standards left.

Butch Palmer

Augusta

(The writer is an organizer of the community group HONGKONG -- Harrisburg Organization Networking for Gentrfication to Keep Our Neighbor from becoming a Ghetto.)

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pthsssh
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pthsssh 05/02/09 - 02:58 am
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Get 'em, Butch! We've got

Get 'em, Butch! We've got your back covered. Keep up the good fight!

charliemanson
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charliemanson 05/02/09 - 03:53 am
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Why spend "taxpayer's money"

Why spend "taxpayer's money" in Harrisburg when the same "culture of decline" is there, also. Moreover, there was no need of calling Betty Beard a liar when she stated the "sheriff dept wasn't doing anything." After Ronnie Strength became Sheriff, he, promptly, got rid of "several bad apples" who were turning the blind-eye to drug dealing in the county.

SargentMidTown
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SargentMidTown 05/02/09 - 04:21 am
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Betty Beard is a liar. Betty

Betty Beard is a liar. Betty is out for Betty.

3headedbeast
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3headedbeast 05/02/09 - 04:40 am
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To Mrs. 0r Mr. Butch

To Mrs. 0r Mr. Butch Palmer,is he a man or a woman?The genrational welfare didn't not make majority of crack cocaine purchased in your community,Harrisburg, are by white people.So, Ms. Palmer if your community so infested with drug dealers lets not forget they would not be their if their were no drug buyer then move and another thing tell them,or call the police,slum landlords to maintain their property the houses are unfit to live in and look bad on the outside thats not Betty Beard fault.So, what you need to do Ms. Palmer is crackdown on slum landlords in your area.

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 05/02/09 - 07:08 am
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Especially cogent letter, Mr.

Especially cogent letter, Mr. Palmer. Thank you. Is Alfred Russell planning to use SPLOST money to sink into the Bethlehem rat hole? Please say no, Alfred. Please don't say, "What, me worry?"

JohnQPublic
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JohnQPublic 05/02/09 - 07:17 am
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Slum landlords are a large

Slum landlords are a large part of the problem. Why does the city allow substandard housing? Some of the homes can't even qualify for any rent subsidies because they need to be bulldozed. I bet we would be shocked to know who owns these dumps. Clean up these properties and it will help clean up the area.

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 05/02/09 - 07:26 am
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Instead of bulldozing, why

Instead of bulldozing, why not just let the property deteriorate naturally? It's a "back to nature" thing.

Riverman1
93626
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Riverman1 05/02/09 - 07:43 am
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LL...haha. That brings up

LL...haha. That brings up visions of vines growing over houses and grass punching up through the streets with drug caused mutant offsprings of those who live there running amok looking for food.

HYPOCRITES 08
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HYPOCRITES 08 05/02/09 - 07:45 am
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I see that Private Pyle does

I see that Private Pyle does not know the history of Bethlehem Community. Given his train of thought, why should any money go into the Harrisburg Community?

Junket831
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Junket831 05/02/09 - 07:51 am
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The people won't change until

The people won't change until the County starts to "crack" down on home owners who do not maintain properties or keep after tenants who live in their properties. There is a simple solution. If a property is abandoned, the County should take possession as a public health crisis. The owner should lose all rights for failure to maintain their property. This should include not only the large number of absentee owners, but also those individuals who either refuse to maintain or are unable to do so for financial or health reasons. If you don't maintain the property then sell it or the government should seize it. The property should be sold to an individual or group that agrees to maintain it OR if nobody buys it within a short period of time, level the structure. The abandon and substandard properties just attract problems and ruin the neighborhood for everyone else.

dashiel
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dashiel 05/02/09 - 07:58 am
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If you like HONGKONG, you'll

If you like HONGKONG, you'll love AAAALAA (African Americans Against All Lame [filtered word] Acronyms).

shivas
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shivas 05/02/09 - 08:06 am
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Butch is one heckuva paper

Butch is one heckuva paper tiger. Probably a weakling who was beat-up quite a bit as a child, and a coward as an adult.

double_standard
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double_standard 05/02/09 - 09:06 am
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Well for those of you that do

Well for those of you that do not know the Bethlehem coummunity and many others downtown are prime real estate. The Augusta Historic District that will stretch from the river to Wrightsboro Rd. If you don't believe me ask someone from Savannah about its Historic District 15 years ago because it didn't exist.

Tots
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Tots 05/02/09 - 09:37 am
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I agree with JUNKET831.Alot

I agree with JUNKET831.Alot of the problem is the property owners they dont care who lives there just as long as they pay the rent and dont make them repair anything.

jack
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jack 05/02/09 - 10:05 am
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Butch is one heckuva paper

Butch is one heckuva paper tiger. Probably a weakling who was beat-up quite a bit as a child, and a coward as an adult.
Posted by shivas on Sat May 2, 2009 9:06 AM....Why don't you find out if he is a coward. Let us know where and when, but we won't hold my breaths.

jack
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jack 05/02/09 - 10:07 am
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If the landlord doesn't keep

If the landlord doesn't keep the property up, plant cudzu in the yard and it will do the job and be green at that.

SargentMidTown
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SargentMidTown 05/02/09 - 10:38 am
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HYPOCRITES 08 ...Harrisburg

HYPOCRITES 08 ...Harrisburg has been neglected but Beard (out of guilt) has worked to get big money into stylish street lighting and other improvements in Bethlehem. The Harrisburg tax base has been far better than Bethlehem and there is a number of people who are fighting for decency and upwardly mobile to take Harrisburg. Very good reasone why Richmond county should spend to restore the paved bricks under the asphalt on Crawford ave. http://www.smoothroads.com/psi/brick-street-restor.html http://pubserv.ci.columbus.oh.us/transportation/surfacing/brick.htm http://www.blairhistory.com/bricks/links_new.htm The Crawford Ave brick pavement will be enjoyed by all of Augusta. It will bring back charm and encourage upwardly mobile people to move into Harrisburg to increase the tax base. WIN WIN for downtown and Richmond county.

RichmondCountyResident1
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RichmondCountyResident1 05/02/09 - 10:40 am
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Great letter Butch, NOT!!! So

Great letter Butch, NOT!!! So you don't want to waste good money on a black slum, but put it in a white slum. What a novel approach. Great attitude also, you inspire so many to help? I guess you're a member of the upper low class, huh?Harrisburg, has been a ghetto for as long as I can remember.

SargentMidTown
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SargentMidTown 05/02/09 - 10:42 am
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Brerd lives in a high

Brerd lives in a high security building because she and her husband got so many decent people angry in Bethlehem. Betty is afraid. She is trying to set things straight in Bethlehem but she is going over board. It is not fair to Harrisburg.

SargentMidTown
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SargentMidTown 05/02/09 - 10:48 am
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RichmondCountyResident .....

RichmondCountyResident ..... Ask the old decent people of Bethlehem and they will verify what I am saying. Most of the people are gone from Bethlehem and Betty has put enough money into it already. Fair is fair. This is not a black white issue. Where do you get this as a black white issue?

SargentMidTown
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SargentMidTown 05/02/09 - 10:54 am
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RichmondCountyResident Please

RichmondCountyResident Please reread the letter and then reread your comments. Harrisburg has ALWAYS been an integrated neighborhood. Go to Magnolia cemetery and look at the burial records in the Rollersville cemetery which is located in Harrisburg. It is filled with black and white people who lived in Harrisburg over a hundred years ago. I have been here 50 years and it has always been black and white during my life and my grandparents lifes.

SargentMidTown
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SargentMidTown 05/02/09 - 11:03 am
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3headedbeast ...."Palmer if

3headedbeast ...."Palmer if your community so infested with drug dealers lets not forget they would not be their if their were no drug buyer"...Your comment has the same tone as does Betty Beards. You both bypass the personal responsibility of the citizens and make up excuses. We have a zero tolerance drug policy in Harrisburg. Things have improved greatly here in Harrisburg.

SargentMidTown
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SargentMidTown 05/02/09 - 11:07 am
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charliemanson ...There are

charliemanson ...There are two neighborhood organizations who have been working to improve Harrisburg and push the trash out. We are winning. That is why money should be spent on Harrisburg. Also, Beard has neglected Harrisburg and already put an unfair share of tax money into Bethlehem. It is past time to put money into Harrisburg.

SargentMidTown
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SargentMidTown 05/02/09 - 11:12 am
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charliemanson " After Ronnie

charliemanson " After Ronnie Strength became Sheriff, he, promptly, got rid of "several bad apples" who were turning the blind-eye to drug dealing in the county.....You are correct. Sheriff Strength is a great Sheriff and does a great job. I am glad that you point that out.

RichmondCountyResident1
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RichmondCountyResident1 05/02/09 - 12:03 pm
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Sarge , slums is slums,

Sarge , slums is slums, period. This letter is only trying to lay blame on one group. Mrs. Beard, made a deal to help the Laney Walker and Bethlehem neighborhoods. This issue was solved last year. Trying to change it at this late date, is reneging. It won't fly.

Chuchi
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Chuchi 05/02/09 - 12:05 pm
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Maybe Butch Palmer is a

Maybe Butch Palmer is a "paper tiger," and maybe he isn't. I don't know the gentleman. But I do know that he was willing to send in a LTE with his real name posted under his real opinion, thereby exposing himself to nasty insults and name-calling like "weakling" and "coward" by certain individuals who are not using their real names and are not saying these childish things to Mr. Palmer's face. Takes a seriously non-cowardly attitude to accomplish that, I must say. I wonder if there is such a thing as a "cyber tiger"?

business owner again
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business owner again 05/02/09 - 12:48 pm
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AMEN again and again to what

AMEN again and again to what Chuchi says ... and what Mr. Palmer said. My experience over the years has been that black leaders really don't won't to improve things too much or they will have nothing to complain about and will have to stop being the worst racists in this country. It cuts both ways folks.

GGpap
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GGpap 05/02/09 - 02:26 pm
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ABSOLUTELY, Churchi! GGpap

ABSOLUTELY, Churchi! GGpap

HillGuy
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HillGuy 05/02/09 - 02:55 pm
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So Butch is a homosexual, I

So Butch is a homosexual, I don't see what that has to do with anything in this letter.

Tots
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Tots 05/02/09 - 03:05 pm
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SargentMidTown-If you read

SargentMidTown-If you read some of the things Richmond countyResident says it makes me wonder if they even live in this county.Betty is just like some of the other politicans.They only help a few and if they have something to gain.They should put money into helping to restore and save Harrisburg.Much better than wasteing our taxpaying money on a new stadium.There is alot of history in that neighborhood.

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