July is "National Ice Cream Month"
August is "National Sandwich Month"
July - August 2015

In This Issue
Employee Spotlight: Betty Middleton
New Hires, Promotions, & Retirees
CCG Colorful Choices Nutrition Challenge
Why Is It Important To Recycle in City Buildings?
Employee Retirement Sessions
EMTs and Paramedics named on Good Calls List
Parks & Rec News
From Intern To County Staff Member: Logan Kipp
CCG Photo Contest
Pet Corner
Healthy Recipes
Healthy Food Quiz
Upcoming Community Events
Quick Links
Employee Spotlight
Betty Middleton - Tax Assessor

 

Betty Middleton is currently the Chief Appraiser for the Tax Assessors' Office. She directs and oversees the appraisal staff and has been with the office since

1964. She was first employed as a cost clerk, a position which involved calculating the square feet of sections of a building and helping to determine the total value. She took advantage of opportunities that were offered and advanced through the ranks to where she is today.

 

Mrs. Middleton has faced numerous challenges. Implementing the changing State of Georgia laws as they pertain to the office has been one of the greatest. Senate Bill 346 in 2010 for 2011, for instance, changed the day to day operations of the office. Before Senate Bill 346, Tax Assessors were required to notify citizens only when their property values changed. Since 2011, every citizen must be notified. Notices escalated from approximately 10,000 to more than 67,000. This led to about 4 times the number of appeals to the Board of Tax Assessors and Board of Equalization. Other challenges have involved interaction with property owners as the office's function is to place a fair market value on property. Some owners become very upset over new values. She has found over the years that if the appraiser treats them as he or she would like to be treated when they leave the office they're calmer but not necessarily happy. In addition, since becoming Chief Appraiser, budget constraints have become very challenging.

 

Mrs. Middleton has witnessed many changes over the span of 50 years. For example, when she was employed, there was no CCG Family. In 1964, there was a City Government and a County Government. She went to work for Muscogee County. The city and county governments consolidated in 1970 and she remained. When she began working in government everything was done with pencils, pens, calculators, and typewriters. The Tax Commissioner at that time and her staff typed the voluminous tax digest on manual typewriters. Fortunately, much of the work is now computerized.

 

Mrs. Middleton noted that God has blessed her and her family tremendously over the years. She married William (Bill) F. Middleton, Sr. in 1952. They were married almost 52 years before he passed away in 2004. They parented two children: a son William (Frankie) and a daughter Beverly. In addition, they have six grandchildren and three great grandsons. On a professional level, she has had the opportunity to work in all three government buildings - the old Courthouse, Government Center, and now the City Services Center. She has been able to work through the consolidation of two governing bodies with many Mayors, different Chief Appraisers and hundreds of peers. This was accomplished by being eager to learn new methods and ways to do the job better for less, where possible. In addition, she stressed that many of her accomplishments have resulted from the popular advice that she lives by:   "Always do unto others as you would like others to do unto you."

 

Welcome and Congrats to Our New Hires, Promotions, & Retirees

NEW HIRE LIST APRIL AND MAY 2015 

Engineering

Dominic Rome

 

Inspections and Codes

William Hart

 

Municipal Court

Keiana   Jones                

        

Muscogee County Prison

Robert Dixon  

Michou Belizaire              

 

Parks & Recreation

Aiyana YEgins

Alea Turner        

Alli Murphy

Ambionna J Dallas

Amy Prince        

Anatasia Collins

Antjuan Smith          

Antrell Crowell          

Ar'reil Smithson

Austin Hightower      

Bailey Diaz

Blake Konans

Christophe D Mcghee

Christy Pritchard

Danielle Lee

Darren D Weaver

David Johnson

David Pierce        

Daysia R Franklin      

Deja Robins        

Destini Johnson            

Destiny Ogletree

Elica Ortega            

Ezbon Risper        

Felton J Chinn  

George J Allen

Hannah Head

Harryson Powell

Howard Williams      

Jacalyn Pearson        

Jaliyah Giles          

James Keefover

Jared Almanza

Jeffrey Hackey        

Jereline Melendez-Garcia

John Nielsen        

Jonathan Clark        

Jonathan Karastury      

Joseph M Gibson

Julissa Santoyo          

Kailey Lytle              

Kandreona Williams      

Katie Shannon        

Kenneth W Mott

Kevin J Mccallister

Kevin J Oatis

Kishawn C Mills

Lauren Porter              

Linda Willoughby

Madeleine H Drew

Madison Thornton      

Mar Darius Gibson                  

Mary Mcbride

Meghan Obleton        

Morgan Daniels

Nadiya L Johnson

Niakeele White          

Nicholas Belen

Nyssa Goodroe

Patricia Miller  

Patricia Smith          

Phillip Nolin          

Richard Baran

Richard Cravens

Richard L Baran

Sarah Culpepper            

Savannah Brown

Shaquille Perryman

Sharon Sherpa              

Shaunte Scott          

Sheridan A Woods

Summer Stanford

Sydney Norris        

Tiffani Kindred          

Tony W Belton

Tra'von Seegers-Cook      

Trey Giles

Troyce S Pair

Tyeshia L Harris    

Victoria Holmes

Wendell K Gordon

Xavier M Jerido

 

Police Department

Jacy Williams      

Brent Nihiser        

Gregg Ramsdell

Zachary Cole          

William Oakes          

Steven Oliver        

John Poe            

Bradley Waldie        

 

Public Works

Eric Boyd          

Lemuel Miller        

Antie Brown                

Richard Irvin          

Charles Outlaw        

Brian Berry        

Donna Huntsman      

Jonathan   Levan          

William   Page          

Arthur Williams      

Clarence Williams      

William Brannon  

David Griffin      

Brandon Hatcher        

Dale Bennett        

Marvin Edge          

Cory Moore          

Allen Thomas        

 

Sheriff's Office

John   Corbett      

John Motos

Michael Miller        

          

Tax Assessor

John Williams    

John Massengale

 

Tax Commisioner

Ni Gel Lindsey        

Trade Center

Brandon Crittenden    

Devin Faison        

Scott Norrell

 

Metra

Douglas Jones      

Jazze Odom          

 

 

Promotions

City Managers Office

Teasha Johnson
Assistant to the City Manager

Crystal Williams
Executive Assistant

Pamela Hodge
Deputy City Manager-Planning

 

Fire & Emergency Medical Services

Robin Simmons 
Fire Captain EMT/AD

Quincy Miller
Fire Sergeant EMT/AD

Bobby Southerland
Fire Captain AD

Parks & Recreation

Sofia White

Employment Coordinator

Raymond Bryant

Park Maintenance Worker I

Dolores Smith

Community Schools Site Supervisor

 

Public Works

Alexander Bryan

Maintenance Worker III

Joseph Sims

Maintenance Worker I

 

Police Department

Annette Belk

Human Resources Technician

 

Sheriff's Office

Sara Robertson

Accounting Clerk

 

Retirees

Fire & Emergency Medical Services

Labrit D Jackson

Fire Sgt. EMT. BD

11 Years

Police Department

Theresia Culberson

Administrative/Human Resource Technician

19.5 Years

Martha McGowan

Support Services

20 Years

 

Michael D. Miller

Corporal BD

20 Years

 

Sheriff's Office

Donna Cox

Deputy Sheriff

21 Years

Margaret A Rouse

Deputy Sheriff AD

28.5 Years

Newsletter Archives
Check out our archive section for previous editions here

 

Newsletter Staff

Jackie Goodwin 

Vickie Hughes 

Iris Jessie   

Donnie Kent

Jenni McDonald

Sheila Risper

Jenny Teague

Cindy Ware
Sofia White

 

Suggestion Box
Do You Have An Idea That Will Improve Our City Government?

Send your suggestions
here

311 Citylink
311

CCG Employees Participate in Colorful Choices Nutrition Challenge

 

 

The call for employees to eat more fruits and veggies as a part of the Colorful Choices Nutrition Challenge was issued in May. Approximately 125 employees enthusiastically answered the call!  

 

These brave souls have eaten 556 servings of tomatoes, 312 servings of Broccoli, 292 servings of Carrots and 257 servings of Spinach. Of course they have also eaten considerable amounts of other veggies but these are the top ones.

 

Since one of the goals of the Challenge is to encourage participants to eat as many colors as possible participating employees are choosing red, orange, yellow/white, green and blue/violet color groups. By spreading daily choices across the rainbow of colors, participants are guaranteed the best produce has to offer - vitamins, minerals, fiber and phytochemicals - for better health.

 

Weekly Raffles have been held and so far the following individuals have received $10 gift cards for earning at least 8 points each day for 7 days or 56 points each week.

 

Week 1 Winners

Shelly Hall

Jeremy Hattaway

Denise West

Darrell Copeland

Cindy Sprouse

 

Week 2 Winners

Alyson Cederholm

Anne-Marie Amiel

Beth White

Michael Jordan

Sandy Hobbs

 

Week 3 Winners

Cheryl Tate

Jeff Griffin

Karen Thompson

Jennifer McDonald

Libbie Tinker

 

Week 4 Winners

Adam King  
Sherry Evans 
Rae McConnell 
James Toelle 
Vickie Graves
 

Week 5 Winners

Jeff Griffin 
Joseph D'Angelo 
Katie Hartford 
Jarrell Schley 
Marie Harrell 
 

  

  

Why Is It Important To Recycle in City Buildings?

   

City Manager Isaiah Hugley directed that all CCG Buildings should participate in the recycling program.

 

Everyone is talking about recycling but what are the advantages of participation? There are some definite advantages for the CCG because of the large amount of paper, cans and plastic that is generated daily. Although some of our paper has to be shredded because of security or sensitive information on the paper a large amount of paper is simply discarded.

 

Recycling makes Sense and Cents! Here are a few advantages:

 

The advantages to recycling are, it prevents the material from being discarded into our landfill. That may not seem like at big deal when you consider your 3 gallon trash can beside your desk. When you multiply your trash can times all the other trash cans in your office, then add all the trash cans in other government buildings, it begins to add up. Estimates on the cost of landfill space vary from $350,000 to $500,000 per acre. Our landfill, Pine Grove, sits on about 375 acres but only a portion of that land is usable for disposal of garbage. The usable life of our current landfill at the time of our last report is about 32 years. Once the Pine Grove Landfill is full it will be closed and there is no more available land within Muscogee County to build another landfill. So the option will be to pay higher fees and haul the garbage to a landfill outside of the county. When you recycle and extend the life of Pine Grove you postpone that inevitable closing and cost to you, the tax payer.

 

Another advantage to recycling is the City actually earns revenue from your recycled items. Yes, we collect process and sell the recyclable items and earn revenue. No, it most likely will not help you get a raise, at least not directly but revenue earned goes back into the Integrated Waste Budget and helps offset the cost of operations. The more the City earns from recycled goods the more can put back into the Integrated Waste budget and the less we have to depend on supplemental money from General Fund. Also the more revenue the Integrated Waste budget can earn to offset costs of operation, the more money it will have to purchase updated and efficient equipment to collect and deal with your garbage. The more efficient we become the more we can save. And the cycle continues.

 

So recycling helps extend the life of the landfill and it earns revenue for the City to offset expenses. But there is one other reason to recycle. That is "It's the Right Thing To Do." A wise man once told me to do the right because it is "It's the Right Thing to Do." So I encourage you to do the Right Thing.

 

Ron Smith

Deputy Director of Public Works

Employee Retirement Sessions

  

The Social Security Administration (SSA) and the Columbus Consolidated Government (CCG) Human Resources Department have partnered to provide information and answer questions related to retirement planning.

 

Two sessions on June 29 and July 1 have already been held for employees. Employees were given information on how to establish a "mysocialsecurity" on-line account, normal retirement age (not everyone has 65 years of age as their "normal retirement age) and about the CCG DROP (Deferred Retirement Option Plan).    

 

Additional sessions will be held at the dates and times below: 

 

July 7, 2015 - Tuesday

Public Works - 7:00 am - 8:30 am

CCG Annex - 9:30 am - 11:00 am

 

July 10, 2015 - Friday

Comer Gym - 11:30 am - 1:00 pm

Other sessions MAY be scheduled in August.

 EMTs and Paramedics named on Good Calls List
 

GoodCall, founded in February 2015, is a consumer-focused website where people and information intersect. GoodCall's objective is to provide access to information consumers need to make career, educational, financial and other decisions that will shape their future by using unbiased and unfiltered information.

 

GoodCall recently used data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Census Data and Indeed.com to rank the list of best places in the U.S. for Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) and paramedics to live and work. The information analyzed which small cities provide the best salary, job climate and lifestyle for EMTs and paramedics.  

 

The Columbus Georgia - Alabama MSA was ranked #22 on the list.

 

This is great news for potential employees and for those desiring to move to our area.

 

For more information you can visit the website at www.goodcall.com/data-center/best-small-cities    

    
Parks and Recreation News


This July we're celebrating 30 years of Park and Recreation Month and the  enduring importance of parks and recreation for the world. From the start, parks were created to serve the people-to give them a place to appreciate nature, exercise, socialize and have fun. This mission lives on and will continue to intensify into the future.

For a listing of activities and events, please log on to http://www.columbusga.org/parks/

 

Awarded 2015 Playful City USA Community

The Columbus Parks & Recreation Department has been awarded with a 2015 Playful City USA designation for the 2nd time. The national recognition program honors cities and towns across the country for making their cities more playable. The Columbus Parks & Recreation Department has always strived to create playability within our community that would allow all kids the opportunity to get balanced and active play. With over 52 parks and numerous recreational facilities of all types, Columbus is proud to offer a myriad of recreational opportunities for youth of all ages as well as adults to have playability.

 

Lisa Castile, Cultural Arts Program Supervisor, Book of Golden Deeds Award Recipient

Congratulations to Lisa Castile upon receiving the Exchange Club of North Columbus' Book of Golden Deeds Award for her efforts in the fight against hunger which benefitted thousands of people in the Chattahoochee Valley Area and for her leadership, passion, enthusiasm and endless hours of service to others.

 

National Association of Counties (NACo) Achievement Awards

Two Columbus Parks and Recreation programs were recognized for their innovative design by the National Association of Counties (NACo). 2015 NACo Achievement Awards were awarded to: "Hands-In Inclusive Gardening Program" developed by Melissa Crawford, Therapeutic Recreation Program Supervisor and "Summer Camp Spanish Program" developed by Millie Del Toro and Shelley Tippens, District Supervisors of Community Schools.

 

From Intern To County Staff Member


CCG Planning Department's very own Logan Kipp was featured in the 2015 summer issue of the ACCG: Georgia County Government magazine. Kipp was interviewed about his transition from intern to a full-time employee, as well as what his roles were then and how they helped him get to where he is now.

The full interview is featured online on the accg.org website. 
CCG Photo Contest
Congratulations to Kyle McGhee, an employee of the Public Works Department, for winning the Stars, Stripes and Freedom - What They Mean to Me - July 4thIndependence Day Photography Contest. Kyle said,  "As small town Americans, we are are free to do as we please and pursue our own happiness.  Even though a facial expression cannot be seen, I believe most viewers would agree that the peacefulness of the moment illustrates TRUE FREEDOM! " 
Pet Corner

Your Guide to Choosing Healthy Pet Food
by Chris Illiades, MD 

Trying to choose the best pet food for your animal can be confusing. Do you really know what nutritional claims like "real beef flavor" and "all natural" mean? Actually, animal protein in pet food can come from the scraps and by-products left over from meat processing, and that expensive bag of "premium" dog food could actually contain chicken feet as one of its protein sources.

 

Pet food ingredients are regulated on a state-by-state basis. The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) establishes a national standard for ingredients, definitions, and nutrient levels, but the organization has no enforcement authority. This means that AAFCO does not regulate pet food, but it does provide standards for what goes on pet food labels. The bottom line? If you want to choose the healthiest pet food, you should understand the basics of their labels.

 

A Pet Food Label Primer

 

Unfortunately, pet food labeling can be misleading. Knowing what to look for can help:

  • Name equals content. Pet food cannot be named "Beef for Dogs" unless it contains at least 95 percent beef. If a pet food clearly states a type of meat, it is usually safe to assume that is what your pet will get.
  • Beware of doggy "dinners". The exception to the 95 per cent rule is when pet food manufacturers combine a meat name with the terms "dinner", "platter", "entrée", "nuggets", or "formula." When pet food manufacturers use these words, the meat may make up as little as 25 percent of the pet food.
  • Steer clear of the terms "flavor" and "with". When a pet food says "Beef Flavor Dog Food," it means that the product just needs to taste like beef and might be beef meal or beef by-products. The word "with", as in "with real beef", means that manufacturers only need to include 3 percent beef by weight.
  • Ignore superlatives. Terms like "premium", and "gourmet", and even "super ultra premium", are not regulated, so they don't mean anything.
  • Know the difference between "natural" and "organic". The term natural is not an official definition, so it can be used indiscriminately. Organic, on the other hand, does have a strict legal definition and cannot be used unless the pet food meets the U.S. Department of Agriculture's standards.

Columbus Animal Care & Control Center at 706-653-4512 http://www.columbusga.org/publicservices2/Animal_Control/ 

 

Remember: **CCG employees may adopt for FREE at the Columbus Animal Care & Control Center**

($50 charge for spay/neuter voucher applies)

 

Healthy Recipes

 

Grilled Fish Tacos 

1 ½ pounds Mahi Mahi

½ Cup Taco Seasoning

1 Tbsp Canola Oil

½ tsp Kosher Salt

½ tsp Black Pepper

12 Corn Tortillas, warmed

Shredded Cabbage

Nonfat Greek Yogurt

Hot sauce

DIRECTIONS

Preheat the grill. Sprinkle the fish with the oil, salt, black pepper and taco seasoning; grill the fish for 5 to 6 minutes per side to cook through. Serve fish in warmed corn tortillas topped with shredded cabbage, yogurt, and hot sauce, if desired.

 

Note: There are many adjustments you can make based on your preferences - try some diced tomato, sour cream, fresh squeezed lime wedges, avocado slices or guacamole.

 


 

Banana Split In A Jar 

 

1 Banana

2 Tbsp Crushed Pineapple in its own juice

2/3 Cup Nonfat Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

2 Tbsp Lite Chocolate Syrup

4 Tbsp Lite or Fat Free Whipped Topping

2 Cherries for garnish

2 - 6 oz jars or clear dish

 

 
Directions:   
Place half of the banana slices in the bottom of each jar. Top each with 1/3 cup of frozen yogurt, 1 Tbsp crushed pineapple, then 1 Tbsp each of chocolate syrup. Finish with with the whipped cream and top with a cherry, serve immediately.

 

(2 servings)

 

What's Your Nutritional IQ?
Healthy Food Quiz  

 

  

Test your Food IQ and Enter in for a Chance to win a $5 gift card to Subway! All questions have to be correct to be eligible for the drawing. Please send answers to
humanresourcesdepartment@columbusga.org by July 22, 2015.    CCG Employees Only

 

 

Are You a "Super Foods' Superhero?

 

1. Which nuts have healthy fats, fiber, and protein?

A. Almonds

B. Peanuts

C. Walnuts

D. All the above

 

2. Which fish has the healthiest FATS?

A. Cod

B. Flounder

C. King mackerel

D. Salmon

 

3. What is the healthiest part of an egg?

A. Yolk

B. Whites

C. Yolk and whites

D. Neither

 

4. You should eat at least five servings of super foods every day?

A. True

B. False

 

5. What are Super Foods?

A. Foods full of nutrients

B. FDA approved foods

C. Foods that fight cancer

D. Organic foods

 

Mar/Apr 2015 Health Foods Quiz Winner- Teresa Snellings, Parks & Recreation

Answers to the March/Arpil 2015 Healthy Foods Quiz- 1.A; 2.D; 3.B; 4.A; 5.C         

 

Information for the questions provided by,

http://www.webmd.com/diet/rm-quiz-super-foods  

Upcoming Community Events
July - August 2015 

  

Columbus Civic Center

400 Fourth St. Columbus, GA 31901 

 

 

Rodeo With Soul

Saturday, July 25 

7:30 PM - Tickets $22.00 - $26.00

                

For more information, please visit columbusciviccenter.org or call 706-327-4142.

 

Britt David Cultural Arts Studio

Stop by Britt David Cultural Arts Studio to see local artists creating and displaying art work. While inside, check out our summer classes and sign up for a drawing to WIN artwork or a FREE PAC MAN pottery class for a group of 10. PAC MAN contest runs from July 1-16.

For more information, call 706-653-4196

 

 

Therapeutic Recreation

Cow Appreciation Day

Tuesday, July 14

10:00 am - 2:00 pm

Meeting at Pop Austin Recreation Center and heading over to

Bradley Park Chick-fil-A

 

80's Party

Friday, July 31

7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Pop Austin Recreation Center

 

National Night-Out Block Party

Tuesday, August 4

5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Pop Austin Recreation Center

 

Summer League Basketball Invitational

Friday, August 7

9:00 am

Pop Austin Recreation Center

 

Friday Night Social

Friday, August 28

7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Pop Austin Recreation Center 

For more information, please contact Melissa Crawford at mcrawford@columbusga.org or call 706-323-8707.

 

 

Recreation Services 

Michael Fluellen Community Center

80's Varity Show

Thursday, July 16

7:00 pm

Michael Fluellen Community Center

 

National Night-Out Talent Show

Tuesday, August 4

6:00 pm

Michael Fluellen Community Center

  

School Supply Giveaway

Saturday, August 8

11:00 am - 1:00 pm

Michael Fluellen Community Center

               

For more information, please contact Chris Bass at cbass@columbusga.org or 706-327-4142.

 


Columbus Consolidated Government - www.columbusga.org | 100 10th Street | Columbus | GA | 31901