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Atlanta Track Club launches scholarship program

Atlanta Track Club launches scholarship program

(WXIA) -- Youth running groups, rejoice -- the Atlanta Track Club has created a scholarship program just for you.

The Peachtree Jr. Participant Challenge will award scholarships to the three organizations that have the most children registered for the 2014 Peachtree Jr. or Lil' Peach Dash.

The first place team will be given a $1,500 scholarship, a $1,250 cash donation from the Atlanta Track Club and $250 in Sports Authority store credit. Two runners-up will each get $750 scholarships, $500 donations and $250 in Sports Authority credit.

"Through the Peachtree Jr. Participant Challenge, we are able to give back to organizations that share our goal of inspiring children to be healthier and more active," Atlanta Track Club Executive Director Rich Kenah said in a release. "Atlanta Track Club is proud to partner with Sports Authority to offer these scholarships to provide extra motivation to keep kids moving."

Deaths decline on Ga. highways

Deaths decline on Ga. highways

(WXIA) -- The number of fatalities on Georgia's highways fell in 2013.

The Georgia Department of Transportation announced Monday that 1,186 people were killed in car crashes on state roads last year, 13 fewer than in 2012. It's the eighth year in a row the total number of deaths has fallen.

"The reduction in fatalities over eight years means that more than 500 additional persons will get to celebrate the life events that are special to us all," Governor's Office of Highway Safety Director Harris Blackwood said in a release. "We must continue to work toward reducing injuries and death on Georgia roads."

Georgia's worst year on record for highway fatalities is 2005, when 1,748 people died.

Nation statistics are not yet available. In 2012, the number of fatalities increase about 5 percent to 36,200.

Weekend traffic: All delays are weather permitting

Weekend traffic: All delays are weather permitting

(WXIA) -- Crews will continue working on the usual road projects this weekend -- as long as the weather cooperates.

The Georgia Department of Transportation is also warning drivers of heavier traffic than normal, due to school systems beginning their spring breaks.

"We apologize for the delays, and there will be big delays," GDOT District Construction Engineer Shun Pringle said in a release. "We understand that this is a spring break for some folks, but so are the next three or four weekends."

Weekend work begins at 10 p.m. Friday on the Interstate 85/Georgia 400 Interchange. Four left lanes of I-85 south from a half-mile north of Clairmont Road to North Druid Hills Road will be closed between midnight and 7 a.m. Saturday and Sunday, and from midnight to 5 a.m. Monday.

Pringle said all lanes will reopen Monday at 5 a.m. The closures are due to overhead sign replacements.

Unemployment rate drops to 6.9 percent

Unemployment rate drops to 6.9 percent

(WXIA) -- Metro Atlanta's unemployment rate fell to 6.9 percent in February.

That's down from 7.1 percent in January and 8.4 percent in February 2013.

Georgia Department of Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said the decrease was due to fewer layoffs. However, the area still lost nearly 2,000 seasonal jobs last month.

Rockdale County's unemployment rate was 7.7 percent in February.

Metro Athens had Georgia's lowest unemployment rate, at 5.1 percent. The Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest, at 9.7 percent.

Blimpie celebrates 50th birthday with 50¢ sandwiches

Blimpie celebrates 50th birthday with 50¢ sandwiches

(WXIA) -- Friday, Apr. 4 is Blimpie's 50th anniversary, and the Arizona-based sandwich chain is celebrating with a great lunch deal.

The first 200 customers at participating restaurants next Friday will receive regular-sized Blimpie Best subs for only 50¢.

Blimpie will also hold a contest in May and June to send one lucky winner and a guest to the 50th state -- Hawaii -- and will give away fantastic prizes all year, including tablets, sandwiches and $50 gift cards.

For more information about all of Blimpie's promotions and to find a location, visit blimpie.com.

Ga. Race to the Top 'Year Three' Report

Ga. Race to the Top 'Year Three' Report

(WXIA) -- The U.S. Department of Education recently released its "Year Three" Report for the 12 states participating in the Race to the Top grant initiative.

Educational practices and successes in Georgia were highlighted throughout the report.

"We have taken on some major initiatives and our success is a direct reflection of the collaborative efforts between our department, other education agencies and the hundreds of participating teachers, principals and district leaders around our state," Dr. Susan Andrews, Deputy Superintendent of Race to the Top Implementation in Georgia, said in a release.

"While educational reform work is never easy, we are pleased with the significant progress that our state has made as reflected in this report," Andrews added.

Some highlights from the report include:

* Nearly 300 Georgia teachers were placed in state public schools from alternative certification programs.

Rockdale Water Resources lowers credit card convenience fees for customers

Rockdale Water Resources lowers credit card convenience fees for customers

CONYERS, Ga. Rockdale County Water Resources (RWR) today announced a reduction in credit card convenience fees for commercial and residential water customers.

The reduced electronic transfer fund fees will apply to all commercial and residential water customers who pay water bills with a credit card via the pay-by-phone system, RWR’s online payment system or in person. Residential customers will now pay $.25 less in convenience fees, and commercial customers will save $2.55 each time they pay by credit card. The new credit card convenience fee for residential customers is $2.25 and $9.95 for commercial customers. Convenience fees for residential and commercial water customers who pay with an electronic check will remain the same at $1.95 per transaction.