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Weekend roadwork gets off to slow start in 2015

Weekend roadwork gets off to slow start in 2015

(WXIA) -- The end of the holiday season means the start of another year of construction on metro Atlanta roads and highways.

Next week, drivers are asked to avoid Interstate 285 north in Cobb County if possible. Projects and lane closures in the area are expected to cause delays.

As in 2014, all roadwork is weather permitting.

Here are some of the projects scheduled for the first weekend and full week of the new year.

Keep Conyers-Rockdale Beautiful celebrates successful green year

Keep Conyers-Rockdale Beautiful celebrates successful green year

CONYERS, Ga. – Rockdale County government commends Keep Conyers-Rockdale Beautiful (KCRB) on its “green year” close out. Finishing the year on a high note as a Keep Georgia Beautiful Governors Circle Award recipient, KCRB held several environmental stewardship events in 2014 with the goal of educating the public about the importance of litter prevention, beautification, waste minimization, and the benefits of improved livability.  

The County recently participated in the 2014 Rivers Alive Cleanup on Oct. 11. More than 200 volunteers, including 122 youth, from local schools, church groups, civic organizations, scout troops, small families, and individuals cleaned up local waterways, parks, illegal dumpsites, schools, subdivisions, roadways, Albert Shoals, and other locations. The cleanup removed 10,680 pounds of garbage and 14 tires, and covered about 5.81 miles of waterways.

Metro Atlanta unemployment plunges to 6.5 percent

Metro Atlanta unemployment plunges to 6.5 percent

(WXIA) -- The unemployment rate in metro Atlanta dropped to 6.5 percent in November.

That's down five-tenths of a percentage point from October's 7.0 percent. The rate was also 7.0 percent in November 2013.

Rockdale County's November unemployment rate was 7.3 percent.

State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said the Atlanta area added nearly 18,000 jobs in November. Many of the new jobs are in transportation, administrative services, health care, food service, finance and manufacturing, according to data from the Georgia Department of Labor. Unemployment insurance claims also dropped last month.

Metro Athens had Georgia's lowest November unemployment rate, at 5.0 percent. The highest was 9.0 percent, in the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region.

Conyers Police search for gunman in deadly shooting

CONYERS, Ga. -- Conyers Police have identified the victim of a deadly shooting early Tuesday as 24-year-old Jarvis Hughes.

His mother was in tears when she arrived at the Meadow Crossing Apartments on Irwin Bridge Road, where the shooting happened shortly before 3 a.m.

Police said a woman in Hughes' apartment called 911 to report he'd been shot at least once. He died at the scene.

Investigators spent hours on the scene collecting evidence and interviewing neighbors.

They do not have a suspect and have not released a description.

"I wish I had information to provide about a suspect or vehicle," said Officer Kim Lucas. "We want to make sure we talk to everyone."

Last weekend of roadwork until 2015

Last weekend of roadwork until 2015

(WXIA) -- Drivers in the Atlanta area: Just make it through this weekend, and then you'll get a much-needed break.

The Georgia Department of Transportation said it will suspend all construction-related lane closures from Dec. 23 to Jan. 2.

Until then, many of the usual areas will see crews hard at work through next Monday morning.

As always, all work is weather permitting. A complete list of closures and possible delays can be found at 511ga.org.

Cobb/Fulton counties
* Two eastbound lanes of I-20 will be closed for about one mile past Six Flags Parkway from 9 p.m. Friday to 9 p.m. Saturday for bridge joint and header replacement.

Coweta County
* One northbound lane of I-85 will be closed between two miles south of Highway 14 and McCollum-Sharpsburg Road from 8 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for barrier wall setting.

Georgia-based Carmike backs out of 'The Interview'

Georgia-based Carmike backs out of 'The Interview'

ATLANTA (WXIA) -- Columbus-based Carmike Cinemas has become the first theater chain to decide not to show the upcoming Sony film "The Interview", according to both Variety and The Hollywood Reporter Tuesday evening.

Carmike operates 2,917 screens in 278 theaters over 41 states, including nine theaters in metro Atlanta -- Athens, Cartersville, Canton, Conyers, Newnan, Snellville, Cumming, Hiram and southwest Atlanta.

Sony said earlier in the day Tuesday that they were moving ahead with plans to distribute the controversial comedy on Christmas Day, despite messages from hackers that appeared to threaten violence at theaters showing the film. The threats evoked the memory of 9/11, and suggested that violence of that sort would come to theaters and theater goers as a result of the film's going into wide release on Christmas weekend.

Fake guns and fast choices

CONYERS, Ga. -- A 12-year-old boy died in Cleveland died after police say he grabbed a gun from his waistband. It was fake. "Guns are not toys," Cleveland Police Chief Williams said. "We need to teach our kids that."

It's a message Conyers Police are echoing after a similar close call. They're telling parents to think twice before giving a toy gun as a gift this holiday season.