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Metro Atlanta unemployment drops to 6.1 percent

Metro Atlanta unemployment drops to 6.1 percent

(WXIA) -- The Atlanta area's unemployment rate was 6.1 percent in February, down from January's 6.2 percent. It was also down a full point from the rate of 7.1 percent in February 2014.

Douglas County's unemployment rate was 6.7 percent last month.

Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said the drop was due to fewer layoffs and more new jobs. Many of the gains came in business, construction, education, government, and leisure and hospitality.

Nearly 39 percent fewer new claims for unemployment insurance were filed in February as well.

Metro Gainesville had Georgia's lowest February unemployment rate, at 5.1 percent. The Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest, at 8.1 percent.

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Ga. health rankings: Douglas County

Ga. health rankings: Douglas County

(WXIA) -- A new report offers detailed health statistics for each of Georgia's counties.

The findings, which are posted at countyhealthrankings.org, determined that Forsyth is Georgia's healthiest county. Early is the least healthy.

Douglas is Georgia's 27th healthiest county, according to the data. It ranks 43rd for quality of life, 25th for health behaviors (such as smoking and obesity), 66th for clinical care, 34th for social and economic factors (like graduation rates and violent crimes), and 125th for physical environment.

Here are some interesting takeaways about Douglas County:

Driver turns himself in after hitting pedestrian

Driver turns himself in after hitting pedestrian

DOUGLASVILLE, Ga. -- The driver accused of fatally hitting a pedestrian in Douglas County has turned himself in to police.

Brian Russell, 51, has been charged with felony vehicular homicide, hit and run, and failure to report an accident.

Investigators said Russell is the driver who struck 56-year-old Audrey Hartley early Sunday at the intersection of Fairburn and Midway roads. Russell drove away after hitting Hartley, but later turned himself in.

The Georgia State Patrol is investigating the accident.

Weekend roadwork: The usual suspects

Weekend roadwork: The usual suspects

(WXIA) -- It's going to be "more of the same" on the Atlanta area's highways and interstates this weekend, as Georgia Department of Transportation crews take to the streets.

Drivers are asked to avoid travel on interstates 20 and 285, if possible. GDOT will close lanes in several areas, which could result in lengthy delays.

As always, all work is weather permitting.

Interstate 20

Three eastbound lanes will be closed between Langhorn and McDaniel streets from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for bridge joint repairs.

Two westbound lanes will be closed between the Downtown Connector and Langhorn Street from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for bridge joint repairs.

Two westbound lanes will be closed between Fulton Industrial Boulevard and I-285 from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for bridge joint repairs.

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Woman injured after car collides with train


DOUGLASVILLE, Ga. -- Authorities are at the scene of an accident involving a train and a vehicle in Douglasville.

The incident happened at Highway 92 and Bankhead Highway. Georgia State Patrol officials say a car flipped over after colliding with a train.

A woman was pulled out of the car and taken to the hospital in serious condition.


Stay with 11Alive for more details.

Pike Nurseries Becomes an Employee-owned Company

Pike Nurseries management is pleased to announce the company has combined with Armstrong Garden Centers, its sister corporation in California, to operate under an established Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP). The plan transfers ownership to Pike Nurseries and Armstrong Garden Centers employees through a defined contribution benefit program. 

 

“The ESOP program allows us to reward our employees for their hard work and longevity with the company,” said Mike Kunce, CEO and Chairman of the Board at Pike Nurseries and Armstrong Garden Centers. “This structure not only enables management continuity, but also ensures the employees who have built and sustained Pike Nurseries and Armstrong Garden Centers play an integral part in the future success of the business.”

 

Douglas County hit-and-run driver arrested, student recovering


DOUGLAS COUNTY, GA (WXIA) – The woman charged with hitting a student getting off a school bus in Douglas County has been arrested and identified.

A spokesman for the Georgia State Patrol tells 11Alive News 46-year-old Yung Lam tried to illegally pass a school bus while it was unloading students. Destiny Wilson, a 17-year-old student, was hit by the car before it sped off Monday afternoon.

The impact knocked the girl down in pain and shattered her cell phone. She was clear-headed enough to borrow a friend's phone to call help for herself, however.

"She said, 'Granny, I think you're going to have to come and get me; I don't think I can walk up that hill,'" said Jean Hutto, the teen's grandmother. "So, I said, what happened?"

"I'm okay. Just shaken up a little bit," said Wilson.