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Washington Post

Several Georgia communities are involved in one of the largest civil trials in U.S. history. The consolidated case is unfolding in federal court in Cleveland, Ohio, with local governments as the plaintiffs and opioid manufacturers and distributors as defendants.

The case is so complicated a special master proposed grouping the participants into an unprecedented “negotiation class” to try to settle, and participants debated the idea at a hearing Tuesday.  U.S. District Judge Dan Polster, who’s pushed for a settlement in general, showed interest in the novel idea.


  • Kemp Calls For State Agency Budget Cuts
  • Augusta City Government Under Federal Investigation
  • Atlanta United Move To Finals Of U.S. Open Cup

John Locher / Associated Press

President Donald Trump is headed to both Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas, Wednesday in response to the recent mass shootings in the two cities.

Along with the previous week's shooting in Gilroy, California, there were 34 people killed and dozens injured in a single week.

Rick Rojas is also in El Paso. He's the new national correspondent for the South at The New York Times. He joined On Second Thought to give us an update on the situation — and the sentiment — in the aftermath of the El Paso shooting.


On Second Thought For Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2019

Aug 7, 2019

About two dozen Georgia counties and cities are involved in one of the largest civil trials in U.S. history.  They’re some of about 2,000 local governments suing opioid manufacturers and distributors. 

Learn about a proposal floated Tuesday to group participants into an unprecedented “negotiation class.”  University of Georgia Law Professor Elizabeth Burch joins On Second Thought.

Also, Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Steven Rich from the Washington Post joins On Second Thought to outline how court proceedings are used to get documents and data that show where massive amounts of the drugs have gone in Georgia -- and the deadly results.


Spc. Tori Miller / U.S. Army National Guard

Gov. Brian Kemp is telling agencies around the state to prepare for spending cuts.

In a letter on Tuesday, Kemp directed government agencies to develop budget proposals with a 4% spending reduction this fiscal year, ending in June of 2020, and a 6% cut in fiscal year 2021, beginning July of next year.


GovTrack

Among the races for U.S. House of Representatives around the country, few are as closely watched and contested as Georgia's 7th Congressional District. After five-term Republican Rob Woodall declared he would not seek re-election, several have considered entering the race. Challengers include Woodall's 2018 opponent, Georgia Legislators, a former NFL star, business executives and a number of first-time politicians. 

Hear from the candidates who hope to represent Georgia's 7th Congressional District. Each candidate was given two minutes to explain the top issue that has driven them to run for the U.S. House of Representatives. 

Ron Harris / AP

The first death from Legionnaires' disease related to an outbreak of Legionella at the Sheraton Hotel in Downtown Atlanta was confirmed Tuesday by the Georgia Department of Public Health.

There are now 12 lab-confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ disease, including one death, and 61 probable cases, DPH spokeswoman Nancy Nydam said Tuesday. That's up from 55 suspected cases and 11 confirmed.

The Sheraton voluntarily closed July 15. The first set of environmental samples were collected four days later and additional samples were collected July 29, Nydam said.

In this Friday, Jan. 24, 2014 photo, a worker is seen behind the registration window of the emergency room at Grady Memorial Hospital, in Atlanta. In two years, federal payments to hospitals treating a large share of the nation's poor will begin to evapor
David Goldman / AP Photo

On this Special Edition of Political Rewind, an in-depth look at rural health care in Georgia.

  • Atlanta City Council Allocates $1.5m For HIV/AIDS Housing
  • Atlanta's Dept. Of Transportation To Oversee Dockless Scooter Permits
  • Atlanta United Plays U.S. Open Cup Semi-Finals Game Today

Wes Browning

Mining below the surface of ordinary lives has made Joshilyn Jackson a multiple New York Times best-selling novelist.

Her newest book, Never Have I Ever, ratchets things up to thriller level when a new neighbor knocks at Amy’s door. The sultry and charming stranger, Roux, hijacks the agenda at book club, and soon moves onto Amy’s life with a blackmail scheme to expose a long buried secret.


About 250 Atlanta citizens with HIV or AIDS could face eviction. Willoughby Mariano, a reporter at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and Patrick Saunders, editor of Project Q Atlanta, join On Second Thought to discuss why a dispute between contractors and the city of Atlanta is making it harder for the clients of the nonprofit group Living Room to pay the bills.


  • Georgians Can Weigh In On Coal Ash Management In The State
  • Atlanta Hotel Remains Closed After Outbreak Of Legionnaires' Disease
  • After Three E-Scooter Deaths In Atlanta, New Permits Still Frozen 


  • Georgia Supreme Court Finds Prosecutor Caused Mistrial Intentionally
  • Atlanta Department Of Transportation Could Take Over E-Scooter Regulation
  • Report: Toxic Coal Ash Is Submerged In Georgia Groundwater


Grant Blankenship / GPB

A report from leading environmental advocates in Georgia describes how the toxins left over from burning coal for power are being stored by Georgia Power in direct contact with groundwater.  

  

The report from the Southern Environmental Law Center, the Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, The Altamaha Riverkeeper and the Coosa River Basin Initiative, and based on analysis of Georgia Power data, came one day before the only chance for Georgians to tell the federal Environmental Protection Agency what they think about plans to handle the management of those toxins, called coal ash, to Georgia’s Environmental Protection Division.   

 

 

Rene Aguilar and Jackie Flores pray at a makeshift memorial for the victims of Saturday's mass shooting at a shopping complex in El Paso, Texas, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019.
(AP Photo/Andres Leighton)

On this edition of Political Rewind, President Trump speaks out about the gun massacres in El Paso and Dayton. What did he say about solutions to an ongoing crisis of deadly shootings?


Georgia's 6th Congressional District includes Cobb County, Northern Fulton County and parts of Dekalb County.
Federal Election Commission

With every U.S. House seat on the ballot in 2020, candidates across Georgia are fine-tuning their messaging to court voters. Hear from the candidates who hope to represent Georgia's 6th Congressional District north of Atlanta.

Each candidate was given two minutes to explain the top issue that has driven them to run for the U.S. House of Representatives. 

Marriott.com

Eleven confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ disease have been linked to the Sheraton Atlanta, with another 55 cases considered “probable” according to the Georgia Department of Health.

The hotel voluntarily closed its doors for testing on July 15, with a proposed reopening on Aug. 11 at the earliest. That places the reopening very close to Dragon Con scheduled for Labor Day weekend.


  • School Safety Top Of Mind As Students Return To Class
  • Higher Than Usual Tides Test New Road Connecting Tybee Island
  • Two With Georgia Ties Enter NFL Hall Of Fame

Adult Swim

"Squidbillies" is Atlanta-based Adult Swim’s third longest-running animated series. It’s based on the show creators’ experiences here in Georgia – and features a cast of anthropomorphic redneck squids. The 12th season of "Squidbillies" premieres Sunday on Adult Swim. Hear from the co-creators Dave Willis and Jim Fortier who recently joined us on On Second Thought


Chris Pizzel / Associated Press

It’s where The Walking Dead roam the earth.  It’s Black Panther’s home away from Wakanda, and it’s the only spot where Donald Glover’s Atlanta rightfully could be made.  It’s Y’allywood!

After an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease at an Atlanta hotel, health officials have identified 11 confirmed cases and dozens of other people who are potentially affected.  Dr. Allison Chamberlain of Emory University and Amy Wenk of the Atlanta Business Chronicle visit On Second Thought to explore the health and economic ramifications.

GPB’s Kalena Boller returns to On Second Thought to catch us up on current Hollywood productions for when the What’s Filming in Georgia series returns.


Richard Spencer

A system of cameras is being set up in north Georgia in hopes of capturing images of coyotes and learning more about them.

Researchers with the Atlanta Coyote Project are working with partners across the nation to study the effects of coyotes and urban wildlife in metro Atlanta, according to the Associated Press.

Wikimedia Commons

Two former NFL players with ties to Georgia were inducted in the Pro Football Hall of Fame over the weekend in Canton, Ohio.

  • New Markers Added To Confederate Era Monuments In Atlanta
  • Tybee Considers Flooding Solutions For Highway 80, The Lone Access Road For The Island
  • Squirrel Hunting Season Will Begin Soon In Georgia


  • Atlanta Officials Ask Residents To Use E-Scooters Less Following Third Death
  • Vice President Praises Georgia's Abortion Law At Atlanta Event
  • Judge Rules Confederate Battle Flag Cannot Fly During Alpharetta Veterans' Parade


(L) Georgia Silk /Life Magazine / (R) Beth Cogswell/The National Portrait Gallery

Saturday morning, 44 baseball prospects from around the country will take the field at SunTrust Park as part of the first ever Hank Aaron Invitational showcase game. 

 

The event is part of a week long celebration of the Braves’ legend, known as Hank Aaron Week.

GPB

On this edition of Political Rewind, competing visions for creating a better future for Americans are being showcased in Atlanta this weekend.


PEXELS.COM

On Monday of last week, Andy Miller shared breaking news discovered by Georgia Health News and WebMD. Their investigation revealed that two facilities, one in Smyrna and one in Covington, have been releasing high levels of ethylene oxide, a gas that causes cancer. These facilities have been releasing airborne toxins in Cobb County for decades.


  • State Hosts Transparency Workshop
  • Another E-Scooter Death In Atlanta
  • Synagogue Vandalized In Columbus

Jeff Hagerman

Jeff Hagerman is into ruins. The Atlanta-based photographer is an urban explorer who squeezes through cracked windows or unhinged doors to access what remains after natural disasters, economic shifts and the churn of urban development.


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