published Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

Region Digest: Convicted killer flees prison

PIKEVILLE, Tenn.

Convicted killer flees prison

An inmate has slipped away from a state prison while working on the property as a trusty.

The Tennessee Department of Correction said in a news release Monday that Garland Godsey disappeared Sunday afternoon from the grounds of the Southeastern Tennessee Regional Correctional Facility in Bledsoe County.

Godsey, 44, was serving a 25-year sentence on a second-degree murder conviction in Cumberland County. His sentence would have expired in 2018.

The department is seeking public tips in finding Godsey.



NASHVILLE

Teachers surveyed for school input

Tennessee teachers are being surveyed about the environment at their schools.

According to the Tennessee Department of Education, it's the first statewide survey of its kind.

All school-based licensed educators anonymously and voluntarily can share their perceptions of the teaching and learning environment, which research has shown to be critical to student achievement and teacher retention.

As part of Tennessee's First to the Top reform initiative, the survey will provide additional data for school and district improvements. Also, results are expected to influence state policy.

The survey is being conducted through March 11.

Details are at www.telltennessee.org.



SAVANNAH, Ga.

Port money lacking in budget

Georgia's senators and two congressmen say they'll keep pushing for federal funding to deepen the shipping channel to Savannah's port after President Barack Obama's proposed budget contained no money for digging.

Obama's budget released Monday proposed $600,000 for preconstruction work on the Savannah project. But that's far short of the $105 million Georgia port officials want in hopes that dredging might begin next year.

Savannah's container port — the fourth-busiest in the U.S. — is racing to deepen its harbor to allow supersize cargo ships expected to use an expanded Panama Canal by the end of 2014.

Sens. Johnny Isakson and Saxby Chambliss, along with Savannah Reps. Jack Kingston and John Barrow, say they will keep fighting to win funding for the project.



CHICKAMAUGA, Ga.

Walker GOP to meet tonight

The Walker County GOP will meet today at 6:30 p.m. in the Wallace Building at Lee and Gordon's Mills in Chickamauga.

Tricia Pridemore, a candidate for Georgia state GOP chairwoman, will be the guest speaker.

For more information, call county GOP Chairman Nathan Smith at 423-364-2964.

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