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Metro unemployment exceeds Coweta rate in Nov.

Metro unemployment exceeds Coweta rate in Nov.

ATLANTA -- A new report shows that Georgia's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has fallen to 9.2 percent.

State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said the new jobless rate fell from 10.2 percent in October, which is the largest one-month decline since 1977.

Georgia's 9.2 percent rate compares to 10.4 percent in November 2010.

Officials said the state's unemployment rate declined because of an increase in jobs. In additional to retail, the state also saw growth in financial and business services, and education and health care.

Among the state's cities, metro Dalton had the highest rate at 11.8 percent. Metro Athens had the lowest at 6.9 percent.

Coweta County's unemployment rate was 8.8 percent in November 2011.

Salvation Army donations dramatically down

Salvation Army donations dramatically down

ATLANTA --  This is the time of year we're used to seeing Salvation Army volunteers ringing their bells and accepting donations. This holiday season, however, their red kettles are turning up low.

RELATED | Valuable Krugerrand coin found in Salvation Army kettle
MORE | Salvation Army ringer goes for a record

As of Dec.

Season of Giving: Ways to volunteer this holiday season

ATLANTA -- Throughout the month of December, we've had viewers reaching out to ask how they can donate or volunteer this holiday season.

MORE | Ways to Give this Holiday Season

So we asked for your input: what are your favorite volunteer opportunities? What are some charities doing good work for others? We've compiled a list with plenty of options to keep you busy through the new year and beyond:

Atlanta Day Shelter
What: stuffing gift bags for homeless women
When: Thursday, Dec. 22 and Friday, Dec. 23
Contact: 404-351-5532 (Judy Barge) or www.atlantadayshelter.org.

The Money Tree files for Chapter 11

The Money Tree files for Chapter 11

BAINBRIDGE, Ga. -- The Money Tree Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, citing difficulties branching from customers who didn't repay loans.

The Bainbridge, Ga.-based consumer lender said Dec. 19 it filed for bankruptcy at the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Alabama, where its accountants are located.

The Money Tree makes small consumer loans as well as loans for cars under the brand name Best Buy Autos. That arm is not part of the bankruptcy filing and will continue operating as normal.

The company intends to stay in business while it goes through reorganization plans -- it will cut the number of branches from 92 to 46.

"We have done everything possible to try and protect the integrity of our investors and the company," president Bradley Bellville said in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Toys for Tots short on toys

Toys for Tots short on toys

SUWANEE, Ga. -- At Thanksgiving, 11Alive News reported that Toys was short on donations this year. Now less than a week before Christmas, it looks like some boys and girls will just have to go without. 

"We basically have no new influx of toys coming in right now," said Theresa Wilhite, assistant coordinator for Atlanta Toys for Tots.

The U.S. Marine Corps Reserves Charity has been giving toys to needy children since 1947. Atlanta Toys for Tots gives toys to agencies in 17 Metro Atlanta counties. 

Many of the bins at their Suwanee warehouse, which are usually filled with toys from drop-off locations around the region, are empty or near empty.

"The difference this year is the demand for toys is much greater," Wilhite said.

She said more than 1,000 agencies have requested toys this year. Last year 800 agencies were given toys. 

Rep. Smith named Environmental Leader of the Year

Rep. Smith named Environmental Leader of the Year

NEWNAN, Ga. -- A state representative from Coweta County has received the Environmental Leader of the Year in Golf award from the Georgia Golf Environmental Association.

Rep. Lynn Smith (R-Newnan) earned the honor for her efforts in resolving Georgia's critical water issues in recent years. She received her award from PGA professional Stewart Cink.

"As chair of the House Natural Resources & Environment Committee, I've worked hard to balance the needs of good environmental stewardship and a sound economy," Smith said. "It is an honor to be recognized as a recipient of Georgia's first Environmental Leader of the Year in Golf award."

"Golf is an important industry in Georgia, where we proudly pioneer new grasses and techniques that benefit all," she added. "We can't do enough bragging about that!"

ADOPT A PET: Meet Dasher

ADOPT A PET: Meet Dasher

 

NEWNAN, Ga. – If you dream of coming home to a wet nose, wagging tail and tons of kisses (in addition to, perhaps, a half-chewed shoe or an overturned trashcan) adopt a puppy from your local Humane Society. According to the ASPCA, approximately 5 million to 7 million domesticated animals enter animal shelters nationwide, every year, and approximately 3 million to 4 million are euthanized. However, you can change those numbers by adopting a "companion" for yourself or for your family. Pets are an investment but, in our opinion, an investment well worth the money.

Dasher is a medium, adult Labrador Retriever mix and he’s on the Urgent Pet Adoption list. A representative at the Animal Control Center thinks he’s is about two years old. Dasher is pretty large but he won’t get any larger and she has been neutered. Dasher was found roaming outside of the shelter; shelter staff thinks he was a doorstep drop-off. Dasher can be adopted for $70.