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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.

Cobb County's November unemployment rate was 6.0 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.

$10,000, gun, illegal prescriptions found at Acworth pill mill


ACWORTH, Ga.-- Cherokee County drug agents found $10,000, a handgun, and pre-signed blank prescriptions at an alleged pill mill in Acworth.

Cherokee County's Multi-Agency Narcotics Squad (CMANS) got its first tip about illegal activity at the Atlas Healthcare and Rehab clinic from an investigator with the state medical board responsible for monitoring medical doctors and practices. Based on that tip, and additional investigation, a search warrant was served Monday afternoon.

Keeping kids’ minds sharp over winter break

Keeping kids’ minds sharp over winter break

By Megan Nellen, Lower School Principal at The Walker School

1. Community Service: Use the break to plan community service ideas for the coming year. Kids can write flyers and notes asking neighbors to save and donate any holiday décor they plan on tossing out to be used next year for a family without a tree or decorations. Children of all ages can help make and deliver sandwiches for a homeless mission or shelter or make cards and pictures for a local nursing home.

2. Reuse, Recycle, Entertain: Collect leftover boxes, ribbons and paper and have your kids use them to build a robot or make a game. Each year at The Walker School second graders use cardboard to make arcade games.

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.

Police: Women used prayer to distract victim


ACWORTH, Ga. – Police say two suspected thieves used prayer to distract a victim at a local Walmart.

Authorities said Shayla Sutherland and Jessica Pina conned five unsuspecting victims in Cobb, Douglas and Paulding counties.

"The two suspects in all of these cases would use some type of tactic distracting victims to focus their attention elsewhere," said Acworth Police Capt. Mark Cheatham.

Weekend roadwork: Once again, avoid I-20 on the west side

Weekend roadwork: Once again, avoid I-20 on the west side

(WXIA) -- Drivers are asked to avoid non-essential travel on Interstate 20 on Atlanta's west side this weekend.

Georgia Department of Transportation crews will perform several road projects on I-20 as well as other areas of metro Atlanta. Lane closures and delays are expected.

All work is weather permitting.

This weekend's work by county includes:

Cobb County
* Two northbound lanes of Cobb Parkway will be closed at the Chattahoochee River on Saturday from 7 a.m. to noon for pavement repairs.
* Two southbound lanes of Cobb Parkway will be closed at the Chattahoochee River on Saturday from noon to 6 p.m. for pavement repairs.

Celebrate National Poinsettia Day with Pike Nurseries

Celebrate National Poinsettia Day with Pike Nurseries

(WXIA) -- Poinsettias, often known as The Christmas Flower, are holiday staples. These classic flowering plants add a dazzling, festive flair to any space. Whether they are used on mantels as beautiful displays or on dining tables as stunning centerpieces, florist-quality poinsettias add the perfect holiday touch to home décor.

In honor of National Poinsettia Day on Friday, Dec. 12, the garden experts at Pike Nurseries reveal fun facts and fresh care tips that will keep poinsettias beautiful all season-long!

Poinsettias have become a symbol of the Christmas season. Pike Nurseries offers fast facts to educate and debunk the myths associated with poinsettias.

History Lesson: This Christmas classic is native to Mexico and was first introduced in the United States in 1825.