WQCH and Georgia 93.7 Local News Headlines 12-28-23


The Catoosa County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public to help find missing juvenile Aireanna Williams.  The 16-year-old was last seen early in the morning on Dec. 26th on Carriage Drive in Catoosa County.  The Sheriff’s Office says she is believed to be with 18-year-old Logan Evans. He also left his home but has been in contact with his family, so is not listed as missing.  If you have any information about the missing teen, they ask you to call (706)-935-2424, or 911.

Georgia officials say they’re working to prevent drunk driving deaths during the New Year’s Eve holiday weekend.  The Governor’s Highway Safety Association (GHSA) and Lyft have partnered with the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (GOHS) to help fund rides for those who may have had too much to drink.  A $20,000 grant will pay $20 toward a ride home for Lyft account holders.  Lyft account holders can claim their credit by using the discount code GAGOHS2023 in their app to get a one-time $20 credit for a ride.

Georgia ranks third in the nation for student loan debt after the District of Columbia and Maryland.  The average borrower owes more than $41,000 for their college diploma.  These numbers come from the Education Data Initiative, an organization that researches the U.S. education system.  In all, 1.6 million Georgians owe $68.6 billion in student loans, and just over half of them are 35 or older.  Loan payments, paused during the pandemic, kicked back in this October, creating a new monthly expense for more than 15% of Georgians.

The Catoosa County Board of Commissioners is seeking volunteers for three panels focusing on issues including growth, property taxes and health care.  Catoosa County announced last week there are three vacancies on the county’s planning commission and one vacancy on its tax assessor board. The county is also looking to make an appointment to the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities Region 1 planning board. Region 1 is made up of 31 counties, including Catoosa, Chattooga, Dade, Murray, Walker and Whitfield counties.