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ATLANTA – Both COVID and monkeypox rates are starting to decline in Georgia, the state’s chief science officer said Tuesday during an update to the state Board of Public Health. “Last week, we saw a 38% decline in [COVID] cases in Georgia,” said Dr. Cherie Drenzek, epidemiologist and chief science officer for the state Department of Public Health.

BRUNSWICK, Ga. (AP) — Authorities have identified a man who drowned off the Georgia coast last weekend as a prominent defense attorney. Glynn County Coroner Marc Neu said that 55-year-old Page Pate was swimming off St. Simons Island on Sunday when strong rip currents swept him into open waters. Neu said a rescue crew pulled Pate from the water and worked to revive him, but he was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

ATLANTA – Emory University ranks as the 22nd best university in the nation, while the University of Georgia and Georgia Tech are among the top 20 public universities, U.S. News & World Report announced Monday.

ATLANTA – Reversing learning loss stemming from the pandemic, boosting the education workforce and stepping up school safety measures will be Gov. Brian Kemp’s top education priorities if he wins a second term in November, Kemp said Monday. At an elementary school in Oconee County, the governor announced he will ask the General Assembly for a $25 million grant program in the mid-year state budget to help schools pay for additional tutoring and other steps to supplement existing learning loss services.

ATLANTA – Georgia’s film industry took off after the General Assembly significantly strengthened the state income tax credit for movie and TV productions in 2008. The industry’s annual economic impact has soared from a relatively paltry $242 million the year before lawmakers upped the ante on the credit to $4.4 billion last year. Now, the Peach State’s musical performers and producers are urging lawmakers to give them the same boost by sweetening the incentives the state offers their industry.

ANDERSON, S.C. (AP) — A single-engine plane crashed into a lake on Saturday near the border of South Carolina and Georgia. The Federal Aviation Administration told news outlets that the Beechcraft B55 Baron crashed into Lake Hartwell near Anderson Regional Airport in Anderson, S.C. Lake Hartwell is a 56,000-acre lake that spans part of the border between Georgia and South Carolina.

ATLANTA – Sonny Perdue has been a Georgia state senator, governor and U.S. secretary of agriculture. But not until Friday did the longtime public servant officially take on what he called, “maybe the most impactful job I’ve ever had,” when he was formally invested as the 14th chancellor of the University System of Georgia.

ATLANTA (AP) — Authorities say two deputies were killed in an ambush while serving a warrant at a home in a suburb near Atlanta. Cobb County Sheriff Craig Owens said the deputies had returned to their vehicle Thursday night after knocking on the door when another car pulled up. The deputies got out of the vehicle and were talking to a suspect when shots were fired.

ATLANTA (AP) — Authorities say two deputies have been killed while serving a warrant in a suburb near Atlanta, and that a suspect remains barricaded in a home. The sheriff’s office in Cobb County outside Atlanta tweeted that the two deputies died Thursday evening “in the line of duty" and that a SWAT team and other law enforcement officers were at the scene.

ATLANTA (AP) — A pastor, political operative and former high-ranking Atlanta city official was sentenced Thursday to 14 years in prison after a jury found her guilty of charges stemming from a long-running federal investigation into corruption at City Hall.

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