This is a newsmagazine featuring the key stories of the day that are relevant to you.  It’s a community forum for and about metro Atlanta. Host Rose Scott knows the ins and outs of covering news important around Atlanta.

She’ll lead discussions on the issues that impact where we live. WABE’s news team is going into metro Atlanta neighborhoods to provide context, storytelling and a sense of place. You’ll hear not only from the biggest newsmakers, but also from folks who don’t often get a voice.

“Closer Look” features a mix of local national and international stories and interviews. It’s an interactive space to share ideas and dig deeper into issues. It’s not just about Atlanta; it’s a program for Atlanta.

Featured Episode

NPU-V community Discusses The Reinstatement Of Officer Garrett Rolfe; Fulton County Library Opens For Two Days A Week; GSU Launches Micro-Mobility Lab

DeMicha Luster, NPU-V community leader, joins “Closer Look’ to discuss the Atlanta Civil Service Board’s ruling to reinstate Garrett Rolfe, the former Atlanta police officer who shot and killed Rayshard Brooks last summer. Plus, Gayle Hunter Holloman, the executive director for the Fulton County Library System, discusses the re-opening of Fulton County libraries. Lastly, educators Chris Wyczalkowski, Deidre Oakley discuss Georgia State University’s Urban Studies Institute creation of micro-mobility lab to study micro-scale transportation.

Closer Look: Goodr and Ponce City Market Reduce Food Waste Pt. 2; Growth in Fayetteville; And More

Monday on “Closer Look with Rose Scott”:

  • 0:00: Rose Scott gives a news brief on early voting across the state, which begins today.
  • 1:31: The largely rural city of Fayetteville, Georgia is growing fast. The town is currently home to Pinewood Studios, where Marvel films a large portion of their movies. How did Fayetteville become a destination for a major film and TV production studio? Mayor Ed Johnson says the city is rebranding itself in the face of impending growth. We ask him about his goals for Fayetteville.
  • 20:53: We continue our look at Goodr, a new app designed to reduce food waste and combat hunger for communities in need. Last week, we talked with Goodr CEO Jasmine Crowe about the goals of the program. Now we talk with two restaurateurs in Ponce City Market using the program to cut down on food waste in their own restaurants. We talk with Linton Hopkins of Hop’s Chicken, and Geoff Melkonian of Farm To Ladle.
PCM Food Hall Chef Linton Hopkins and Geoff Melkonian with Rose Scott. (Courtesy of Lizzie Williams)
  • 39:08: In the 1940s, a U.S. government study deliberately infected Guatemalan prisoners, soldiers and mental health patients with sexually transmitted infections. A new report finds tissues from these unethical experiments may still sit on the shelves in U.S. government labs. The study, published in the Milbank Quarterly, calls for a “complete public accounting” of whether the U.S. still has the specimens. We talk with study co-author and Georgia State University Law Professor Paul Lombardo.

Closer Look is produced by Candace Wheeler, Emilia Brock and Trevor Young.

Closer Look: Author Alice Walker; Coretta Scott King’s LGBT Advocacy; And More

Friday on “Closer Look with Rose Scott”:

  • 0:00: Rose Scott gives a newsbrief on yesterday NFL draft pick by the Atlanta Falcons, and the announcement that Gov. Nathan Deal will sign his last state budget next week.
  • 10:00: There are books, essays, poems, short stories and children’s books, all flowing from Georgia native Alice Walker. Rose sat down with the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “The Color Purple”, and we hear their conversation.
  • 40:25: A former Eastern Air Lines employee met Coretta Scott King on the day after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Their connection that day would turn into a life-long friendship. On what would be Mrs. King’s 91st birthday, Winston Johnson joins us in studio, as he recalls Mrs. King’s LGBT advocacy and the bond they shared.
(Emilia Brock/WABE)

Closer Look is produced by Candace Wheeler, Emilia Brock and Trevor Young.

Closer Look: Life After Hate with Christian Picciolini; Georgia Transit Legislation; And More

Thursday on “Closer Look with Rose Scott”:

  • 0:00: Rose Scott gives a news brief about how Rear Admiral Ronny Jackson, President Donald Trump’s nominee and White House physician, has withdrawn from consideration to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs. This comes amid several allegations citing Jackson having a pattern of unprofessional conduct. Jackson has denied the accusations and says it all stems from a disgruntled colleague. In a statement to Closer Look, Georgia’s senior senator, Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson stated, “I respect his decision, and I thank Admiral Jackson for his service to the country. I will work with the administration to see to it we get a VA secretary for our veterans and their families.” Iskason chairs the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee.
  • 6:55: Christian Picciolini tells his story of spending eight years as a member of a violent, white power skinhead group – and how he reformed. Picciolini is now the co-founder of a nonprofit peace advocacy organization called Life After Hate. He also wrote a memoir, “Romantic Violence: Memoirs Of An American Skinhead.” He was recently in town to participate in a panel discussion about the current state of hate in Atlanta and across America.
  • 39:17: The Georgia State Legislature passed landmark legislation that establishes a regional transit governance and funding framework in metro Atlanta. The legislation creates the Atlanta-region Transit Link Authority, or The ATL, which will be charged with regional transit planning for 13 counties in metro Atlanta. And the 2019 state budget includes $100 million to fund transit projects statewide — the most significant state investment in transit in Georgia history. We’ll hear more about this focus on Georgia’s transportation and transit infrastructure from Doug Hooker, Executive Director of the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC), and Chris Tomlinson, Executive Director of the State Road and Tollway Authority (SRTA) and the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority (GRTA).

Closer Look is produced by Candace Wheeler, Emilia Brock and Trevor Young.

Closer Look: New Snellville Panhandling Ordinance; The Decline of Brick-and-Mortar Retail; And More

Wednesday on “Closer Look with Rose Scott”:

  • 0:00: Rose Scott gives a news brief about how Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal’s announcement earlier today that Pandora, the largest music streaming service in the U.S., is expanding its presence and will create 250 jobs here in Atlanta over the next three years. Pandora plans to hire for positions in product and engineering, sales, client services, legal, and human resources.
  • In other news, a group calling themselves the DeKalb Drivers Support Coalition plans to hold a press conference tomorrow morning — right next to DeKalb County Schools Superintendent Dr. Stephen Green’s office. In a press release, the DeKalb Drivers Support Coalition says Superintendent Green is planning to meet with “an illegitimate drivers’ committee that does not represent the organizing workers.” All this comes after DeKalb County bus drivers staged a three-day sickout in order to protest for higher pay and better retirements benefits.
  • Also, today marks 16 years since the death of rapper Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes. Lopes was part of the Atlanta-based R&B and hip-hop trio TLC. She died in a car accident in Honduras in 2002.
  • 10:08: The city of Snellville has adopted a new aggressive ordinance against panhandling, restricting where people can ask for money and enacting punishments for people who lie about why they need cash. The new rules, passed March 21 in a 4-1 vote, prohibit people asking for money from making physical contact with the people they are soliciting, following them or “generally scaring or intimidating them.” Anyone convicted of violating the city ordinance can be fined up to $1,000 or sentenced to up to six months in prison. Snellville City Councilman Roger Marmol was the only council member to vote against the ordinance. He joins us in studio to talk about why.
  • 34:12: Toys’R’Us is one of the latest retail chains to announce store closures. This follows a major trend nationally and across the state of Georgia of businesses closing down and leaving empty buildings behind. What’s behind this, and what are the consequences? We talk with Denish Shah, professor of marketing and analytics at Georgia State University, and Joe Allen, executive director for the Gwinnett Place Community Improvement District.

Closer Look is produced by Candace Wheeler, Emilia Brock and Trevor Young.

Closer Look: Atlanta HBCUs with W. Kamau Bell; Gwinnett Transit; And More

Tuesday on “Closer Look with Rose Scott”:

  • 0:00: Rose Scott gives a news brief on the “sickout” taking place amongst DeKalb County bus drivers, which started last week as drivers participated in a sickout as a demand for higher pay and better retirements benefits. According to DeKalb County Schools, 63 drivers called out of work yesterday that’s down from 224 on Friday. The school district is using substitutes to cover the shifts, and therefore do not expect any delays this week.
  • Also, a preview of an upcoming conversation with Christian Picciolini, a former white supremacist leader who tells his story of spending eight years as a member of a violent, white power skinhead group and how he reformed. Picciolini is now the co-founder of a nonprofit peace advocacy organization called Life After Hate. He also wrote a memoir, “Romantic Violence: Memoirs Of An American Skinhead.” He was recently in town to participate in a panel discussion about the current state of hate in Atlanta and across America.
  • 10:42: W. Kamau Bell is a sociopolitical comedian, and host and executive producer of the Emmy Award winning CNN docuseries “United Shades of America with W. Kamau Bell.” Bell was here in Atlanta to preview an upcoming episode of the series focused on HBCUs, which features interviews with faculty and students from the Atlanta University Center. He stops by WABE to talk more about the episode and series.
  • 41:13: Gwinnett County recently announced plans to include heavy rail in its transportation goals. We talk with Charlotte Nash, who chairs the Gwinnett Board of Commissioners, about how the county hopes to expand its transit options.

Closer Look is produced by Candace Wheeler, Emilia Brock and Trevor Young.

Closer Look: Ponce City Market and Goodr to Reduce Food Waste; Fulton County Public Works; And More

Monday on “Closer Look with Rose Scott”:

  • 0:00: Rose Scott gives a news brief on this weekend’s protest and counter rally in the city of Newnan. Rows of police in riot gear separated supporters of the National Socialist Movement and counter protestors affiliated with the Anti-fa group. According to WABE news, Newnan city officials reported 10 arrests, no property damage, and no injuries as a result of the protest and counter rally.
  • In other news, it was another day without many of the regular bus drivers for DeKalb County Schools. Today, 63 drivers, or 6.9 percent of the staff, called out of work. The “sick-out” by the bus drivers is due to demands for more pay and better benefits. Last Thursday, nearly 400 drivers called out of work, creating delays in student pick-ups to and from school.
  • 9:14: Ponce City Market announced a collaboration with Atlanta-based sustainable surplus food management platform Goodr. Designed to reduce food waste and provide hunger relief in local communities, Goodr’s logistics technology aims to allow participating businesses to donate unused food to local organizations in need. We hear more from Goodr’s CEO, Jasmine Crowe.
Goodr CEO Jasmine Crowe and Rose Scott. (Courtesy of Lizzie Williams)
  • 30:25: When it was first envisioned, no one could predict the future growth and rising market values of development along the 22-mile loop of multi-use trails and parks known as the Atlanta BeltLine. An early initiative for the project was to include affordable housing — in fact, it was projected 5-thousand units would be available, which is now well off the pace. We revisit a conversation with Atlanta BeltLine President and CEO Brian McGowan.
  • 38:46: The Transportation Division of Fulton County’s Public Works Department held an open house last week to discuss an upcoming intersection improvement project in the City of South Fulton. Members of the project team were on hand to discuss the project to improve the intersection of Stonewall Tell Road at Union Road as well as present concept alternatives and solicit input from the community about the types of improvements desired. David Clark, Public Works Director for Fulton County, joins us in studio to discuss.

Closer Look is produced by Candace Wheeler, Emilia Brock and Trevor Young.

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