Locals express New Year's resolutions

ALBANY -- With 2010 here, many people are beginning to ponder how they want the year -- and, in some cases, themselves -- to shape up.

Dougherty Distric Attorney Greg Edwards is a prime example. He said his personal resolution for this year is to focus on his health.

"I'm going to be engaging and reviewing my health status," he said. "I'm hoping to get back in the gym and to also get a physical."

But Edwards said he has goals for the district attorney's office as well.

"I want to engage in direct community prosecution projects. It will be a non-traditional seminar and I hope to educate business owners and citizens about the DA's office and the laws that concern them," he said.

Albany City Commissioner Roger Marietta, Ward IV, also admitted that he's resolving to get healthy this year.

"Lose weight and get in shape is something that I personally try to do every year," he said. "As far as work resolutions, I resolve as a public official to provide some property tax relief to the citizens of Albany."

Albany Fire Chief James Carswell said he plans to eat healthier.

"I need to take better care of my health," he admitted.

The resolution should be easier this year for the fire chief as the fire department is engaged in a rigorous wellness program for all of its employees.

"It's just more motivation," Carswell said. "We (the fire department) just need to keep doing what we are doing."

Dougherty County Sheriff Kevin Sproul said his personal goal this year is to spend more time with his family.

"I actually have the opportunity to take a vacation this year and spend with my wife and kids," he said. "In 2009, I was not afforded a vacation because it was my first year (in office)."

Sproul said the resolution for the Sheriff's Office will be to continue to have a close relationship and ties within the community.

"We hope to continue to work with the citizens of Dougherty County on ridding crime from this area," he said. "We resolve to continue to work in unison with other agencies and the people of this community towards this common goal."

Dougherty County Commission Chairman Jeff Sinyard said his resolution for the Commission is to ensure that citizens of Dougherty County are safe in 2010.

"Crime rates have been low in the unicorporated areas outside of the city thanks to our police and sheriff's department," he said. "Something we are going to continue to focus on is trying to maintain and keep our citizens' safety."

Sinyard also stressed the importance of staying focused on utilizing the taxpayers' money as efficiently as possible.

"It's critical in these hard times to remain focused on our goals," he said.

Some citizens of Albany are also hoping to have a healthier year in 2010.

Sandra White, 58, said her New Year's resolution is to quit smoking.

"I've attempted it several times, but I think this year is going to be the year. I think it's going to have to be," she said.

White said to motivate herself, she has been shopping for recipe books.

"When you quit they say food tastes better so I'm trying to find some healthy and easy recipes," she said.

Laurel Smith, 16, said she just wants to be a nicer person this year.

"I need to be," she said. "I think things will be better for me if I was nicer to people."

Powell Harris, 16, said she wants to finally find a decent boyfriend.

"I want to find a nice guy who treats me right," she said.

Danielle Young, 33, who lost her job back in the summer, said she hopes to find new employment in the new year.

"They say it's starting to turn around," she said. "2009 has been a hard year for everyone, especially in Albany. I know there are a lot of people who have the same resolution as me."

Corey Bryan, 19, said he hopes to pass all his classes at Darton College.

"I'm studying psychology," he said. "I want to make good grades and just do really well at Darton."

Ed Smith, 79, said his resolution for 2010 is simple -- make it to 2011.

"I have outlasted a lot of my fellows that I went to school with," he said. "I thank God for my health and I hope he keeps me going so I can see my fourth grandchild born."

Smith said he is also waiting on flying cars.

"When I was just a young boy, we were all convinced that in the year 2000 we would have all kinds of technology like flying cars," he said. "I haven't seen them yet."