UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS: While the national jobless rate dipping to 7.8 percent last week made some big political news, Georgia's higher-than-average unemployment may help some out-of-work residents of the state. The Georgia Department of Labor says that beginning this week, some long-term unemployed workers may be eligible for additional Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC). The department is mailing notifications to those who may be eligible and instructing them to begin filing for benefits. Georgia is eligible for the extended benefits because the state's unemployment rate has been 9 percent or higher for three consecutive months. For additional information, visit the GDOL website at www.dol.state.ga.us.
COLUMBUS DAY OBSERVED: Don't look for banks, post offices or other similar facilities to be open today, since this is the observed holiday for Columbus Day, which actually occurs on Friday. It'll be the 520th anniversary of the famed explorer's journey to the Americas, which came while he was searching for a navigational route to the Far East.
DOUGHERTY COUNTY COMMISSION: Meets at 10 a.m. for a work session in room 120 of the Government Center, 222 Pine Ave. Commissioners will get an update on a recent recycling event and are expected to approve a list of roads and streets for resurfacing.
VOTER REGISTRATION DEADLINE: If you want to vote in the Nov. 6 general election and aren't already registered, this is the last day to get it done. It's also the last day that you can make name or address changes before the general election. You can get registration forms at your public library, your local elections office or any public assistance facility. Dougherty County registered voters who want an absentee ballot can submit a written application to the elections office, P.O. Box 1827, Albany, Ga. 31702. Dougherty County voters can contact (229) 431-3247 for information.
LEE COUNTY COMMISSION: The board meets at 6 p.m. at the T. Page Tharp Governmental Building at 102 Starksville Ave. North, Leesburg. Agenda was not available.
ALBANY CITY COMMISSION: Meets at 8:30 a.m. for a special called work session in room 120 of the Government Center, 222 Pine Ave. Officials from the Water, Gas & Light Commission are expected to attend the meeting to discuss the city utility's budget.
BEER AND BANJOS: A fundraising effort in conjunction with the Georgia Throwdown is scheduled for 5 p.m.-8 p.m. at the Albany Museum of Art, 311 Meadowlark Drive. The event features music by the Evergreen Family Band and beer provided by sponsor MillerCoors. Tickets are $10 each and include an open beer bar, boiled peanuts and bluegrass music. Proceeds will go toward maintaining free admission at the museum for all visitors. Visit www.albanymuseum.com or contact (229) 439-8400.
REPORT CARDS: Dougherty County public school students get their report cards today, just in time for fall break Thursday and Friday.
GEORGIA THROWDOWN: The long-awaited three-day Georgia Throwdown gets under way at the Exchange Club Fairgrounds at South Westover Road and Oakridge Drive. The event will have 60 bands on four stages over the weekend. Headliners: Friday -- Randy Houser, Easton Corbin and Big & Rich with Cowboy Troy; Saturday -- Lynyrd Skynyrd, Drive-By Truckers and drivin n cryin; Sunday -- Corey Smith, Colt Ford and Uncle Kracker. Tickets are $45 for one day, $85 for the weekend. Website is www. georgiathrowdown.com.
ROCKTOBER: An entertainment event being billed as an alternative to the Throwdown is at 7 p.m. at the State Theatre, Pine Avenue. Tickets are $10 each. Bands include Torq, Dog Head, Intoxicated Logic and headliner Stone Stephen.