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Unemployment climbs again in July

Unemployment climbs again in July

(WXIA) -- Metro Atlanta's unemployment rate was 8.0 percent in July, up from 7.5 percent in June. The rate was 8.3 percent in July 2013.

Gwinnett County's unemployment rate was 7.1 percent last month.

Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said the increase was due to seasonal layoffs in manufacturing and education. Many of those workers have since returned to their jobs.

In addition, metro Atlanta's private sector created 8,900 jobs in July. Most of the positions were in business; trade and transportation; finance and information services; leisure and hospitality; and construction.

Metro Athens had Georgia's lowest July jobless rate at 6.6 percent. The Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest at 11.4 percent.

GDOT: Avoid I-285 this weekend

GDOT: Avoid I-285 this weekend

(WXIA) -- The Georgia Department of Transportation has a strong word of warning for Atlanta-area drivers this weekend: avoid the Perimeter.

Crews will work on several I-285 projects, causing lane closures and heavy delays. Motorists are encouraged to take alternate routes where possible.

Some of the scheduled Perimeter work includes:

* 2 northbound right lanes will be closed between South Atlanta and Paces Ferry roads from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for concrete slab replacement and interchange construction

* 2 southbound outside lanes will be closed between Washington Road and Old National Highway from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 p.m. Saturday for bridge joint repairs

* 3 southbound left lanes near Flat Shoals Road will be closed Saturday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. for paving

Work will continue in other parts of metro Atlanta as well.

Lightning blamed for 2 Gwinnett house fires

Lightning blamed for 2 Gwinnett house fires

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. -- Lightning strikes started at least two house fires in Gwinnett County Saturday night.

The first blaze broke out at around 9:40 p.m. in the 2700 block of Spanish Oak Drive SW in Lilburn.

Gwinnett County Fire Capt. Tommy Rutledge said the fire started when lightning struck near the home; it traveled through an outside water line and into the two-story house's basement.

Although the fire did not spread beyond the basement, it caused extensive damage to that room, Rutledge said. It also sent smoke throughout the house.

Everyone inside the house managed to escape safely.

The second fire started about half an hour later in the 1600 block of Little Lisa Lane SW in Snellville.

Major roadwork resumes this weekend

Major roadwork resumes this weekend

(WXIA) -- Last weekend, drivers got a bit of a reprieve when several major road projects were postponed. But all that work will resume this weekend.

Some of the problem areas include Interstate 20 in Rockdale and Newton counties, and I-285 in Cobb County.

As always, all roadwork is weather permitting. Rain could halt or postpone projects.

Weekend drivers should use caution and look for crews in these areas:

Bartow County
* One right southbound lane of I-75 will be closed four miles before Cass White Road from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for concrete slab removal and bridge raising.
* One left northbound lane of I-75 will be closed four miles after Cass White Road from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for concrete slab removal and bridge raising.

Back to school surprise: Weekend roadwork canceled

Back to school surprise: Weekend roadwork canceled

(WXIA) -- This weekend will be a holiday for Georgia families in more ways than one.

The Georgia Department of Transportation has suspended construction-related lane closures on all major interstates and highways within five miles of malls and shopping districts.

This will allow parents and students to enjoy the tax-free shopping weekend without the added stress of road delays.

"The sales tax holiday is an opportunity for Georgians to save a little money during these challenging economic times," GDOT Commissioner Keith Golden said. "The department is glad to offer some relief from lane closures as families prepare for school."

11Alive Ways to Save reporter Valerie Hoff has some of the best tax-free weekend deals. Find out how to get the most bang for your buck.

Atlanta-area unemployment jumps in June

Atlanta-area unemployment jumps in June

(WXIA) -- The unemployment rate in metro Atlanta climbed again last month.

June's rate was 7.6 percent, up from 7.2 percent in May, but much lower than last June's 8.6 percent.

Gwinnett County's unemployment rate was 6.8 percent in June.

Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said the increase is due to end-of-summer job loss among non-contract school workers, an influx of graduates and students entering the workforce, and temporary layoffs in manufacturing.

So far, metro Atlanta has gained slightly more than 58,000 jobs in 2014 -- a good sign for those who are looking for work.

Metro Athens had Georgia's lowest June unemployment rate, at 6.3 percent. The highest was 10.4 percent, in the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region.

National Night Out - August 5

National Night Out - August 5

The Lilburn Police Department and City of Lilburn are proud to host Lilburn's National Night Out in Lilburn City Park on Tuesday, August 5 from 6-8 p.m.  This year marks the 5th anniversary for this FREE event, which has grown to be one of the largest in the state of Georgia!

National Night Out is a nationwide event designed to generate citizen support and participation in local anti-crime efforts, strengthen neighborhood spirit, and build police-community relationships.  The City of Lilburn and Lilburn Police Department wou