The McDuffie Mirror will become the legal organ for McDuffie County, Thomson and Dearing starting Jan. 1.
Georgia law sets a three-person panel - consisting of Superior Court Clerk Connie Cheatham, Probate Judge Gene Wells and Sheriff Logan Marshall in McDuffie County - to designate a newspaper as the legal organ for a community. The panel had been researching and discussing the designation for more than a month before its unanimous decision was announced last week.
Mirror Publisher Jason Smith said the newspaper will publish the first group of ads on Jan. 4, and all ads will also be listed at www.mcduffiemirror.com and at GeorgiaPublicNotice.com.
Mr. Smith said the designation as legal organ is the culmination of more than a year of intense work by his staff.
"This is a tremendous honor," he said. "We are proud of the confidence Judge Wells, Mrs. Cheatham and Sheriff Marshall have placed in The Mirror. This was not a hasty decision for them, and I appreciate all their work and diligence throughout this process."
Mr. Smith said becoming the newspaper of record for the local communities has been one of the goals of The Mirror since it started publishing in 2003.
"This is a very significant step for our newspaper," he said. "I've said from the beginning that The Mirror was a newspaper that belonged to the people of McDuffie County and should reflect their lives. Even though we can never truly achieve that goal because of the ever-changing nature of our community, this designation certainly tells us we are moving in the right direction."
Janet Wells will be handling all legal advertising for The Mirror. She can be reached at 706-597-0335. The newspaper has also established an e-mail address specifically for such advertising: firstname.lastname@example.org.