Hall County Sheriff Steve Cronic says it's simply about enforcing the law. Latino advocates call it a misguided step that could lead to a exodus of workers and damage an already tenuous relationship between Hispanics and authorities.
However one views the provisions of the local-federal immigration enforcement partnership known as 287(g), it seems certain to have a noticeable impact in Gainesville and Hall County.
Gary Michael Hilton put a lot of miles on his Chevrolet Astro van in the days following Meredith Emerson's New Years Day disappearance, authorities believe.
Between the afternoon of Jan. 1 and the evening of Jan. 4, Hilton, who authorities charged with abducting and killing Emerson, was placed in at least six counties and seen by or talked to numerous people. During much of that time, Emerson remained alive, according to officials.
It's a January phenomenon as predictable as cold weather: Fitness centers are flooded with new members, as people seek to make good on their New Year's resolutions to get in shape.
The Times staff asked local officials about their Christmas wishes for the community: "What would you ask for if you could have any Christmas wish come true?" Here are their responses.
The Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe ended on Wednesday, but the implications of the rare rites performed by priests of the Archdiocese of Atlanta during the celebration may continue to effect the area's immigration controversy.
During the celebrations, the priests in Archdiocese of Atlanta performed a coronation ceremony for the first time in the over 50-year history of the Archdiocese.
The president I am looking for will expect us to be engaged citizens -- active, informed, responsible citizens -- and not mere supplicants, demanding ever more services and benefits.
Whether you consider the Bush presidency a success or a failure, one thing is certain: We will have a new president in 2009.
When Eddie Staub was 27 years old, he came to Gainesville with little else but a dream. He had visions of creating a home for children who were struggling in their family lives, in school and with themselves.
After acquiring some land in Chestnut Mountain in South Hall County with the help of Georgia coach Vince Dooley and Georgia Tech coach Bill Curry, Staub sat down in a rickety old barn on the property, the only structure on site, and saw a glimpse of Eagle Ranch's future.
GAINESVILLE -- The departure of Connie Hagler from the Lanier Canoe and Kayak Club has some people wondering if the Lake Lanier Olympic Venue is now without its paddle.
GAINESVILLE - Ten years ago, Hall County began receiving $1 million checks each month from a 1-cent sales tax.
That has mushroomed to $2 million-plus. And, if the economy holds and retail continues to grow, the promise of higher amounts lies ahead over the next five years with area school systems' sales tax programs.
I have heard many times since coming here that Eagle Ranch is hope and a new beginning. I never really believed that two years ago when I came here. I thought Eagle Ranch would just be another place that said they cared and wanted to help but never took the time to take me out of my shell and get to know me.
Boy was I wrong. From the moment I walked into the doors of the Praise Home, I knew there was something different about Eagle Ranch.
As the drought continues to draw down Lake Lanier and other reservoirs in Georgia, some municipal water intakes have been left high and dry.
GAINESVILLE -- White County schools had 34 Hispanics systemwide in 2001. That number could be found in just two classrooms today in some Gainesville and Hall County schools.
CLEVELAND - There are many things that make White County unique: the "birthplace" of the Cabbage Patch Kids, the Bavarian-style village of Helen, the picturesque dome of Mount Yonah.
But there's one distinction that White County officials aren't particularly proud of. Their community is also home to LHR Farms, a waste-disposal operation that processes material pumped from septic tanks and grease traps all over North Georgia.
Three times a week, Larry Cohan can be found teeing off at the Chattahoochee Golf Course.
Cohan, an avid golfer for 30 years, began playing the course almost four years ago when he moved to Gainesville.