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Friday, September 9, 2011 - 4:31am

Deal Replaces State Climatologist

Gov. Nathan Deal has dismissed Georgia's longtime state climatologist, but there was confusion about what transpired and the climatologist says he was never told of the development.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports ( that Deal signed an executive order Tuesday appointing a state employee to take over the state climatologist's job.

The new state climatologist, Bill Murphey, works in a meteorology unit for the state's Environmental Protection Division in Atlanta. Deal spokesman Brian Robinson said in an email that Deal wanted to consolidate the work within the division.

Murphey would replace state climatologist David Stooksbury, who is also an associate professor of engineering and atmospheric sciences at the University of Georgia.

Stooksbury told the Journal-Constitution that he has had no direct communication from the governor's office about the change.

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