Category Archives: Wiregrass Tech

Why people don’t speak up: they owe their soul to the company store

Some of our elected officials wonder few people ever speak up around here. It’s simple: they owe their soul to the company store. If you don’t go along, you don’t get business.

As Tennessee Ernie Ford sang in that old Merle Travis song:

You load sixteen tons, what do you get
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don’t you call me ’cause I can’t go
I owe my soul to the company store

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Videos: Development Authority’s BRAT @ VLCIA 2015-06-16

They meet again tonight with a bylaw amendment scheduled, which is probably for extending officer terms to two years as Roy Copeland proposed. (He first suggested that at least several years ago when he was re-elected Chairman.) And their nominating committee nominated the same officers again.

Lots of dials showing targets and where they are in reaching them, which is good, because I keep getting questions about what they’re doing with all that tax money and are they doing enough to justify it.

One citizen asked about the airport and another (OK, me) handed out Alapaha River Water Trail brochures and once again suggested solar panels at the airport to turn that otherwise-unusable space into profit.

Here’s the agenda and below are LAKE videos, followed by a playlist. Continue reading

Development Authority’s BRAT @ VLCIA 2015-06-16

Late o tonight’s agenda but big on their minds, and described and pictured by Stuart Taylor, VDT, 31 May 2015, as consisting of:

  • Georgia Department of Economic Development — Michelle Shaw
  • Valdosta-Lowndes County Chamber of Commerce — Myrna Ballard
  • University of Georgia’s Small Business Development Center — Lynn Bennett
  • Valdosta-Lowndes County Development Authority — Stan Crance
  • Georgia Department of Labor, Valdosta Career Center — Jamon Williams
  • Wiregrass Georgia Technical College — Bill Tillman
  • Georgia Tech Enterprise Innovation Institute — Art Ford
  • Georgia Power Company — Scott Purvis

Valdosta-Lowndes Development Authority’s Business Retention Action Team, or BRAT, brings together a number of local and state organizations to offer services, information, solutions and contacts that a company might need.

“We’ve always had an existing industry program,” said Meghan Duke,VLDA marketing and community relations. “These organizations have always worked together, but now we’re formalizing it.”

Here’s the agenda:

Valdosta-Lowndes Development Authority
Tuesday, June 16, 2015 5:30 p.m. Continue reading

Tim Golden and Amy Carter at Chamber Legislative Lunch @ VLCoC 2013-12-04

The event posting (noon today at Wiregrass Tech) doesn’t say, but I’m told state Senator Tim Golden (District 8) and state Rep. Amy Carter (R 175) will be there.

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Event Name: State Legislative Lunch
Event Type(s): Chamber Calendar
Community Calendar
Description: A luncheon featuring a program presented by State Legislators on issues on top for the upcoming State Legislative Session. Tickets are $15 for Chamber members and $20 for non-members. Seating is limited!

Greenlaw concerned about Sabal Trail pipeline

Received today. I added the links. -jsq

Mr. Quarterman,

I am an attorney with GreenLaw investigating issues related to the proposed Sabal Trail natural gas pipeline. We have serious concerns regarding the need for this pipeline and its proposed route.

I am writing you because Dinorah Hall, who first brought this issue to our attention, has told me that you are also very concerned about this proposed pipeline. I wanted to be sure that you are aware that Sabal Trail will be holding an open house to discuss the proposed pipeline this Wednesday, October 16 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. at the Wiregrass Georgia Tech Atrium, 4089 Valdosta Tech.

This is an opportunity for the public Continue reading

Tonight in Moultrie, tomorrow in Valdosta, Spectra Pipeline meetings

Spectra Energy is coming to Valdosta and Moultrie to tell us how great their proposed pipeline will be, as it cuts a 100-foot wide path from Anniston, Alabama to Orlando, Florida through south Georgia, using eminent domain to make you sell your land, for the benefit of Florida Power and Light. Maybe you’d like to ask Spectra reps Brian Fahrenthold or Andrea Grover a few questions, like can we see a map of the proposed route, with parcel numbers, and what about those fines for violating federal regulations and Spectra’s own corporate operating procedures?

Tonight (Tuesday) 15 October 2013 5:00-7:30 pm.
Moultrie Technical Facility
800 Veterans Parkway
Moultrie, GA
Tomorrow (Wednesday) 16 October 2013 5:00-7:30 pm.
Wiregrass Georgia Tech (Atrium)
4089 Val Tech Road
Valdosta, GA

I have confirmed by calling Wiregrass Tech Economic Development that Spectra Energy will be there from 3:30 to 8:30 PM, which Wiregrass Tech says apparently includes setup and teardown. The Wiregrass Tech contact is Christy Cobb; she wasn’t in when I called. Tech’s web server seems to be down right now, but Google has cached her as:

Cobb, Christy,
Director of Economic Development,
(229) 468-2218,


Community Assessment Group and Internet access @ LCC 2013-07-22

Valdosta Mayor Gayle was standing next to the video ghetto after the county’s rather rudimentary SPLOST VII presentation Monday morning, so I asked him why I hadn’t seen anything about Internet access either Valdosta’s or Lowndes County’s SPLOST lists? He said that was because it was being handled by the Community Assessment Group (CAG). What’s that?

Mayor Gayle said CAG is a group of representatives from the county and all the local cities, the two school districts (Valdosta and Lowndes County), VSU, Wiregrass Tech, the Industrial Authority, the Chamber, and he may have said others. It’s an attempt at better local cooperation, specifically about issues that cross all the various local governmental and non-governmental groups. So far they’ve had two meetings, Continue reading

Tina Anderson new President of Wiregrass Georgia Technical College

From Moultrie to Valdosta, Dr. Tina Anderson unanimously appointed new Wiregrass Tech President.

Wiregrass Tech PR of 6 June 2013, Commissioner Jackson Appoints Dr. Tina Anderson to be the Next President of Wiregrass Georgia Technical College

Atlanta — Commissioner Ron Jackson today informed the state board that oversees the Technical College System of Georgia that Dr. Tina Anderson, who is currently the president of Moultrie Technical College, is his choice to become the next president of Wiregrass Georgia Technical College in Valdosta.

Board Member Ben Copeland of Valdosta made the motion to approve the appointment of Anderson to the position, and the full board voted unanimously in favor of the selection. The announcement and vote were made during the board’s monthly meeting at the TCSG headquarters in Atlanta.

Anderson will move into her new position at Wiregrass Georgia Technical College on July 1. She will replace Dr. Ray Perren, who left the college in May to become president of another TCSG college, Lanier Technical College in Oakwood, Georgia.

Jackson told the board members Continue reading

Broadband on the table @ VLCIA 2013-02-19

Internet speed and access (appearing as Broadband) played a starring role at the 19 February 2013 meeting of the Valdosta-Lowndes County Industrial Authority (VLCIA), with a surprise cameo by Lowndes County Commission Chairman Bill Slaughter (appearing as himself) and a bravura performance by Angela Crance of Wiregrass Tech, with a strong supporting role by VLCIA Chairman Roy Copeland, and Mary Gooding standing in for VSU. Internet access (as "telecommunications infrastructure") came up in Project Manager Allan Ricketts' report as a requirement for a Fortune 500 customer service operation and for a National health care service provider, both considering locating here, also as bandwidth, as a requirement for jobs. That was the main theme of Executive Director Andrea Schruijer's report, especially in rural parts of our county, especially for a home-based call center. Even Rotary Clubs need broadband.

VLCIA is also helping find potential sites for several utility-scale photovoltaic solar installations.

The Industrial Authority Board was down to three members, barely a quorum: Mary Gooding, Chairman Roy Copeland, and Tom Call. Whereabouts of Norman Bennett and Jerry Jennett were undetermined. I can't complain; I was in bed with a sinus infection.

Here's the agenda (such as it is), with links to the videos and some notes, often in separate posts.

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Broadband “huge strategic initiative for our community” —Mary Gooding for VSU @ VLCIA 2013-02-19

Mary Gooding spoke up for VSU at the Industrial Authority 19 February 2013, saying that VSU President McKinney was in Athens (as was President Perrin of Wiregrass), but he and VSU:

We too believe that this is a huge strategic initiative for our community. And we were thrilled after the meeting that we attended that the city, the county, both educational institutions, the Industrial Authority, everyone there, the hospital for sure, all agreed that this had to be a significant incentive.

Mary Gooding added:

At Valdosta State it’s becoming one of our biggest road barriers to online degrees, to online classes. That’s again more bandwidth that’s needed to be able to deliver degrees and classes online.

That’s all good, but where were the superintendents and school boards of the two K-12 school systems? Where were library Continue reading