Tag Archives: Ben Copeland

Videos: 3 Hospital Authority appointments, 3 road abandonments @ LCC 2016-11-08

They appointed Ben Copeland to the Hospital Authority. More later on why they seem to be doing it backwards. Nobody spoke in the Public Hearing for abandonment of Excession RoW off Payton Place, so they abandoned it and quit-claimed it to the adjoining landowner. Then they determined to hold a Public Hearing to abandon unopened RoW of Avenue I, although there was an ownership question from Commissioner Clay Griner, which County Engineer Mike Fletcher answered. They approved in this public meeting a list of three elected officals using county-issued credit cards, but they did not reveal to the public who was on the list. The County Manager had no report and there were no citizens wishing to be heard so they adjourned.

Here are links to each LAKE video of the Tuesday 8 November 2016 Regular Session, with a few notes, followed by a video playlist. See also Continue reading

Videos: 3 Hospital Authority appointments, 3 road abandonments @ LCC 2016-11-07

Discussion at Monday morning’s Work Session of the Hospital Authority appointment clarified that it’s just for one opening, but didn’t explain why they seem to be doing it backwards to what Georgia law says. Commissioner Demarcus Marshall asked for resumes for the applicants. The Commissioners vote tonight at 5:30 PM.

New intern, Hampton Rawlinson(sp?), working with Finance and Clerk. Finance reported on credit cards for elected officials. Commissioner Mark Wisenbaker stumped County Engineer Mike Fletcher. County Manager Joe Pritchard had no report.

Here are links to each LAKE video, with a few notes, followed by a video playlist. Continue reading

3 Hospital Authority appointments, 3 road abandonments @ LCC 2016-11-07

On this morning’s Work Session agenda, Lowndes County is replacing 3 of its 4 Hospital Authority board members. Of those, 2 of 3 are on the Hospital Foundation board, so how much change is this? And why does the Lowndes County Commission seem to be doing this appointment backward to the way Georgia law requires?

These appointments are especially interesting after the Valdosta City Council’s call for Hospital Authority resignations back in September. The city’s list of Authority board members is out of date, still listing Continue reading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

Valdosta confused about water uses

Is there an outdoor water restriction in Valdosta, or isn’t there? The city and the newspaper seem confused about that. Also remember much of Lowndes County gets its water indirectly from Valdosta through the county’s utility system. And that with groundwater levels at all-time lows, we need to be conserving all the time anyway, and thinking about how much and what kind of growth we want.

The City of Valdosta front page says:

In the Spotlight

The City of Valdosta has issued an outdoor water restriction suspending all outdoor water uses for 72-hours, or until further notice. Click here for more.

Yet if you click there, you get this error page:

Error The page you have requested does not exist. Please click here to go back to the home page.

Similarly, there was a VDT article on that subject, but that link also goes nowhere now.

Stephen Abel wrote for WALB yesterday, Temporary water restrictions in effect for Valdosta,

Folks in Valdosta need to think twice about washing their cars, or doing anything else that uses much water, this weekend.

“The city of Valdosta is urging all citizens to immediately cease outdoor irrigation use and all other nonessential uses of water. Now and throughout the weekend,” said Public Information Officer Sementha Mathews.

Severe vibrations in the water pumps is what put them out of commission. “The city’s water treatment plant experienced some mechanical issues this week with two of its raw water well pumps which caused the low levels in water,” said Mathews.

So, did the city fix its pumps? Or is it just confused about what to do?

WCTV posted this update, and seemed to indicate the water restrictions were still in place:

The City of Valdosta sincerely thanks the citizens who responded quickly to its request today to cease all outdoor irrigation and non-essential use of water. Currently, there are no water quality issues in the system, and the water provided by the city is safe for all purposes.

People should be conserving all the time anyway. These suggestions from the city are pretty good for a start:

Continue reading

This is what a mayor with vision sounds like

Mayor Julian Castro of San Antonio speaks at 44:25 about
…the nexus between sustainability and job creation. Every now and then, perhaps once in a generation, there presents itself a moment, an opportunity, for those cities that are willing to seize it, to truly benefit the region for generations to come.
Here’s the video: Continue reading

South Georgia already in drought: parameters for industry?

Droughts and floods: maybe we need to manage water better, including managing industrial use of water.

According to the AP, Ga. foresters brace for busy wildfire season:

A cold, wet winter has left northern parts of the state in decent shape, but in southern Georgia river flows and soil moisture are both at some of the lowest points that would be expected in a century, said David Stooksbury, Georgia’s state climatologist at the University of Georgia.
The nearterm effects:
“We have a good fuel load with plenty of dry vegetation, the soil is dry and there’s a low relative humidity and there’s wind,” Stooksbury said. “That is the simple recipe for a trash fire to get out of control very quickly and become a wildfire.”
Yes, Sunday Georgia Forestry cut off burn permits in Lowndes County because some fires had gotten out of control.

The long term problem? Continue reading

There are other ways than a college degree

Editor of the Pelican Post remarks Harvard Study Calls for New Education Priorities:
A new Harvard School of Education study, “Pathways to Prosperity,” recommends that educators place a stronger focus on vocational education and apprenticeships, rather than aim to send every high school student to college.

“We are the only developed nation that depends so exclusively on its higher education system as the sole institutional vehicle to help young people transition from secondary school to careers,” says Robert Schwartz, academic dean of the college and co-author of the study.

This produces many problems: lots of people don’t get a college degree who would like to (can’t afford to go; can’t pass), lots of people who do still can’t get a job, and let’s not get into the Profzi scheme for Ph.Ds. Here’s a partial solution:
“We need to do a better job exposing our students to different career pathways so that they understand what options are available to them after graduation.”
Wait! Somebody local talked about this recently: Ben Copeland at the Lake Park Chamber of Commerce.


Uncontrolled growth and water problems

Daniel Mayer, November 2006
Maybe growth, growth, growth alone isn’t any better than jobs, jobs jobs alone, and water remains one of the main issues. Kay Harris wrote in the VDT 17 Feb 2011 that Aging infrastructure, growth, and other issues contribute to city’s sewer woes:
Valdosta Utilities Director Henry … Hicks addressed the sewage spills, saying they are caused by excess rain which overloads the Withlacoochee River Water Pollution Control Plant. He said growth along the river and throughout the regional watershed area has contributed to the amount of excess water running into the river.

“When you have all this growth and you create more impervious surface area (through paving and development), more and more water is running into the Withlacoochee. On average, the plant handles six million gallons a day and is equipped to accommodate twice that, but in recent rain events, we’ve gotten upwards of 15 million gallons extra in stormwater runoff and the system can’t handle that,” Hicks said.

Some of the comments on the VDT page are also interesting. Guest remarked: Continue reading

Why “jobs, jobs, jobs” isn’t good enough for the public good and the general welfare –John S. Quarterman

Sure, everyone wants jobs for the people right now and jobs so the children don’t have to go somewhere else to find one. But what good is that if those jobs suck up all the water those children need to drink?

This is the problem:

“What I believe the three most important things are, not only for our community, and our state, and our country, but for our country, thats jobs number 1, jobs number 2, and jobs.”

Brad Lofton, Executive Director, Valdosta-Lowndes County Industrial Authority (VLCIA),
speaking at the Lake Park Chamber of Commerce annual dinner,
Lake Park, Lowndes County, Georgia, 28 January 2011.
Video by Gretchen Quarterman for LAKE, the Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange.

I shook Brad Lofton’s hand after that speech and told him I liked it, because I did: in general it was a positive speech about real accomplishments. I’ve also pointed out I had a few nits with that speech. This one is more than a nit. This one is basic philosophy and policy.

Now one would expect an executive director of an industrial authority to be all about jobs. And that would be OK, if Continue reading