Tag Archives: broadband

Videos: Howell Road Halfway House tabled @ LCC Regular 2023-03-28

Update 2023-04-10: Packet: Raise waste collection rates, appointments to 3 boards, crop sprayer for wastewater hayfield @ LCC 2023-04-10.

As suggested by Commissioner Mark Wisenbaker yesterday, the rezoning was tabled until the next Lowndes County Commission meeting: 6.a. REZ-2022-10 The Campus Transitional Care Facility, 2193 Howell Road. It was tabled before the Public Hearing, so I would guess that means they have to send out notice again for a Public Hearing. The motion to table was by Commissioner Wisenbaker, second by Commissioner Scottie Orenstein, and it passed unanimously by the four voting Commissioners present. Commissioner Clay Griner was not there, which was the purpose of tabling: wait until all five Commissioners are there.

Interestingly, most of the people who came for the Howell Road public hearing stayed to the end. They didn’t leave when the item was tabled. This was very unusual.

[Collage @ LCC 28 March 2023]
Collage @ LCC 28 March 2023

The Land Bank Authority appointment was also tabled until the first meeting in April, due to lack of nominations.

Everything else passed unanimously.

On the waste collection franchises by Continue reading

Packet: Howell Road rezoning, Trash colleciton centers, Windstream Broadband map @ LCC 2023-03-27

Update 2023-03-30: Videos: Howell Road Halfway House tabled @ LCC Regular 2023-03-28.

The Lowndes County Commission board packet for this week’s meetings contains no letters supporting the Howell Road halfway house rezoning. It does contain eleven opposition letters plus 31 pages of opposition petition signatures, which at about a dozen a page comes to somewhere around 372 signatures. Commissioners will decide tomorrow evening at 5:30 PM, after a Public Hearing.

[Howell Road rezoning, Trash colleciton centers, Windstream Broadband map @ LCC Packet 2023-03-27]
Howell Road rezoning, Trash colleciton centers, Windstream Broadband map @ LCC Packet 2023-03-27

The packet, received in response to a LAKE open records request, is on the LAKE website.

See also the agenda and the LAKE videos of this morning’s Work Session.


Investigative reporting costs money, for open records requests, copying, web hosting, gasoline, and cameras, and with sufficient funds we can pay students to do further research. You can donate to LAKE today!

Videos: Howell Road Halfway House @ LCC Work 2023-03-27

Update 2023-03-27: Packet: Howell Road rezoning, Trash colleciton centers, Windstream Broadband map @ LCC 2023-03-27.

Commissioner Wisenbaker asked this morning whether they could table 6.a. REZ-2022-10 Campus Transitional Care Facility 2193 Howell Road, E-A to P-D. He was concerned that Commissioner Clay Griner will not be present, so once again the Chairman may have to break a tie, as happened last year in the vote that they later had to rescind because they did not give proper notice of the Public Hearing.

Answer from Chairman Bill Slaughter and the Attorney: yes, Commissioners can move and vote to table.

Does this mean they’ve all already made up their minds before they even listen to the Public Hearing tomorrow evening?

[Collage @ LCC 27 March 2023]
Collage @ LCC 27 March 2023

Both DSS and ADS asked for a trash pickup fee increase from $20 to $25/month, and deposit center hours changed from 7AM to 7PM to 8AM to 6PM. According to the Chairman, those things will not change yet, rather they will be addressed in the retreat. Also, Deep South Sanitation has 6,900 customers and Advanced Disposal Services has 9,000.

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, with a few notes by Gretchen Quarterman, followed by a LAKE video playlist.

See also the agenda and agenda sheets. Continue reading

Agenda: Howell Road Halfway House @ LCC 2023-03-27

Update 2023-03-27: Packet: Howell Road rezoning, Trash colleciton centers, Windstream Broadband map @ LCC 2023-03-27.

Update 2023-03-27: Videos: Howell Road Halfway House @ LCC Work 2023-03-27.

The controversial halfway house on Howell Road is back for its final Public Hearing Tuesday evening, with review this morning at 8:30 AM.

[Agenda, The Campus @ LCC 2023-03-27]
Agenda, The Campus @ LCC 2023-03-27

$22 million is a lot of money, but almost all of it is incoming grant funds.

Cost What
$21,853,779.00A New Headquarters for Second Harvest of South Georgia
$116,286.00PowerPhone Emergency Medical Dispatch with CAD Integration
$86,266.00Acceptance of the FY2023 VAWA Continuation Grant Award
$500.00Lowndes County DUI Court Technology Supplemental Grant Award
$250.00Adult Accountability Court Technology Supplemental Grant Award

Here is the agenda. The agenda sheets from the county’s website are also on the LAKE website.

We do not have the board packet because I didn’t send the GORA request until this morning. LAKE will publish it after we get it.

WORK SESSION, MONDAY, MARCH 27, 2023, 8:30 a.m.
327 N. Ashley Street – 2nd Floor

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Video: Windstream Proposed rural Fiber Internet @ LCC Rural Internet 2022-11-07

It’s good Lowndes County is finally doing something about Internet access.

[Windstream presenter, map, Lowndes County officials]
Windstream presenter, map, Lowndes County officials

It took a pandemic to impress upon the county that fast Internet access for everyone really is necessary, and Windstream volunteering, plus state funding, but something is apparently finally happening. Lowndes County Chairman Bill Slaughter thanked state Senator Russ Goodman for helping.

Slaughter also made it clear that Windstream would be making all the decisions about deployment. Slaughter emphasized that the county would be working closely with windstream, but apparently the county’s role is mostly telling people about it.

Slaughter said information about this program would be available on the county’s website, but I can’t find anything on lowndescounty.com.

Here’s a LAKE video playlist:

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Georgia Broadband Deployment Initiative 2019-04-26

Good about the Georgia Broadband Deployment Inititative (GBDI): wired and wireless, and they are actively doing something, including mapping.

[Map Phase 1]
Map Phase 1
See also interactive Phase 1 map.

Dubious: stakeholders are only “private telecom and cable providers, local government, and electricity cooperatives”.

Where are universities, technical colleges, doctors and hospitals, local businesses, nonprofits, and the people? Supposedly “Community partnership will be a central component”, but where is the community in GBDI’s plans? Where are the other stakeholders? Where are the public hearings?

Maybe that’s farther along in their timeline: Continue reading

Broadband, outsourcing, trash, and fire @ LCC 2014-02-28

The second day of the Commission retreat is finished. Reporting from location, Gretchen noted:

1PM: BroadBand

Chairman Bill Slaughter has a five year goal of making broadband available. Some possibility of creating a fibre ring. He says he’s working with the City of Valdosta.

Well, a year ago in February he said broadband was “one of the number one issues”, but in October he said “we have broadband”, so it’s anyone’s guess what his opinion will be in a few months.

1:06PM: Outsourcing

Commissioner Crawford Powell wants to outsource more county services.

That’s working so well, after all; see the next note.

1:19PM: Trash evaluation

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U.S. #58 out of 90 in broadband cost

Stacey Higginbotham wrote for GigaOm 16 January 2014, Two charts that show how crappy U.S. broadband is,

Despite the deployments of a few gigabit networks by Google and the spread of faster cable technology, U.S. broadband is falling behind. It’s expensive both as a monthly bill and on a per-megabit basis when compared to the rest of the world. For example, at $89 per month on average, U.S. residents pay more for broadband than residents in 57 other countries including Canada, Bulgaria, Colombia and the U.K. That’s right, the U.S. ranks 58 out of 90 countries.

The research, from research firm Point Topic concludes that the higher broadband prices are “caused by lower investment in infrastructure as well as lower take-up which prevents them from benefiting from economies of scale.” To get the above data the firm compared the prices paid for residential broadband and includes standalone and bundled services offered over DSL, fiber and cable broadband in the fourth quarter of 2013.

Per-country comparisons like this are hard to act on, but even at the country level we know Continue reading

U.S. broadband among most expensive worldwide: why?

We don’t have to continue letting the duopoly gouge us for slow and expensive Internet access. We don’t have to wait for Washington or Atlanta, either. We do need our local leaders to stop defining away the issue and get on with doing something about.

Tom Geoghegan wrote for BBC News 27 October 2013, Why is broadband more expensive in the US?

Home broadband in the US costs twice as much as it does in Europe and three times as much as it does in South Korea, according to a new report. Why?

Because we let the duopoly get away with it, as Susan Crawford has been reminding us for a while now. Continue reading

Broadband fiber correlates with increased house prices

Preliminary research indicates that broadband fiber results in about 5% increase in property values for connected houses. This would indicate that an MSA wanting to profit from broadband should want to deploy it as widely as possible, especially in new housing. Hm, what’s the Homebuilders’ Association’s position on this?

NCM 0268 fiber ... result in 5.1% change in real estate value

The authors report that “fiber presence is associated with a positive effect on property values”, in The Impact of High-Speed Broadband Availability on Real Estate Values: Evidence from United States Property Markets by Gabor Molnar, University of Colorado at Boulder; Scott Savage, University of Colorado at Boulder; Douglas Sicker, University of Colorado at Boulder.

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