Archived Story

Commissioners withdraw support of SCABC

Published 3:11pm Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Lowndes County Commission wants the South Central Alabama Broadband Cooperative District (SCABC) to dissolve.

At its regular meeting Monday night, the county commission approved a resolution withdrawing its support from the SCABC, citing that it “no longer has confidence in the leadership” of the SCABC to serve the needs of Lowndes County.

The commission also believes that the broadband project for which the group was created is “no longer feasible” and called upon the SCABC “to take the necessary steps to dissolve itself.”

Voting in favor of the resolution were Commissioners Carnell McAlpine, Brenson Crenshaw, W. Dickson Farrior and Joseph Barganier. Abstaining from the vote was Commission Chairman Robert Harris.

The SCABC was originally formed to own and manage a broadband communications infrastructure designed to bridge the digital divide in South Central Alabama.

The original project to construct 2,200 miles of fiber-optic broadband network in Butler, Crenshaw, Conecuh, Dallas, Escambia, Lowndes, Macon and Wilcox counties was to be funded by a $59 million federal grant and $27 million in matching funds.

While funding to grant recipient Trillion Communications was terminated in October of 2012, the SCABC has continued efforts to move a broadband project forward.

Charlie King Jr., the former Lowndes County Commission chairman who serves as chairman of the SCABC Board of Directors, said he had no comment at this particular time on the county commission’s action nor did SCABC Managing Director Aaron D. McCall.

McAlpine said the resolution in addition to calling for the SCABC to dissolve withdraws the county commission’s support of the project.

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