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County seeks grant for wireless broadband
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 Rockdale County Grant Administrator Alice Cintron reported on a broadband initiative grant in front of the Rockdale County Board of Commissioners in a work session meeting on Monday,

The $5 million stimulus-funded grant would help to install 60 miles of fiber optic lines throughout the county.

The grant requires a 20 percent price match, or $1 million dollars, which prompted Commissioner JaNice Van Ness to inquire where the funds would come from.

Cintron said the matching moneys would come from either a split from the three partners, the County of Rockdale, the City of Conyers and the School Board, or a combination the entities.

"We've already met with the city and public school system, and everyone is on board," Cintron said.

The fiber optic instillation would allow access to a wireless network in county government, fire stations and schools.

Cintron said the network would stimulate economic growth, create jobs, and attract other job opportunities.

The grant application is due at the end of March.


In other BOC business

  • Fire Chief Cedric Scott related to the board the fire department's plan to create a Fire Explorer Division.
    The Fire Explorers would involve youngsters ages 14 to 20, and will teach fire support, fire prevention, fire safety and the life of the fire fighter.

The fire department plans on going to the school s for registration, and using volunteers to serve as advisors.

The public cost will be $10 and $20 and fundraisers will be used to supply funds for T-shirts, uniform pants, and supplies. Other supplies will come from old fire department equipment.

There will be no live fire involvement with the group, which will meet twice a month from 6 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. at Station 8.

The proposal was met with positive reviews from the board.

"It's exactly what the community and young people need," Commissioner Oz Nesbitt said. "It allows the young people to get involved, and it builds self esteem and discipline."


  • Fees for the county's park and recreation facilities were also brought in front of the board.
    Jackie Lunsford discussed rental fees and deposits to cover costs for such events at Johnson Park and Black Shoals Park.

For Johnson Park a $20 fee for outdoor facility and $100 for indoor facilities were proposed, along with a $36 dollar set up fee.

The county will also offer lock-in events for groups who want to have an overnight event.

The event will last from 10 p.m. until 7 a.m. at cost of $500 dollars, which includes facilities and a life guard from 10 p.m. until 11 p.m.

Black Shoals will have a boat fee of $25 for county residents and $40 for non-county residents, and will start taking reservation for use of facilities in April.

The amphitheatre at Black Shoals will cost a rental fee of $240 for county residents and $375 for non-county residents. The park can also be rented for $500 dollars for non-profit county groups and $750 for out-of county renters.