Regional planning video features locals

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 4, 2016

$21,494,219 – that’s the number of grant dollars that the Southeast Regional Planning and Development Commission has helped bring to Covington County since its founding in 1969.

“That’s a pretty good impact,” director Tom Solomon said.

Solomon was the guest speaker at Wednesday’s Andalusia Lions Club meeting.

Solomon presented a video that encompassed the programs and aid provided by the commission, which included testimony from locals.

“We help people and communities,” he said. “Our motto is to improve the quality of life for our seven-county region.”

One of the programs administered through the commission is Head Start.

Solomon said they operate six Head Start centers and three of them are in Covington County – Andalusia, Opp and Florala.

In the video, locals such as Andalusia City Clerk John Thompson, Opp Head Start Director Lisha Jackson, Andalusia City Schools Preschool Director Jenny Watson, Covington County Schools’ Amy Wright, and Opp Mayor John Bartholomew give their takes on the importance of the Head Start program.

Mizell Memorial Hospital CEO Jana Wyatt is also in the video.

She discusses a loan program the hospital secured through PowerSouth, CEC and the commission.

The hospital’s newest imaging system was paid for by the loan.

Victor Wyatt of PowerSouth, who helped with the loan process, also appears on the video.

Additionally, Elba Mayor Mickey Murdock and Slocomb Mayor Rob Hinson are in the video.

The video also highlights the Wiregrass Transit Authority and the Senior Center Community Service Program, which offers training to senior citizens who need to get gainful employment.