Grant & Loan Awards: Baker County
ESB loan guarantee to purchase land, building and working capital to support Southern Fine Edibles, LLC, dba/Big Jackâ€™s Steak and Seafood Restaurant, a new restaurant located in Newton, Baker County. Big Jackâ€™s Steak and Seafood Restaurant plans to serve the best catfish around while supplementing the menu with current operator, Josh Griffinâ€™s, specialty BBQ.United National Bank in Cairo is the lender.
E 9-1-1 funds to upgrade Miller Countyâ€™s E 9-1-1 system with a mapping system for wireless uses and to provide E 9-1-1 service to Baker County. Currently, Baker County does not provide E 9-1-1 service. All E 9-1-1 phone calls in the County are connected to The Thomasville State Patrol Post. The new system will allow Miller County to dispatch calls to whoever is best suited to handle them in Miller County which will enhance efficiency and possibly save lives. Additional benefits for this new regional system include realized cost savings for each county while increasing the level of service for Miller County, and the system will also allow emergency personnel to pinpoint the exact location of the caller.
BRIDGE funds to construct a wireless broadband system across the 5-county area. A feasibility study conducted by TechSmart reflects a great demand for high speed connectivity in the counties of Baker, Calhoun, Early, Miller and Mitchell. The backbone of these rural counties is agriculture and, more recently, nature-based tourism. Wireless broadband provides an opportunity to support their economy while protecting their valuable resources. This project supports a system that will allow farmers to implement precision agricultural practices increasing profits, preserving natural resources and decreasing chemical and water usage. There will be multiple benefits to the counties in the area of business development, tourism, education and local government efficiency.
BRIDGE funds to assist with a five-county (Baker, Calhoun, Early, Miller, Mitchell) regional technology assessment, TECHSMART. Georgia Tech staff will conduct a series of community-wide meetings to assist the local leadership and stakeholders in identifying the regionâ€™s technology assets/needs as well as opportunities. This current technology benchmark will serve as the basis for the development of an integrated plan, the Digital Development Plan or â€œroadmapâ€ for future technology development and utilization within the region. In addition, grant funds are awarded to assist with site study, engineering and preliminary system design for development of a high-speed wireless broadband access system to support a number of agricultural applications, including remote pivot irrigation, as well as to community residents and businesses located within the five counties.
Equity funds to assist with the cost of a feasibility study to determine the economic impact of promoting Nature-Based Tourism within the four county area. The JDA's strategy includes marketing the region's hunting plantations and other natural settings in the four county area. The study will be conducted by the Tourism and Regional Assistance Center at Ga. Tech.