Friends start independent polling service - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Friends start independent polling service

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March 22, 2006

Thomasville -- Two Thomas County men worry that the public isn't being heard on important issues.

They've started their own volunteer polling service to get public opinion on some of the hot topics in Thomasville and Thomas County, and they plan to let city and county leader know just what the public thinks.

J. Knapp and Lloyd Eckberg believe there's one thing missing from Thomas County: public opinion. So, they've started an electronic polling service.

"It's also a way of getting the community a little more involved on issues that are important to them that sometimes I think as citizens that we don't get involved because what can I do," said Knapp.

They're asking for the community's thoughts and plan to share what they learn with local officials or agencies. "We believe we need some where in the neighborhood of 110 people to respond to the poll to be a true reflection of what the people are thinking," Eckberg said.

A poll is sent out via e-mail with three to four questions, simple yes, no, or undecided answers are needed, but you can elaborate.

Results of the first poll are in. Overall, 69% of those polled were for consolidating city and county schools. Only 50% agreed to consolidating city and county government.

Presented with the poll, county school officials say the results depends on who you talk to. "I deal with the ones that are in the school system and involved I've got a lot of friends in the city school system on the board and they feel the same way they don't want it to happen, but it's an issue that will continue to come up," said Thomas Co. School Board Chairman Johnny Bannister.

And as those issues come up, J. and Lloyd plan to be there. "It's going to be issues that matter to people here living in Thomasville and Thomas County," said Knapp.

Whether it's city and county government, traffic, or beautification for the community, Eckberg and Knapp will be looking for your opinion.

To get started, the poll was sent to e-mail addresses of those willing to participate, but the men are looking for more input.

Feedback: news@walb.com?subject=NewPoll/Emert