Thomas County Ranked Poor County

By Kate Gaier
6:45 pm January 4, 2007
Thomas County takes a hard hit when it comes to poor counties in The Peach State.
Pam Davis comments, "I'm not surprised to hear that because they have a lot of places around here but it's not a lot of start off pay."
The Georgia Department of Community Affairs ranking all 159 counties into four different groups.
The department looking at things such as the percentage of residents below poverty level, per capita income and unemployment rates.
Carroll Wilkes says he's surprised of the news, "We do need more jobs. Although I'm retired but still there's a lot of people out there looking for jobs. And we do need more jobs."
Decatur, Grady, Mitchell, Colquitt and Brooks Counties all falling into the poorest category, Thomas County in the second poorest, and Lowndes County in the third poorest.
The DCA takes these ratings into consideration when handing out state grants... grants that could bring improvements to Thomas County.
Barry Perez says, "I think we need to do whatever we can to help people that are underprivileged and less fortunate."
Louis Rehberg, County Commissioner for District 4 says, "We'd like to have some help from somebody, to help us pay for doing this and not have to take it out of the pockets of the citizens of Thomas County."
Rehberg says the county has been denied certain grants in the past, but that this new DCA ranking could be a blessing in disguise.
This is the second year Thomas County has ranked among Georgia's poorest counties.