THOMASVILLE — An advisory team has set short- and long-term goals for the local senior center that closed several months ago.

The SOWEGA Council on Aging (COA) in Albany closed Scott Senior Center several months ago. A COA spokesman said the facility was closing because of COVID-19, and it would not reopen.

COA is the provider of aging services in 14 Southwest Georgia counties, said Mike Stephenson, Thomas County manager.

Pointing out that the state's fiscal year begins July 1, Stephenson said a long-term goal is to have a Thomas County organization, perhaps Thomas County Commission, designated by the state to be the provider of local aging services.

"We need that designation from the state to receive that funding," Stephenson said. "We need a year to work on that. We want to work for July 1, 2021.

"It is too late to be included in the state's upcoming budget year."

The short-term goal is to begin providing services at Scott Senior Center. Those who were active in the senior center will be contacted and asked what services they would like to see returned.

Stephenson said COA has decided the senior center is not needed. He said COA will continue to provide certain senior services in Thomas County, but will not fund the senior center.

"We are in the process of learning from COA and the state what Thomas County's share of the 14-county funding is," Stephenson said. 

Senior reporter Patti Dozier can be reached at (229) 226-2400, ext. 1820 

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