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Major hang-up rectified?
by Chip Latcham
Aug 08, 2014 | 394 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Can you hear them now?

Many Bee Countians certainly hope so.

For several weeks, county offices have been plagued with telephone problems.

Disconnects and garbled audio were some of the woes mentioned as county officials wrestled with the new system that did not allow incoming or outgoing calls.

And that’s not to mention the reception from irate county residents.

As one county official, Zenaida Silva, pleading for a solution, pointed out at a recent Commissioners Court meeting, “It is a very trying time for us. It is really very stressful with people cussing you out... and telling you, ‘How come you don’t answer your phone? Don’t you work?’”

Perhaps the signal is becoming clearer now, though.

At this week’s continued court meeting, commissioners made the decision to have Time Warner install a fiber optic line to handle the county’s digital phone system.

It’s an expensive option: the county signed a new contract for $850 a month for the next five years – or about $50,000. However, Time Warner agreed to waive the $40,000 installation fee.

Yet, the cost of doing nothing, cutting corners or trying to get by with the present cable lines at the courthouse was out of the equation.

The commissioners found themselves in an uncomfortable place – caught in the middle between competing digital companies and IT directors, trying to make sense of the technological problems they faced.

As one audience member opined: “The bottom line is we don’t want to point fingers. We just want to get things fixed.”

We can all agree with that assessment. Hopefully, Tuesday’s decision will start fixing this conundrum.

Now perhaps the county can turn its attention to more important matters, like the slow, monotone voice listing all the county offices in order to direct our call...
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