Working together for the good of the county

Published 9:20 am Monday, December 22, 2014

Chilton County received an early Christmas present on Dec. 17 when the Alabama Certificate of Need Review Board approved the Chilton County Healthcare Authority’s plans to construct a 30-bed hospital facility, off Highway 145 near Interstate 65 Exit 212.

Obtaining the Certificate of Need, the state’s stamp of approval that must be acquired to operate a hospital, was an important step because it was the last part of the process that won’t be in the hands of the Healthcare Authority.

From here, after months of discussion and analysis and promotion and politics, it’s basically building a hospital.

As if the CON weren’t enough, there were more positives to be taken from the CON Board meeting in Montgomery.

More than 20 Chilton County officials and others connected to the project were present in an impressive show of support.

In addition to members of the Healthcare Authority, there was Rep. Jimmy Martin, Sen. Clyde Chambliss, Clanton Mayor Billy Joe Driver, Probate Judge Bobby Martin, Industrial Development Coordinator Fred Crawford as well as representatives of the Chilton County Commission, Chilton County Chamber of Commerce and St. Vincent’s Health System, which is under agreement to operate the planned facility.

The sight of such a large group of local leaders together anywhere, much less in Montgomery, working as one to benefit the county is remarkable and surely a sign of many more positive things to come.

It has taken a cooperative effort to bring Chilton County to doorstep of having an operating hospital for the first time in more than two years.

Let’s open the door and step through, and not stop there. The opening of a new hospital can be the beginning of a brighter future for Chilton County.