Monday, December 18, 2006

That ship's already sailed

The long-awaited relaunch of the Gees Bend ferry, closed by Wilcox County officials in the 1960s in retaliation for a visit from Martin Luther King, Jr., finally came three months ago after a decade of state and federal promises. Now a burning question confronting today's Wilcox County leaders is whether it's safe to put a school bus on the ferry, thereby cutting the one-way ride for about 50 students in half.

County officials say they may wait until the next school year to decide, mainly to see if the ferry is still around then. If it is, the early indications are otherwise good: The ferry is built to carry up to four buses, and it has hauled buses on field trips to the other side of the Alabama River without a hitch.

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