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Civic Corner, May 17th: Board of Aldermen Recap

Ricki Garrett alderwoman at largeBy Ricki Garrett, PhD, Alderwoman at Large

 

Our Board of Aldermen meeting on May 3 began with a presentation by the Clinton Junior Civic League of a gift of $11,000 to the Parks and Recreation Department from the proceeds of the Hearts of Gold Gala. We are very appreciative of this donation, as we are any gift of time, money or service to the City.

The Board also approved a consultant for the development of the eighty-four acres of property that the City has recently acquired. The proposed park will possibly include an RV park, glamping, hiking, biking and disc golf. However, the development of this park will span many years.

As many of you have seen through public notices, the garbage rates for our citizens will go up following the Board’s approval. These increases are the result of having to negotiate a new contract with Waste Management, due to increased costs in fuel and salaries. Although the Board of Aldermen put out a Request for Proposals, Waste Management was the only company to submit a proposal, giving the Board little negotiating room.

 

The Board gave approval to the Clinton Police Department for a Memorandum of Understanding between the Hinds County Sheriff’s Department, the City of Byram and the Clinton Police Department for the purpose of a unified SWAT Team. The Board’s desire to do a city-wide drainage study moved closer to reality with approval to submit a Planning Assistance to States request to the Corps of Engineers for assistance with this project.

 

The Board passed a resolution to authorize a special election for the purpose of submitting to the qualified electors of the city whether the city should implement a 2% tax upon the gross proceeds of sales of restaurants for the purpose of providing funds to promote Tourism and Parks and Recreation within the city. This tax requires 60% approval of the voters and must be re-submitted for a vote every four years. If approved by the citizens, it will allow us to use the funds as a match to acquire grants that will make considerable improvements to our parks, including walking/biking trails, playground equipment, lighting, bathrooms, pavilions, concession stands, tennis and pickleball courts, disc golf and other improvements.

 

Many thanks to Mayor Phil Fisher, Aldermen Karen Godfrey and Chip Wilbanks, Public Works Director Phillip Lilley, Consulting Engineer Greg Gearhart, and lobbyist Gregg Harper for the successful work they did last week in Washington, D.C., advocating for funding for our regional water/sewer project. Further lobbying efforts on behalf of this project will be carried out over the coming months.

 

In another very long work session this week, the Board heard about a proposal to develop our tennis program in Clinton, continued to look at possible re-districting maps and also at a sign ordinance for neighborhoods. The Board also had a presentation from the East Clinton Historic District and also one from Mississippi College history professor Otis Pickett, regarding a future historical marker. Although a presentation was made regarding a possible development in Olde Towne, it was determined that the development was not allowed under our existing zoning codes, and the conditional use request was removed from the Board agenda. Finally, the Board and Mayor looked at how best to use the $1,000,000 appropriation from the 2021 Legislative Session.

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: Space will be provided in each issue of The Clinton Courier to the Board of Aldermen for a recap of each meeting. Aldermen are asked to volunteer to provide this recap for the Courier.





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