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Civic Corner: January 5, 2024

Ricki Garrett, Alderwoman at Large


The first meeting of the Board of Aldermen for 2024 included four of us in person, two participating by telephone and one Alderman absent due to illness.  We welcomed former Congressman and now lobbyist, Gregg Harper, and Brett Bailey, who shared with us that our proposed funding on the national level is dependent on what happens with the Congressional budget talks.  They are also assisting us with State Legislative lobbying, and the Legislature went into session this week with Clay Mansell as our new Representative from Clinton.


Our Department Head report was provided by Chandra Broomfield, Director of Therapeutic Recreation.  Director Broomfield reported that participating in Therapeutic Recreation had increased from 6,649 in 2021 to 13,640 in 2023.  The department includes both Living Young for Seniors and Abilities for those with disabilities.  Upcoming events include a Health Challenge, Challenger League Basketball, an Annual Sweetheart Banquet, and a Love Masquerade for Valentines.


The Board of Aldermen approved an annual payment of $10,000.00 to Connect West, the umbrella organization being formed to handle economic development for Clinton.  Much like similar organizations in Tupelo, Vicksburg, Hattiesburg, and the Golden Triangle area, this organization will be made up of businessmen who contribute to the organization and make up the governing board.  Although the economic developer will be hired by and work for Connect West, all proposed economic development projects will still come before the Board of Aldermen for approval.


The Board of Aldermen also approved the acceptance of the highest bid for the sale of firearms held at the Clinton Police Department and, also, approved the use of some of the funds for sound and flash suppressors for the SWAT Team. Mayor Fisher also asked Police Chief, Ford Hayman, about progress in the use of drones, and he reported on a recent arrest of a Jackson carjacker with the help of a drone. Approval was also given to replace the flooring at Fire Station 1, dormitory side.


The Board also approved an amendment to the agreement with Canizaro Cawthon Davis to incorporate the detailed building and site design work for the 2% parks construction project. The Board also agreed to re-advertise for the Clinton Parkway planting project to replace landscaping damaged by the drought and sprinkler problems. The Board of Aldermen also approved the advertising for Lions Club Park improvements, which includes a retaining wall under the bridge and drainage.


The Board also voted to approve a certificate of appropriateness for a utility building to be built behind the home at 202 Belmont and approved the architectural review for Top Shelf Wine and Spirits at 600 Highway 80 with certain changes to the color and design and with the addition of planters.


The Board of Aldermen also approved a preliminary plat for the Bond/Olson Subdivision on Midway Road.  In final action, the Board approved the hiring of three uncertified firefighters, a part-time code-enforcement officer for Community Development, and a CDL truck driver and a heavy equipment operator for the Public Works Department.

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