City Pauses Funding For Main Street

WATER VALLEY – City officials voted  unanimously to suspend funding to the Water Valley Main Street Association due to the compliance issues with the Mississippi Main Street Association.  The topic surfaced during the monthly city meeting on Sept. 1 after Ward 1 Kagan Coughlin noted the local organization has multiple compliance issues with the Mississippi Main Street Association.
“I love this program, but this city is the primary funder of it and right now it is kind of a mess. It is behind on dues, paperwork and training requirements from the state,” Coughlin said about requirements from the state association. “I would like to pause the funding to the Main Street Association until someone from the (Main Street) board can come and tell us that they are back in compliance with the state,” he added.
Alderpersons voted 4-0 in favor of Coughlin’s motion (Ward 2 Alderman Fred White was absent).
On Thursday, Sept. 3, Ward 3 alderperson Cinnamon Foster reported the association was back in compliance.
Other business conducted at the monthly meeting included:
• Tabled a request to rename Fly Street to Percy Lee Rogers Street following a request from a member of Rogers’ family.
Mayor Donald Gray offered his opinion first about renaming streets in the city.
“Her children are wanting the street renamed for her. Ms. Rogers was a fine  lady, I get that.  But my own opinion, if we start renaming streets, what about the next great person who passes away who lives on that same street. Are we going to rename it again?” Gray added.
Alderman-at-Large Herbie Rogers was next to offer his opinion, explaining he thought city officials should not get in the business of renaming streets.
Coughlin noted there are a number of people who live on Fly Street.
“I think it would be a different conversation if the whole community on that street came and had a proposal. But I don’t think we can take action if one person or even a small group from the street (makes the request),” Coughlin added.
“You might want to do a petition in the area and get names. I think that would be the best approach as well,” Foster noted.
“We will just table this, if they bring it later with a petition, we will address it,” Gray said.
• Approved beer permits for Hendricks Steak House and Wiggly’s, two restaurants housed in The Hendricks Building at 102 South Main Street.
“They have met all of their requirements as far as the state,” Gray added before the permit was approve unanimously.
• Approved a petition from Pate Street residents to reverse the direction of travel on the one-way street. Currently the traffic flow runs from Panola to Dupuy and the request was to reverse the traffic flow to run from Dupuy to Panola.
The petition, signed by all residents who have a driveway on Pate Street, was approved unanimously.
“Anybody who comes down there, you know if you try to pull out on Dupuy coming from Panola, you can’t see in either direction,” Gray explained.
• Discussed the status of obtaining two commercial appraisals for the former police and fire department buildings on North Main. The buildings were vacated in July after the departments moved to a new location in the former National Guard armory building on Wise Street. Alderpersons have indicated their desire to declare the buildings surplus and sell them and the appraisals are needed to determine the value.
Gray said one appraiser has been engaged and he is looking for a second appraiser.

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