Ousted supervisors hopeful

Published 7:41 pm Friday, December 28, 2007

Several supervisors who will not be returning to office after the first of the year took time to reflect upon their time in office and what they hope will be the future of Pearl River County.

District II Supervisor Danny Wise said his term in office has been full of accomplishments as well as some disappointments.

“Some of our main accomplishments were the subdivision regulations, the building codes and the utility authority. These things are very misunderstood by most citizens, but they are very important to the future of Pearl River County,” Wise said.

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Some of the disappointments Wise mentioned were the lack of unity between the two cities and the county and apathy of county residents.

“Only 30 percent of registered voters actually voted in the last election, and an even lesser number want to know about important issues in the county,” Wise said.

Wise said overall, however, his time served was very full and well-spent.

“I’m glad I was able to serve the county. If I could choose the time, it probably would not have been during Katrina, but I am proud of what we accomplished and to be a part of everything that we did,” Wise said.

District III Supervisor Larry Davis said he had also seen many accomplishments in the county during his two terms.

“I think the biggest was the new jail. I also was part of redoing the hospital and adding the nursing home, as well as the new Health Department,” Davis said.

Davis said he also worked hard to improve the roads within his district, going from 125 miles of dirt roads when he entered office to less than 30 miles of dirt roads today.

“I think I had a pretty good run…. I felt like we had come a long way in bringing the county together as a whole… That’s the only way the county can go forward is as one unit,” Davis said.

District V Supervisor Bettye Stockstill said she had spearheaded several county projects during her two years in office, including the remodeling of the tax office and the completion of the Carriere walking track.

“I feel it was an experience of a lifetime to have been able to serve the people of Pearl River County as their first woman supervisor,” Stockstill said. “One of the most challenging things was getting stuff done after the storm.”

District IV Supervisor Robert Thigpen was out of town and unavailable for comment.

When asked about unfinished projects that they wished they could have completed, Wise, Davis and Stockstill all agreed that the two main unfinished projects were the Lake Troy project and the Chimney Square project.

“I wish we could have let the bid on the office building in Picayune and moved Lake Troy closer to a reality. I think Lake Troy is very important, and the next board should continue to push for it. We have moved forward a great deal to make it happen, such as feasibility studies, wetlands studies, and approval from the Corps of Engineers. I encourage the next board to continue the project because it is one of the best economic things that could happen in the county,” Wise said.

“I think everything is already in the works for the Picayune building and for Lake Troy. I think they will continue on. They are both projects to help the county go forward,” Davis said.

“If the new board will look forward, they will see that (Lake Troy) is very good economically for the county. Also, Chimney Square is one of the biggest things that we started that we almost got finished. I do hope they will continue both projects for the county… because we all have the same objective, and that is for the betterment of Pearl River County,” Stockstill said.

Stockstill said she wanted to thank the voters and the people she served with for her experience as a county supervisor.

“The four men I have served with… were always gentlemanly and treated me with respect. I appreciate Adrain Lumpkin and also Nova Carroll and Buddy McDonald. They will always have a special place in my heart. I wish Anthony (Hales) the best of luck and Godspeed in his quest to continue serving the people of Pearl River County…. To everyone who supported me in my campaign, I want to tell you that I appreciate your vote of confidence. Pearl River County will always be my home… Thanks again for the opportunity to serve,” Stockstill said.

“My thanks go out to the members of the Katrina task force, the Utility Authority board of directors and other private citizens who served with no pay and devote hours of their time to public service,” Wise said.

“It’s been a good eight years, but now I’m ready to go on,” Davis said.