Board of Supervisors to hold first meeting in new boardroom

Published 1:36 am Sunday, January 6, 2008

When the new Pearl River County Board of Supervisors holds their first meeting tomorrow, they will do so in a new location.

The new boardroom is in the building behind the courthouse, which also houses the Chancery Courtroom.

County Administrator Adrain Lumpkin said the new boardroom, which was formerly a courtroom itself, will provide more seating room for citizens, with approximately 30 seats in the gallery.

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The supervisors will be seated on a raised platform in the front of the room, and will utilize a former judge’s chamber as an executive session chamber, allowing spectators to remain in the room, rather than retiring to the hallway as was done in the former boardroom.

Lumpkin said a question had been raised about the first meeting of the new board having to be held in a courthouse, but that an opinion from the Attorney General’s office stated that a courthouse was any building in which court sessions are held, allowing for the new board to go ahead and move into the new space.

District I Supervisor Anthony Hales says he thinks the new space will be better for the board and may encourage better attendance at the meetings.

“I like the idea of a chamber for executive session, and think it’s better than the crowd going into the hallway. It’s better for us and better for the public. I look forward to having a better place for meeting,” Hales said.

District III Supervisor Hudson Holliday said he hated the idea of not meeting in the old boardroom, but acknowledged that there just was not enough room.

“I want people involved. It’s hard to stay enthused about serving people if people don’t act like they care about the government. The new boardroom is a better facility,” Holliday said.

District IV Supervisor Patrick Lee said he was dissatisfied with the former boardroom.

“(The old boardroom) did not feel like a friendly environment… . The new room offers more … I’m sure up to 60 or 70 people could fit if needed,” Lee said.

Lumpkin said the county used inmate labor to remodel the room, including raising the seating area for the supervisors, painting the walls and installing carpeting. The work was not complete on Thursday, but Lumpkin said it would be completed in time for Monday’s meeting at 9 a.m.ß