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Pearl River County Board of Supervisors receives grant for courthouse

The Pearl River County courthouse will be receiving some repairs and modifications soon with the help of a $600,000 Community Development Block Grant.
The Pearl River County Board of Supervisors recognized the approval of the grant in a letter from Governor Phil Bryant at Thursday morning’s bimonthly meeting. The board applied for Regular Public Facilities funding earlier this year through the CDBG program to help improve the county courthouse.
Gov. Bryant’s letter formally informed the board that the Mississippi Development Authority had approved the application and listed the effective award date as Sept. 29, 2014.
The board’s intention is to make the courthouse compliant with American Disability Act standards, and to address any other issues that may require fixing, said president of the Board of Supervisors, J. Patrick Lee.
The county is obligated to match the $600,000 dollars the grant provides with their own funds, which means that by the project’s completion, there will be $1.2 million dollars spent on renovating the courthouse, said Lee.
In his letter to the board of supervisors, Gov. Bryant wrote: “Through this application for funding, the Pearl River County Board of Supervisors has demonstrated its commitment to addressing the community development needs of Mississippi. I commend you for this initiative and for helping improve the quality of life in your community.”
The contract to receive the grant is contingent upon the project receiving environmental clearance, which the board unanimously agreed would not be a problem.

The board also discussed the replacement of the Barth Road Bridge during the meeting and approved the motion to award the contract for the project to a Pascagoula construction company for $574,000 dollars.
County Engineer Les Dungan said that the bridge will be “significantly longer and wider,” and the estimated timetable for the project is 75 working days.
The county received federal funds to replace the bridge, said Dungan, and the accepted bid was a considerable amount lower than the county’s original estimate. Dungan went on to say that state aid and federal highway officials still have to sign contracts, but construction on the bridge could begin in January 2015.
The board mentioned another bridge, the railroad overpass in Ozona on Highway 11, stating that there had been an unusual amount of accidents at that location recently. Lee said taller trucks have been hitting the overpass, and District Five Supervisor Sandy Kane Smith mentioned that water had been pooling up on the road surrounding the area. Lee said that there was no visible sign stating the bridge’s clearance and asked Dungan to measure the clearance.
The board will meet again on Monday, Nov. 3.

LOW CLEARANCE?: The board of supervisors is giving extra attention to the railroad overpass on Highway 11 that has been the sight of a few recent accidents. Photo by Dart Spiers

LOW CLEARANCE?: The board of supervisors is giving extra attention to the railroad overpass on Highway 11 that has been the sight of a few recent accidents.
Photo by Dart Spiers