Board hears pitch for USM hotel study
Published 7:00 am Wednesday, December 16, 2015
During Tuesday’s Poplarville Board of Aldermen meeting, the board heard from representatives from the University of Southern Mississippi’s Trent Lott National Center for Economic Development and Entrepreneurship about a proposed hotel feasibility study.
They also heard an update about termite damage at the building located at 101 North Main St.
Shannon Campbell, director of the Trent Lott National Center for Economic Development and Entrepreneurship, said the center focuses on outreach services, which help communities focus on being most competitive in keepings jobs in the local community.
Graduate students are partnered with faculty to gain experience solving real world problems communities face, she said.
“Essentially what we’ll be doing is a supply and demand data-driven type of analysis that you all need to have in front of you if you’re going to try to see where you stand as a city to support a hotel of some type,” Campbell said. “It will include what size of a hotel you can maintain, if indeed it shows it’s favorable. The data will tell you where your strengths are in order to attract a possible hotel developer.”
The proposed project could start as early as March 1 and end May 1, she said. The cost would be $10,560.
The board voted to take the matter under advisement.
Last month the board voted to remove the roof of a building at 101 North Main St. to determine if the building is still structurally sound.
Poplarville Public Works Director Sam Hale provided the board with an update on the health of the building.
“They seem to think it is repairable,” Hale said. “There was no sign of active termites in the structure that they found, but there is significant damage in that overhead. The outside of the building needs attention or repair first.”
Hale suggested the board get an estimate for repairs for the outside first, then the inside.
The board voted to take steps to obtain specifications on the building, which includes the ADA compliance upgrades, HVAC and electrical repairs.
The building was home to the Poplarville Chamber of Commerce as well as the Poplarville Historical Preservation Society’s Museum. Currently, the museum’s items are in storage.
The board voted Tuesday to allow the Chamber use of office space at City Hall until a determination is made on the building.
In other action:
–– A public hearing was held for the property at 818 Julia St. No one representing the property was in attendance at the meeting. Poplarville Code Enforcement Officer Guy Ray Holston said the house has termite damage and the ground and sky are visible upon entering the home. The board voted to declare the property derelict.
–– The board also set a public hearing for Rush Family, LLC property on West Michigan St. for the Jan. 19 meeting.
–– The board also voted to give the owner of a trailer on E. Nelson St. until Jan. 28 to pay past due trailer variance fees.
–– The board set a workshop with supervisor-elect Hudson Holliday for Dec. 21 at 9 a.m. The meeting was made at the request of Hudson, Poplarville Mayor Brad Necaise said, to create a plan of vision and priorities.
–– The board appointed Nick Thompson as city attorney for the next year.
–– The board accepted the resignation of city clerk Jody Stuart, which will be effective Dec. 31. Next, the board appointed Jane O’Neal as the new city clerk.
The board will meet again on Jan. 5 at 5 p.m. in the boardroom at City Hall.