FD, PD consolidation discussed by Board of Aldermen

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, September 21, 2016

The Poplarville Board of Aldermen will tour the headquarters of the Poplarville Police and Fire Departments and review a list of recommendations from the respective chiefs in the city’s plan to combine the agencies’ offices into a single building.
Aldermen have been looking at options regarding the first-responder departments. The police department is now housed in a former church building at 305 Highway 26 East, and the fire department is at 1390 S. Main St. The city would then sell the police headquarters.
“We’d have a little more space, and there would be a savings on utilities and other costs,” Police Chief Butch Raby said.
Fire Chief Jonathan Head said he and Raby compiled a list of suggested improvements to allow the departments to share the Main Street building.
Board member Maggie Smith said she wanted to see the list and suggested the Board conduct a personal inspection of the facilities.
“I’d like to go down there and do a walkthrough, all of us,” Smith said.
The Board also heard from Carolyn Tedford of the Excel By 5 Resource Center at Pearl River Community College about the “Poplarville Reads” campaign, which is working with local businesses to build reading areas for children.
During a remodeling of the Burger King restaurant on Highway 26 West, the management agreed to take out a booth and put in book shelves. Since then, several other restaurants have signed on, she said.
“Every time I present, I get two more spots,” she said.
Children are welcome to take the books home. She said the Excel By 5 program is conducting a book drive to stock the reading areas.
Head also reported that delivery of a fire truck financed through Homeland Security funds the city expected in the first week of September was delayed due to shipment issues. It is expected any day.
The Board also renewed CableSouth Media III LLC’s cable television franchise and approved sending a police officer to a two-day training course in Biloxi on effective trial testimony.
The next Board meeting will be Oct. 4 at 5 p.m.

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