Aldermen discuss plans for city Park on Main Street

Published 7:00 am Thursday, November 17, 2016

Mike Cambre presented the Poplarville Board of Aldermen with plans to construct a farmer’s market on the city-owned property on Main Street. Photo by Julia Arenstam

Mike Cambre presented the Poplarville Board of Aldermen with plans to construct a farmer’s market on the city-owned property on Main Street.
Photo by Julia Arenstam

Discussion concerning the development of what is being called City Park on Main Street continued during Tuesday’s Board of Aldermen meeting.
Mike Cambre, who owns land nearby, presented a plan to the Board for a permanent farmers market.
Cambre asked the Board if city administrators would be interested in such a project, and if the population would support it. He said the market would include cottage industries, not just produce, that make less than $20,000 a year, and local artisans.
The Board expressed interest in the project, but did not take action on the matter.
Alderman Jason Pearson said there are 84 successful farmers markets throughout the state.
“We’re the blueberry capital of the state, but we only have one day a year we sell them,” he said. “It’s the best idea for that lot in this part of town.”
Cambre said the city would need to hire a market manager to organize the market and possibly acquire state certification, if the Board decided to pursue the idea.
The Board also said they would have to look into whether the market would qualify under the Small Municipalities and Limited Populations Counties Grant they were awarded worth $143,857. The grant requires a match of about $22,000 from the city.
City Engineer Jason Lamb, previously recommended the property be used as a City Square Park.
In other news, the Board granted a property owner permission to install a light on the telephone pole at their property line, at their own expense.
The Board also decided to hold quarterly meetings with the Pearl River County Utility Authority, Poplarville Municipal Airport, Municipal Court and the library.
“We need people that we’re contributing money to, to come and make a report,” Alderwoman Shirley Wiltshire said.
In a separate matter, the Board discussed plans to allow candy to continue to be thrown during the annual Poplarville Christmas Parade.
Last year, the candy left on the ground clogged the street sweeper, causing heavy damage, Alderwoman Maggie Smith said.
As a solution, Pearl River County Sheriff David Allison volunteered two litter crews to help pick up trash after the parade, Smith said.
The parade will be held Dec. 2 at 5 p.m.
The Board also granted an event request for First Baptist Church of Poplarville to hold Carols, Cookies and Cocoa on Dec. 7 from 5 to 8 p.m.
In a separate matter, the Board continued discussion of a zoning issue concerning the operation of a tutoring service.
Board Attorney Nick Thompson said that after researching the original 1971 ordinance, the current ordinance and the Mississippi legal definition of a school, the Board’s proclamation about the tutoring service operated by Kimera Torrence needs to be altered.
Thompson said that in order to legally operate out of her home, the Board will have to issue an order stating the service fits within the state’s legal definition of a school—as stated in Miss. Code Ann. 37-16-01 (e)(i)—and affirming that a school can operate in any zone.
Thompson said Torrence and other residents of North Jackson Street would be notified of a public hearing to discuss the matter, which will likely be held in January.
The Board took no action on the matter, pending Thompson drafting the order.
The next Aldermen meeting is scheduled for Dec. 6 at 5 p.m.

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About Julia Arenstam

Staff Writer

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