City has legislative wish list

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 24, 1999

It’s not quite Christmas, but city officials are working on a wish list for local legislators. Among the legislation being drafted is a proposal to reconfigure the Natchez-Adams County Economic Development Authority board.

City Attorney Walter Brown said one of the proposals is to shrink the board to five members, with two appointed by the city, two appointed by the county and a fifth appointed jointly.

Brown will meet with County Attorney Marion Smith next week to discuss the details of the legislation. The EDA board was created by local and private legislation, so any changes have to go through the Legislature.

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Brown said ex officio board members – the directors of the Natchez-Adams County Airport, Natchez-Adams County Port, Convention and Visitors Bureau and Natchez-Adams County Chamber of Commerce – would likely stay on the board.

&uot;It’s helpful to have them there,&uot; Brown said of the nonvoting members.

Other legislation the city will be in which involved includes funds to improve the golf course at Duncan Park.

Last year, a bill to provide $25 million in bonds for state parks failed to pass in both the House and Senate. Money was allocated in that bill to build a golf course at the Natchez State Park, and city officials were hoping the money could be diverted to improve the golf course at Duncan Park.

Brown said he expects the state park bill to make the Legislature’s agenda again next year.

But he said the city could have a hard time convincing legislators that the state park system needs to partner with the city’s recreation system to improve the city golf course.

&uot;It’s a novel idea,&uot; Brown said. &uot;I’m sure it would have some resistance on the state level.&uot;

Diverting the money would give the city &uot;more bang for the dollar,&uot; Brown said, because Natchez would only have two competing golf courses rather than three.