Bartley to take over Senior Center

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 15, 1999

The Natchez Senior Center will see a changing of the guard next year as Sabrena Bartley takes over as executive director.

Current Director Barbara Byrne, who plans to retire next year, will assume the duties of assistant director and will continue to oversee the renovations at the center, located in the old Carpenter No. 2 School.

Byrne has been director of the center since 1992 and has worked for the city since 1974. Bartley is currently deputy city clerk.

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She will move into her new position on Jan. 1, and Mayor Larry L. &uot;Butch&uot; Brown said he hopes Byrne can help Bartley adjust to the new job.

&uot;I’ve asked Mrs. Byrne to continue as assistant director so we have a very smooth transition,&uot; he said.

In other business Tuesday, the board:

— Approved an amendment to its agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that will include the next two phases of bluff stabilization, at Silver Street and Natchez Under-the-Hill. The amendment speeds up the process before work can begin, so it is possible work could begin on those phases even before work on the current phase from Madison to State streets is complete, Brown said.

— Heard from Recreation Director Ralph Tedder that the Parks and Recreation Department will invest $20,000 in a tree planting program. The department received a $10,000 grant from the Mississippi Forestry Commission, a $3,000 donation from Terry Swalm Memorial Funds, and will contribute $5,000 in in-kind work. That leaves the department’s monetary contribution at only $2,000, Tedder said. Trees will be planted along Duncan Avenue, around the tennis courts, along the golf course, in front of the golf shop buildings and along the main Duncan Park Road.

— Heard from City Engineer David Gardner that the engineering department will trade about $3,000 in equipment it does not need for equipment of like value from the City of McComb.

— Approved a transfer of $4,400 from the gaming fund to the farmer’s market fund; a loan of up to $300,000 from gaming to the general fund for monthly payments; and a loan of up to $17,000 to the Natchez Transit Authority fund. Both loans will be repaid with tax collections and federal reimbursements, respectively.

— Heard from City Attorney Walter Brown that the city will send the Voting Rights Section of the U.S. Justice Department a request to change the Ward 2 voting precinct at the Harden-Wallace Center to Frazier Primary School. Brown said the school has better access for voters.

Under the Voting Rights Act, the city must submit any changes in voting precincts to the justice department for approval.

— Heard from Natchez Fire Marshal Johnny Franklin about a new manual designed to instruct seniors about preventing fires and falls.

— Recognized Natchez author Greg Iles and winners of the recent Christmas parade as the weekly PROUD — Presentations Representing Our Unique Diversity –&160;program.

— Heard from Natchez resident George Foster, who said he was concerned about the amount of money the city would be paying for renovations of the city auditorium, where the annual Confederate Pageant is held.

He said he wanted the board to examine its contract with the Natchez and Pilgrimage garden clubs that allows the clubs to rent the building each spring for the pageant. The board declined to take any action after his comments.