Despite tax talk, city business rolling along

Published 12:00 am Monday, September 11, 2000

While Natchez City Hall has been buzzing over taxes the last few weeks, other city officials have been going about the day-to-day business of the city.

Assistant City Engineer David Atkins said engineering crews began work this week on a disposal site for work on the bluff. The construction, located on Orleans Street, should last 60 days, Atkins said.

After receiving word that an anticipated grant for work on Government Fleet Road was approved, engineering staff and representatives from cooperating agencies are working on &uot;getting their ducks all in a row,&uot; Atkins said.

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With fall approaching, Atkins said the engineering department is working to wrap up summer projects.

&uot;Right now, we’re just trying to get all our loose ends tied up,&uot; he said.

The Natchez Senior Citizens Multi-Purpose Center is also preparing for the change in seasons.

Executive Director Sabrena Bartley said the center usually sees a significant increase in the number of visitors during the fall months. Meanwhile, workers are continuing renovations to the Washington Street center, located in the old Carpenter No. 1 School. &uot;They’re doing the final touchups on the renovations now,&uot; Bartley said. &uot;You see improvements every day.&uot;

Once renovations are complete, the center will offer extended arts and crafts classes and a new fitness program.

City Planner David Preziosi and Assistant City Planner Gretchen Kuechler attended a professional development seminar with the Mississippi chapter of the American Planning Association last week.

Because of the seminar, the regularly scheduled Natchez Zoning Board of Adjustments meeting was postponed for Wednesday.

Kuechler said the planning staff has been working on compiling recommendations for the meeting, at which the board will consider five applications, including two requests for communication towers.

Recreation Director Ralph Tedder said his department recently submitted the paperwork for reimbursement from the Department of Transportation for construction of a nature mountain bike trail and work on the Duncan Park Golf Course.

Tedder also said the fall season holds many activities, including Cathedral School’s fall festival and golf tournament and the state mixed doubles tennis tournament. &uot;We’ve got a plate full,&uot; Tedder said.

Tourism Director Walter Tipton said his department is also preparing for upcoming events, including Fall Pilgrimage, the Great Mississippi River Balloon Race, an antique car show and several large conventions.

In October, Alcorn State University and Copiah-Lincoln Community College will sponsor a gathering of college presidents from across the state. Soon after, Natchez will host the Mississippi Police Chiefs Association conference.

&uot;Starting Oct. 11 (with Fall Pilgrimage), and going through November, we’re jamming,&uot; Tipton said.

Manager James Thorpe said Natchez Water Works recently completed its inflow and infiltration project. By &uot;smoking&uot; the city’s sewers during the last year and a half, public works crews were able to identify and repair leaks and cracks in the system, Thorpe said. The project marks the first time such a procedure has been done, but Thorpe said he hopes to acquire grant money and conduct it on a regular basis.