Aldermen make right decision for community

Published 12:00 am Friday, June 8, 2001

On its surface, the decision didn’t seem to be a difficult one. A corporation, utilizing federal funding, wants to invest $3 million in your community to build affordable housing for working families looking to better their position in life. The corporation needs developable land and the endorsement of local government agencies.

In reality, the process wasn’t that easy.

Yet, after clearing half a dozen hurdles, the corporation received its go-ahead this Tuesday.

All it took was a difficult vote by the Natchez Board of Aldermen.

After two aldermen recused themselves because of possible conflicts of interest with the issue, Ward 4 Alderman Theodore &uot;Bubber&uot; West, acting as mayor pro tem, broke a tie vote to reverse the planning commission’s refusal to rezone property along St. Catherine Street for the development. Then, in another important vote, West cast the deciding vote allowing Trustmark Construction to go ahead with its $3 million investment in rent-to-own townhouses.

It was the right decision, and apparently a difficult one to make. We’re glad Aldermen West had the conviction and commitment to cast his ballots to break the tie. It was a vote for business and growth. And it was a vote that will benefit Natchez in the long run.

Moreover, it leaves us poised to look ahead – to the ultimate investment in our community and the potential of growth offered from the development – and take with us the lessons learned and the confidence of having made an important decision.