Recreation needs more heads at table

Published 11:21 pm Saturday, September 15, 2007

Two heads are better than one, 20 are better than 10 and sometimes group discussion is the best way to reach a goal.

Ever since Mayor Phillip West and the aldermen threw their support behind a recreational plan that included spending $100,000 on a consultant, we’ve been more than a little skeptical.

The consultant seems wasteful at least until past studies have been reviewed. The timing seems awfully close to election season, and the song and dance is one we’ve waltzed to before.

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But, the goal is a good one.

And at Tuesday’s aldermen meeting, things started looking up.

A private entity approached the board about working together to fund the recreational facility. The business, whose leaders have Natchez ties, proposed using grant and donated dollars to match city funding on the project.

But best of all, the company doesn’t get paid unless they show results.

USA Partners Sports Alliance is largely unproven in Natchez. The aldermen need to do their homework on the group to determine if they are a smart choice.

But, one way or the other, there’s another player in the ballpark.

Natchez doesn’t need to spend $100,000 of taxpayer dollars on a consultant when our city is full of recreation-minded citizens. But partnering with a business to raise the funds might be an idea worth consideration.

The aldermen should keep an open, yet scrutinizing mind, when reviewing this company and others.

With more heads at the table, a recreation facility in Natchez could become a reality, and that’s something we all agree we need.