County board to pick president

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 30, 2008

NATCHEZ — Monday the board of supervisors will elect a board president to lead the board through 2009.

“It’s a tough job,” Supervisor Mike Lazarus said.

Lazarus was the swing vote in the 2008 vote that put current President Henry Watts in office.

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That vote also ended Supervisor Darryl Grennell’s four-year run as board president.

And if the supervisors have any idea of who the next president will be, they’re not letting on yet.

On Monday, Grennell would not say if would be pursuing the opportunity to act as president in 2009.

But he won’t shy away from the job.

“I’ll be happy to do it if they see fit,” Grennell said. “I’ll do my very best to serve the county.”

Watts’ could not be reached for comment.

Lazarus said he has discussed Watts’ intent to seek a second term as president with Watts but still was unsure of who he would vote for.

“I think they both did a good job,” he said. “It’s a hard choice to make.”

But for some the choice isn’t one that’s too difficult.

Supervisor S.E. “Spanky” Felter said he’d be voting for Watts.

“(Watts) asked me if he could do one more year (as president,)” Felter said. “And I’ll vote for him again.”

Felter said he’d be voting for Watts because he liked the way he managed the board in 2008 and felt he needed more than just one term in office to reach all his goals.

“I takes more than one year to get all you want accomplished,” he said. “I’ll give him another year.”

Supervisor Thomas “Boo” Campbell said he had not decided for whom he would vote.

No matter who the next president is, they won’t likely have much free time in the coming year.

Campbell, Felter, Grennell and Lazarus said one of the biggest issues to be tackled in 2009 is the poor state of many of the county’s roads.

At the board’s last meeting, the supervisors all agreed the roads need a great deal of attention. However, the funding for the roads was an issue for which no one had a solution.

“They need a lot of work,” Felter said. “But we need a way to pay for them.”

The supervisors also said they were looking forward to the pending sale of the county’s hospital.

“We’ve all put a lot of time in it,” Grennell said.

Monday’s meeting will also call for a vote for the county attorney.

In last year’s vote, attorney Bobby Cox replaced Bob Latham.

However, Lazarus said the supervisors have yet to discuss the appointment of a new attorney.