Bylaws on front burner

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 16, 2010

NATCHEZ — Now that the appointments have been made, the seven people who comprise the interim economic development board are laying the groundwork for Natchez, Inc.

Board Members James Biglane, Pat Biglane, Debbie Hudson, Glenn Green, Margaret Perkins, Sue Stedman and Phillip West are responsible for writing bylaws and articles of incorporation for Natchez, Inc., which will eventually replace the Natchez-Adams County Economic Development Authority. The board is also responsible for creating a needs analysis and job description to hire a new executive director, whose recommended salary is $115,000 as outlined in the plan unveiled by Boyette Strategic Advisors in December.

Natchez, Inc., is a partnership funded by the Natchez Board of Aldermen, the Adams County Board of Supervisors and a private sector group known as Natchez Now. The Boyette plan suggests the county contribute $165,000 annually, the city contribute $100,000 annually and private investors contribute $115,000 annually. Natchez Now has already received commitments of $133,000 each year for the next three years.

Board Members Pat Biglane, Green and Perkins represent the private sector investors. Hudson represents the Natchez-Adams County Chamber of Commerce. West represents the Natchez Civic and Business League. Stedman and James Biglane represent the city and county governments, respectively.

Green said the group met for the first time last week and is focusing on finalizing bylaws and defining organization goals.

Bylaws are required for Natchez, Inc., to attain its 501(c)(6) nonprofit status. The new bylaws are also needed to repeal the state legislation that formed the current EDA.

Hudson said teamwork is critical to Natchez, Inc.’s success, emphasizing the board wants to be viewed as a one unit rather than seven individuals.

“We’re working on goals set by the (Boyette Strategic Advisors) plan,” Hudson said. “We’re taking a team approach.”

The board plans to meet again before month’s end, once Stedman returns from vacation.

“We’re just beginning the process,” West said. “I think we’ll work hard and do the best we can to do a good job.”