Let’s get creative with PD opening

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Nothing screams opportunity like a few empty seats on the bus.

With openings or the potential for change in nearly every major local office, the people of Natchez are certainly at the wheel.

In the coming year our community will see big changes on the county board of supervisors, a new police chief, a new superintendent of schools, a new school board member and city elections for mayor and aldermen.

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Now is the time to think creatively about where we are going and who we want to be when we get there.

The retirement of long-time Natchez Police Chief Mike Mullins provides a perfect example for a new way of thinking.

Hold onto your seat on the community bus, this idea will strike some as a wild ride.

Could the sheriff become the police chief?

Before you toss up objections, let’s realize that it’s a fair enough question, one many taxpayers have already asked.

A few kinks would need attention — namely the Civil Service Commission’s role in overseeing police appointments — but the idea is worth talking through.

We’d propose that the sheriff could oversee the management of police officers without costing taxpayers any additional funds.

It’s only an idea at this stage, but this community — the people, not just the elected leaders — must try some forward thinking.

This is the time and the place and you are the driver.

Where are we headed?