Ecru aldermen looking for new revenue

By Sandra Priest

After several months of researching current city laws, ad valorem tax revenues, and legal precedents within the Mississippi Code, Ecru Mayor Tom Todd asked aldermen to consider a resolution in which the town could receive amounts nearing the $100,000 mark annually. This revenue, which would come as a result of Road and Bridge Tax dollars from the ad valorem tax collected from municipalities, is currently divided among the districts within the county. Municipalities, in return, receive culverts, gravel, loads of dirt, and other supplies.

Last year the Road and Bridge Tax revenue from Ecru alone was $93,000.

“Right now our supervisors take this money and split it five different ways,” Mayor Todd explained.

Estimates place the yearly cost of materials supplied to Ecru by supervisors in the $2,500 to $3,000 range.

“Pontotoc gets their own (Road and Bridge tax dollars) . My recommendation is to pass this resolution, and in October start buying our own materials,” Todd suggested.

Alderman Ivonne Whitehead expressed the opinion that any such action be delayed until after the upcoming election.

“I think if we delay it, it will affect this town’s budget and the supervisor’s budget,” Alderman Pat Davis remarked.

Alderman Bill Nance commented, “I certainly don’t want our tax dollars going to another community.”

Comparing the net gain/ loss of a possible $93,000/$2,500-3,000, Mayor Todd said, “It’s a no-brainer situation to me.”

The decision was made to invite Supervisor Wayne Stokes to attend the next meeting to further discuss the issue.

Mayor Todd also informed board members of property that is currently in bankruptcy proceedings. “It joins us (town owned property), and it would make an ideal place to store rock, culverts, and supplies. It was suggested that Attorney Phil Tutor look into the matter further.

Noting the presence of small children, as well as horseback riders, along East Road, Alderman Nance requested a Children at Play sign and a Speed Limit sign be erected. It was agreed to order and install both as soon as possible.

In other business, Patrick McBrayer was hired as a Water and Sewer employee following the resignation of Greg Ferguson. Bonnie Todd was appointed as Election Commissioner, and building permits were issued for James Speck and Scotty Holcomb. Town Clerk Gretchin Moody and Police Chief Gary Chisholm were both authorized to attend upcoming events pertinent to their positions within city government.