Supervisors shoot down P&H board’s $100K highway beautification project
By Cassandra Favre
Jan 21, 2014, 18:24
The Hancock County Board of Supervisor on Tuesday voted not to support a$100,000 expenditure the Port and Harbor Commission had budgeted for byways, grass cutting and landscaping.
"In the commission's budget," District Five Supervisor Tony Ladner said. "there had been some debate about whether or not the supervisors would support the budget.
"This has been going on for a while and they needed clear direction."
Ladner said that the problem is that the commission has just been doing projects and not bringing its plans to the supervisors.
District Four Supervisor Steve Seymour said that he feels the board is micromanaging them.
"Shouldn't somebody come to us and we have to say yay or nay," Seymour said.
"I totally agree," Ladner said. We were supposed to get a clear directive and now they're starting to expunge time, effort and people over there that could be working on other things.
"My commissioners came to me saying we need a clear directive."
Executive Director of the Port and Harbor Commission Ashley Edwards said he is not aware of the dynamics.
"This pre-dated my appointment," Edwards said Tuesday. "I know our commission has been talking about maintenance beginning at Hwy. 90 down Hwy. 607.
"Our board talked to them about having them help us."
"We're here to help and make sure we are doing things to help," Edwards said. "On that same note, we always defer to supervisors.
"That money was set aside in the port's budget for this project. This was an effort started by Commissioners Gene Taylor and Robert Kane for beautification."
"It's unfortunate," Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission President Robert Kane said. "It would serve county well to pick up trash and make corridors into the county more aesthetically pleasing.
"It's a no lose for the county, their money wasn't going to be spent on."
The motion to not support the $100,000 budgeted by the Port and Harbor Commission to spend on byways, grass cutting and landscaping passed three to two with Board of Supervisor President Lisa Cowand and District Four Supervisor Steve Seymour voting against.