Meridian Star

October 13, 2012

New lights for baseball fields

By Terri Ferguson Smith /
The Meridian Star

MERIDIAN —     Work to add lighting to some baseball fields in Meridian is about to get under way.

    Wayman Newell, Lauderdale County District 2 supervisor, said Thursday that lighting at Magnolia Ball Park, Q.V. Sykes Park and Highland Park is expected to get going the week of Oct. 22.

    "We started two years ago renovating that field," Newell said. "We took bids several months ago and the bids were awarded to a contractor out of Brandon." "It had lights at one time but sometime in the '80s, nobody played on the field and the city took them down."

    Newell said he hopes that this will open up playing opportunities for more children.

    "Now with the economy the way it is, a lot of those kids don't have the opportunity  to play baseball. I was approached about renovating that field and of course we had to do it in stages. The lights on the three entities were about $300,000. Magnolia was $101,000."

    Work is expected to be completed by Feb. 1, he said.

    Right now you have four to 10-year-olds playing out there," Newell said. "I certainly hope that we'll have little league out there next year. We're looking forward to seeing someone hit a home run out of the fence."

    The lighting is being paid for from funds generated from a bond issue for roads, bridges, recreation and fire protection passed earlier this year.

    On Thursday, county supervisors mulled over a proposal for fines related to county residents who violate flood plain rules by failing to get a building permit. They are also considering adopting a fee schedule for those permits. The county recently hired a part-time compliance officer who is responsible for making sure new construction and renovation projects have the proper permit.

    Cathy Lummus, Flood Plain administrator, presented the Board of Supervisors with a proposed list of fees and fines.

    A permit for a new house in a non-flood zone would cost $25; a new commercial building permit would cost $50; and mobile homes and other permits would be $15.

    All permits issued for property in a flood zone would cost $75.

    If no base flood elevation for a particular property has been established, the county will have to have an elevation study conducted. A person applying for a permit, in that case, would have to pay $100 towards the cost of the study.

    Fines for failure to obtain a permit will start out at a modest amount. For a $15 permit, the first offense of not getting one would be $30; for the second offense, $45 and so forth. However, Lummus said the third offense should be $250 or $500.

    As the meeting was a work session, no action was taken on the matter.