A CROWN FOR RECREATION OPTIONS that are coming soon to Bonita Lakes Mall and East Gate Plaza.

Bonita Lakes Mall announced this week Hype Indoor Adventures would be locating in the old Sears space, offering climbing walls, trampolines, a ropes course, a go-cart track and other fun activities.

That’s great news. Empty store fronts, especially anchor spots such as the space used previously by Sears and JC Penney, are depressing and discourage prospective tenants from joining the mall lineup.

Foot traffic of people entering and exiting Hype Indoor Adventures is likely to create new energy and interest in other vacant spots and generate customers for existing mall businesses.

Meanwhile, the outward appearance of East Gate Plaza has greatly improved since the arrival of Planet Fitness. New signs went up this week for the planned Event Zona, which will offer trampolines, bowling lanes and other recreation activities.

Some may fear an excess of options will lead to failure for one or both new businesses, but we think competition is healthy and leads to better performance and better attentiveness to consumers.

CROWNS TO MERIDIAN CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS for expressing skepticism that granting tax breaks to businesses will result in new jobs.

Too often incentives are given to businesses while a shrinking population of homeowners is left to make up the difference to keep up roads and municipal services.

Handy Hardware and more recently CertainTeed were given incentives only to leave without fulfilling the promise of good, steady jobs.

Council and the Lauderdale County Board of Supervisors would do well to act with caution before awarding incentives for empty promises.

A FROWN FOR THE NEED FOR THE CITY to ante up another $11,527 to APAC-Mississippi for paving work between 65th Avenue and Old Highway 80.

Apparently inaccurate estimates by the city and county led to the added bill.

What’s that adage: measure twice, pour asphalt once?

A FROWN FOR THE COUNTY SUPERVISORS reversing course on putting contracts for cleaning services out for bids.

The process doesn’t put into question the quality of the work being done by current providers, but bidding should lead to the possibility of better pricing for the taxpayers and fairness for the contractors.

Supervisor Joe Norwood was correct in saying, “I just think anytime that we have contracts we should make it available to all of those companies, individuals and entrepreneurs who are interest in applying. I just think it’s competition. You get better service (when you put out for bids).”

The city and county need to break the cycle of relying on the same providers because it’s always been done that way.

A CROWN TO EAGLE SCOUT candidate Parker Henry, his fellow Boy Scouts and teammates for cleaning and painting the locker room last week at West Lauderdale High School.

A CROWN TO THE CITY OF MERIDIAN and other communities in East Mississippi and West Alabama who put on their annual Fourth of July celebrations and fireworks shows.

Building a sense of community and celebrating together adds greatly to our quality of life.

Thank you to the public employees and volunteers who made those celebrations happen.


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