Sunday, September 25, 2016
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The Tunica Times • P.O. Box 308/986 Magnolia Street, Tunica, MS 38676

Tunica Times

TCUD gets co. funding

Supervisors agreed Monday to give the Tunica County Utility District $100,000 to help the district catch up on outstanding bills. But the county purse comes with strings attached: TCUD will have to take up monthly loan payments to the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality that the county had previously been paying on the utility’s behalf.

County administrator Michael Thompson recommended that course of action, after meeting with TCUD commissioners on June 28.

The county board delayed action on TCUD’s request for funds at its June 30 meeting and asked for more information from the district.

In a letter to Board president James Dunn dated June 30, TCUD chairman Beatrice Peace cited “a significant drop in revenue” as the source of TCUD’s current financial crisis.

“In fiscal year 2008, TCUD’s budgeted revenues were $3,536,500,” Peace wrote. “The budgeted revenues for TCUD’s fiscal year 2015 are $2,457,131.25.

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WHEREAS, W. Ellis Pittman has served Tunica County as the Attorney for Tunica County Board of Supervisors and worked with Tunica County for three (3) years; and

WHEREAS, W. Ellis Pittman, throughout his service to Tunica County, has displayed the highest degree of professionalism and integrity; and

WHEREAS, W. Ellis Pittman treated all persons with dignity and respect; and

WHEREAS, W. Ellis Pittman has provided valuable service to Tunica County and its citizens in handling the complicated and complex issues; and

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School take over by state looming

A week of turmoil for the Tunica County School District culminated Wednesday, July 8, when the Commission on School Accreditation voted unanimously to seek a state of emergency in the Tunica County School District. The State Board of Education met later the same day on whether to forward that recommendation to Gov. Bryant, who must also approve the emergency declaration.

The state could then dismiss the local school board and interim superintendent Glen Newsome and appoint a conservator to run the 2,200 student district.

School board president Tomaka Henderson-Cotton, Board attorney Regina Quinn May, interim superintendent Glen Newsome, and special advisor to the district Dr. Vance Siggers appeared before the Commission on School Accreditation and the state Board of Education in Jackson. Other members of the local school board and a number of county residents also traveled to hear the proceedings.

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Board attorney shot dead June 26

A Clarksdale attorney who had served as the legal adviser for the Tunica County Board of Supervisors for a year and a half was shot and killed on Friday, June 26

Thirty-eight year old Recardo R. Frazier of Clarksdale is being held without bond for the murder of Ellis Pittman.

The shooting occurred during depositions in Pittman’s law office in Clarksdale. Pittman and Frazier were opposing parties in a legal dispute. Frazier, a contractor, apparently fled the scene but later turned himself in to authorities in Tunica County.

Pittman was well known in the area, serving as the elected prosecutor for Coahoma County. He was unopposed for re-election to the post in the upcoming election cycle.

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DEC’s appeal of Boykin order dismissed

An appeal of a May 2015 Circuit Court decision by the Tunica County Democratic Executive Committee has been turned back by the Mississippi Supreme Court.

In an order issued June 22, the Court granted a motion by Jacqueline Dishman-Boykin to dismiss the DEC’s appeal. Dishmon-Boykin successfully challenged a March decision by the DEC not to certify her candidacy for the Tunica County Justice Court, Southern District.

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