NDPDD: Local senior services won’t be interrupted
The recent arrest of North Delta Planning & Development head Glenn K. Brown and the removal of its Area Agency on Aging designation has had little impact on things in Tunica County, according to NDPDD interim director James Curcio.
Curcio, who appeared before the Board of Supervisors on July 15 and the Board of Aldermen on July 20, told local officials that the North Delta office is still open.
“Some people think we are closing, but that’s just one division...We do a lot of other things. Even if we don’t get our AAA designation back, we are going to continue to operate, “ Curcio said, reporting that North Delta can still assist with grants, etc.
Curcio told both boards that North Delta was planning to respond to the Mississippi Department of Health and ask them to reconsider the removal of North Delta’s Aging Designation. Until a final decision is made, South Delta has taken over Meals on Wheels services for about 22 local seniors.
North Delta is continuing to deliver meals paid for by Tunica County plus 75 “medicaid waiver” meals, Curcio said.
“Those 22 people probably haven’t even noticed an interruption in service. The only thing that has changed is who is bringing their meal. In some counties, that’s even stayed the same,” Curcio said.
Curcio said North Delta was doing all it could to reorganize and satisfy the state and federal regulations.
“We know that’s going to be a long process,” Curcio said.
The process may include streamlining some jobs and subcontracting some things out. Curcio said it will also include more contact with town and county officials.
“We want to keep the board updated on the progress of our efforts,” Curcio said.
Curcio shared the same message with the Board of Aldermen on July 20, saying North Delta would continue to move forward with “what we do.” He then presented an application for a grant that would allow the town to purchase some police cars. The grant will provide 15 percent of funding while the town must pay 85 percent.
The aldermen approved the grant application and a resolution in support of North Delta.
The Board of Supervisors also approved a resolution supporting the organization.
In other business, the board of supervisors:
• hosted several lot owners for a public hearing.
Tunica County Code Enforcer Jewelie Brown reviewed the list of lots, which included properties owned by John A. Ferguson, Bertha Banks, Alonzo Dungeon and Gillie Johnson/James Johnson/Comimilla Johnson.
Supervisors opted to give Ferguson 30 days to clean his property. They awarded Banks 60 days to have electricity turned on at her property.
The rest will be cleaned up by the county. A lien will be placed against the property and the owner will be responsible for paying it.
• authorized $1 charge on any voice over internet phones.
The additional revenue will cover E-911 services.
Local Emergency Management Director Randy Stewart said it will probably generate less than $100 a month.
During their meeting, the Board of Aldermen:
• received a report from Barbara Evans of the First Regional Library system. Evans thanked the aldermen for their continued support and asked them to consider funding them again in FY2011. The requested amount was $30,000.
• agreed to look into a committee to explore “economic development opportunities to generate sales tax revenue in the city limits.”
Alderman Charley Knabb introduced the idea, saying he would like to see a group that could unite entities like the Chamber of Commerce and Tunica Main Street along with other interested parties.
“It would be an open discussion where people could share ideas,” Knabb said.
The board recommended that Knabb create a list of people who would like to serve on the committee.
DA’s investigator resigns from post
The investigator for the District Attorney’s office has stepped down from his position following allegations of burglary last week.
Rich Canon turned in his resignation at the Tunica County Sheriff’s Department on Monday, July 19. No criminal report was filed in the case, but Canon was charged with burglary following a probable cause hearing in Coahoma County. He was arrested on July 20 and posted a $2500 bond later that day.
The Board of Supervisors appointed Canon as an investigator for Tunica County cases handled by the district attorney in 2009. Prior to that, he was a deputy for the Tunica County Sheriff’s Department, most recently working in investigations.
The case is being handled by the Tunica Police Department. Canon is being represented by attorney Stan Little.
Ganging up on crime
Tunica County Sheriff’s Department officers Clark and Davis offered a follow-up on gangs to the Tunica Rotary Club on July 22.
A week earlier, Rotarians joined with Tunica Lions Club to learn about gangs from two former law officers at the Mississippi State Penitentiary.
Clark and Davis presented a local overview.
Relay on the River set to light up the night
“In the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary,” Aaron Rose once said.
On Aug. 27, Relay for Life organizers are hoping that the right light produced by hundreds of luminarias will make a local effort to fight cancer extraordinary.
Individuals throughout Tunica County are now selling luminarias that will honor cancer survivors, support those currently battling the disease and remember those who have lost the battle. In addition to serving as a tribute, the small bags, filled with sand and a candle, will be used to light up Rivergate Park when the sun sets.
“Luminarias are a simple but powerful way to get involved with Relay For Life,” Relay on the River Chairman Meg Coker said. “It will be beautiful when all the bags with candles are illuminated around the track.”
This year, luminarias are available in three different colors.
“We have luminarias in white bags for $10. Silver luminarias are $25, and gold luminarias are available for $50. Other relays in our area have tried this and it really makes a dazzling display. I’m so excited that Tunica will be amping up our efforts to light up the night,” Coker said.
Another added element will be torches that organizers plan to mix in with the luminarias.
“These torches are another way to honor our survivors, current cancer patients and pay tribute to those who have lost the fight,” Coker said. “They will include a plaque with the honoree’s name on it. It can be removed and sent to that person or their family.”
Torches can be purchased for a $100 donation.
The names of those on each torch and each luminaria will be read aloud during a special ceremony during Relay on the River. It will be held at 9 p.m. in the amphitheatre on Aug. 27
Last year’s ceremony was a powerful and touching experience ,and Coker said she is certain that this year will be just as moving.
“I know the ceremony will be wonderful and that Rivergate Park will again be glowing with hundreds of luminarias and dozens of torches,” Coker said.
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