by Calvin Ishee

The Pass Christian Dog Park cleared another hurdle at the March 5th PC Board of Alderman meeting when the Board unanimously approved the lease agreement with Trinity Episcopal Church.  Pass Christian’s first and only dog park will be located on the west side of the Church on St. Louis street. The lease agreement will be conducted on a one-year term basis with an option to renew for twenty four one-year terms.

The City agreed to clear parts of the property, as well as to conduct routine maintenance after the park project has been completed. The Committee for the Dog Park has agreed to raise all funds necessary to construct the park along with future park improvements. Committee members in attendance in the auditorium applauded the Board’s decision to support this project.

Additionally, the Board approved Avra O’Dwyer’s reappointment to the PC School District Board, a six month lease agreement with the owners of the Sea Level and three running events by the Gulf Coast Running Club. The running events will be held April 13th, Gulf Coast Classic Run, August 3rd, Summer Beach Run and December 21st, Pass to Bay Run.

The BOA cancelled an engineering contract with T. Baker Smith and awarded the same contract to another company called Overstreet and Associates. This decision was based on Bob Escher’s expertise on Pass Christian and his moving from T. Baker Smith to Overstreet and Associates.

A Public Hearing was held regarding a Conditional Use Permit for an eight by four foot shed, referred to as a non-dwelling building, on a lot without a Principal Structure.  Although these requests are typically disapproved; the owner committed to build on this property when he retires next year, so the Board approved his request. One citizen rose in opposition and another rose in support of this request. The owner stated that the shed was going to be used to store equipment and supplies needed for ongoing yard work and landscaping purposes.

In a 4-1 vote, the BOA approved the PC Public Works Department’s request to go back to their former Monday-Thursday, ten hour day work schedule. Alderman Buddy Clarke stated that coverage should be five days a week instead of just four. Public Works Director Russell Holliman told the Board that Pass residents could still contact them on Fridays because the office phone will be forwarded to his cell phone and he would respond accordingly.

During the Public Comments portion of the meeting Mayor Leo “Chipper” McDermott and several of the Board members expressed their thanks and gratitude to the Police, Public Works, Pass Harbor and Beautification Departments for a job well done supporting this years highly successful Pass Parade. Marian Gest, PC City Clerk, was thanked for her outstanding contributions during this strenuous time.  Harbormaster Marty Tiller informed the Board that the PC Harbor accommodated parking for 244 cars and 13 RV’s. Mayor McDermott concluded by asking residents to shop locally as often as possible. He stated that we need to “support local businesses every way we can.”

The meeting ended after the BOA came out of Executive Session and disapproved a claim for $450 from C&J Quick Stop. Per City Attorney Malcolm Jones, C&J Quick Stop was seeking damages from when a person that had a warrant against him, ran and escaped from a PC Law Enforcement Officer. The City reviewed the video and coordinated this request with a state office called the Mississippi Municipal Service Company and their Mississippi Municipal Liability Plan which recommended the disapproval of this request. Typically police departments cannot be held liable for damages incurred during the course of operating within their line of duty.

The next PC BOA meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, March 19th at 6 p.m.