The Harrison County Board of Supervisors recently elected District 1 Supervisor Beverly Martin to serve as the board’s president for the year 2021. Martin served as the board’s vice president in 2020. District 4 Supervisor Kent Jones was elected to serve as vice president for 2021.
Additionally, the board selected Matt Stratton to be the new director of Emergency Management, Homeland Security, and Emergency Communications for Harrison County. Stratton fills the vacancy left by the 2020 retirement of longtime EMA Director Rupert Lacy.
A resident of Harrison County for 12 years, Stratton served as the Harrison County’s Deputy Director of Emergency Management since 2017. He is a 20-year veteran of the U.S. Air Force, is married with eight children, and holds degrees in Emergency Management and Meteorology.
“I appreciate the board’s confidence in selecting me,” Stratton said of the appointment. “I look forward to working with our residents, businesses, nonprofit allies, and government partners in addressing the disaster needs of our communities.”
Finally among appointments, former Gulfport Police Chief Leonard Papania was selected by the Board of Supervisors as a commissioner to Region XII Mental Health. Papania recently retired from the police department and has joined Oceans Healthcare as the behavioral health system’s law enforcement and community outreach liaison.
Harrison County residents will have a temporary location where they can request FEMA Individual Assistance if they experienced damages from Hurricane Zeta. The Hurricane Zeta Assistance Center is located at 9229 Highway 49 Gulfport, and will be staffed by specialists from Mississippi Emergency Management Agency. The center’s hours will be 8 AM to 6 PM Monday through Friday, and 8 AM to 12 noon Saturday.
To address COVID concerns, face masks will be required and appointments will be scheduled if a line begins to form. Applicants should bring the information listed below, which will be needed to request assistance.
Requests for assistance can also be submitted online through FEMA’s website https://www.disasterassistance.gov/ and FEMA’s Helpline can be contacted at 1-800-621-3362.
CrowderGulf started the second sweep of debris removal in the unincorporated area of Harrison County. This contracted effort is only for Hurricane Zeta debris. It will be best collected when vegetative debris and other damage debris are separated, and they will likely be collected by different trucks.
Other bulk waste should be collected by the normal waste hauler, but may need to be identified to make sure they are aware it is not Hurricane debris. Please call the hotline number if you are not sure about the classification. The hotline number is 228-337-0986.