September 25, 2010 7:32:00 PM
A rose to the city of Columbus, Lowndes County, and the Columbus Lowndes Recreation Authority for the open, public process if has gone through to get public input on the soccer complex and park planned for Burns Bottom. Citizens were allowed to weigh in on the specifics during three public hearings, and plans were altered to meet some concerns.
Work on the park, to be located in Burns Bottom off Main Street in downtown Columbus, could begin a soon as January. The first phase of the project will include construction of fields, lighting, parking, restrooms, concessions and other work.
After years of talking, we''re glad plans for the park are under way, and we commend all leaders involved for keeping the public tuned in and informed of the park''s progress.
A rose to the city of Starkville, Oktibbeha County and Mississippi State University, for joining together to land a $95,000 grant that will make Starkville a little greener.
The city, Sheriff''s Office and Mississippi State University were approved for a $95,000 Mississippi Development Authority grant to install new technology on vehicles and allow them to run on gasoline and propane. Gasoline will be used to start the converted vehicles and as a secondary fuel system, but propane will be the primary power source.
The technology allows the cars to save $1 per gallon on fuel. The savings in taxpayer money, and less emissions polluting the air, allow us all to breathe a little easier.
Roses of condolences to employees of Starkville-based Cadence Bank, some of whose jobs are in jeopardy after the bank agreed to be swallowed up by rival Trustmark National Bank in a deal announced Wednesday. Columbus, in particular, could be hard hit, with both banks operating branches and offices downtown. One of the two will likely close as Trustmark looks to consolidate its operations.
Workers have a little breathing room for the time being, as the plan won''t be official until early next year. But we bemoan the loss of decent-paying jobs that will be the result.
A thorn to New Hope Assistant principal Robin Ballard, who failed to report the fondling of a first-grade girl by a classmate on the elementary school playground.
Not reporting such instances is a crime, and Ballard faces a misdemeanor charge.
Parents should able to trust teachers and administrators are watching over their children and keeping them safe and secure in a positive learning environment. The incident has left some parents in the district shaken. We hope this is a one-time lapse in judgment that the county school district is taking seriously.
We also hope this serves as a reminder for parents to teach their children what type of touching is appropriate and what isn''t.
disgustedwithbarber commented at 9/27/2010 10:55:00 AM:
And a BIG thorn to the Commercial Dispatch for feeling the need to weigh-in on the events at New Hope School. All of the facts have not been published and adults and especially business leaders and journalists should act in a professinal and responsible manner when reporting news. I have always been a subscriber to the paper, of course not always agreed with items published, but I am really ashamed and disapointed in this lack of professionalism. By all accounts Ms. Ballard is a fine person and administrator and would never intentionally do anything to harm or endanger a child. We should be supportive of our teachers and administrators and wait until ALL THE FACTS are known before rushing to judgement and pointing the finger of blame and wrong doing at someone.
nhmom commented at 9/28/2010 9:15:00 AM:
I have a child in the NH school system and I can assure you that Dr. Ballard is an asset to the system. No one at the school is more of a child advocate than Dr. B! She taught my child before she became principal and she truly cares for her students. NH has many problems that should concern parents but she is not one of them. Please do not judge before all the facts are presented.
warren commented at 9/28/2010 11:34:00 AM:
Sorry "disgusted", any incident of this nature MUST be exposed to the fullest extent possible, the "facts" as we learn them should be examined and reexamined as we learn more about them. They must NEVER be covered up and/or ignored, not from the beginning to the end. Our youth are (or should be) our best, most prized asset, and must be protected and educated, not exploited or exposed to abuse. We must all remain vigilant and vocal in our shared opposition to the myriad of harms that threaten them daily.
walter commented at 9/28/2010 3:32:00 PM:
Ditto, to warren's comment. ANY AND ALL INCIDENT(S) INVOLVING ANY OR ALL OF OUR YOUTH(S) MUST BE TREATED WITH EXTRA PRECAUTION AT EACH AND EVERY PHASE. TO INCLUDE ALLEGATION(S), CHARGE(S) OR ACCUSATION(S), ARREST(S), PUBLICATION OF INFORMATION OR MIS-INFORMATION, AND RESOLUTION(S).
DESPITE THE SINS OF THOSE OF US WHO PRECEDE THEM AND IRRESPECTIVE OF OUR VIEWS OR POSITIONS ON A HOST OF ISSUES, THE ONE THING TO WHICH WE ALL MUST AGREE IS THAT OUR YOUTH MUST NOT BE CORRUPTED BY NEGATIVITY OF OUR HISTORICAL EXPERIENCES, AS MISSISSIPPIANS. ZERO TOLERANCE OF ANY EFFORTS TO EXPLOIT OUR YOUTH IS A PLEDGE THAT WE SHOULD ALL BE WILLING TO MAKE AND KEEP.
2. Our View: Time to set the Legislature straight on open meetings DISPATCH EDITORIALS
3. Voice of the people: Elaine Hegwood LETTERS TO THE EDITOR (VOICE@CDISPATCH.COM)
4. Voice of the people: Lori LeVar Pierce LETTERS TO THE EDITOR (VOICE@CDISPATCH.COM)
5. Local voices: Remembering Ed Phillips LOCAL COLUMNS