April 9, 2009
Letters to the Editor
I am Betty Byrd, Marshall County Tax Collector. I have worked in the tax collector’s office numerous years and have been honored to serve as your tax collector for the past six years. I have a great concern for Marshall County’s taxpayers and wish to inform the citizens about a problem.
Due to the current economic downturn causing slumping automobile sales, the state’s ad valorem tag reduction fund is broke. It is expected to be a $25 million shortfall by July. Also, beginning in July, if nothing is done the price of all car tags will increase; some dramatically. You, the citizens of Marshall County, have enough challenges meeting your financial obligations without the burden of large increases in the price you have to pay for license plates.
There is pending before the Legislature a bill that will increase the state’s tax on tobacco and, if passed, the bill proposes that a portion of the new revenue would be used to provide the necessary funds to keep solvent the tag reduction fund. Even if the proposed tobacco tax is not passed, the Legislature could and should find other revenues to fund the program (such as the “Rainy Day Fund”).
This is a call to action. I would like to ask every taxpaying citizen of Marshall County to become active and let their legislator know how much this tag increase will affect them, and not end the Legislative Session without solving the tag issue. This is very important and will affect every vehicle owner in the county. Let your voice be heard.
If you have any additional questions, please come by or give me a call. We have to work together to solve this problem. Please let me know if I can ever be of service. My phone number is 662-252-3661. The phone number for the capitol switchboard is 601-359-3770.
The employees of Citizens Bank would like to thank everyone for their participation in our bake sales to benefit Christy Clarkson. Christy is a patient at St. Jude and the daughter of Kim Bryant (an employee of our Victoria Branch).
Many thanks and heartfelt appreciation to the people in the community who contributed baked goods, those who bought and for the generous donations. May God bless each of you.
On behalf of Pastor Denise Anders-Modest and the adult ministry of Anderson Chapel CME Church, we would like to say a special thanks to each and every local and surrounding business, as well as individual person(s), who donated and/or had a desire to give to our 2009 Women of Faith Conference.
We will forever be grateful for your kind acts of love to make our conference a success. We could not have done it without your help. Because of your response, women from within and across the States were blessed. To God be the glory!
Thanks -- thanks -- thanks --again, thanks!
Once again, the time has arrived for baseball, softball and T-ball season. Once again, the fields at Sam Coopwood Park are a mess. The 12/u softball team had practice out there Saturday afternoon. There was so much water behind first and third, the girls should have had on swimsuits instead of practice clothes!
Every year this has been a hurdle to overcome in dealing with trying to get Sam Coopwood Park the way it should be - up and running and nice facilities. Every year, it has been a disappointment. If we even get a light sprinkle in Holly Springs, a river runs through the softball field at Sam Coopwood Park. The other fields are in a little better shape because they are not in the “hole” by the highway - yes, the water runs down onto the field causing a major gully to split the field with water running through it.
Everyone knows that it is time for ball season, although (to some of us) it just seems like yesterday when the children were putting up their cleats. One would think that Sam Coopwood Park would have been in the process of getting prepared for the season. There were not even any bleachers at the softball field for the parents. It is a good thing that most parents bring their own chairs.
Sometimes it feels like you are banging your head against the wall in trying to get positive things accomplished. We are all here for one purpose - the children. What do we have to offer new people who have children moving to Holly Springs sportswise? I have worked hard in supporting our local Dizzy Dean softball and baseball organization. This will be Caitlyn’s third year to play softball here. However, we have lost a lot of children to either competitive teams or to the town of Byhalia, where they have an organized program - one that runs really smoothly. Granted, they only have one field down there for baseball and softball to share (one field for T-ball and coach pitch, as well), but the scheduling works out and their fields always look great. They take the time in between games, if it is a tournament, to drag the fields or even wet them down when it is hot out and the dust is flying everywhere. One field for the older ones to share. One field that is kept up yearround in impeccable condition. Here we cannot even get one field out of four that doesn’t have a lake running through it or a pool behind the bases.
We need to demand more for our children in Holly Springs. Our children deserve more than what they are getting year after year from the Parks and Recreation Department. When parents have to get together with registration forms and divide out teams, there is a problem. There is a problem when parents have to use their ATVs to drag fields before games or practices because the fields never got taken care of by the people who are employed to do so.
The week of April 20 is when the tournament is supposed to be held at Sam Coopwood Park right here in Holly Springs. If you have not heard from a coach for your child’s team, call the Parks and Recreation Department. If your field looks terrible and you swamp your lawn mower with a drag behind it trying to make the field “workable” for practice, call someone and complain. Maybe if enough people get together and complain about the problem, something will be done about it.
A couple of years ago, the 10/u All-Star team hosted a fastpitch tournament at Sam Coopwood Park. I cannot tell you how much money was raised that one day from the other teams coming in to play ball in a one-day tournament. The concessions were running, the fields were running - there were ticket takers at the gates. It was great! That is what we need to be able to offer here - Sam Coopwood Park would bring in the money to sustain itself throughout the season - on and off - if there were weekend tournaments held out there for the different age groups. There are teams looking all over the place for weekend tournaments.
This is something that our city should be able to capitalize on to help promote our town, as well as Sam Coopwood Park. It will take motivation and work, but that park could look like a new penny if it were taken care of properly.
I continually mentioned it being Sam Coopwood Park. I knew Sam Coopwood and am very good friends with his wife, Eleanor. He loved children of all ages. He enjoyed seeing them have a good time romping about town. I can assure you he would be ashamed at the condition of the park that is named after him. It is a disgrace. Our children deserve better.
Mary Clay Brooks
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