Published 11:05 pm Saturday, August 18, 2012

High temps in Vicksburg ranged from the upper 80s to lower 90s throughout the week. Overnight lows varied from the mid-60s to upper 70s. About two-thirds of an inch of rain fell during the week.

The Mississippi River sank locally from 1.6 to .7 feet. Forecasters were expecting it to remain at that level throughout today. Barge operators have been lightening their loads on the river, a method unlikely to change until there’s more water to float their boats.

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved a series of rate increases for ambulance service ranging from a $25 hike for basic non-emergency to $150 for life support. The increases, expected to take effect immediately, are the first in 10 years, according to the mayor.

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The Storehouse Community Food Pantry celebrated 10 years of feeding those in need from their South Street location. The all-volunteer organization gave food to 3,522 people in 2011.

Dr. Paul W. “Bill” Pierce, a longtime Vicksburg physician currently practicing at Medical Associates, and his son, Paul W. IV, who practices cardiology with River Region Medical Center, welcomed another family member into the medical field. Dr. Sam Pierce, younger brother to Paul IV, has returned to Vicksburg and will work as a general practitioner alongside their father.

Mike Hayes of Nashville, who bought the former YMCA building at Clay and Monroe streets in 2000, has decided to put the 89-year-old building up for sale. A new roof is being put down and Hayes estimated the selling price at $500,000, though he said he has no potential buyers.

AmeriCorps welcomed a new team of workers at its Southern Region center on Confederate Avenue who will work explicitly with the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Volunteers with the new program, FEMA Corps, will work with disaster survivors, conduct inventory at recovery centers and handle data base management.

Warren County Humane Society officials and law enforcement authorities are spending hours responding to calls about livestock running loose on the county’s roadways. Loose horses, especially, have become a problem to corral and return to their owners, officials said.

Mayor Paul Winfield presented a proposal during a public works budget session to consolidate the city’s right of way, cemetery and landscape departments. His plan is part of a reorganization effort, but he has not said when he plans to bring it before his board for approval.

Though city officials have made no public announcement, information surfaced during a budget hearing that Vicksburg is not allowed to borrow money because it has been without a bond rating since Feb. 15. The rating is similar to a credit score for an individual. The city is seeking to refinance $6 million in loans — balances remaining on bond issues floated in 2003 and 2007.

Magistrate John M. Roper signed an order that Mayor Paul Winfield must produce all text messages and cell messages to Kenya Burks or that contain her name and information about her. Roper’s directive came after two requests from Winfield’s lawyers that phone records be kept out of Burks’ case charging the city and Winfield with a hostile work environment after a soured consensual affair.

A 2004 Chevrolet Malibu was pulled from the Mississippi River at LeTourneau Landing after low water revealed the car’s presence to a passer-by. No body or skeletal remains were found, and a rental company out of Atlanta was the last entity to hold the car’s title, according to Sheriff Martin Pace.

Local deaths during the week were Jerry Donald Kiner, Josephine Teresa Canizaro Head, David Allen Volk, Irene Moore, Velma Rose Dates Bester, Annie Mae Dillard, Jim F. Ladner, Riley G. Summers Jr., U.L. Wright, John W. Horn, Brian Dennis “Wittie” Miller, Ethel Marie Lane Richie Cessna, Bruce Noland Bishop and Betty Steen Gillis.