Supervisors must mend relationships

Published 9:48 am Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Over the past week, you have seen The Post write a number of editorials focused on the performance of the Warren County Board of Supervisors, call on them to approve a very important measure or call on one of them to apologize.
It is not very often the supervisors are in the spotlight. Most of the headlines, for one reason or another traditionally fall on Vicksburg’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen.
But, that is a mistake on our part as a newspaper and something we will quickly work to resolve.
The Warren County Board of Supervisors provides crucial leadership in our community. The ways their decisions affect our day-to-day lives goes from the condition of the roads we drive, to the safety and security of our communities.
Their decisions affect recreational opportunities for youth and adults and are at the helm of economic development and job growth in Warren County.
That is why recently, we have challenged them to do what we — and many others — believed to be the right decision in merging the economic development agencies in our community under one roof.
That vote came Tuesday, with four of the five supervisors approving a plan that would combine the Port Commission, Vicksburg-Warren County Chamber of Commerce and other economic development groups under one office, one director.
It was the right move for Warren County. It was the right move for Vicksburg.
Initially, I was skeptical of the idea to merge the chamber and other groups together.
I worried about the chamber being lost in the shuffle and losing many of the gains won under Jane Flowers’ leadership as director.
After talking with many involved in the decision, and learning more about Pablo Diaz, the incoming director, my concerns have been quashed.
But there is one lingering issue that the county supervisors still must address.
Two weeks ago, District 2 Supervisor William Banks called for Port Commission chairperson Margaret Gilmer to be dismissed from the commission. He did so in a public meeting and did so without providing any evidence as to why such a demand was warranted.
He also made this demand right in the middle of leaders negotiating the terms of this economic development merger and working to recruit Mr. Diaz to come and lead our economic development team.
In the days following those comments, The Post called on Mr. Banks to apologize. He has declined to do so.
And, Tuesday, he cast the only nay vote in the decision to merge the economic development groups.
So now, in addition to again asking Mr. Banks to apologize to Mrs. Gilmer, we add a second question.
What does Mr. Banks have against economic development in Warren County and why does he insist on standing in the way?
Our supervisors are crucial to the growth and well-being of Warren County, if they work with the same goal in mind. As of right now, I am not so sure.

Tim Reeves is publisher of The Vicksburg Post. He can be reached at

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About Tim Reeves

Tim Reeves, and his wife Stephanie, are the parents of three children, Sarah Cameron, Clayton and Fin, who all attend school in the Vicksburg Warren School District. The family are members of First Baptist Church Vicksburg. Tim is involved in a number of civic and volunteer organizations including the United Way of West Central Mississippi and serves on the City of Vicksburg's Riverfront Redevelopment Committee.

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