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State funds will pay for park improvements

A north Brookhaven community park has been approved to receivefunding for improvements, Mayor Bob Massengill told aldermenTuesday.

Massengill said a Bicentennial Park improvements projectundertaken by the Competitive Community Program is in line toreceive $80,995 when state funds become available. The mayor saidin-kind assistance would be used to provide the required localmatch for the project.

“This is very exciting because so many communities didn’t getfunding,” Massengill said during a brief city board meeting Tuesdaynight.

Massengill said he would be meeting with CCP representatives inthe near future to get started on the project. Improvements thathave been discussed for the park on Main Street in the Pearlhavencommunity include lighting, playground equipment upgrades andparking.

In other business, aldermen voted to advertise for architect andgrant administration assistance for a chamber of commercerenovation project. The city has received a $297,600 grant torenovate the old fire station behind the chamber building.

The funds are for chamber improvements, but the money is comingthrough the city. Therefore, the city has to oversee grantactivities such as choosing architects and grantadministrators.

“The city is responsible for the grant,” said City Clerk MikeJinks. “The city has to make that decision.”

Also Tuesday, the board agreed to allow an Apache helicopter toland in Railroad Park parking lot during the upcoming Memorial DayVeterans Parade Day on May 28.

However, the board will seek some guarantees from eventorganizers that the helicopter blades’ downthrust will not threatenvehicle windows and newly planted trees. Officials said vehicleswill be parked away from the landing area.

Massengill said an Apache helicopter was scheduled to be presentfor a previous parade; however, it was called away.

“That could happen again,” Massengill said.

Lasting only about 20 minutes, Tuesday’s meeting missed beingthe shortest on record by about about three minutes, city officialssaid. Last night’s meeting was brief because of Election Day andseveral officials’ desire to go to their wards forvote-counting.