Officials plan to add spray park

Published 7:00 pm Thursday, June 6, 2013

City and county officials have devised a plan to locate a spray park in Brookhaven’s Bethel Park.

The plan calls for city and county money and grant funds to be pooled to pay for the spray park.

District One Supervisor the Rev. Jerry Wilson will apply for a Pearl River Basin Development District grant, said county administrator David Fields.

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The grant would provide up to half the needed funds for the $100,000 park installation. The remaining $50,000 would be provided by the city and county.

During their Tuesday meeting, Brookhaven aldermen approved, at Ward Three Alderman Mary Wilson’s request, supplying $45,000 of the matching funds.

The remaining $5,000 would come from the District One budget.

Fields said the grant application will be submitted by July and word on the applications should come later that month.

The Pearl River development district grant is available annually. Fields said the grants are intended for recreational projects and that Lincoln County typically, in recent years, has used the Pearl River grant for upgrades to the Lincoln County Civic Center.

While Fields said Lincoln County is certain to receive some kind of grant award from the Pearl River development district, the final award amount for this year remains tentative.

The maximum the Pearl River grant will supply is $50,000 in matching funds. Depending on the development district’s funding levels, that maximum amount may not be available to Lincoln County this year.

In the previous two fiscal years, Brookhaven aldermen have, at Wilson’s request, allocated money toward the spray park project.

The intent was to annually allocate a particular amount until the park could be paid for.

If the project is successful, Bethel Park will join Brookhaven’s City Park and Bicentennial Park in calling itself home to a spray parks.

Fields said the county has previously allowed Brookhaven to utilize the Pearl River grant on certain projects.

During Tuesday’s board of aldermen meeting, Ward Four Alderman Shirley Estes added that she’d like to eventually locate a new park in her ward.

Aldermen also approved various routine matters Tuesday evening before adjourning by 7 p.m., a notably abbreviated meeting time by comparison to typical aldermen meetings.