Category Archives: Starkville Board of Aldermen

Godfather’s is Coming to Town

GOLDEN TRIANGLE– Courtesy of the Dispatch


Pizza and buffet chain Godfather’s Pizza is opening a local store in Midtown at 301 University Drive, Suite 2. They plan to open their doors sometime this spring. The chain has been in business since 1978, and currently has more than 600 locations in 40 states. More options for tasty food in this burgeoning town are always good to have!

Starkville’s Cadence Bank main branch building, located at 301 E. Main St., is back on the market. The Board of Aldermen considered buying the property in 2014, but the project was eventually voted down. The 30 thousand sq ft building is currently listed at $2.5 million.

Ceco Building Systems, which makes materials needs to construct pre-fab homes, will be moving to a new location a few blocks down Hwy 45 N, according to Human Resources Director Tim Lamm.  

Nails and Spa, located at 1726 Hwy 45, has put up an “opening soon” sign, but no date has yet been announced. The nail salon will be open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.  


K-Mart has officially closed its doors here as of late November. Future plans for the retail space, if any, have not yet been announced.

Penny Ridge Grocery, located at 2003 Ridge Road between Caledonia and Columbus, is on the market. Owners Deanna Jordan and John Wooten have said that they are in the process of finding a buyer, but that they would close for business by the end of the week.

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New Starkville Parks and Rec Head Sees Great Things in its Future

STARKVILLE – Courtesy of the Dispatch

Starkville Parks and Recreation Director Gerry Logan talks about his department to the Starkville Rotary Club – Logan talked about parks and recreation’s impact on Starkville – Photo by Alex Holloway, Dispatch Staff

Starkville Parks and Recreation recently appointed a new Director, Gerry Logan, who spoke with the Starkville Rotarians recently. He spoke about upcoming tournaments and events both past and future, all of which help to contribute to Starkville’s bottom line by way of tourist (and local!) dollars filling the coffers at hotels and local shops.

“Parks and Rec is an economic impact driver,” Logan said. “We host tournaments. We host events. We contribute to the economic development of the community. We deal with quality of life issues. We have sidewalks and areas for people to walk. We have a free walking track at the Travis Outlaw gym . . . It’s about contributing to the … soul, if you will, of the community.”

SP&R runs seven local parks, accounting for about two hundred acres of territory and facilities. With a $400K+ budget increase for 2019, Logan plans to put the additional funding to good use, with new projects on the horizon: “What the comprehensive plan said we needed is certainly some additional field space,” Logan said. “That’s proven. We are certainly short on field space, particularly diamond field space — baseball and softball fields. It also noted we have a lack of multi-use trail. Those are things we need and it’s certainly our goal to get there.

“As part of this new process, with any new facilities that come on we’re also going to look at renovating the Sportsplex,” he added. “A second entrance has certainly been talked about. It’s challenging because of the creek and overall layout of the land, but with any potential discussion of new facilities and a new park, the second part of that is renovating the Sportsplex to make it as efficient as it can be — parking, access roads, things like that.”

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Joe Max Higgins on Bringing Industry to Starkville

Joe Max Higgins on Bringing Industry to Starkville

STARKVILLE – Courtesy of the Dispatch

GTR LINK CEO Joe Max Higgins recently met with the Starkville board of aldermen, Oktibbeha County board of supervisors and Oktibbeha County Economic Development Authority to talk about the issue of trust. He feels that economic development depends on it.

Golden Triangle Development LINK CEO Joe Max Higgins and SV Industrial Park — Photo by Alex Holloway, Dispatch staff

From his perspective, he needs to know that he and the LINK can trust that they know what the area’s county and local officials expect, so as to make sure that proposals for economic investment will get heard and acted upon. He stated that, in Lowndes and Clay counties, he has a pretty good grasp on that; for Oktibbeha, not so much: “I do (know) in the other places,” Higgins said. “I don’t have that comfort here. . .there’s some of you that I don’t know how you’re going to vote and it’s scary,” he added.

On the flip side, Higgins stated that local leaders will need to know that they can trust the LINK to keep the cities’ and counties’ best interests in mind when bringing them new prospects and proposals: “We don’t go after and heavily incentivize deals that don’t pay more than our county averages,” Higgins said. “You can’t make your place be a better place by going after jobs. You need to go after good jobs.”

District 3 Supervisor Marvell Howard spoke on the importance of such trust: “We’ve just got to trust Joe Max and his team. To this point, they’ve been good about keeping us in the loop,” Howard said. “But as things speed up, we’re not going to be able to call everybody together every time. He’s going to have to be comfortable that we trust him enough to say, ‘Joe Max is not going to bring us a bad deal.'”


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Master Plan Has Been Approved for Starkville Athletic Complex

Master Plan Has Been Approved for Starkville Athletic Complex

STARKVILLE – Courtesy of The Dispatch

Starkville aldermen recently approved a contract with Dalhoff Thomas, a Memphis architecture firm. They are to be awarded $61,000  for a master plan of a proposed athletic complex at Cornerstone Park off Highway 25. Ward 4 Alderman Jason Walker reports that this will become integrated with the master plan the city already has for its overall parks system. “This is for design purposes to get you to a master plan level,” he said. It is to be a basic, non-final plan/proposal for a possible athletic facility at Cornerstone Park, allowing the city to move ahead on getting the actual project in motion, pending approval.

Walker continued, “This is going to be the plan for us to decide how we want to do it, what we want to do and from that standpoint, there would be a separate contract that would go to construction documents to actually get the project built.” It will likely include things such as a projected square footage, drainage and other infrastructure requirements, et al.

Starkville Mayor Lynn Spruill (courtesy photo)

Mayor Lynn Spruill said that the city might be eligible to receive roughly 114 acres in Cornerstone Park from the Oktibbeha County Economic Development Authority. “That gives us a whole lot of options we can use because we keep McKee, we keep the Sportsplex, and we have a real serious competitive opportunity we can use here,” she said. She also pointed out that success in this venture would eliminate the need to acquire similar land nearer the existing facilities: “Unless Cornerstone has … a huge wetland issue for mitigation, then the amount of acreage we were looking at (near the Sportsplex) was half of what we’d get at Cornerstone,” she said.

“We want to do high-end ball fields,” Spruill went on to say. “We want to be as competitive or more competitive than anyone out there. We want to do amenities to go with it — maybe a splash pad or a batting area. A jogging track — it’s very easy to put something around a facility to allow other facilities.”

Ward 5 Alderman Patrick Miller commented: “When the Outlaw Center at the Sportsplex fills up or there’s an event going on, I’d like to make sure that our youth or whoever it might have the opportunity to play basketball in other parts of the city as well and have good, nice facilities just like everywhere else in the city.”

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Starkville to Get New Public Housing and Commercial Space

Starkville to Get New Public Housing and Commercial Space

Starkville – Courtesy of The Dispatch

Local attorney Johnny Moore recently spoke with Starkville aldermen on behalf of Tuscalloosa developer Christopher Dobbs at their board meeting. They discussed potential plans to move public housing development Pecan Acres to a new location, freeing up the original site on Highway 12 for commercial development.  The Starkville Housing Authority and HUD are also involved with the possible project.

Attorney Johnny Moore speaks to aldermen during Tuesday’s board meeting – Credit: Alex Holloway, Dispatch Staff

While the exact location of the new Pecan Acres site has yet to be determined, it will still be within Ward 7, and current residents will have first choice of housing units to move into at the new location. The new site will be 100% ready before requiring anyone from the old one to decide whether to move there or go elsewhere: “The way this is going to take place, the units will be built, and then they will move into the new units,” Moore said. “Nobody’s going to be displaced for any period of time.”

The aldermen seemed receptive to the idea, according to reports. Ward 1 Alderman Ben Carver said that “This is a once-in-a-lifetime (opportunity). . . So if Volunteer Starkville wants to get involved or anyone wants to help, there’s tons of outreach programs out there that could help.”

“We’re going to take the Pecan Acres property and put about $150 million in infrastructure improvements in it,” Moore said. “It’s going to increase the funds that our schools will receive by about half a million dollars a year. We’re going to receive sales tax. We’re going to receive property tax. We’re going to get people who are living in public housing that’s over 70 years old in new housing.”

The aldermen also discussed potential interest in a planned EMS district, and the matter will be open to input from EMS service providers at their May 1st meeting. The idea is that it should be possible, within the defined district, to house both fire trucks and Fire Dept. ambulances at the same stations, improving response times and allowing easier access to OCH Regional Medical Center.

The fact that ambulance services are generally run at a loss, and must therefore be subsidized, was brought up as part of the discussion; it will be discussed further at their next meeting, along with ideas for potential outside firms that can assist with implementation.

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Zoning Approved for Starkville Industrial Park

STARKVILLE – Courtesy of The DIspatch

Circuit Judge James Kitchens recently affirmed a recent zoning change for a proposed 360-acre industrial park near Hwy 182 & Hwy 389. Starkville aldermen had previously re-zoned the parcel in question as appropriate for Manufacturing, but that decision was challenged by LMK LLC, Bettye Bell, Mary S. Bell, Margaret Copeland and Laura B. White. Judge Kitchens said that these appellants were unable to meet their burden “to show that the decision was invalid.”

As such, GTR LINK plans to go ahead and seek funding to the tune of $14 million that had been pledged by the Oktibbeha County Board of Supervisors and Starkville Board of Aldermen.

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Tax Incentive Back on the Agenda for Wal-Mart in Northern Starkville

Tax Incentive Back on the Docket for Wal-Mart in Northern Starkville

A proposal to add a tax increment, which was shot down several months ago, will be back on the Agenda for the Starkville Board of Aldermen in a couple of weeks. The intention is to provide money to help set up proper infrastructure and other construction-related costs to allow a new Wal-Mart to be built on the North side of Starkville, which has gone without a convenient option for grocery shopping for decades. A number of elderly residents seem to welcome the idea of a new store, even if it means higher taxes – and, if it works, it could help to bring in other stores, as well…And That’s Good for Business!

STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI) – starkville-story-wcbi-wm

A proposed Neighborhood Walmart store in Starkville will be back on the board of aldermen’s agenda when they meet again. If they approve the project, there would be a $1.3 million dollar tax increment to finance it.

A twenty-minute trip to the grocery store may not seem long, but resident June Carpenter says it is for most elderly. For 50 years, Carpenter has lived in Starkville, and has spent most of her time living on the northeastern side, where there hasn’t been a near by grocery for decades. She stated, “Really, I don’t like the idea of paying the TIF, but the problem is the city leaders have paid the TIF to have businesses on the west side of town, so now it’s time for them to equal it out, and pay the TIF to have stores on our side of town.”

Alderwoman Lisa Wynn says the town needs Walmart, more than Walmart needs Starkville. That’s why the city needs to prepare to provide some tax incentives: “The soil is not of good quality, it would have to be removed. We’re talking about construction of a street. The sewer would have to be developed in that area. Smaller businesses wouldn’t be able to afford that, and even if a developer were to come in and want to do it, I can assure you he will be asking us for TIF also.”

The project will be brought up again for discussion on November 15th.

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Video: Starkville Contemplating a WalMart Near Hwy 12

Video: Starkville Contemplating a WalMart Near Hwy 12

Courtesy of WCBI


The Mayor and Aldermen will take up a proposal on the Starkville Neighborhood Market Project on Tuesday, October 4th. The proposed site, east of Hwy 12, will cost about $14 million to set up, and will hopefully provide both jobs and a supermarket for students and other residents on the east side of town and nearby areas.

The project would be paid for through a tax increment financing plan.

Video: The Starkville Neighborhood Market Project

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Starkville’s Hwy 182 Improvements in the Works

Courtesy of the Dispatch

Officials in Starkville will be holding a meeting today with business developers and planers to discuss new ideas for how to improve the Hwy 182 corridor in order to bring new businesses into the city. The public meeting will be held in the second-floor conference room in City Hall at 11AM today. Reps from MDOT and MDA are also expected to attend. It is hoped that making the area better via various means will help new, businesses to establish themselves in affordable locations as close to downtown proper as possible.

Community Development Director Buddy Sanders had this to say: “For example, you could give more flexibility to someone in terms of how they have to alter structures to bring them up to standards,” he said. “Small startups typically don’t have a lot of cash. Say someone graduates from State, loves Starkville and doesn’t want to leave, and his or her dream is to open up a pizza place. Rent in Starkville can be expensive in a lot of places, but 182 is reasonable, and there is a lot of opportunities. Say they want to open it up in an empty service station, but they can’t afford to tear it down and move it closer to the street. That’s where you can find flexibility.”

More public sessions are expected to follow in the future.

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LINK Industrial Park Report Coming Up Soon

gtr linkThe GTR LINK, which has been a large part of making our Golden Triangle community better for many, many years, is reportedly preparing to discuss plans for new industrial park options in the area.

The GTR LINK is expected to meet with Oktibbeha County supervisors and Starkville aldermen with regards to any potential projects. The exact area which will be focussed on has yet to be determined, but is likely to be selected from one or more of the following: land north of the Highway 82-Highway 25 juncture; 16th section land south of George M. Bryan Airport; and Cornerstone Park.

Ward 4 Alderman Jason Walker, who also serves on the steering committee, said each plan offers different benefits and problems: “One thing that the committee members do agree on is that no matter which option we choose, [the Cornerstone improvements are] something we have to definitely look at,” Walker said. “Part of my hesitation is money. [Another] is looked at as a game-changing effort, but they said the same thing about Cornerstone years ago. The good parts of [the 16th section and Cornerstone options] are that they tie in with the structure of town, build on what we have and affirm that we’re not abandoning what we’ve already invested in.”

For the full article, please click this link below (from the Commercial Dispatch):

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