Supervisors Push Forward on Byram-Clinton Corridor | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Supervisors Push Forward on Byram-Clinton Corridor


Hinds County District 3 Supervisor Peggy Calhoun's motion to deny Milwaukee Electric forgiveness for taxes because of errors on the company's behalf passed today.

The Hinds County Board of Supervisors today approved taking another early step forward in the Byram-Clinton corridor road-construction project. Supervisors voted unanimously to advertise for engineering consulting services on the project, which Supervisor Peggy Calhoun called "vital to the future economic development of Hinds County."

The project will include an expansion of Siwell Road as well as acquisition of some new right-of-ways and will likely carry a total cost in the hundreds of millions. The county must contract with an engineering firm for consulting before it can begin construction or right-of-way acquisition, however.

The county recently received $35 million in federal funds for the project. Calhoun said that prompt action by the county would help its case in attracting more federal aid.

"I would like to see us keep this momentum going," Calhoun said. "This is probably the most vital project that this board could ever pursue."

The county will need to furnish matching funds for the federal dollars, which will likely come out of the county's 2007 bond fund.

Supervisor Doug Anderson suggested that the county could use some of the $14 million in bond funds originally intended for a downtown Jackson parking garage—a pet project of Anderson's, now scrapped—for the corridor project.

"I can't think of anything better to do than dedicate the $14 million to this project," he said. "This would also tell the federal government that we're serious about this project, and that we're willing to put our money where our mouths are."

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