Who's in Charge?

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County administrator Rex Hiatt brought the question of the power bills for night baseball games to the attention of the board of supervisors Thursday morning.

"Meridian High and other leagues are using the Q.V. Sykes baseball field," said Hiatt. "We're getting some rather high power bills in now and even though the park has not been turned over, I wanted to get the consensus of the board if it wanted to send those power bills to Parks and Recreation of the city to pay or if you wanted to continue paying those bills."

The current bill is over $1,300. When the idea for Sykes Park was first approved, the agreement was the county would deed the baseball complex to the city when it was completely finished. County engineer Neal Carson reassured the board Thursday that it is.

"The only thing we lack is paving the road from 8th Street down to the park and then paving the ring road into the parking lot of the park," Carson said.

Carson said because of the weather, the roads might not be rebuilt until April. But supervisor Ray Boswell said he wants to get the entire problem off the county's back now.

"I don't think we need to own any of it out there," said Boswell. "What purpose have we got to own any out there, except more expense to the taxpayers of the county?"

The original agreement said the only portion of that land the city would accept was the baseball complex itself. The remainder of the property was to remain in possession of the county. That is not the way Boswell sees it.

"If it's a park, let the city have it all and run it as a park," Boswell said.

Meridian's parks and recreation director, Mark Naylor, told Newscenter 11 that wasn't the deal. He also said he doesn't believe the city should pay bills incurred prior to the county deeding the baseball fields to the city.

But supervisors voted to send the power bills already incurred to the city for payment.