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Sen. Wicker encourages comments to USACE in support of Yazoo pumps project

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U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., encourages Mississippi residents to submit comments to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on the environmental impact of backwater flooding in the South Delta and the need to complete the Yazoo Area Pumps. The Corps recently published a “Notice of Intent” to prepare a “Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement” for the Yazoo Area Pump Project and is accepting public comments on the proposal.

“This is wonderful news for Mississippi and particularly for residents and small businesses and particularly farmers in the South Delta region,” Wicker said in a statement. “We’ve been under a veto for some 12 years now from the [Environmental Protection Agency] and the Corps of Engineers on the Yazoo Pump project. … It’s very important that those of us who want to protect homeowners, property owners, residents, and also protect the wildlife of the South Mississippi Delta from the devastation of these floods – It’s important that we make comments on the record.”

The Corps’ notice indicates a willingness to reevaluate the flood control project, which was vetoed in 2008 based on inaccurate environmental impact data, Wicker said. As explained in the Corps’ notice, recent evidence has shown that prolonged periods of flooding in the South Delta have “adversely affected the aquatic and terrestrial environment” and “demonstrate[s] the need to complete the Yazoo Area Pump Project.”

The decision to move forward with a new environmental impact statement comes after leaders from both the Corps of Engineers and the EPA visited the area and expressed an interest in finding a solution for the flooding.

Members of the public will have until June 15, 2020, to comment on the notice of intent.

View the full text of the notice here.

Comments can be submitted directly to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and should include this heading:

To the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Vicksburg District
RE: Notice of Intent published April 16, 2020, 85 FR 21218

If sent by postal mail, send to:

Edward E. Bel, Jr.
Director of Programs

Mississippi Valley Division
US Army Corps of Engineers Vicksburg District
ATTN: CEMVK-PPMD
4155 East Clay Street
Room 248
Vicksburg, MS 39183

If sent by email, send to: [email protected]

News

City employees to ring the bell in support of the Salvation Army

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(photo source: Salvation Army)

”The need is great, but the strength of the community is greater!”

City of Vicksburg employees will be doing their part in assisting the local Salvation Army in operation “Rescue Christmas.” Employees will ring the bell at Kroger from 8 a.m.to 5 p.m. Monday, Dec. 7.

There are several ways to give at the kettle. Cash is accepted via Apple and Google pay, or you can scan a code that will direct patrons to the Vicksburg kettle donation site. More importantly, all proceeds stay right here in Vicksburg!

Please stop by and help the employees of the City of Vicksburg “Rescue Christmas”!

Schedule – Kroger Monday, Dec. 7

8 a.m. – 9 a.m.
Gary Jackson and Rick Daughtry

9 a.m. – 10 a.m.
COV Traffic Dept

10 a.m. – 11 a.m.
Kim Hopkins and Ashley Hoeft

11 a.m. – noon
Malinda Hill and Fayeshetta Odoms

Noon – 1 p.m.
Fermika Smith and Deputy Chief Paymon

1 p.m. – 2 p.m.
Trey Martin  and Alex Monsour

2 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Vicksburg Fire Department

3 p.m.-4 p.m.
Mayor George Flaggs Jr. and Officer Joseph Stubbs

4 p.m. –  5 p.m.
Nancy Thomas and Doug Whittington

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COVID-19

Mayor taking the gloves off on businesses not complying with COVID-19 regulations

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Vicksburg Mayor George Flaggs Jr. in Dec. 4 press conference. (photo via video screen grab)

Mayor George Flaggs Jr. is taking off the gloves when it comes to COVID-19 in Vicksburg.

In response to the rising numbers of COVID-19 cases in Warren County, Flaggs announced Friday that any business not conforming to the city’s COVID-19 restrictions will be cited and fined. If the business continues to flout the law, the city will turn off its utilities. This new, tougher restriction goes into effect at noon Saturday, Dec. 6.

The seven-day average of new COVID-19 cases rose to more than 20 per day Friday with 46 cases reported. The average is four times higher than where it was a month ago.

“The mitigation of this disease is too important,” Flaggs said, his voice rising with emotion. He said that continuing the trend will land Warren County on the governor’s hot spot list.

“We will not compromise, and we will not negotiate,” the Mayor added.

Flaggs said that most businesses in Vicksburg are complying to the city’s orders, but a few continue to ignore them.

“We’re not going to let one business disrupt the economy of Vicksburg by not wanting to do what you should be doing,” he said.

Summary of the new order:
Read the complete supplemental order

In addition to the regulations effective Dec. 2, 2020:

  1. All persons are required to wear a face covering, both indoors and outdoors, at group/social gatherings if social distancing (6 feet apart from persons who are not household members) is not or cannot be practiced.
  2. Group/social gathering temperature checks – before entering a group/social gathering, inside or outside, of more than 20 people, the host or other designated responsible person must check the temperature of all persons requesting entrance. If a person’s temperature is higher than 100.4°, the person must not be allowed to enter the group/social gathering. Examples of a group/social gathering are a private party, house party, wedding, wedding reception, wedding or baby shower, sporting event, funeral, worship service or other social event. The host or other designated responsible person must also keep a list of persons attending the gathering and contact information for contact tracing if needed.
  3. Restaurants and bars – businesses that sell alcohol for consumption on its premises or businesses that allow consumption of alcohol on its premises must check the temperature of every employee and patron before entrance. If a person’s temperature is above 100.4°, the person must not be allowed to enter the premises.
  4. The Block Party scheduled for Downtown Vicksburg Friday, Dec. 4, 2020, is canceled and all future Block Parties are canceled until further notice.

Violation of this EMERGENCY PROCLAMATION will be subject to misdemeanor prosecution pursuant to Sec. 45-17-9 of the Mississippi Code of 1972, as amended, Sec. 33-15-7 and Sec. 1-9 of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Vicksburg, including a fine of up to $1,000.00 and 90 days in jail.

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Events

Junior Auxiliary announces ‘Santa Stories’ fundraiser

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(photo courtesy Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary)

When it became clear that COVID-19 would make their fall Pirates and Princesses Tea Party impossible, the Junior Auxiliary of Vicksburg came up with a new fundraiser and called on an old friend to help them out—Santa Claus.

The new fundraiser, called “Santa Stories,” allows parents to purchase a special package from the North Pole for their children. The package will feature a bedtime story on video, as well as a personalized, handwritten letter from Santa.

“This has been a tough year for so many of us, but that doesn’t stop the magic of Christmas,” said Candice Reeder, chair of the Santa Stories fundraiser. “We wanted to help spread that, while also raising money for the projects we support.”

There are two packages available for purchase. The first includes one video and one letter, which can be addressed to one or multiple children, for $25, with the option for additional letters at $15 apiece. The second package includes two videos and one letter for $35, with additional letters for $10 apiece.

To purchase a package or learn more, visit www.javicksburg.org/santa_stories.html.

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