Columbus mayor breaks tie in favor of tabling Propst Park improvements

COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – After a heated debate, the fate of Propst Park will have to wait.

The park remains a priority for Columbus Mayor Keith Gaskin and City Council.

At last night’s Council meeting, Gaskin broke a 3-3 tie in favor of tabling improvements on the park until more information can be gathered.

All of the council members seem to support major improvements to the city’s oldest park. The questions are what form should those improvements take, and how to pay for them?

One plan, already on the drawing board, would expand baseball offerings by building new fields. It would cost $3.3 million. The city has $1.2 million on hand to work with.

A plan has been floated to take out loans against future restaurant tax collections, an estimated $4 million over 10 years.

Some council members believe baseball capacity is already adequate, and the money could be better used on improvements that would appeal to a broader base of city residents.

“We want to make sure that the park is not something that’s just focused on tournaments necessarily, but how’s it going to best serve all the citizens of Columbus, especially the children. And Greg [Lewis, Recreation Director] is very passionate about the baseball fields, wanting them to have the same quality baseball fields you see in other communities surrounding Columbus. And I understand that, and the Council does as well,” said Gaskin.

Gaskin would also like to wait on the results of a feasibility study that the city and county are having done on their parks and recreation systems.

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Categories: Local News