The abandoned caretaker’s house at Burnside Park and the campground bathrooms will be demolished because they’re so dilapidated, the Board of Supervisors decided on Monday after consultation with the park commission last week.
The abandoned caretaker’s house at Burnside Park and the campground bathrooms will be demolished because they’re so dilapidated, the Board of Supervisors decided on Monday after consultation with the park commission last week.
The abandoned caretaker’s house at Burnside Park and the campground bathrooms will be demolished because they’re so dilapidated, the Board of Supervisors decided on Monday after consultation with the park commission last week.

At a special meeting Thursday with supervisors, members of the Philadelphia-Neshoba County Park Commission voiced their concerns about the condition of the properties. District 5 Supervisor Obbie Riley, the president of the Board of Supervisors, said then they’d consider the demolition.

In January, the county purchased the approximately 115-acre park for $42,900. The park includes a playground, basketball courts and ball fields among other amenities.

At the meeting Thursday, District 4 Supervisor Allen White proposed fencing to close off portions of the park, but a designated county road that runs through the would have to be closed, officials said.

Park Administrator Cody Bryan said he had priced an automatic gate for the park in the amount of $5,000. Bryan told the supervisors that many people use the part late at night and leave large amounts of trash, including drug-related paraphernalia, beer cans and condoms, which takes workers several hours on Monday to clean up.

“It has gotten bad out there,” Bryan said, in reference to the late-night activity.

Riley, during Thursday’s meeting, said that the county’s goal would be to put some money into the park in the form of renovations and improvements.

“Look, I want that house torn down as much as you all do,” Riley said. “Just so you all understand, we own this park. There isn’t a question that we are going to have to continue to maintain it. It is important not only legally, but we want to do what we can to protect our green spaces in county for those that don’t have access.”

Discussion then followed regarding the approximately $42,000 the county had been putting into the Pearl River Basin Development District and whether the county could provide that money to the park commission for use in Burnside.

White noted that one of the reasons the county pulled out of PRBDD is that they did not feel they were getting value for the money they were putting in.

Riley said that the county would be putting money into the park, but it would probably not be putting in the full $42,000.

This led to a request from Bryan that the county fund at least $5,000 for the acquisition of a new lawn mower, which could be used at Burnside and other area parks.

During Monday’s meeting, supervisors approved the new lawn mower.

The supervisors also approved setting a public hearing for 10 a.m. on June 18, 2018 regarding the abandonment of County Road 2812, which is the road leading through the park.

County Attorney Wade White explained that the public would still be able to use the park roads, but abandonment is the first step in allowing the county to gate or fence off a portion of the roadway.

Another discussion included the possibility of selling a portion of the park to the Philadelphia Public School District, which currently maintains the ballfields.

Attorney White explained that there would be multiple entities involved in a sale, including approval from the National Parks Service and from the Mississippi Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks Department.

No action was taken regarding the possible sale of property to the school district, but White said they would pursue opening the discussion with those agencies.