Exciting year for Batesville – more coming in 2023

Published 6:47 am Wednesday, December 28, 2022

By Hal Ferrell

Batesville Mayor

As 2022 comes to a close, I am taking the opportunity to recognize and celebrate all of our citizens and their incredible accomplishments throughout the year.  Thank you for playing a positive and critical role in Batesville’s growing success to be all that it can be. 

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Reflecting on 2022, the Board of Aldermen and I have held over 40 meetings at City Hall.  

I have met with dozens of people needing help.  When the City was unable to provide assistance, other individuals or groups were sought and helped supply those needs.  It has been my pleasure to attend new businesses’ ribbon cuttings, community meetings, and special events. 

Throughout the year, I have met with elected officials from Panola County, the State of Mississippi, and the United States to discuss ways to improve Batesville.  

Additional meetings include those with Northwest Mississippi Community College and FedEx to plan for and meet the challenges of a flight school in Batesville.  It was also insightful for me to have been visited by James Meredith concerning his last mission: to uplift the moral character of Mississippians.

These are some of this year’s highlights not only for me, but also for everyone “making Batesville all it can be”:  speaking to South Panola and Pope kindergarteners; declaring Feb. 13  as Darrell Henderson Day; helping Dr. Ervin Fox establish a heart study in Panola County; recognizing the South Panola JR ROTC Rifle Team and South Panola Cheerleaders for national awards; and meeting Jermarcus Yoshi Hardrick with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of Canada and his family who want to give back to his original community.

Live streaming of Batesville city board meetings was enacted so that citizens who cannot attend meetings can see and hear matters being discussed at regular meetings.  

Each meeting streamed on Facebook has had hundreds of viewers.  After years of attempts to connect Lehman Roberts (LR) to Batesville gas lines, the property rights-of-way were attained, and LR is now a valuable summer customer of gas.  

Free Wifi at Patton Lane and Trussell Parks was installed.  Online billing for city utilities has been made available.  

Batesville has location, location, location.  

The city limits were expanded.  Several more businesses and some new houses are under construction.  Hired as an event coordinator to utilize the Batesville Civic Center, Rodney Holley will schedule more venues of entertainment for more diverse audiences.  And, Taylor Grocery Catering will start Jan. 1, 2023, as the food concessionaire.

“When a year ends, another begins” is much like “when one door closes, another opens.”  My focus is recognizing the doors that will open and benefit Batesville in 2023 and beyond.

 Because I love a challenge, I answer the phone, “This is Hal, how may I help you?”