EXCLUSIVE: More information revealed about potential City of Bellevue

EXCLUSIVE: More information revealed about potential City of Bellevue

LAMAR COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - Members of the executive committee involved in the incorporation of the potential City of Bellevue spoke with the Sandstone Home Owners Association Tuesday night.

John Adcock, Brantley Fryfogle and David West told the HOA that a detailed presentation of city plans, which would sit in Lamar County just west of the City of Hattiesburg, will be presented to the county Board of Supervisors on Aug. 20, 2015.

"We've had a plan all along to get a plan together and then go before the board of supervisors," Adcock said.

Adcock said Bellevue would include 13-14 square miles and include approximately 6,000 residents.

"I believe this community has the potential to be one of the premier cities in the south," Adcock said.

He also said "there is a budget that is near completion," but would not go into specifics about cost or new taxes residents may incur.

"I'm not going to tell you that there will not be extra millage," Adcock said. "That would not be correct.  A city has to have revenue in order to operate. I don't want to discuss millage with you because that would not be prudent at this point. But I think you'll find that the millage will not be out of line with what any other city this size would have."

The Bellevue representatives discussed some of the hurdles they need to overcome to incorporate. They said they would need 66 percent of the registered voters in the proposed incorporation to sign a petition. That petition would include details about the potential city's government, including a list of five alderpeople, a mayor, and a budget.

Adcock indicated the petition process could start in about a month.

"The zoning is the driving force behind all of this," Adcock said.

He also said Bellevue representatives have studied the cities of Diamondhead and Madison for comparison.

A public records request made by Seven On Your Side for county emails shows a drafted area that includes, but is not limited to, Sandstone, Bridgefield, Canebrake, Cumberland, Bellegrass and Bent Creek subdivisions.

"We've drawn the city limits," Adcock said. "We've drawn the city on a map."

The emails date back to February 2015, and it is possible the area has changed since then.

The executive committee also said they may face a legal objection from the City of Hattiesburg, which could end up in Chancery Court.

Adcock said the committee is trying to be open about plans for Bellevue.

"This is not something being done in the shadows," he said. "It's not intended to be secretive."

Seven on Your Side reached out to Adcock for further comment on Wednesday, but he declined saying details would be given on Aug. 20 at the supervisors meeting.