Oktibbeha County lake work continues amid acquisition talks

Austin Montgomery
Staff Writer

The first phase of construction to fix the damaged levee at the Oktibbeha County lake will wrap up in 6 to 7 months, according to District 3 Supervisor Marvell Howard. Supervisors discussed at length Monday of possibly acquiring its associated Wet-n-Wild water park, and assume the lake's lease.

The board stopped short of voting on the acquisition, but approved a cost analysis assessment to retain as much information as possible about the lake's financial history ahead of an acquisition vote. District 1 Supervisor John Montgomery and District 4 Supervisor Bricklee Miller voted against the assessment.

Howard and District 2 Supervisor Orlando Trainer supported acquiring the lake to provide the county with more recreational options, and District 5 Supervisor Joe Williams said he wanted more information about the lake before making a decision on the possible acquisition.

"We [as a county] do not offer any type of recreation here in Oktibbeha County," Howard said. "We need to do better, we're capable of doing better and we can do better."

Miller voiced concerns over the monthly maintenance costs of the water park, various franchise agreements and maintaining the campground's sewage lagoon to state compliance. She also mentioned flooding issued with cabins in the area, along with potential payroll costs of reoccurring lake employees—if acquired by the county. In years past, 12 part-time workers ran the facilities on a busy day, she said.

For more, see the Oct. 5 edition.