Value of street naming debated

To the majority of Jacksonians, that is inspiring, Ward 3 Councilman Kenneth Stokes said.

To Ward 1 Councilman Quentin Whitwell, who quietly cast the lone dissenting vote on the names, it is a waste of tax dollars.

Whitwell, elected in February and the newest member of the council, said a common theme he heard while campaigning was that people in his ward are tired of their tax dollars being spent on street renaming when the city has “bigger issues.”

“I’ve made a pledge to focus on priorities of crime reduction, business recruitment, and openness and transparency in government,” Whitwell said. “When I feel those three major tasks have been accomplished or are in order, then I’m willing to consider other superfluous issues.”

City spokesman Chris Mims said the average cost per street corner is $338, including installation and production of two signs.

Each of the two proposals passed Tuesday will cost $1,562.73, Mims said, as each affected passage is three blocks long. They will require two new overhead signs and six ground-mounted signs.

Clarion Ledger
4/23/11