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Mayor: People hungry for growth and development'

By By Ben Alexander/The Meridian Star
Jan. 25, 2001
At a special meeting to present the city's annual report, Mayor John Robert Smith said 2000 was a great year for Meridian and the 2001 outlook appears just as successful.
This year's annual report linked Meridian at the turn of the century to the city's present day accomplishments, mirroring how different the city's operations are in the year 2000 compared to its past.
Smith said, although primitive at the time, the city had a vision for a better future and those visions still existed.
During the presentation six department heads spoke about highlights that their respective divisions had in 2000 including:
The police department's Anti-Tobacco Youth program winning a statewide award.
The Finance and Records Department processing more than 10,000 purchase orders and handling more than 17,000 cases in Municipal Court.
The Fire Department's grand opening of a $3 million Central Fire Station and answering of more than 3,000 emergency calls.
The Parks and Recreation Department's $50,000 playground expansion at Highland Park. The PR department also hosted over 29,000 rounds of Golf at the city's Lakeview Golf Course.
The Community Development Department's completion of a $1.1 million extension of sewer service to a newly annexed area and the department's work on a $268,000 hiking trail around Bonita Lakes.
The Public Works Department's implementation of a new, high-tech traffic light system throughout the city and its treatment of more than 2.5 billion gallons of drinking water for public use.
Councilwoman Mary Perry said the report showed good progress, but other steps would still need to be taken in order to see the city continues moving forward.
Smith said 2001 promises to be an exciting time to live in Meridian.
Ben Alexander is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. E-mail him at