Waveland's new mayor, Jay Trapani, took office on January 4. His campaign website lists his many qualifications and experience, as well as a detailed platform focusing on community development and financial responsibility. This week, he took time to answer a few questions from the Shoofly Magazine team.
After two unsuccessful attempts running for mayor, and on the urging of many citizens, I decided to run again. As they say, the third time is the charm!
Have you made any new appointments, or do you plan to?
New appointments are Lisa Planchard as city clerk and Ronnie Artigues, Jr. as city attorney. Both have previously worked for Waveland in the same capacity as they will now. Having these two experienced individuals will be a tremendous asset to Waveland and will shorten the transition of the new administration.
What are your plans for new development in Waveland? What big changes do you see coming?
My plan all along has been to bring Waveland back to where it was pre-Katrina. In order to do that, we will have to develop Coleman Avenue. With that being said, there are two potential projects about to begin at the foot of Coleman Avenue and Beach Boulevard. One project was approved by the aldermen of the previous administration. The other should be coming in front of the Planning and Zoning Board in late January or early February. Also, the Rite Aid-building on Highway 90 at Nicholson Avenue has been purchased. The buyer is in the early development stage but is looking at bringing something exciting to this corner.
The citizens of Waveland and all of Hancock County have waited for a long time for the repair of the Garfield Ladner Pier. FEMA has obligated the money for the repairs. The process to rebuild will start just as soon as possible.
In addition, drainage was a topic brought up as I knocked on doors campaigning. Mayor Mike Smith was key in starting two drainage studies that are currently ongoing by Chiniche Engineering. Once these studies are complete, the new administration will be looking for funding sources to correct any deficiencies found.
What project are you looking forward to most?
I can't say that any one project excites me more than any other project. I am extremely excited to have the opportunity to lead Waveland over the next four years. Working together with the aldermen, the city staff, and the citizens of Waveland, we can accomplish a lot. We all just need to be patient. We can't expect everything to change overnight. I'm probably the most impatient. I'm still learning the slower pace of projects in the public versus the private sector.
The new mayor also told the Shoofly Magazine that he wanted citizens to know the street light issue on Hwy 90 was addressed last week and “we should see this problem corrected very soon.”
Jay Trapani, Mayor
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