There is good news coming out of Vaiden. The town added two more good men to their police force. The beautification committee has a display that people want to drive to Vaiden to see, and that drive to Vaiden means eating out, shopping, sightseeing which could lead to even better things if Vaiden residents vote in November to pass their tourism tax.
Vaiden’s board of aldermen added two new officers to their police force, bringing the total officers to three. In a special called meeting Wednesday, October 10, Vaiden’s board of aldermen approved hiring James McBride and Mel Cannon as part-time police officers.
Mayor Mel Hawthorne said McBride and Cannon would work with current part-time officer Aaron Agee. He said McBride also works part-time with the Attala County Sheriff’s Department. All three men will work daytime, and the town still has a contract with the Carroll County Sheriff’s Department that controls the town’s night time activity.
He said McBride, Cannon, and Agee will work part-time for now and after an evaluation of the officers, one of them may be offered the full-time position at a later date.
Also, the board discussed the upcoming two percent tourism tax vote. Back in March 2016, Senator Lydia Chassaniol authored Senate Bill 3067, in a proposed two percent tax increase on all prepared food and beverages in the town to go toward beautifying Vaiden, improving their parks and recreation and any other related purposes.
The two percent increase, if approved by Vaiden’s voters, will include any gas station that sells food, Linda’s, Guy’s and even Vaiden’s more risqué entertainment venues –if they sell food, which most usually do.
And there is a new business in Vaiden to help boost its economy, Vaiden could see the influx that it’s been needing.
Classrooms, which once held students bubbling with excitement to learn and teachers eager to teach them, are now home to one of a kind pieces, artwork and pottery at the Prissy Hen. Owners Cindy and Ted Williams purchased the old Hathorne Elementary School in April. Williams said her dream is to provide a destination shop, sort of like the Canton Flea Market and in the process it brings more people to Vaiden that may have never been.
And, if Vaiden’s tourism tax is passed, it could mean good things for the town. With Vaiden’s antebellum homes, Cotton Gin and nightlife Vaiden could be on the cusp of revitalizing itself. The town was also awarded $100,000 for road repairs. With improved roads and beautification committee that’s working had to make Vaiden more appealing than it already is – it’s sure to bring new people into town.
“It’ll bring more people into town,” Mayor Mel Hawthorn said. “We have multiple establishments like the cotton gin, a man who makes leather belts on Highway 35, antique shops, historic homes. Vaiden could be a prime stop.”
He said the newfound crowd would eat at Guy’s and Linda’s, get gas at their gas stations, shop at Whitney’s and even stop at Vaiden’s Dollar General. And whether it sales tax or tourism tax, it’s all good news for Vaiden.