Grimes column: It seems problems keep getting bigger, bigger

Published 4:29 pm Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Twenty-five years ago, in 1990, the year was off to a good start with several things happening in the news.
The East Brewton City Council targeted property within the city that was overgrown and run down. Notices had been sent to 81 property owners warning them that action would be taken if the property was not cleaned up. Another 45 to 50 notices were scheduled to go out the next week. Councilman Arthur Brantley was to work with Police Chief Charles Adkins to see that the work was done.
Now, doesn’t that sound much like it does today? Both Brewton and East Brewton have these same problems today. I don’t know if the problem is lack of funds for the property owners or just plain old indifference, but these problems reflect on all of the citizens who live in the area. No one wants to live in a neighborhood that has been overgrown with brush or where there is a building that is about to fall down. We all need to take pride in our property and make sure that we clean up our own space.
In an interview, public defender Everette Price said the number of cases was running 350 to 400 a year.
I recently learned that a couple more offices are being prepared at the courthouse annex for the use of public defenders. I guess the problem has only gotten bigger in the past 25 years and the county is expanding the number of public defenders.
Do you remember what buildings were located on Persimmon Street 25 years ago? I vaguely do. In early 1990, demolition was begun on the old stockyard which was located on Persimmon Street. That left only the Ritz Theater and the Farmer’s Exchange.
Today only the spinning ball of the theater is left and Farmer’s Exchange moved into the building which was previously the site of Piggly Wiggly.
There was a large article in the newspaper about the Escambia County Activity Center where the clients worked at various jobs to raise money and give the clients a job to keep them actively involved.
The center was located, at one time, on Douglas Avenue, across the street from Pic N Sav. The students, or clients, collected newspapers and stacked them for recycling.
Many times in the early 2000s I collected the newspapers from vendors and took them by the center. Those people would be working really hard to bundle the newspapers. What ever happened to recycling?
And speaking of the landfill; the one located on Jay Road was reported to be nearing capacity.
Although it doesn’t seem that long ago, it was reported that a three-lane project was beginning from Underwood to Stadium Street.
I don’t know how we ever made it without this third lane. I make it my habit when I am on my way home from work to go to a traffic light in order to get on Douglas Avenue.
If you sit and wait at the other crossings, you will be there for a while. Sometimes I wonder where all those cars are coming from or going to. I have often made the comment that I believe every car in the Brewton and East Brewton area are on the streets at the same time. If you don’t believe there is anything going on in Brewton, just check out the number of vehicles on the streets.

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