Pensacola

The battle over Burgress Road heats up

September 20, 2017

On “Pensacola Speaks,” Councilwoman Sherri Myers gave more background on last week’s council budget amendment that would allocate $1.6 million for sidewalks and drainage on Burgess Road if it can survive the second budget workshop and Mayor Ashton Hayward’s line-item veto.

Last year, the city council approved the mayor’s request to borrow $15 million to do a decade’s worth of resurfacing over the next three years.

“We thought that was going to take care of resurfacing for some time,” said Myers. “Well, according to the Mayor’s proposed budget, he wants to spend $3.2 million in 2018 of LOST money for resurfacing.”

She said, “I think that was quite shocking to the city council to see that.”

Myers is stumped as to why Mayor Hayward hasn’t acted to protect the children who travel Burgess Road to one of the three schools in the area. The county has taken care of its part of the route to Holm Elementary, Workman Middle and Washington High.

She said that she had a conversation with the mayor on Feb. 24, 2016, while they were also discussing the tornado damage in her district.

“He told me that he knew how dangerous Burgess Road is for children because he traveled Burgess Road frequently going to Everwell Pharmacy,” said Myers. “He told me that he was very aware of how dangerous that road is.”

She added, “I felt like he gave me some assurance that he would support efforts to make that road safer for children. I would love for him to just come on out and support it, but I also hope he doesn’t do a line item veto and force me to have to go back to the city council and get the city council to override his veto.”

When asked how many times she has met with the mayor in his office, she said, “I’ve never been in his office I don’t think. Maybe one time when I first got on council. I have had one meeting with him, not in his office, but up on the seventh floor.”

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