Impacting Our Community

When I was in high school at Harrison Central, several of my classmates formed a club called Because We Care. Our mission was simply to do good deeds for and in our community. Those benevolent activities impacted my life in positive, lasting ways. Today, participating in activities and opportunities that benefit my community still excites me.

Check Your Smoke Detectors

The American Red Cross has a launched a nationwide campaign to reduce the number of home fire deaths and injuries by 25% over the next 5 years. Do you know that smoke detectors have a life span of about 10 years? Even if you change your batteries faithfully, the smoke detection apparatus inside the housing doesn’t last forever.


Red Cross of Southeast Mississippi is teaming up with Gulfport Fire Department to check and install smoke alarms in homes in several Ward 6 subdivisions on Saturday morning, April 30. Volunteers to canvass the neighborhood with fire safety education are needed and can enroll and get more information concerning the event at

This project is being sponsored through donations by and volunteers from Walmart Supercenter and Walmart Neighborhood Market on Hwy 49, Waggoner Engineering, Great Gulf Development, Rotary Club of Gulfport-Orange Grove, and Coast Electric Power Association.

Dedeaux Road Widening Project Update

Although visible, onsite work on Phase 1 is complete for the moment, work on the project continues. Last week, Engineering provided me with this status update and the next few steps in the process.

Widening Project Phase 1 status and current efforts:

  1. All utilities have been relocated.
  2. The Plans, Specifications and Environmental documents will be sent to MDOT.
  3. MDOT will schedule an Office Review.
  4. After Office Review and final changes are made to plans, permission to advertise will be granted by MDOT.
  5. City of Gulfport will advertise in June/July goal.


Let me be very clear, all planned dates provided are subject to delays from many variables: political, bureaucratic, and otherwise. As Helmuth von Moltke said, “No plan survives contact with the enemy.”

Funding for construction of Phase 1 remains in place. As for Phases 2 and 3 of the widening project, the administration recently began applying for grant funding for the remaining phases. I wrote the letter below in support of seeking those funds.

Letter – Mayor Billy Hewes – Dedeaux Road TIGER Grant Application Support by rleeflowers