New residents to see lower fire insurance rates

Biloxi’s recent annexation victory means that the 80 or so homeowners in the new sections of the city could qualify for lower-insurance ratings and more recreational opportunities because the city has a better fire rating and less expensive recreation leagues than in D’Iberville or Harrison County.

Key city department leaders met with Mayor A.J. Holloway and Chief Administrative Officer David Nichols to discuss the addition of two-and-a-half square miles of Biloxi, primarily straddling Mississippi 67, south of the D’Iberville High School and north of the Promenade development.

In addition to lower fire insurance rates for homeowners – the drop in price will be determined by type of construction, claims history, and other factors – new residents will see discounts on city adult and youth recreation leagues. Land use and zoning will be similar to current zoning for the new area of the city.

The area, which has about 250 new residents, will officially become part of the city on Sunday, April 21.

Public safety – with residents seeing Biloxi police patrolling streets, and Biloxi police and firefighters responding to 911 calls – will be the first evidence of Biloxi’s presence.

Firefighters, in fact, have already been surveying the area. In terms of manpower, Biloxi, with nearly 160 firefighters, has one of the largest departments in south Mississippi. Biloxi has a Class 4 rating while Harrison County has a Class 8 and D’Iberville is a Class 6. In fact, Biloxi is one of only six cities in the state and one of only two on the Coast to have a Class 4 rating.

“The homeowners in this new 2½-square mile section of Biloxi should be checking with their insurance companies and make sure they know that they’re going from a Class 8 to a Class 4,” Nichols said.

Biloxi’s rating was upgraded from a Class 5 to a Class 4 in December 2009. In determining the classification, the rating bureau considered the staffing levels in the Biloxi Fire Department, the city’s accreditation as a Level 2 training facility, adequate water pressure at fire hydrants, and employing backup generators at city water wells.

See the map: To see the map showing the area awarded to Biloxi and D’Iberville, click here.

See the detailed map: For a close-up map of the area now part of Biloxi, click here.

News and notes

Spring break weekend: Capt. Jim Adamo of the Biloxi Police Department discusses plans to handle the expected onslaught of traffic this weekend in this week’s City Desk webcast. To listen to the program, which also features Chief Administrative Officer David Nichols, click here.

Cops: WLOX and Subway have produced a 30-second TV commercial honoring the Biloxi Police Department. The spot which begins airing next week on WLOX as part of a continuing campaign to honor service providers. To see it now, courtesy of the city’s You Tube channel,
click here.

Retiree party: A retirement party honoring two longtime key city employees — Fire Chief David Roberts and one-time Police Chief and Port Division Manager Frankie Duggan — will be held Tuesday, April 16 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Biloxi Visitors Center. Dozens of friends and family members are expected to gather at the function, which is open to the public.

Weekend preview: To see the entertainment lineup for this weekend, click here.

Kensington Drive work: The city is planning another of its community meetings to inform residents about pending infrastructure work in their neighborhood. Postcards will be going out to Back Bay residents in and around the Kensington Drive area to tell them about upcoming work. To see the postcards, which also alert residents to an April 25 meeting, click here.

Election, Part 1: Residents in Biloxi should be receiving the four-page newsletter Voter Information 2013 in their mailboxes over the next several days. You can also pick up copies at public libraries in Biloxi, and most city facilities. To see it now, click here.

Election, Part 2: Coast Young Professionals, an organization of the Mississippi Gulf Coast Chamber of Commerce, will host a political forum for candidates in Wards 4 and 6 on Tuesday, April 23 at 5:15 p.m. at The Innovation Center, 1636 Popp’s Ferry Road, east of Cedar Lake Road. The event will be moderated by members of Coast Young Professionals, with candidates answering questions submitted by the public and selected by forum organizers. Have a suggested question? Email by Friday, April 19.

Hiatus: Bmail is scheduled to be on hiatus through Monday, April 22.