Phil Fisher For Mayor of Clinton MS
Accomplishments in City Public Safety, Quality of Life, Efficiency and Transparency
July 2013 to March 2021
- Started streaming the BoA meetings in Sept. 2013 to give more citizens access and engagement to the City meetings.
- Twice a month radio show. When MC closed their radio station, I began quarterly streams to the city on specific topics (Retail Coach Aug 2017, Mad Genius Nov 2017), Crime numbers (Feb 2018) Clinton Next presentation (June 2018). Economic Development Director (Oct 2018), Parks and Rec (Feb 2019), Police (Sept 2019), SBA loan process for Coronavirus and Updates from Agriculture Commissioner, State Epidemiologist, and Speaker of the House (March 2020), Update on Entergy Complain with PSC (July 2020), General update on PD, PW, PR, ED, COVID-19 (Nov 2020),
- Started weekly e-mails to inform City and promote transparency – 46% open rate vs. an industry average of 20%. And a “click through” rate of 27% vs. average rate of 8%.
- Reworked the City web page from a pdf. to an interactive modern webpage.
- Placed Map-Viewer on-line allowing anyone to check tax parcels and zoning without coming to Community Development.
- Put City minutes on line going back to 1928.
- Certified Local Government (CLG) – received $2,000 for National Register survey.
- Olde Towne Historic District placed on the National Register (2017).
- Became a certified Local Government to open new avenues for federal grants.
- Codified City ordinances/land use map/comprehensive plan and put on the web page for the convenience of the public with $45,000 of the $75,000 from CMPDD.
- Combined the on-line calendars of the City, CPSD, and MC to inform residents of all activities available in our community on any chosen day.
- Created com, a curated “things to do” website for residents.
- BoardSync program to allow better transparency of City minutes.
- Developed the Wayfaring system throughout town to direct visitors to areas of interest.
- Made signs on Arrow Drive recognizing all Clinton state championships.
- Added and elevated the following positions to staff level to allow a growth in these areas and expansion of programs for the benefit of the entire City;
- Established Communications Director position to get Clinton’s message out to the local, regional, state, and national market place.
- Established Grants Administrator position. (2014-2017).
- Established a fulltime City Attorney to handle legal issues in house and save the hourly fees charged to the City from an outside firm on day-to-day legal issues.
- Established a fulltime Judge position allowing the police department to utilize technology in conjunction with a streamlined warrants process resulting in quick and efficient warrant service. The full-time judge position allows the process from “crime to jail-time” to be streamlined and consistent. The Judges court policies increased collections by $172,161 in calendar year 2019 ($666,254 (2019) vs. $494,092 (2018)) more than paying for the Judge position and all court upgrades.
- Established a fulltime Economic Development Director position allowing a person to focus 100% of their time to the retail, and industrial promotion of our City.
- Promoted Main Street, Train Depot, Wood Center, and Visitor’s Center heads to staff level position with their own budgets.
- Elevated women, Hispanics, and African Americans to key staff positions.
- Changed the City payroll system to achieve better efficiency.
- Established a Department Head committee to review and rewrite the City policies.
- Established a committee to recommend a fair pay system to the BOA. Assured male and female employees are paid equally for the same job position.
- Established a yearly pay raise system that gives raises based on work effort vs. across the board raises.
- Increased police department pay an additional $1,300 to 25 underpaid patrolmen (2013).
- Reduced the number of billboards with Lamar Advertising allowing only 2 billboards on City property, included free use of digital billboard space to advertise City events.
- Took major steps towards a paperless city.
- Developed Fresh at Five farmer’s market with a $35,867 grant from the USDA.
- Train Depot organized a “Rail Club” and hosted the first model train display over the 2019 Christmas holidays with 700+ visitors.
- Began Polar Express.
- Initiated and enforced beautification ordinances to deal with unkept buildings and property to include tearing down eyesore structures.
- Privatized landscaping to save the City money and promote a better appearance.
- Created Visitor and Business Kiosk for tourism and business support at Visitclintonms.org and housed in local hotels.
- Woods Center improvements – ping pong table, pool table, therapeutic equipment, sofas, TV. Program expansions for both seniors and special needs residents.
- Restored the City budget to the black.
- Used the money from State refund of engineering money ($125,0000) to establish a rainy-day fund requiring 5 BOA votes to spend.
- Added a budget line allowing yearly City building maintenance and used it to update/replace old or broken flooring, roofing, furniture, and the structural integrity of every building except City Hall, preserving the City’s structural assets.
- Began the Clinton Employee Education Program with HCC and MC.
- Established Mayor Art Exhibit in Woods Activity Building and City Hall.
- Added the Artist Bicycle exhibits in Olde Towne.
- Added miniature cars in the Boulevard District.
- Hosted a golf tourney to raise funds for Parks and Rec.
- State sanctioned car show in Sept. 2014 -140 cars, Sept 2015 – 80 cars, Sept 2016 -80 cars, 2017 – 110cars. Sept 2018 – 76 cars, Sept 2019 – 95 cars, 2020 canceled due to COVID-19.
- Added a mobile Caterpillar for selfies around town.
- Built “Turner the Train” for fun transportation during events.
- 2020 Clinton named 5th best City in MS based on Census and FBI crime stats, up from 7th in 2019, unranked prior to 2018.
- During the Coronavirus the train depot and Main Street provided crafts and reading programs for children as well as virtual scavenger hunts.
- During the coronavirus the City hosted the virtual Caterpillar parade and encouraged families to post their pics and videos on the City web page.
- Unfroze police (5) and fire (5) positions at first meeting of the new administration in 2013. 47.
- Increased CPD slots from 40 paid to 63 paid slots. Need to increase the total officers from 63 to 70 in a potential third term.
- Purchased body cams for all CPD officers.
- Worked with County, CPS, WIN, and the Sec. of State’s office to get handheld radios from the County to update CPD and CFD communications.
- Received additional radios from UMC valued at $75,000 for improved Public Safety communications.
- Led City-wide effort to purchase 60 M-4 rifles from citizen donations saving the City budget $34,632 (2015).
- Crime down from 32% to 86% in major categories (2013-2019). Robbery crimes down 82% – see numbers below;
2013 – 2020 Crime Numbers;
|Offense||2013 Totals||2020 Totals||% Change|
|Auto Burglary||116||77||33.62% decrease|
|Residential Burglary||174||22||87.35% decrease|
|Business Burglary||18||5||72.22% decrease|
|Grand Larceny||65||16||75.38% decrease|
|Total Major Felony Property Crime||373||120||67.82% decrease|
|Offense||2013 Totals||2019 Totals||% Change|
|Armed Robbery||12||5||58.33% decrease|
|Strong Armed Robbery||5||0||100 % decrease|
|Total Robbery||21||6||71.42% decrease|
- Civic League donated $10,000 to CPD.
- Kroger donated $500 to CPD.
- Clinton rated the 8th safest City in MS in 2018, the 3rd safest City in 2019, the 3rd safest City in 2020, 3rd safest in 2021.
- Since 2013, CPD bomb squad (one of three in State) received $543,486 in grants.
- Successful building swap to give better protection in business district on Hyw 80 and open up two Olde Towne buildings for retail.
- Added a traffic unit to free up/focus neighborhood patrolling and better enforce traffic laws.
- Began Lock it or Lose it Program to inform public about the importance of locking cars to prevent theft.
- 8 permanent LPR sights established with 26 cameras and $263,233 from the 911 wireless commission fund.
- Negotiated an agreement with the Clinton School Board to pay for three SROs ($40,000 apiece), $30,000 for the car from the MCOPS fund, and $90,000 in arrears for past SROs. Agreement to be reviewed every April 1st.
- Established Citizens Police Academy with 5 classes and 65 graduates
- Increased CFD from 50 slots to 63 slots.
- Purchased land, constructed Fire Station # 4, and purchased fire truck
(completed Dec. 2017) as per the annexation court order of 2007.
- 2014 Clinton Fire Department was able to participate in a Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant where we got 15 Tri-Band radios costing $75,000.00. This was achieved because we operate an Advanced Life Support service.
- Received $137,914 in AFG grant to purchase new air packs.
- Received $544,788 in a SAFER grant for hiring 8 new firefighters.
- Received $20,000 in Homeland Security grants for Haz-Mat suits.
- The Jr Civic League contributed $12,500 for Fire Equipment.
- Purchased $41,185 in exercise equipment from a Blue Cross/Blu Shield grant.
- Private donors contributed $19,200 for mattresses and extraction equipment.
- Developed training exercises for public safety, coordinating CPD, CFD, CPW, and numerous outside agencies – “shooter in the school” (FY 2014) Hosted a train derailment exercise (FY 2015), hosted a Shooter in a Church training Exercise (FY 2016). Table top exercise with MC (FY 2018). Shooter in the school with teachers and staff from CPSD (FY 2019), Table top exercise with CPSD 2020, 2021 exercise in planning stage for June 2021.
- Collaboration with Camp Down Range/CPD/CFD for training facility completed Jan 2018. Money raised from sources outside the City budget. (Feb. 2018), contributions from citizens saved the City $65,000 and provides a shooting range. Tower for public safety training.
- Hired TheRetailCoach to work retail businesses in community (2014-2018).
- Hired Mad Genius to brand/advertise the City – “You Belong Here”. Held branding event and used 4th of July fireworks to introduce a song written for Clinton. You Belong Here campaign won prizes for the campaign.
- Announcement of Continental Tire Plant, negotiated grants with the State to pay for water/sewer lines to support the project (totaling $2,924,458). In other words, no cost to the City.
- Some of the $2,924.458 from the Continental water lines was also used to increase City fire protection in West Clinton while agreements with Mt Olive Water Association and St. Thomas Water Association increased fire protection in West and South Clinton. Increase fire protection in North Clinton down Pinehaven via agreement with North Hinds Water Assoc. With those moves and the addition the Pinehaven fire station, fire truck, and fire personnel, Clinton fire rating dropped from 5 to 4, reducing your fire insurance rates.
- Industrial park gained – Taylor Machinery, Robertson Produce, Auto Plus, Gulf Relay Trucking (and expansion), E3, Bradley Flooring, Siemens Energy, Sullivan Insurance, the expansion of McNealy Plastics (2017) and again in 2018, Birdsong Expansion and Gulf States expansion, totaling over 1000 new industrial jobs.
- Continental Tire is up and running with an eventual hiring of 2,500 new jobs. This is a major win for the City and we are already benefiting from their presence. Our hotels enjoy an 85% occupancy rate and since the City adds a 3% tourism tax to hotel bills, promotion of Clinton – from New Orleans to St. Louis/Atlanta to Dallas – has increased. I negotiated the payment of the required water/sewer lines by the State of Mississippi and the additional lines constructed led to a decrease in your fire rating from a 5 to a 4. Most important, sales tax receipts are up and while I cannot give a number to the influence of Continental, I know it has been significant.
- MS Dept. of Revenue moved to Clinton (700 employees).
- Passed “Go Cup “legislation for Olde Towne District through the Legislature. Establish a “Go Cup” area for Olde Towne Clinton to promote activities.
- Passed street legal golf cart through the Legislature.
- Hosted “Clinton Next” project and used the learning from that effort in City planning/budgeting to establish the City’s path to 2050.
- CSPIRE Fiber to the neighborhood in 2017.
- AT&T 5 G capabilities 2018.
- AT&T full fiber overlay 2018.
- COMCAST – 1 GBPS service to city via Fiber overlay.
- 1% tourism tax increase by vote of the citizens (raising tax from 2% to 3%) to further promote the City in the region.
- Atlas Restaurant first restaurant in the State.
- Sonny’s Bar-B-Q located in Clinton.
- Named Dr. Walter Howell City Historian. He conducted a seven-part history series on Clinton.
- Historical programs on Sen. Charles Caldwell /Riot of 1875 (2015), Sara Dickey (2016), Walter Leake (2017) Clinton Duel (2018), Clinton Trial (2019). 2020 program cancelled due to COVID-19.
- Received $10,000 for placing historic markers and historical reliefs (national and local) from the Legislature. To date, through City and state funds we have added 21 new historic makers and now total 25 historic markers.
- Started the Distinguished Clintonian Trail at the Library with 13 honorees in 2018 and 14 more honorees 2019. The 2020 program was delayed until March 2021 and combined with the 2021 inductees with a total of 11.
- Started the Veterans banner program in 2017 with 16 banners on the Parkway, increased to 38 banners in 2018, increased to 80 in 2019. In 2020 banners increase to 101, 2021 increased to 112.
- Began a Historic On-Line Trail (HOLT) to draw tourist and tell Clinton’s history via the historic markers – funded by $6,000 grant from Visit Mississippi. The HOLT system has 29,519 unique visits with an average stay- 27 minutes 52 seconds.
- Established a “20 Things to Do On I-20” to promote Clinton Tourism.
- Lobbied MDOT and received signage on I-20 denoting Olde Towne as a historic area. This is the first areadesignation of a historic district in MS.
- Gathering family histories for future historic study.
- Mile Post 89, a monthly music event at the Visitors Center.
- Established Settlers Day at Visitors Center each Sept.
- Blues Trail Marker from the State of MS due in 2021 for the Blues Trail.
- Civil Rights Marker from the state of MS due in 2021 for the Civil Rights Trail.
- Adopted the Historic Preservation Ordinance with input from MS Department of Achieves (Demolition by Neglect).
- Used the Historic Preservation Ordinance to fight for the preservation of the City’s most historic buildings (110/112 E. Leake Street) through the court system under the demolition by neglect laws to preserve our heritage. Won case May 7th, 2020, won appeal from Wiggins Aug 13, 2020. Building then sold to the private sector in Oct 2020 for renovation.
- Construction of Hampstead Extension.
- Received $472,000 for paving March 2015 and $6,000 for historical signs from the Hinds County.
- Worked with other Mayor’s and the Legislature to receive a guaranteed amount of money each year for infrastructure in municipalities. Clinton’s amount is $661.937.
- Increased the City street paving budget from $0 to $1,261,937 by adding $100,000 per year from the City revenue and using the state guaranteed $661,937 p/y.
- Received $770,000 from Hinds county in 2019 for street paving.
- Used CMPDD grant for to repair and repave the Magnolia Road (2020) $577,944.
- Repaired 4 bridges in the City mandated in the federal inspection decree;
- Midway Bridge replacement with $377,717 from MDOT.
- Cynthia Road replacement $840,350 from Emergency Road and Bridge Fund.
- Kickapoo Bridge replacement with 661,675 Emergency Road and Bridge Fund.
- Pinehaven Bridge repaired with City money and 500,000 from Legislature.
- $1,504,851 in SRF money to construct a 1000 gallon per minute water well.
- $221,100 for NRCS drainage improvements.
- Used $1,000,000 from the legislature to completed major road projects on Easthaven, Briarwood, Welbourne Circle ($703,081) and the remaining $269,919 for bridge and road repair.
- Received an additional $1,000,000 from Legislature for infrastructure totaling $2,500,000 from Legislature.
- Took responsibility (from MDOT) of maintaining I-20 right of way so the grass would be cut on our schedule verses 3 times per year and allowing us to clean the underbrush from under the bridges to give our City a better appearance.
- Construction of Hillman Commons underway adding 91 lofts to Olde Towne as recommended by the 2005 Charrette.
- Began conversion of existing City street lights to LED, currently 700 of 2,198 completed. The $22,855 in one-time installation cost paid by ENTERGY. In addition, the City saves $5.00 p/m per street light currently saving $42,000 p/y in electricity cost. This is a continuing project.
- Completed the lighting of the Parkway with the final 32 LED lights (2017 and 2018). Plans are to extend the lighting from Northside to Arrow Dr. along Pinehaven.
- Received $700,000 from Congress for water/sewer. Used to refurbish southside water tank.
- Rebuilt intersection at Mt. Salus/College (remember the Bermuda Triangle).
- Rebuilt/reworked the bricks on Monroe Street.
- Removed 26 unsafe/dilapidated structures.
- Worked through the Public Service Commission to question Entergy’s pricing structure. Result is pending as of March 1, 2021. Potential saving to the City $120,000 to $160,000 per year.
- In March of 2018, planned and built Towne Springs with money coming from outside the City budget ($20,000). In other words, zero cost to the City.
- Negotiated a land swap with MC to take City ownership of the Train Depot land
- In April 2018, constructed the Train Depot. Received $225,000 for construction of the train depot from County.
- Train Depot hosted 120 events in calendar year 2018 increasing to 190 events in calendar year 2019. 2020 events canceled due to COVID-19.
- Used $142,333 from Legislature to make improvements to Northside Park:
- Resurfacing of basketball courts.
- New backboards for basketball courts.
- Security fencing at entrance of the park.
- New playground and swings.
- New picnic tables.
- New water fountain.
- Fencing around basketball court.
- Park rules sign.
- 2019 – Clinton Water/Sewer System named “Best in the State”.
- Used City resources to construct a walking trail in Kid’s Towne Park.
- Planed and now building a 15.1mile bike and walking trail throughout City, starting behind the schools on Arrow Drive and ending at Butts Park. Phase 1, behind Arrow Drive schools (out for bid). Phase 2 ($750,000) on Arrow Drive (paid by grant) starts in Spring of 2021, phase 3 Brighton Park to Butts Park in the future.
- Bought a paving machine to pave walking trails and bike trails.
- Construction of the Bark Park ($48,134).
- Traceway Park Baseball field improvements in fencing, backstops and dugouts ($470.483).
- Planning/Construction to refurbish Robinson Park underway.
- $200,000 of City money was matched by an equipment company adding an additional $200,000 (total $400,000 vs. $200,000) for the new playground equipment in Kid’s Towne Park and Robinson Park.
- Made improvements to the bathrooms in Northside, Robinson, and Traceway Parks via cap loan from MDA ($250,000).
- Worked with MC to build an outdoor archery range. Will use the range to draw archery tournaments at the high school and community college level to Clinton
- Negotiated a land swap with MC to take City ownership of the new Lion’s Club Park property.
- Built new Lion’s Club Park – designed so that every child can to participate, regardless of limitations. Raised $400,000 from various sources to save the City money.
- The numbers in green represent the amount Clinton received from sources outside its budget (county, state, federal, private donations). From July 1, 2013- March 1, 2021 this totals over $17,000,000 in funding from sources outside our budget. To put this in proportion, during the July, 1 2013 -March 1, 2021 timeframe, the City budget has ranged from $15,000,000 to $18,000,000 per year, so we have had the value of nine budgets in eight years due to outside revenue sources.
City promotion in the region, the country, and internationally;
- Began promotion of Clinton online, in magazines, and with bill boards from Atlanta to Dallas/New Orleans to St. Louis to encourage tourism and make Clinton the place to stop on I-20.
- Kept the Women’s Junior College Division II National Championship in Clinton, generating $300,000 in sales over a five-day period and making Clinton the only City in Mississippi to host a national championship sporting event thru 2020 (canceled due to COVID-19).
- Host a yearly Professional Bike race April and August 2018, August 2019, March 2020 cancelled COVID.
- We are in contact with representatives of the Little League World Series and with the work underway at Traceway Park on the baseball fields I will attempt to get a play up tournament to the Little League Worlds Series in Clinton.
- In a nation-wide vote, the water tower by the Jr. High voted the 3rd best in America.
- The byline for any information sent to the world by Continental Tire Clinton has Clinton, Mississippi on it. This allows those that have never heard to Clinton to take note of a community that is ready to compete in the world market place.
- Joined the Sate of MS, the MS National Guard, and Sister City International to sign a Sister City agreement with Zarafshan, Uzbekistan. Made a trip in May 2019, hosted a return trip in Oct. 2019.
- Two movies, “Teacher’s Watching” (Feb. 2021), “Coin” (Mar 2021) were made in Clinton. Negotiations are underway for a third movie that is scheduled for June 2021. We continue to work with various producers to expand our “Hollywood Presence” and enhance our national exposure.
Personal Volunteer projects.
- I chipped asphalt off Monroe Street.
- I cleaned all four quadrants of the entrance/exit ramp at I-20 of grass and vegetation.
- I saved the root system on existing trees in the new Lion’s Club Park by and killing and then pulling the vines down and saving $10,000 in project cost