Connect with us
[the_ad_placement id="manual-placement"] [the_ad_placement id="obituaries"]


B&B at odds with neighborhood over zoning decision



Zoning for Stained Glass Manor on Drummond Street, a bed and breakfast owned by Dallas, Texas, residents Don and Elizabeth Nelson, was the subject of heated debate at Tuesday’s Mayor and Aldermen meeting in Vicksburg.

Drummond Street residents came to discuss their protest and appeal of the Zoning Board’s Jan. 7 ruling that will allow Stained Glass Manor, located 2430 Drummond St., to operate without event-venue conditions.

Dalton McCarty, zoning administrator for the City of Vicksburg, held a public appeal hearing regarding the ruling. Concerned residents suggested three public-safety conditions they feel should be adopted for holding events at the property: The events must have adequate and legal parking onsite; the out-of-state owner, a representative or keyholder must be on the property during the entire event; and lastly, all events at this location must conclude by 10 p.m. 

The Zoning Board ruled the property could operate without those conditions.

“We went to a meeting at the residence on Drummond Street, and the residents voiced their concern about the noise and the inability to come out of their driveway and park at their own residence,” South Ward Alderman Alex Monsour said. “The residents’ biggest concern is it is a residential section, and it does get congested.”

Marilyn Corley, who lives across the street from the property, addressed the parking concerns. Corley said that many of the events held at Stained Glass Manor reduce the street to one lane due to event attendees parking on both sides of the street and disregarding city-posted “No Parking” signs. 

“We will agree to having a bed and breakfast if the requested conditions are met,” she said.

“Drummond Street is a major thoroughfare for police,  fire and ambulance routes,” another concerned resident said. “Having that closed down to one lane for any reason whatsoever, to me, is unacceptable because of the public safety for the entire city.”

North Ward Alderman Michael Mayfield said the neighborhood had to come to an agreement that satisfied all parties to some extent.

“We need to find a happy medium regarding the conditions,” Mayfield said. “… If I told you, you had to close your facility at 10 o’clock at night, and one three blocks down the road is able to stay open ’til midnight, and that facility is still in a neighborhood, then they would have a good argument, so we need to find that happy medium.”

Mayfield said he knows it’s impossible to make everyone happy but he ensured Corley and other residents the board will do what is right and fair.

At the hearing, the Zoning Board listened to the residents’ request and the proposed restrictions and granted the special exceptions for Stained Glass Manor to operate in a residential area without any restrictions, said City Attorney Nancy Thomas. The neighbors appealed it because they didn’t agree with the decision.

The appeal kicked the decision to the Board of Mayor and Aldermen, which seemed to frustrate Mayor George Flaggs Jr.

“So, (the Zoning Board) could have denied the whole thing, but they didn’t do that,” Flaggs said. “They sent it to us for a political judgment.”

Mayor Flaggs questioned owner Elizabeth Nelson on what her remedy for the situation will be.

“We have sufficient parking for the B&B onsite to support the number of rooms we have already,”  Nelson said. “Our plan for larger gatherings is to, obviously, do a better job of communicating to not park on both sides of the street.”

Owners of other Vicksburg bed and breakfast homes attended the meeting as the final decision could impact their businesses as well.

“If the decision is to end Duff Green events by 10 o’clock, you would significantly impact my revenues from wedding receptions,” said Harley Caldwell, owner of Duff Green Mansion,

“In Mrs. Nelson’s case, our community has watched her put a lot of money into that property, and if we don’t let her make it income-producing, then the next people aren’t coming to Vicksburg because the city didn’t support tax credit initiatives,” Caldwell added, “and it’s very important for the bigger picture for other people coming to town and investing in our community.”

The board chose to take this situation under advisement, and the mayor requested a meeting with aldermen, residents and owners to come to a final agreement. 

See a typo? Report it here.