Moran and McKay square off once again - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Moran and McKay square off once again

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OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) -

Both candidates talked money right at the start, McKay accusing the mayor of overspending. 

"It is a fact that the city, led by the mayor has borrowed $1.7 million from its cash balance leaving the city far less than $200,000," McKay said. 

The mayor disputed those numbers.

"Add in the $770,000 in our emergency reserve fund, which the county doesn't have and it becomes $1.6 million in cushion for reserve," Moran said.  

On the issue of a potential tax increase in the city, both touted their anti-tax stance. Moran went first.  

"There has never been a tax increase in my administration even with the challenges of the worst economy since the BP oil spill," Moran said.

McKay followed by saying, "In ten years on the board of alderman and 14 years on the board of supervisors, I have not voted one time to raise taxes." 

Concerns over traffic on Highway 90 was a major topic of discussion, as was the need to widen the main thoroughfare through town, according to McKay.  

"If you go out there at 5 o'clock in the afternoon or early in the morning, traffic is backed up for miles on Highway 90," McKay said.

Moran wants widening, but something else as well.

"I have no objection to widening Highway 90. We want a highway that is functional, but we also want to leave enough room for future frontage roads, bike lanes and more of a boulevard concept," Moran said.

In closing, the mayor accused the county, and McKay of using the city to prop up county finances.

"While taxes as OS citizens we pay to the county has increased by $779,000 and that's because the county has revalued Ocean Spring's property so highly and in that sense we are the piggy bank to fund other areas of the county," Moran stated. 

McKay accused the mayor of trying to infer he did something wrong by taking a boat trip last year on a DMR foundation boat, an agency under state and federal investigation.

"The state auditor has stated he has no investigation of me and stated there is no violation of state law relating to my participation as a guest on a boat trip related to the DMR foundation," McKay explained.

This was the last of two scheduled debates between Moran and McKay. They face each other in the general election on June 4.

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