Official: Mayor costing Southaven money - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Official: Mayor costing Southaven money

Southaven Mayor Greg Davis Southaven Mayor Greg Davis

(WMC-TV) – Investigators say Southaven Mayor Greg Davis owes taxpayers thousands of dollars, but one person with the city says the investigation is costing them much more.

Officials say they've hadn't had a problem securing grants for the city until the state audit into Davis' spending.

Whitney Choat-Cook, the city's planning director, said the investigation is becoming costly for the city.

The mayor's been ordered to pay back $170,000 to the state. He's accused of misusing the money by spending it on himself.

It's a controversy, Choat-Cook said may have cost the city a million dollar grant from the Mississippi Department of Transportation called Safe Routes to Schools.

"We didn't receive a rejection letter which is the normal standard," said Choat-Cook. "You either get a reward letter or a denial letter and we didn't receive either on it."

The grant would have made it possible for some city neighborhoods to get sidewalks and bike paths.

MDOT also decided to delay funding on another $850,000 Transportation Enhancement Grant to install three miles of walking trails in Southaven's parks.

"I was heartbroken,' she said. "That was the fourth largest grant we had ever received."

However, the city has been told it will receive the grant money soon.

"They were instructed to delay the award until the City of Southaven and Mississippi Auditor's Office investigations were complete," said Choat-Cook.

Choat-Cook admits securing grant funding for the city has been a lot harder since the state investigation into Davis.

"To me it implies that the city as a whole or these individual departments that have filed this stuff are under investigation and I just felt like a private investigation on a specific person should not affect the grants we're filing," she said.

Davis still hasn't responded to the Southaven Board of Aldermen's request asking him to resign. He is currently taking 30 to 60 days off for health reasons

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