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City buys eroding church to avert spending to fix waterway

A Mississippi city is buying an abandoned church, saying it’s cheaper than fixing erosion problems in a bordering waterway.

The Vicksburg Post reports the city voted last week to buy the property, which is threatened by erosion from Sprouts Bayou.

An appraisal will determine how much the city pays.

Mayor George Flaggs Jr. says the church has been compromised by erosion that is the city’s fault. Public Works Director Garnet Van Norman says the city used a federal grant several years to stabilize erosion, but says the problem has returned.

Alderman Michael Mayfield says the only permanent solution is work along the length of the bayou, because a narrow section causes water to rise elsewhere during heavy rains.

Mayfield says a comprehensive solution is estimated to cost $400,000 to $800,000.

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