New members added to Oxford Planning Commission

Published 9:23 am Friday, August 4, 2017

Three local men will join a seven-set commission to help steer Oxford’s growth and manage developments slated to be built around town.

The three new Oxford Planning Commission members were officially appointed Tuesday by the Oxford Board of Aldermen to fill three seats recently left open by retiring board members, Mark Harmon, Hayden Alexander and Mark Huelse, who stepped down after winning the June election to become the Ward 2 alderman.

The three chosen to fill those seats are Marvin King, a political science professor at the University of Mississippi who recently served for several years on the Oxford Park Commission; local attorney Brian Hyneman who recently served for several years on the Historical Preservation Commission; and JR Rigby, a research hydrologist with the National Sedimentation Laboratory.

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The commissioners applied to the Mayor’s Office to be considered for the position. On Tuesday the aldermen approved the recommendations suggested by the selection committee. The Oxford Planning Commission consider ordinances, codes and districts and base decisions on that information.

All development in Oxford must go through the board and must be approved to proceed. The Planning Commission works closely with the Planning Department.

King said he applied because he wanted to serve in any capacity that is focused on helping Oxford grow and develop as a community.

“Oxford is my home, so I want to help promote responsible development through the guiding principles of Vision 2037 in a manner promoting economic growth for all of Oxford,” he said Wednesday.

Hyneman said he enjoyed his time serving on the Historic Preservation Board but decided to apply to be a planning commissioner given the unique opportunity to have input into the implementation of the new Land Use Code as part of the Vision 2037 comprehensive plan passed earlier this year by the aldermen.

“The planning commission has a wider reach and presented a challenge that was too good to pass on,” he said. “While the Land Use Code will provide minimums for all development in Oxford, I hope that I can encourage more from those wishing to build and/or develop in our fair city.

“I believe the citizens of Oxford deserve a commission that will urge all new developments to go the extra mile with those impacted by the proposed actions and seek input from those individuals before presenting any plan to the commission.”

Rigby was out of town attending a business trip and could not be reached for comment Wednesday.