Harrison County

Harrison County District 3: Term limits or not?

Marlin Ladner
Marlin Ladner

District 3 voters in Harrison County will choose Tuesday between a supervisor running on his 16-year record and an Air Force retiree who believes eight years in office is long enough.

Supervisor Marlin R. Ladner, who ends his fourth term in January, said, "I think experience is always advantageous."

The retired Long Beach school superintendent, who is 69 years old, said he has gotten all the public roads paved in his rural district. Sewerage hookups also have been completed in communities with failed septic tanks, the Republican incumbent said. Plus, ballfields and recreational facilities have been improved.

Democratic challenger Cecil J. Lizana said he is running because it is time for a change and he's been discouraged when veteran supervisors run unopposed. If elected, he said, he would limit himself to two terms in office.

"I'm kind of uncomfortable with the direction I see that board has charted for themselves," said Lizana, 62, who retired from the Air Force after 32 years of service. "There are people who have been on that board too long. We need to do a little cleansing."

District 2 Supervisor Kim Savant resigned in December 2014 after seven years in office and just before he pleaded guilty to a federal charge of conspiring to accept bribes while he represented the board on the Harrison County Utility Authority. He recently began serving a five-year prison sentence.

In February, District 4 Supervisor William Martin, a supervisor for more than 15 years, committed suicide hours before he was to appear in federal court on charges of bribery and obstruction of justice.

Lizana, who was elected to the Pass Christian school board in 2013, said he will resign the position if elected supervisor. He said he would take a proactive approach to the supervisors' job. For example, he would see that weed-choked drainage canals are cleaned to prevent flooding. He also said he intends to hold town hall meetings because he believes the board should be more open with residents.

If re-elected, Ladner said he would continue to support funding for tourism and tax breaks that encourage economic development.

"My intentions are to continue doing what I've done in serving the people of District 3 in Harrison County," Ladner said. "I'll stand on my record. People know. They know what I've done."

Both men live in the DeLisle community.