2014 in Review: Accomplishments, continued improvement, but big challenges ahead 

Chris Phillips and Terry Frank

Chris Phillips, left, director of Anderson County Accounts and Budgets, and County Mayor Terry Frank are pictured above. (Submitted photo)

 

 

By Chris Phillips, director of Anderson County Accounts and Budgets, and County Mayor Terry Frank

We recently finished our Popular Annual Financial Report for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2014, and we wanted to share a snapshot of Anderson County’s financial health. While there are many factors that go into evaluating our county’s overall ability to promote prosperity for the people of our county, our financial health as a county government has a direct impact on the lives of families who live here and the business and industry that operates here.

Noteworthy accomplishments from 2014: [Read more…]

Public meeting on Kingston coal ash natural resource damage restoration, compensation plan

TVA Kingston Fossil Plant Dike C Reinforcement

Photo courtesy TVA

The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Tennessee Valley Authority are releasing the TVA Kingston Fossil Plant Coal Ash Release Natural Resource Damage Assessment—Restoration and Compensation Determination Plan for public review during a public meeting on Thursday, April 9.

A copy of the document is available online at http://www.tva.com/kingston/ and http://www.tn.gov/environment/kingston.

Who: Representatives from Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and Tennessee Valley Authority [Read more…]

AC Animal Welfare Task Force meets Monday, March 30

The Anderson County Animal Welfare Task Force will meet at 4 p.m. Monday, March 30. The meeting will be in Room 118A at the Anderson County Courthouse in Clinton.

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Oak Ridge household trash pick-up starts Monday, March 30

The citywide household trash pick-up program in Oak Ridge will start on Monday, March 30. Household rubbish, old appliances (compressors must be removed from refrigerators and air conditioners), and minor remodeling materials will be picked up.

City collection efforts will follow the accompanying schedule as closely as possible, a press release said. The proposed schedule is a general guide and can vary considerably from the actual schedule due to weather conditions and/or the amount of participation by residents.

“Residents have always been very cooperative and we ask for their continued cooperation this year by following a few guidelines,” the release said. [Read more…]

Main Street Oak Ridge rezoning, master plan to be considered Thursday

Main Street Oak Ridge Presentation

Pictured above during a Monday presentation on Main Street Oak Ridge are Crosland Southeast partner James Downs, right; Barry James, Crosland Southeast senior vice president, center; and Houston E. Daugherty, Cannon and Cannon vice president.

 

The Oak Ridge Municipal Planning Commission will consider a rezoning request for Main Street Oak Ridge during a Thursday meeting.

The Planning Commission will also consider a planned unit development, or PUD, master plan for the project.

Main Street Oak Ridge is the redevelopment of the former Oak Ridge Mall, now officially known as the Oak Ridge City Center.

The Thursday meeting starts at 5:30 p.m. in the Oak Ridge Municipal Building Courtroom. [Read more…]

City sewer line inspections begin Monday

Sewer Line Inspections Map

The sewer line inspections will take place in the area pictured above.

 

Inspections of the city’s sewer lines will start Monday, March 23.

The Oak Ridge Public Works Department will use a state-of-the-art system that employs a sonar machine that emits a repeating series of tones, similar to a musical scale. In open areas, the sounds can be heard over long distances, a press release said.

“The tones emitted by the machine, while harmless, are low enough in frequency that residents nearby may be able to feel and, in some instances, hear them,” the release said. [Read more…]

OS Council takes interim tag off Campbell

Information from WYSH Radio

The Oliver Springs City Council voted unanimously Thursday to take the interim tag off of City Manager Becky Campbell’s title and install her in that position on a full-time basis. She will be paid slightly more than the previous city manager, whom she replaced in October of 2014.

Campbell, who has been an Oliver Springs employee for almost 18 years, will not be subject to the standard 90-day probationary period and, according to our partners at BBB-TV, would not have accepted the job had that been part of the deal.

The Council also voted to hire Lisa Relford as Campbell’s assistant. Relford currently serves as a dispatcher for the Oliver Springs Police Department.

3M gets permit to expand Clinton facility

Food Lion Distribution Center and 3M Company Manufacturing

The 3M Company purchased the former Food Lion Distribution Center on J.D. Yarnell Industrial Parkway in the Eagle Bend Industrial Park in Clinton in December. (Photo courtesy Tim Thompson/Anderson County Economic Development Association)

 

Information from WYSH Radio

Clinton city officials confirmed Friday morning that the 3M Company, which announced late last year that it had purchased the former Food Lion Distribution Center in the Eagle Bend Industrial Park, has obtained a building permit to make roughly $18 million worth of upgrades and improvements to the facility and build a 45,000-square-foot addition.

3M, one of the world’s largest manufacturers, said that product for the oil, gas, and automotive industries will be made at the Clinton facility, but have not said exactly what they will be producing. [Read more…]

Greenway project to connect Knox, Oak Ridge

Information from WYSH Radio

The region’s paved greenway trail system is set to expand, according to plans unveiled Wednesday.

The Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization, or TPO, announced plans to link West Knoxville and Knox County to Oak Ridge. An additional 13.2 miles will be added to the more than 100 miles of paved greenway trails that already exist throughout the area. The project is estimated to cost $8.8 million.

The project will link three existing greenways: the Ten Mile Creek Greenway in West Knoxville and West Knox County, the Pellissippi Greenway in West Knox County, and the Melton Lake Greenway in Oak Ridge.

More information will be added as it becomes available.

Chancellor rules no conflict on school propane deal

Information from WYSH Radio

A specially appointed chancellor has ruled on a seemingly routine propane gas contract awarded last year that became controversial when some county officials learned of a possible conflict of interest.

Last spring, the county awarded a propane gas contract to Blossman Gas Incorporated to supply propane to the county school system after it had gone through the Purchasing Committee. Scott Daugherty, the manager of Blossman’s Knoxville location, is an Anderson County resident and serves on the Purchasing Committee. [Read more…]

Oak Ridge Egg Hunt on March 28

The Oak Ridge Recreation and Parks Department will host the 2015 Egg Hunt on Saturday, March 28, at 11 a.m. Hundreds of children are expected to participate in this annual spring event, a press release said. More than 15,000 candy- and prize-filled eggs will be hidden in Alvin K. Bissell Park with a first-, second-, and third-place prize egg in each age group.

This event will be held rain or shine so participants should dress for the weather. If severe weather prevents hiding the eggs outdoors, they will be given away in the gym and a drawing will be held for the prizes. [Read more…]

Second Breakfast with Legislators on Monday

Randy McNally

Randy McNally

Ken Yager

Ken Yager

Submitted

The Tennessee General Assembly has now been in session for more than two months. According to LegiScan, an impartial and non-partisan legislative tracking and reporting service, 195 of the 3,192 introduced bills were completed by mid-March, a press release said. Legislative committees are dealing with hundreds of bills ranging from education, environment, and healthcare to firearms, digital currency, and controlled substances.

Senators Ken Yager and Randy McNally and representatives John Ragan and Kent Calfee have been invited to speak about the legislative activities of this session of the Tennessee General Assembly and to respond to questions from the audience at the this year’s second Breakfast with the Legislators. It starts at 7:30 a.m. Monday, March 23, in the Social Room of the Oak Ridge Civic Center, located at 1401 Oak Ridge Turnpike. [Read more…]