The Maryville Daily Times reports that the Blount County Democratic Party has requested a federal investigation into a possible Hatch Act violation related to U.S. Postal worker Shawn Carter's election to County Commission.
We are told that the Blount Democratic Party, Carter's opponent, and the administrator of elections were all aware of the situation before the election.
Better late than never, we guess.
The Knoxville News Sentinel has a ridiculous hit piece today about City of Alcoa management salaries. It seems some local guy heard about a city manager in California making $800,000 per year and has gone on a crusade to "take back our city, take back our county, then the state, then the country," starting with Alcoa.
More Mayberry shit. Somebody wake me up when the Blount Co. Democratic Party grows a pair.
What a game! The entire community should be proud of these two teams and their fans. They put on a show last night and it was well worth the $6.
Check out KnoxViews for more.
From the AKC website.
A dog park:
- is a public park, typically fenced, where people and their dogs can play together.
- allows dogs to exercise and socialize safely.
- promotes responsible dog ownership.
- provides an outlet for dog owners to socialize.
- make for a better community by promoting public health and safety.
If you would like to have a dog park in Blount County, please submit possible locations in comments.
Please join us on Thursday, August 19, from 7-9:30pm at The Market on High Street in Maryville.
SAVE IT, DON'T PAVE IT!
Thursday, August 19 from 7-9:30pm
Join us for BBQ (pork and chicken), cole slaw, iced tea, and beer at The Market at High Street in Maryville.
The Spurgeon Boys (local old-time musicians) and CAPPE's long-time friend, singer-songwriter Jay Clark, will be with us.
$25 suggested/person at the door; cash or check.
RSVP PLEASE by Friday, August 13 to firstname.lastname@example.org OR call 977 7399.
(we need your reservation to ensure we will have enough food on hand)
Please carpool and park at The Market or across High Street on the west side of Blount Memorial Health.
This event is a benefit for Citizens Against the Pellissippi Parkway Extension, Inc., a non-profit organization.
Contributions to CAPPE are not tax-deductible.
Call to Blount Co. Election Commission re. early vote: Mitchell 4401, Kerr 1782. The good ol' boy establishment appears to have prevailed.
UPDATE: Another call to Blount Co. Election Commission, with 14 of 34 precincts reporting:
County Commission 1A: Cook 215, Burchfield 357.
CC 1B: Carter 344, Ballard 215.
CC 4C: Reeves 755, Moon 1412.
CC 7B: Dees 65, Green 325.
CC 6A: Lail 961, Wynn 250.
CC 10A: Webb 110, Kirby 386.
Not a good night for Democrats. Keep an eye on 1A in the morning, though.
We attended the TDOT meeting yesterday regarding the DEIS report. There was a large turnout, with, it appeared, half of the attendees in opposition to the PPE.
Twenty citizens of the community were able to speak and give their comments as to why the PPE should not (or should) be completed. Nineteen of the twenty citizens were opposed to the completion of the PPE. The citizen speakers did a very good job, many with facts, figures, and reasonable arguments as to why the PPE should not be completed. The one gentleman who spoke as a proponent for the PPE seemed to be just giving up, if you're going to do it, just do it, he said.
Kudos to Nina Gregg for her hard work and persistence.
Go to KnoxViews for the full report.
What do you think of spending $10 million of tax dollars a minute? This is the potential cost of the PPE -- $100 million to shorten drive time by ten minutes, but no improvement in traffic congestion or levels of service on our area roads even with three new highways (PPE, Southern Loop and Alcoa Parkway). Readers will be interested in the substance (not just the soundbites in circulation) of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement. The material below quotes directly from the DEIS (available on line at (link...) and in hard copy at the Blount County Public Library and Chamber of Commerce) and from supporting Technical Memoranda, available upon request from TDOT but not currently on the TDOT webpage.
There is much, much more information in the 370-page DEIS and 900+ pages of supporting material that demonstrates the PPE will not satisfy the purposes and needs in the official description in TDOT materials.
This is no longer a matter of opinion:
TDOT’s own data show the PPE will not improve regional mobility, will not reduce crash incidence, will not address traffic congestion, will not improve levels of service on most of our roads, will likely accelerate residential development that increases costs to the County for providing services like education, will displace families and take active farmland out of production, will substantially increase noise levels in residential neighborhoods, and will threaten our waterways and wildlife habitat.
Three examples, with page references to TDOT’s own materials:
“Little change is predicted in the level of service of existing roadways between the No-Build and Build Alternatives since the traffic volumes do not change substantially for most roadways among the alternatives.” (DEIS, 3-3)
“Overall, this analysis does not demonstrate that any of the Build Alternatives would substantially improve the level of service for the existing highway network.” (DEIS, 3-4)
“Sections of SR 33 and US 411/Sevierville Road would operate at a poor level of service (LOS E or F) regardless of alternative due to existing and projected high traffic volumes on these roadways that exceed the given capacity.” (DEIS, 3-4)
The DEIS shows that only two intersections in the entire study area are improved by Alternative A or C (DEIS 2-10; 3-4; Traffic Operations Report 43) despite such improvement being a major project purpose (DEIS S-2, 1-7).
The DEIS assumes that “when combined with appropriate land use regulations, the recommended transportation improvements need not contribute to urban sprawl.” DEIS 3-17 and 3-18) But the Economic and Fiscal Impacts Analysis acknowledges a different outcome from recent history: “a review of historical building permit trends between 2005 and 2007 suggests that despite the smart growth policies of the County, new residential growth outside municipal boundaries is occurring at a far more rapid pace than within those city limits. . . . on average about 75% of new development over the past three years has occurred in the unincorporated portions of Blount County as compared to Alcoa and Maryville.” (EFIA 18)
The Economic and Fiscal Impacts Analysis addresses the issue of declining revenues: “In both development scenarios, property taxes represent the smallest category of net revenues likely to accrue to the County, with the largest contributor being sales tax revenues from the expenditures of new residents and employees."(3) But sales tax revenues have been unreliable for recurring County expenses, and the commercial development anticipated at the new PPE interchanges has been or will be annexed by the cities of Maryville and Alcoa, meaning those new sales tax revenues will not go to the County, while education costs due to population growth will continue to be borne by the County.
More analysis using TDOT’s own data is now available on CAPPE’s webpage (link...)
The public hearing on the DEIS is Tuesday, July 20, beginning at 5pm at Heritage High School. Come ask why proponents continue to advocate the expenditure of up to $100 million in taxpayer dollars for a project that, even according to TDOT’s own data, doesn’t fulfill the official purpose.
Tony Webb, candidate for County Commission District 10, Seat A has a new campaign website...
Wendy Pitts Reeves, incumbent running for County Commission District 4 seat C, has a new website...
Every Democrat running for County Commission in the Aug 5th general election has a last name that causes them to all be listed second on the ballot after their Republican opponents.
Blount Dems: Recruit more Aarons and Abbots.
Reminder: Early voting starts Friday, July 16th.
County Commission 6A candidate Gary Wynn now has a website and there's some very interesting discussion about energy and commerce in Blount Co. with some concrete numbers showing how local decisions can make a huge local impact.
In other election news, the Blount Co. Election commission has posted sample ballots for the Aug. 5th county general and state primary elections.
Early voting starts July 16th, just two weeks from today.
The last day to register to vote is Tuesday, July 6th.
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