Albert Gore Jr. visits Chamber of Commerce
City Council meeting held Monday night
State Approves Overton-Pickett 911 Merger
Gore Jr. visits Chamber of Commerce
By Becky Meredith, OCN staff
Former Tennessee Senator and United States Vice President
Al Gore was warmly welcomed at Livingston-Overton County Chamber
of Commerce on Tuesday, Jan. 29 by a tremendous amount of cheers
and applause from local Democrats.
More than 200 persons attended the afternoon meeting
to endorse their support and care for the Tennessee native.
"I'm overwhelmed with the size of this turnout;
I had no idea there would be this many people," Gore said.
"I've heard of standing room only, but this is sure enough
standing room only!Ó he laughed.
"Let me start out by saying I am Al Gore.ÊI used
to be the next President of the United States," he joked. "Well,
you know, my attitude is you win some, you lose some, then there's
that little-known third category, if you know what I mean.
"I wanted to just come here and tell you what
was in my heart on election night a year ago in November,"
he continued. "It was a long election night. As a matter of
fact, it lasted 36 days if you will recall," he said, as the
audience laughed. "And one of the things that really got me
through that and has lifted me up since is looking at the county-by-county
returns, and thinking about all of you all, and realizing what happened
here on Election Day, and realizing all of the hard work that was
put in, leading up to Election Day. I never will forget it."
He further expressed his sentimentality for the area,
mentioning that his grandfather was raised in Overton County and
his father was born just across the Jackson County line.
With strong roots in the Upper Cumberland, Gore has
tried to keep strong his relationship with Middle Tennessee residents
during his time in political office.
"For the last 26 years, I've been coming here
and having open meetings, and talking with folks, especially when
I was in the House of Representatives. And then in the Senate, I
had 95 counties then, so it was a little less frequent. And of course,
having 50 states, that made it really hard."
Since the 2000 Presidential Election, Gore says he's
been enjoying life.
"I'm teaching now, teaching down at Middle Tennessee
State, and at Fisk University in Nashville. I'm a visiting professor,
or you could say ÔVP' for short,Ó he joked. "It's a way of
hanging on, you know.
"I'm enjoying learning a little bit about the
business world, and making some speeches round and about. I've been
doing my best to try to strengthen the hand of Democrats."
Gore spoke on the nation's current status, as the
economy has recently met a decline.
"You know, I'm getting worried about this economy,"
he said. "I was the first one laid off, back in January,"
he laughed. "Unfortunately, there have been a bunch more since
then," he said on a more serious note.
"You know that big surplus that was built up?
Where is it now?" he asked the crowd.
"I don't care what anybody says, I think Bill
Clinton and I did a good job for this country, for the economy,Ó
he said, followed by applause from the audience.
Gore expressed to the crowd how important he believes
it is to fight for those with smaller incomes.
"You've got to stand up and fight for the working
men, the farmers, the ones who have trouble making ends meet. And
the basic question is whether you're going to fight for the working
men and women, or whether you're going to fight for the Enrons of
the world. And they don't need more. They've had too much. But the
ones who are having a hard time are people who are hit the hardest
when the economy goes back into recession. Now we've got big deficits
again and we've got a recession again."
Gore has, however, commended the current administration
on their stance against terrorism.
"I've complimented President Bush on his handling
of the business in Afghanistan. I think they've done an excellent
job there. And I think Democrats and Republicans alike have joined
together in the way Americans ought to. We're doing that right,
and I hope it continues going right.
"But we've got a lot going on here, at home,
with healthcare and education and people who've been laid off. You
know, it makes a difference. It makes a difference whether the policies
are aimed at the right targets or not," he said. "That's
one of the reasons I want to ask all of you to take a look at what's
going on in the state of Tennessee, because we've got deficits here
Gore told the crowd he was uncertain whether he would
be a candidate again.
"But I do know that I'm going to do everything
possible to make sure that Overton County, and Jackson County, and
Smith County, and Putnam County, the whole Upper Cumberland area,
and our state of Tennessee and our country have the better of it,
instead of going on this rollercoaster that we're on now economically."
He went on to stress to the youth on hand the importance
of government involvement.
"Get involved in politics, stay connected. Don't
let anybody turn you into a cynic. Things go wrong Ð you bet they
do. If you don't think they do, hey, take it from me," he laughed.
"If I can get back up and tell you to get involved and not
get discouraged, you should not be set back by anything that happens
in your lives where involvement in politics is concerned."
He continued by bragging on the strong political
leaders from the area who have represented Middle Tennesseans throughout
"This area in Tennessee, this Upper Cumberland
region, has had a tradition going back to Cordell Hull, and before
that, of sending national leaders who can deliver your common sense
to the Capitol of this nation."
In his closing remarks, he praised the family values
strongly enforced in the region.
"Those values are what our country needs. And
you've got a very precious heritage here."
top of page
meeting held Monday night
By DEWAIN E. PEEK, OCN staff
Livingston City Council held the regular monthly meeting
Monday, Feb. 4 with all aldermen present.
The aldermen voted to enter into a gas contract with
a fixed rate of 2.74 from March 2002 to March 2003. The Council
could have gone with a month-to-month rate instead of a fixed rate
for a year, but the price could vary by an unpredictable rate each
Mayor Hosea Winningham said, "It could go down
or it could go up. If it goes up a right smart bit, we've done a
good job. If it goes down, we've done a bad job."
A facility use agreement was approved for Livingston
City Park to protect the town from liability.
A statement from the town's insurance provider states,
"The TML Pool liability agreement provides coverage for activities
that are organized, supervised, and directed by the town. The Little
League and any special tournaments do not fall under this definition,
and therefore, injuries that stem from these activities may not
be insured through the TML Pool. The TML Pool strongly recommends
the town verify that the leasers have adequate insurance before
they are allowed to use the fields."
The facility use agreement establishes a written contract
with organizations requiring the following:
A certificate of liability, which names the town as
an additional insured.
Minimum limits of $350,000, which reflects the town's
limit of liability under the Governmental Tort Liability Act.
The leaser obtain from each participant or the participant's
parents or legal guardian a release of liability for any injuries
that might occur as a result of organized play.
The third party leaser state the town shall be held
harmless from any injuries that occur as a result of participation
in the league or tournament.
Inspection of the field/facility before and after
the use of the third party.
The town retains the exposures for any defective conditions
that may exist in the facility. The TML Pool recommends that documented
inspections be conducted to identify and eliminate any conditions
that might cause an injury.
The Council voted to turn the city election over to
the Election Commission. The municipal election will be held June
Beginning with this municipal election, the three
aldermen positions whose terms are up will be determined by an at-large
vote. Instead of one alderman being voted for one seat in each city
ward, the top three in the overall voting will be elected to the
three open seats on the City Council.
The Council approved the purchase of a Hi-Jet pump
for the sewer department at a cost of $7,500. The pump to be purchased
is a 1993 model, according to department supervisor Tim Coffee.
Perry Kingery was hired to fill an open position
at Livingston Police Department. The Council also voted to place
Jarman Hicks and Troy L. Story as the next two, respectively, to
be hired at the police department when positions become available.
Mayor Winningham informed the Council that the city
would again file for a fire grant for fire department equipment.
The aldermen voted to donate the light poles recently
replaced on the square to area churches. Churches have asked for
the poles for use as flag poles, according to Mayor Winningham.
The meeting adjourned.
top of page
Approves Overton-Pickett 911 Merger
Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance's Emergency
Communications Board approved the merger of Pickett and Overton
counties 911 districts on Thursday, Jan. 31. The merger creates
the first multi-regional emergency communication district in the
state. Frith Sellers, executive director for the Emergency Communications
Board, said, "The merger is the most cost effective and efficient
way to improve emergency 911 service to the residents in that region.
By combining resources, these counties will be able to purchase
the necessary equipment to provide the enhanced service which can
reduce response time and help save lives.Ó With the new service,
the 911 caller's name, telephone number, and address is traced and
automatically displayed on the 911 operator's screen. The Pickett-Overton
Emergency Communications District will be the central communications
center allowing residents in both counties access to the same state-of-the-art
emergency 911 service, and can dispatch to EMS, fire, and rescue
agencies. New computer equipment and trained operators will contribute
to the improvements with emergency training to describe to the responder
the specific nature of each emergency. "We are thankful to
the Chamber of Commerce, mayor, and local 911 districts for their
cooperation and support in the merger,Ó Sellers said. "We look
forward to continuing our goal of implementing enhanced 911 communications
to residents in all communities.Ó
top of page
Copeland to run for office
of County Executive
Kenneth Copeland has informed Overton County News
he plans to run for the office of Overton County Executive in the
upcoming Democratic Primary. His statement is as follows:
"I am 50 years-old and have lived my entire
life in Overton County. My wife, Linda, and I have two children
and three grandchildren.
"I owned and operated a grocery store and service
station prior to being elected as Overton County Trustee in 1978,
where I served the people of Overton County until 1990. At that
time, I entered private business where I was employed until 2001.
The business was sold at that time.
"I have valuable experience in running a successful
business, working with city, county, and state officials. I am familiar
with the operations of Overton County government, having worked
with former county executives during my time as trustee.
"I pledge to the citizens of Overton County that
I will work to recruit and bring new industry and new businesses
to our county. When elected, I will do my best to keep our property
taxes and other forms of taxation as low as possible and still provide
the services that the citizens of Overton County need and deserve.
"With the state having financial trouble, it
is very important to have strong qualified leadership at the local
level. When elected, I will provide that leadership.
"I believe Overton County is one of the best
places in the world to live, work, and raise a family. I am looking
forward to visiting with the citizens and voters of Overton County
during the coming months and asking for your vote and continued
support. Should I not see you personally, your vote and support
on May 7 would greatly be appreciated. Together, we can and will
make a difference."
Hull seeks re-election for
Kelly Hull has informed Overton County News he is
seeking re-election as Overton County Sheriff in the upcoming Republican
Primary Election. His statement is as follows: "
After weeks of consideration and encouragement from
hundreds of supporters, I have decided to seek re-election to the
office of Sheriff of Overton County.
"Four years ago, you, the good people and citizens
of Overton County, said you wanted law enforcement equally and fairly
for all, and that law enforcement should be firm and fair. We have
done this to the best of our ability, and I, like you, still stand
for the same.
"Drugs and drug dealers have been our main objective.
Since we began our objective, drug use in our school system is down
30 to 40 percent over the last three years.
"The Sheriff's Department has worked as a team
with educators, teachers, parents, other law enforcement agencies,
and citizens from each community to make a difference in the availability
of illegal drugs in our county.
"Roadblocks and patrolling roads in each section
of the county has helped to confiscate drugs and to keep drunk drivers
off the road.
"Other things that we have been able to accomplish
are that we have been able to stay within our budgeted monies and
have actually returned monies to the county at the end of the fiscal
"We have gotten the jail prisoner population
working at the recycling center, as well as on our roadways, picking
up trash while the more dangerous prisoners are kept behind bars
ÐÊas they should be.
"A boot camp has been started for juvenile offenders
in which help is received from volunteers such as judges, district
attorneys, nurses, and law enforcement personnel from Overton County
and surrounding counties, and from the military. The boot camp tries
to teach the juvenile offender right from wrong, discipline and
respect for other people and their property. The program has proven
to be a great success as juvenile calls have dropped 50 percent
since the boot camp began.
"I am running on my record since taking office.
The Sheriff's Department has made some mistakes since I have been
in office, and I, like the department, have learned from the same
and continue to learn daily about how better to manage and operate
the Sheriff's Department for the safety of our citizens.
"I appreciate your support in the past and would
ask for your continued support now and over the next four years.
"Your vote and influence would be greatly appreciated."
top of page
Overton County News
415 West Main Street
P.O. Box 479
Livingston, Tennessee 38570