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80 Years Ago

Archives 08-04-2004



Overton County Fair thrills kids of all ages
Cub Mountain road to receive interim fix
Water rates to increase 32 percent in three years



Overton County Fair thrills kids of all ages

photos by Lyndon Johnson/OCN staff
The 66th Annual Overton County Agricultural Fair was held at Overton County Fairgrounds from July 26 through July 31. Fairgoers were treated to the sights and sounds of colorful rides and games along with the scents of carnival food and agricultural exhibits. While the rides provided thrills for children of more advanced ages, the smaller children had fun with games of their own.

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Cub Mountain road to receive interim fix

The Office of the Overton County Mayor received notice on Friday, July 30 from Tennessee Department of Transportation that the transportation commissioner has given the go-ahead for an interim fix to be done through Region 2 maintenance forces on Highway 85 and Cub Mountain.

Mayor Copeland stated, "Work on the highway should begin in the next couple of weeks.

"We have been working on this problem for the last one-and-a-half years, and we are very pleased improvements are going to be made."

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Water rates to increase 32 percent in three years

Livingston City Council voted on water rates, a new fire chief, and a settlement with the School Board during the regular monthly meeting held Monday, Aug. 2. Alderman Thurman Langford was absent.

The Council voted unanimously to raise the water rates over the next three years. Rates will go up 12 percent on October 1, then 10 percent more next year, and 10 percent more the following year.

According to the engineering firm, the water rate increase is a stipulation of the Department of Environment & Conservation in approving a $5 million loan for the water project.

When discussion began on increasing the rates, Mayor Hosea Winningham said, "That's a high water bill."

The mayor, presiding over his last monthly City Council meeting, asked the aldermen to take more time to study the increases before voting on them.

During the discussion, Vice Mayor Bill Winningham said, "Looks like we've invested a lot of money already, not to go along with this. It's a pretty good increase, but somebody's got to pay the fiddler if you want to drink clean water."

Alderman Robert Jolley concurred, "We're not going to get started if we don't process this loan."

He later said, "Let's just do it and get it over with."

Aldermen Johnny Halfacre and Curtis Hayes addressed the Council about the need for a full-time fire chief.

Alderman Halfacre said, "We've spent a lot of money on our fire department. We've got probably as nice a fire department as any town our size, but we still have a part-time chief."

A.B. Coleman has been the fire chief for years, serving in a part-time capacity.

Halfacre made a motion to make Rocky Dial the new fire chief. Vice Mayor Winningham seconded the motion.

Alderman Hayes said, "We've went so far with this ISO. We've spent a lot of money on it to get us up to the next rating."

He said two primary needs of the fire department to help move to a better Insurance Services Office rating are a full-time fire chief and a generator.

Alderman James "Pug" Lee said, "I think we ought to all sit down and discuss this thing before we make a move."

Alderman Lee said he hadn't heard about replacing Coleman until Sunday.

Alderman Jolley said, "Until I talk to A.B. Coleman, I'm going to vote no, because he hasn't told me he was through."

Dial was present at the meeting, and Jolley looked at him and told him it wasn't anything personal against him, that he had nothing against him being fire chief. Lee expressed the same sentiment.

Aldermen Halfacre, Hayes, and Winningham voted yes, and Aldermen Jolley and Lee voted no.

In very old business, the Council discussed Overton County Board of Education's rejection of the last settlement offer on gas bills at A.H. Roberts Elementary.

Alderman Jolley asked, "Are we going to settle this with them, or are we going to court?"

Alderman Hayes pushed for the Council to settle the matter.

Hayes said, "I just think we need to get some closure on this."

After much discussion, Jolley put forth, "I make a motion that we send the Overton County Board of Education a check for $350,000 and waive their present gas bill to $12,424.22."

All aldermen voted for the settlement proposal.

Ordinance 2004-8-1 was approved to zone the newly annexed area. A public meeting will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, Aug. 20.

Ordinance 2004-8-2 was approved to rezone Larry Norris' property on Oak Street from R-2 to C-1. A public hearing will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, Aug. 20.

Jonathan Swift was hired to replace Charles Davis at the Police Department. Davis had quit, according to Mayor Hosea Winningham.

The City Council voted to adopt Tennessee Code Annotated as part of the city ordinance, and agreed to allow the use of the Public Safety Building as a shelter for Head Start, as requested by Police Chief Roger Phillips.

According to Chief Phillips, the Public Safety Building is designated as a public shelter.

Gas Department Supervisor Rick Winningham addressed the Council to announce, "The last week in August into the first week in September, we're going to be doing a leak survey and corrosion survey."

Alderman Halfacre addressed the Council to announce his resignation from the Court Square Committee, citing business taking too much time. He suggested Alderman Jolley for the committee, and he was appointed.

Halfacre said, "The meetings are of the morning, like at 8 o'clock, and I really need to be at my workplace at that time. I'm so busy right now, I just haven't been able to attend the meetings; and I'm not doing the square committee right by keeping missing them."

Before adjourning, Alderman Hayes brought up two more topics -the need for a generator at the Public Safety Building, and keeping the City Pool open on weekends through Labor Day.

Hayes said that when the power goes out, police and fire personnel are relegated to hand-held radios that don't reach the repeater well because of inadequate signal strength.

According to Chief Phillips, the Public Safety Building, which houses both the fire and police headquarters, has an auxiliary telephone that works when the power is out, but the main phone system is out of service when the power is out.

Chief Phillips said, "We are designated as an alternate dispatch for 911. We've got a battery backup at the repeater up there that will handle it, but when the power goes out, the radio there at the police department doesn't work. So, we're just floating dead in the water without some kind of power."

Alderman Hayes asserted, "We need a generator."

According to Phillips and Dial, Electrical Inspector Houston Robbins said the building needs an 80-kilowatt generator with a 400-amp automatic transfer switch.

Three bids had been taken for a generator with these specifications and the lowest bid was from C1, which would be in the $23,000 to $24,000 range installed, depending on the amount of work the city puts into preparing the site where it will be installed.

Though they weren't sure where the money would come from, all aldermen voted to accept the bid from C1.

The Council voted to keep the pool open on weekends though the Labor Day weekend.

Alderman Hayes then suggested offering the position of fire inspector to A.B. Coleman at his part-time fire chief pay rate. The offer will be discussed with Coleman and voted on at the next meeting if he is interested.

The meeting adjourned.

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