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Archives 09-23-2009


News

School Board approves graduation move to TTU
Overton farmers to receive federal farm assistance
August revenue $28.2M below budget estimate

LA Centennial Celebration Itinerary

School Board approves graduation move to TTU


Dewain E. Peek photo
School Board members look over the results of a survey of the parents of Livingston Academy seniors asking if they prefer to keep the graduation at LA or move it to Tennessee Tech.

By Dewain E. Peek,
OCN staff

Sometimes the necessary thing to do is distasteful. To a man, each member of Overton County Board of Education did not want to do what had to be done during the regular monthly meeting Monday, Sept. 21.

With an 8-2 vote, the School Board voted to move the Livingston Academy graduation of the class of 2010 to Hooper Eblen Center on the campus of Tennessee Tech University in Cookeville. To do otherwise would have meant limiting LA seniors to 8 tickets for family members to attend.

School Board member David Sadler Sr. said, “I don’t want to move the graduation at LA to Cookeville, but we’ve taken a survey, and not only a survey, we sent letters home to parents to sign and see what they wanted to do, and 137 that answered this survey voted to move it to Tennessee Tech, 14 voted to keep it at Livingston Academy. Now, this is out of the senior class and their parents.”

In the work session immediately prior to the meeting, Livingston Academy guidance counselor Bonnie Stapp presented the results of that survey asking the parents of the 232 active seniors whether they preferred moving the graduation ceremony to Tennessee Tech or keeping it at the high school. Along with the 14 for staying at LA and the 137 for moving to TTU, 81 did not express a preference.

In the work session, Board member Larry Looper asked LA Principal Lesley Smith where she wanted to have it at.

“I think it needs to be moved to The Hoop,” she answered. “I want to have it at Livingston Academy; I want to have it at Livingston Academy, but I’m tired of cutting people out, saying, ‘You can’t fit. You’re not one of your child’s 8 tickets.’ I’m tired of not having enough room for every family member who wants to come.”

Looper asked, “Do you think having it at Tech will eliminate a lot of people going to graduation?”

“No,” she replied.

Principal Smith went on to add, “I think it will give more people the opportunity to go.”

Board member Sam Pendergrass said he was told last year by students who were graduating that they were ashamed to send out invitations, knowing the people receiving them would not be allowed to attend because of the restriction.

Sadler alluded to Pendergrass’ comment before the vote was taken, saying, “It’s their class, it’s their invitations that are being sent out, their families that aren’t able to attend because of limited seating.”

Pendergrass agreed, “I think if we asked the students and the parents, I think we should stand behind what they want. And I think next year we should ask the senior class, give them the option also, year to year.”

Board member Lenard Ledbetter disagreed, “We’ve had it here for years and I don’t see the need to move it, myself. We don’t need to move it out of Overton County.”

When put to a vote, Pendergrass, Sadler, Looper, Houston Robbins, Howard Miller, Ray Smith, and Dolphus Dial voted for the move, and Ledbetter and Mark Peek voted against it.

First reading of the new drug policy was approved. The policy, which adds testing of new hires, must be approved three times to go into effect.

Robbins asked who will have to pay for the new hire testing.

Peek answered that the school system will pay for the testing, but the savings on workman’s comp insurance should offset that cost.

Terry Webb was approved as the primary assistant school director, at a pay of $2,500, and Teresa Johnson was approved as the secondary assistant school director, at a pay of $1,500.

An alternative school at Livingston Middle School was approved.

The 2009-2010 Extended Learning Program was approved.

The 2009-2010 Safe Schools application, in the amount of $12,900, was approved.

Kelly Hill was elected chairman of the School Board, and Houston Robbins was elected vice chairman.

Board member Sadler expressed appreciation to Dolphus Dial for his term as chairman, saying, “I think you’ve done a fine job.”

Mark Peek was appointed as TLN representative.

The following were designated as management personnel: Diane Sadler, Sheila Pemberton, Terry Webb, and Teresa Johnson.

An overnight trip was approved for Hilham Elementary’s Beta Club to go to the Beta Convention at Opryland Hotel from November 16 through November 18, as requested by Principal Vickie Eldridge.

In executive action, the low bid for pest control from Universal Pest Control was approved.

The low bid for playground grade mulch from Elements of Play, of Hopkinsville, KY, was approved at $17.89 per truck load with delivery.

Central Office staff members were raised from 7 hours per day to 8 hours per day, effective August 18, 2009.

Director of Schools Matt Eldridge issued the Director’s Report to the School Board.

Before the meeting adjourned, Board member Howard Miller announced that a building meeting will be held Monday, Sept. 28.


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Overton farmers to receive federal farm assistance
U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved Governor Phil Bredesen’s request for federal farm assistance for Overton County due to heavy rains and extensive flooding that occurred in July.

“This designation is important for helping farmers in Overton and surrounding counties mitigate their losses resulting from heavy rains that were experienced in mid-July,” Gov. Bredesen said. “I’m pleased that USDA recognizes the difficulties these farmers are facing and has acted promptly to grant this request.”

Gov. Bredesen made the request on August 25 to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. A primary natural disaster designation makes farmers eligible to apply for assistance through their local Farm Service Agency. Qualifying farmers are eligible to be considered for emergency loans, livestock assistance, and supplemental farm payments as provided by the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008.

Under the designation for Overton County, farmers in adjoining counties are also eligible to apply for assistance through USDA Farm Service Agency. Those counties include Clay, Fentress, Jackson, Pickett, and Putnam.

Farmers in these areas suffered crop losses, including hay and pastures, reported in excess of 30% in some cases. Farmers also reported significant damage to farm equipment and structures.

For a weekly report on crop conditions across the state, visit www.nass.usda.gov/tn. U.S. Department of Agriculture makes this report available each Monday at 3 p.m. CDT, April through November.




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August revenue $28.2M below budget estimate
State tax collections again fell below budgeted estimates in August, with sales tax collections recording negative growth for 18 of the last 20 months.

Finance and Administration Commissioner Dave Goetz reported Friday, Sept. 11 that overall August revenues were $726.9 million, which is 5.74% below collections for August 2008.

“The continued negative trend in tax collections requires us to continue to closely monitor revenues and adjust expenditures accordingly,” Goetz said.

“August sales tax figures reflect July consumer spending, and represent the first month of collections for the new fiscal year.

“We need to make sure we make adjustments to accommodate for the next several months so we keep the state’s budget in a balanced posture.”

On an accrual basis, August is the first month in the 2009-2010 fiscal year.

August collections were $28.2 million less than the budgeted estimate. The general fund was undercollected by $30.5 million, and the four other funds were overcollected by $2.3 million.

Sales tax collections were $24.6 million less than the estimate for August. The August growth rate was negative 8.21%.

Franchise and excise taxes combined were $279,000 above the budgeted estimate of $20.6 million.

Gasoline and motor fuel collections increased by 9.13% and were $5.2 million above the budgeted estimate of $68.2 million.

Tobacco tax collections for the month were undercollected by $289,000.
Privilege tax collections were $1.4 million less than the budgeted estimate of $17.6 million.

Inheritance tax collections were $3 million below the budgeted estimate.

All other taxes were undercollected by a net of $4.4 million.

The budgeted revenue estimates for 2009-2010 are based on the State Funding Board’s consensus recommendation adopted by the first session of the 106th General Assembly in May 2009.



LA Centennial Celebration Itinerary
Saturday, September 26, 2009
8:00 a.m.
2009 Hog-eye Invitational 5K Race

All proceeds from this event will go to help sponsor the Livingston Academy Cross Country team.
Registration will begin at 6:30 a.m. and the race which is separated into seven age groups will begin at 8 a.m.
Entry fee is $20. T-shirts will be available on race day while supplies last.

10:00 a.m.
CENTENNIAL CELEBRATION BEGINS

10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Registration at front lobby of LA
10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. TWRA Wildlife Exhibit

11:00 a.m.
DEDICATION OF LIVINGSTON ACADEMY SIGN
& BURIAL OF TIME CAPSULE IN FRONT OF SIGN

Anyone wishing to place a picture, note, etc. in the time capsule
should bring it with you. It must be no larger that a 3X5 index card.

2:00 p.m.
CEREMONY BEGINS IN LA GYMNASIUM

•Assembly in gymnasium. National Anthem. Invocation – Dee Wells, Minister at First Christian Church.
•Awards/Prizes. Roll Call of Classes. Alma Mater.
•William Winningham Billy Kidd with WIMZ Radio will serve as MC.
•Guest speakers are as follows: Mike McCulley an LA Graduate & NASA astronaut,
•Willie Hugh Bilbrey honoring Duvone Dale &
Jimmy Carlock an LA graduate & Project Manager of the Hubble Space Telescope.
•Cheerleaders lead crowd in hogeye cheer and throw balls into stands.
•Honor oldest graduates: Rose Hart Dale, Lyda Speck and Ottie Robbins.
•Arts and crafts booths will be around Winningham Park.
•Live music at the Rotary Amphitheatre.
•Dunking booth. Food vendors and individual class activities around Livingston Academy.
•There will be door prizes awarded throughout the day.
•LA Snow globes, CD’s, and LA Prints For Sale.
•Kids activities include Bouncing Bubble, Ollie Otter, and many other activities.



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Overton County News
415 West Main Street
P.O. Box 479
Livingston' Tennessee 38570
tel 931.823.6485
fax 931.823.6486
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