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Dandridge, Tennessee

May 9, 2011

Jefferson County Services On Chopping Block

Staff Photo
The Jefferson County Budget Committee met on Monday, May 2, 2011, at the Historic Jefferson County Courthouse.
The meeting was called to order by Committee Chairman Scarlett. Commissioner Tabor was absent.  The Minutes of the previous meeting were unanimously approved.
Director of Jefferson County Finance Helton presented the committee with the proposed requests from departments that have been received. The School System was not included in this request. The committee was informed that some of the increased requests were mandated and could not be cut. The commission had voted to fund a Veteran’s Services Officer and that position is included in the proposal, as well as a state mandated increase in Judge’s salaries.
The Budget Committee decided to address the non profit requests, before addressing departmental requests. Non profits that were currently being funded in some part by Jefferson County, requested a total of $142,046 in increase for the next budget year. Some, such as the Boys and Girls Club were granted no increase, and some were granted only minimal funding. Commissioner Estes presented a formula to the Budget Committee to be used to determine what, if any, funding should be received by a requesting agency. Estes contended that any requesting agency that receives their majority of funding from other sources, should be cut to save county money. Chairman of the Full Commission Mills stated that some nonprofits require a contribution from the county to deliver services to Jefferson County citizens. He expressed concern that cutting funding, without knowing the parameters of the nonprofit’s funding, may result in Jefferson County losing services that the citizens depend on. Estes stated that any cut to non profits is difficult but must be done. Non profits receiving less than 4% of their budget from Jefferson County were impacted, as the majority of the budget committee voted to cut or drastically reduce the requested funding for several non profits. Douglas Cherokee Senior Nutrition was impacted. Safe Space, Senior Citizen’s Home Assistance and Douglas Cooperative were also on the budgetary chopping block. Also on the list for budget cuts were Dandridge Community Trust, Glenmore, Alps Adult Day Care and Habitat for Humanity. The Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce was fully funded. The previously reported numbers put the chamber funding in excess of $360,000. The Red Cross, TN Valley Homeless, and Safe Harbor were denied funding.
Seven Fire Departments were funded at $55,000 per department. Dandridge, White Pine, Chestnut Hill, Lakeway, New Market, Talbot Kansas, and the Jefferson County Rescue Squad will all receive the full $55,000 funding. Jefferson City, Baneberry and Parrots Chapel will receive $25,151 per department.
E-911 had requested a budget increase to cover additional expenses. The department has had a budget shortfall for two budget years and will be cited if shortfall occurs again. Barreiro’s motion to fund the service at the requested amount failed. Kesterson moved to fund at $ 425,000 plus a 50 cent increase to Jefferson County residents for landline phones. The motion passed. Tucker tried to make a High Privilege Motion to refer the phone increase to the E-911 Board. The motion failed. The E-911 board was against a landline charge increase, due to fewer citizens still operating landline phones.
The Budget Committee voted to support the proposed combination Emergency Services building that will house the counties E-911, as well as EMS and EMA. The committee voted to take the funds from the Debt Service. Both the building proposal and funding will go before the full commission.
In other action, the Budget Committee approved a new position for Penny Murphy’s office. The purpose of the position is to collect outstanding court costs. Departments that requested little or no funding increase were accepted on consent. Some departments will be addressed at the next budget meeting. The Committee was informed on the bid progress for the new Landfill Dozer, but no action was requested.  The meeting was called Adjourn.

Tennessee Army National Guard 190th Engineers
Receives Proclamation from Jefferson City Mayor Mark Potts
Staff Photo
The Jefferson City Council met for their Regular Meeting on Monday, May 2, 2011, at the Jefferson City Municipal Building.
Mayor Mark Potts called the meeting to order.  City Recorder, Monica Myers, executed a roll call and all were present.  The Minutes from the previous meeting were unanimously accepted.
Doug McGill of Waste Connections presented citizen Linda Hill with an award for 2010 Recycler of the Year. Hill recycled more than 2000 lbs from her home. 
Mayor Potts presented a Mayoral Proclamation to the Tennessee Army National Guard 190th Engineers. The 190th recently left their home base in Jefferson City to train for deployment to Afghanistan. Mayor Potts presented the proclamation to Sgt. Edward Douglas. Sgt. Douglas will be in charge of the company while the majority of the unit is deployed. The Mayor pledged his, and the city's, support for the families of the 190th. He said that Jefferson City will joyfully embrace the soldiers upon their return and appreciates their sacrifice for the citizens of the city, and nation. Jefferson City will keep them and their families in their prayers.
Mike Jones, Public Works Director, addressed the violation at the wastewater plant. Jones stated that the complications were due to flooding, during the month of March. He stated that the situation is not being taken lightly. Flooding was not a controllable situation , however work is being done to identify problem areas and clean lines.
In Other Business, the city voted to extend their audit contract with McFarland and Gann. A resolution was passed to approve and extend the contract with Waste Connections and a resolution with TDOT.  The meeting was called Adjourn.

Town of Dandridge BMA Work Session
DWMF & Dandridge Fire Dept. to Get New Names
Staff Photo
The Town of Dandridge held their BMA work session on Tuesday, May 2, 2011, at the Dandridge Public Works Building.
The meeting was called to order by Mayor Gantte.
Under Items for Discussion, Stephen and Brandon Otto (Perkins Restaurant) requested a beer permit approval. The council was informed that the distance from a church would support the permit. Four resolutions were discussed, including naming the Dandridge Water Management Facility in honor of Herb Norton and the Dandridge Volunteer Fire Department in honor of Garland McCoig. Barbara McAndrew was requested to be remembered by the Dandridge Planning Committee, of which she was the chair.
One Citizen had inquired about the ordinance against parking on the street in a subdivision. A neighbor had complained because a service vehicle was parked in front of the citizen’s home, although it was not blocking traffic. Dandridge Police Officers used discretion and did not site the vehicle. The City Council decided to leave the ordinance as it stands and rely on the judgment of officers, should the police be called.
Tina Morrow and Barbara Garrow both addressed the council about upcoming projects. Morrow and Garrow both distributed information to the group and invited the members of the council to join the Main Street Dandridge Program. 
Information was provided by Town Administrator Hutchins on the State of Tennessee TDOT contract with the town. The cost will be $52,392, which will include snow removal.
The FY11/12 Budget was discussed. Hutchins informed the council that the cost of health insurance was on the rise and the town is considering several options. The council was presented with information about the insurance and was told that projected numbers would be available soon. 
The State of Tennessee has eliminated the Local Government Planning Office. The town will look into the cost of contracting for the services.
The town is looking into alternate water sources. The Council discussed the vehicle take home policy, which generally effects those who used police cars and public works vehicles. All departments in question stated that they often service calls directly from home, during after hours. It would be difficult and time consuming to go into the town and change vehicles before answering a call. Due to current tax laws, the employees will be taxed on take home vehicles.
Dandridge will continue with their current policy, using prisoners only in an limited capacity.
The town will investigate the cost for a fully staffed Fire Department. The department is currently volunteer.
In Other Business, Mayor Gantte informed the Council that the town had received a request from the Director of Schools about the used of town sewer. The town will take the matter under advisement, at their regular meeting.  Mayor Gantte called the meeting Adjourn.

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