By Marjorie Lloyd
John Boyers, a familiar presence in Gallatin’s banking history, was honored for his 55 years of service to the community last Friday at a reception at the new Citizens Bank building on East Main Street.
Family, friends and business associates gathered to pay tribute to the career of this man who has affected so many lives of the residents of Sumner County.
“We started this branch,” said Betty Sue Hibdon, president and CEO of Citizens Bank, “and John had a swollen leg and swollen knee and was in a brace, and he trudged in the building every day on matters of pipes and tarpaulins and whatever to make appointment times with people. … He started this thing, and we’ve not been disappointed a time since. I’ve grown closer to him. …
“He is one of the kindest, nicest men I have ever known. He is a joy to work with. Every employee here will attest to how wonderful he is, and we are going to miss him, but we hope there are better things in store for him, maybe fishing. Maybe Dean can find things for him to do around the house. … He was a true pleasure to work with.”
She made a presentation of a photograph by local photographer Richard Suter of the new pipe organ at the First Presbyterian Church where the Boyers are members and John serves as a trustee.
By Neal Siders
The Sumner County Commissions Committee on Redistricting held its first meeting Monday June 27. While the meeting did not have any motions, Committee Chairman Merroll Hyde said that he would like to summarize population changes in order to allow members of the committee a preview of the upcoming decisions they will have ahead to make.
Redistricting is a constitutionally mandated process that coincides with the federal census, which takes place every 10 years, resulting in voting districts being realigned to reflect population change over time. When redistricting, population totals of each district are supposed to be equal within a five percent margin.
Hyde said that the committee only has to address a couple of commission districts, and fortunately four of the districts that require the most change border each other.
After looking at it, this may not be as difficult as I anticipated, said Hyde.
By Corey Conley
It was common knowledge that last weeks board meeting would likely be Assistant Director for Instruction Judy Wheelers final board meeting; however, it was the announcement of Assistant Director for Human Resources Craig Otts imminent departure which shocked the boardroom. Wheeler will be retiring after a 36-year career in Sumner Schools, but Ott will be moving to a high-level position within Metro City Schools Human Resource Department.
It was Chairman Don Long who dropped the news. Its not just Mrs. Wheelers last board meeting, it is also Mr. Otts last board meeting with us, he said before thanking both for their work.
Describing Wheeler as still in like Flynn, White Houses Ted Wise also thanked both of the departing Assistant Directors.
You have made impressions on numerous young people, and I appreciate you. Youre leaving huge, huge holes to fill. You do your work everyday, and you do it diligently and you do it well.
Board members Will Duncan and Glen Gregory also voiced their appreciation. Were going to miss both of you, said Duncan.
Theres no one who has given more to the Sumner County School system for the last 10 to 12 years than Judy Wheeler, said Gregory. Mr. Ott, I dont know why youre leaving.
By Marjorie Lloyd
John and Allyson Simons could have lived anywhere in the United States when they decided to make their retirement dream a reality. They chose Castalian Springs, Tennessee, because it is horse country, and the rolling hills and historical sites, such as Wynnewood, Cragfont, and Bledsoes Fort Park, appeal to them.
We came into riding late in our lives after we retired, said Allyson. We got into horses. We researched where to live and moved out here because we thought it was perfect for horses and a peaceful, nice place.
John added, We spent a lot of time on the computer, even (looked at) Washington State. We put a lot of thought into it. Were real happy with this. This is the best home weve ever had.
The Simons are from Yorktown, Virginia. John, whose career was with the Environmental Protection Agency, and Allyson, a retired department head with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, have made quality of life an important part of their personal choices.
Both are diet-conscious, with emphasis on healthy foods, such as the fresh vegetables they have growing in their backyard.
Green beans, tomatoes, peppers and squash, said Allyson, relating her current crop, but she admitted that she is concerned about squash borers.
Both enjoy being outdoors and especially sailing on ocean-cruising boats, something which they enjoyed doing for many years until the physical requirements became too demanding.
By Corey Conley
Sumner County Director of Schools Dr. Del R. Phillips ended months of speculation on Monday when he announced Jennifer Brown as the new Assistant Director of Schools for Instruction. Brown replaces current Assistant Director Judy Wheeler, whose June 30 retirement marks the end of a 36-year career with the district.
While she may have large shoes to fill, Brown is no stranger to Sumner County. According to the announcement by Sumner schools, she began teaching at T.W. Hunter Middle in 1996. From there she rose to assistant principal at Portland Middle and Watt Hardison Elementary. After those and other supervisory roles, last year she served the district as the Instructional Coordinator for Accountability, EL, and Pre-K.
She has been a teacher, she has been an assistant principal, and she has worked to train teachers and administrators in how to be more effective. She has spearheaded programs that have helped make Sumner County Schools what they are today. I am very excited with all the possibilities she brings, said Phillips in the release. Phillips said he was drawn to her understanding of instruction and history of innovation.
Brown has a busy year ahead of her. The Assistant Director of Instruction is deeply involved with many of the day-to-day challenges teachers and principals face. She is also pursuing a doctorate at David Lipscomb University. She has already earned a Masters Degree in Education from Trevecca Nazarene University.
Please join Mayor Jo Ann Graves at the next stop on her Mayor’s Listening Tour on Monday, June 27, at 5 p.m. at George’s Family Restaurant, 447 E. Broadway.
“Some of Gallatin’s most successful and important projects over the last few years grew out of ideas that came from our citizens,” Graves said.
“Your ideas are important to me. Your feedback helps formulate a future path for the city. Please join me at one of the last two stops on my listening tour. Let’s have a cup of coffee and talk.”
Four years ago, the mayor formed the Mayor’s Visioning Committee and held public meetings to collect ideas. Then she sent out the Citizen Survey. Last year, she met with citizens one-on-one during Mayor’s Night In after hours in her office.
This year, she is hosting Mondays with the Mayor Listening Tour.
“All of these opportunities to hear from you have led to many important projects in Gallatin. Among them, the South Water Avenue Revitalization project, Town Creek Greenway, rapid bus service to Nashville, added cultural events, improvements in energy efficiency, multiple road projects, and a new land use and development plan,” Graves explained. “The City has improved processes because of your ideas. We’ve created new tools for communication. We’ve added more on-line options so you can do some of your city business from home.
“The City has also been able to answer some of your individual concerns or issues and get your problems solved. I look forward to seeing you Monday.”
For more information, contact the Mayor’s office at 451-5961. Or, email her at: email@example.com.
By Corey Conley
PTO Committee Chair and Hendersonville school board member Vanessa Silkwood presented a plan to the Board of Education that would eliminate many school fees. This issue has been a longstanding complaint of parents and board members; many feel asking parents for the average base fee of over $65 per class per student is far too much for a free education.
For Silkwood and other board members, it is unacceptable that fees and fundraisers are going to pay for things they consider necessities. Silkwood cited computers, software, library books, teachers assistants, copiers, playground equipment, and even permanent infrastructure improvements to board property.
Of course the families that pay these fees already pay property taxes, noted Silkwood. I feel its our duty as a board to reduce these fees and the need for students to fundraise for their free public education.
Silkwoods plan broke down the difference between what the board already provides and what it would cost to pay the additional $65 per student fee. Because the board already provides $10 per student and pays the class fees for students on free and reduced lunch, it is currently paying the equivalent of $35 per student.
The PTO committees play would increase that allocation by $20 per student for next school year, and then by an additional $20 for the 2012-2013 school year. The suggested raise would add just over $500,000 to the budget, according to Silkwood.
It’s Vacation Bible School time at Grace Baptist Church, located at 410 Old Hwy. 31E in Bethpage. Children age 3 through grade 12 are welcome from 6-9 p.m. This year’s theme is “Big Apple Adventure - New York City.” School will include worship, Bible study, music, missions, snacks, outdoor activities and crafts. There will also be a family picnic on Saturday, from 6-8 p.m. at Flick Farm in Bethpage. If you have any questions, call Kim @ 452-2913.
Humane Society’s “Dining For Dogs’ event is 4 to 8 p.m. at the Barefoot Charlies restaurant, 125 Sanders Ferry Rd in Hendersonville. Portion of your food sale will benefit the Humane Society.
“Summer Revival” is 7 p.m. nightly at Peach Valley Baptist Church. Pastor C.A. Wimberly from Hunter Hill Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia is the guest speaker.
June 24, 25
Emeritus employees, residents and families will hold a yard sale to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Walk that will be in Nashville during October. The yard sale will be all day on Friday, June 24 and Saturday morning, June 25. Emeritus at Gallatin is located at 400 Hancock Street, at Hwy 109, across from Gateway Tire.
Descendants of William and Melissa Linder are invited to a family reunion from noon until 3 p.m. at the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Bring a covered dish. For more information call 931-761-0819 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
GHS Class of 1991 20 Year Reunion is from 6-11 p.m. at the Gallatin Country Club. If you or someone you know graduated from Gallatin High School in 1991 please make contact as soon as possible with one of the following Reunion Committee members: Nikki Thompson Michael, email@example.com; Carl Nelson, firstname.lastname@example.org; Susan Willbanks Byrum, email@example.com or 270-791-3460.
Trammel Lodge #436 annual Supper & Auction is at 4 p.m. with barbecue and potluck and an auction with donated items from the community to bid on.
Mt. Vernon School Reunion begins at noon at the Gallatin Civic Center. Bring a favorite dish to share. Call 452-3547 for more information.
June 25, 26
McMurry and Winston Family Reunion is at Rockland Recreational Center, Hendersonville, from noon until 7:30 p.m. with a Hawaiian Luau Family Picnic Saturday. Bring a favorite dish and lawn chair. Sunday there is a family banquet at the Gallatin Civic Center from 1 to 5 p.m. Family registration fee is $10. Bring a large covered dish to share. Contact Jessie Austin at 452-2077 or Donna Turner at 481-2536 for more information.
Mayor Jo Ann Graves will hold the next Listening Tour at Georges’ Family Restaurant from 5-6 p.m. The restaurant is located at 447 E. Broadway.
This month’s open meeting for Sumner United for Responsible Government (SURG) is from 6:30 until 7:30. at Cody’s Pub at 1201 Twelve Stones Crossing in Goodlettsville.A buffet table will be available to attendees, which includes salad, entrees, sides, and drinks, for $9.95. The guest speaker is U.S. Representative Diane Black (R) of Gallatin.
The Gallatin Senior Center is holding an Independence Day dance featuring the Southern Country Band. A Pot luck dinner will be held from 6 – 7 p.m. Please bring dinner style dishes. Tea, punch, coffee and desserts will be furnished by the center. Music and dance from 7 ‘til 10 p.m. All ages are invited and welcome. A donation of $5 per person, $7.50 per couple is suggested.
July 6-August 10
Workshop on the basics of learning to Live Well with Chronic Medical Conditions is approximately 2.5 hours per week for six weeks, each Wednesday morning. All materials are provided. There is no fee for the workshop. The focus is on older adults with chronic conditions and on those who provide care for them. For more information and to register, call Marilyn Whalen, at the Greater Nashville Area Agency on Aging, 891-5864. The sessions will be held at Volunteer State Community College and space will be limited.
Thrifty Paw is now open at 222 Fairgrounds Road (Behind the Post Office). Hours are Thursday, Friday, Saturday, 8:00 a.m.– 2:00 p.m. Proceeds benefit Sumner Spay Neuter Alliance (“Low Cost” Spay Neuter Clinic). Furniture, household & childrens items, books, CD’s, and more good stuff. They will gladly accept your unwanted items. Contact Beckie, 210-3296 to arrange a pickup.
A Support group for Parkinsons patients and spouses/caregivers meets at The Blackeyed Pea restaurant in Hendersonville the first Monday of every month at 6 p.m.
Alzheimer’s Support Group meets the first Tuesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. at Elmcroft of Hendersonville, 1020 Carrington Place, 264-2440.
Faces of Hope Children’s Therapy Center is hosting the Gallatin Municipal July 4th Festivities. Any organizations interested in vending at this event please call the office at 615-206-1176 and ask for Adam or Kathy, or visit the website at www.facesofhopetn.com for vending information.
Sertoma of Gallatin has a drop off box at the Gallatin Senior Citizens Center on Franklin St. near the square for anyone who would like to donate a used hearing aid to be given to HEAR Nashville to refurbish and provide hearing for someone who cannot afford a hearing aid on their own.
FARMERS MARKET is open Monday through Friday 10 to 6 and Saturdays 7 to 12. Portland Strawberries, a variety of homemade breads and jellies, landscaping items/plants, tomato plants, pepper plants and flowers are available. On Facebook, go to Gallatin Farmers Market and ‘like’ it and you will be notified weekly as items change at the market or call 452-5692 to get registered. The daily fee is $10 but drops substantially if you pay by the week or month.
Need entries for Independence Day Parade Saturday, July 2 in Hartsville. No entry fee-Start at 10 a.m. at Industrial Park-Theme is Patriotic-Antique Cars, floats,and marching bands/groups, etc-Contact Mark Presley (374-1010) or Mark White (202-9752) by Monday, June 27.
Peach Valley Baptist Church 508 Peach Valley Road, has a “NEW” 8 a.m. service each Sunday.
For The Gallatin Newspaper
What do you do when you spent half your life in the broadcasting and entertainment business, and you have a massive record collection at your disposal? If you’re a former DJ, you share the music online with an internet radio station. Lifelong Gallatin resident Pat Julian, who goes by the air name “Chuck Lundi,” has done exactly that with “Chuck Lundi’s Rock Box.” Live every Friday night from 6 p.m. until midnight, Chuck plays the greatest hits of all time with his extensive 4,000 song play list. “When I decided to do this, I did not want to play the ‘same old songs’ that 99 percent of ‘oldie’ type radio stations play,” he said. “I was very fortunate to work with some of the best in radio and entertainment from 1971 until 1993, and there are far more than the usual 300 song play list that is formatted on OTA (over the air) stations”.
Chuck is quick to credit longtime friends Jack Hunter, Bill Buntin, and Jack Williams with giving him the opportunity to hone his skills, when he was hired as a Sunday morning announcer at WHIN back in 1971.
“My first duties were to sign on, on Sundays and operate the station for all the local ministers who would do a Sunday sermon, either live or on tape. Sundays started at 7 a.m., and the church programming went until 11:45, which gave me 15 minutes to play some rock until I left at noon for the afternoon DJ. Gradually, Bill and Jack felt it was safe enough to let me work more weekend hours, and they were very patient as I learned the 'do’s and don’t’s’ of radio. I made a lot of mistakes, and got more than a few phone calls from Program Director Jack Hunter and Bill when I was on the air. It was the most fun I ever had working in radio.”
Chuck went on to work at WHIN AM & FM, WQSI (where he was voted one of the top disc jockeys in the country in 1983), WAMG, and WLAC before he left broadcasting. “It finally got to the point where it was just not fun anymore, so I got out when I had other options presented to me.” Fast forward to 2010 when he was surfing around listening to internet radio stations, only to find they are all playing the same 300 songs over and over. “I knew there’s a better way to do this,” he said. By doing tons of research, he found an online server that was able to handle the large bandwidth that was required to do his show. So, with the equipment he had collected over the years as a DJ and live musician (he plays bass, guitar, and drums), he debuted his show to one listener, longtime friend Bob Watson, who lives in Alaska. “I emailed Bob and said ‘Hey, listen to this and tell me how it sounds.’”
Soon I posted the details of the show on Facebook, and the audience began to grow, first with friends and classmates from Gallatin High, then in the last year alone, over 7000 local area listeners have tuned into the “Rock Box” either live on Friday nights or listened to the archived shows that are updated every week.
By Neil Siders
Six members of the Sumner County Commission voted to uphold the recently enacted 1981 Financial Management Act during their Monday, June 20 meeting. A majority, 13, voted to rescind the Act, but the vote required 16 to pass and thus failed.
The six who voted against the repeal were Commissioners Merrol Hyde (District 8), who spearheaded the adoption of the Act, though he opposed it in the past, Frank Freels (District 4), Kirk Moser (District 7), Jim Vaughn (District 6), Steve Graves (District 3), and Billy Geminden (District 2), with Commissioner Jo Skidmore present, but not voting on the issue.
Commissioners Moe Taylor (District 1), Jerry Stone (District 11), Paul Freels (District 11), and Bob Pospicil (District 12) were absent during the meeting. Stone, Freels and Pospicil were attending an E911 conference out of state, along with County Executive Anthony Holt. Taylor was home ill.
During the debate on the issue of repealing the 81 Act, Commissioner David Kimbrough said he would like to propose an amendment to the resolution to repeal the Act, an amendment that he proposed during the last Financial Management Implementation Committee meeting, on which he serves. The amendment had been scheduled to appear with the resolution, but was not included on the version presented on Mondays agenda. If the commission would vote to repeal the act, Kimbrough stated, the commission would create a committee to investigate generating a private financial management act that would benefit all parties involved and be tailored to fit Sumner County, which is larger and has more schools that any of the 19 counties currently on the Act.
Kimbroughs amendment passed.
Cover letters and resumes
By Mike Needel
Local Veterans Employment Representative Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development
Have you found that ideal job yet? After you have done a personal skills assessment and researched that career you have an interest in, you are convinced that this job is perfect for you. You are now ready to progress through the application process and start working. However, you find that the company wants you to send in a resume and cover letter, as opposed to applying in person and your resume is old and out of date. Maybe you don’t have one at all...so what do you do?
You have to write an effective cover letter and resume that will get someone’s attention. This is sometimes the only opportunity you have to make a first impression and your resume is your introduction to the employer. (We will talk about the interview later, but we have to get you to the interview first.)
If your cover letter and resume are sloppy or filled with misspellings and grammatical errors, the impression you give is of a person who does not pay attention to detail, this could also be a reflection of how you will work. However, if they are neat, concise and professional the employer will have a positive first impression of you and give your resume a more thorough reading.
A cover letter is a self-introduction that is a summary of your skills and experience relating to the job you are applying for. It should be a short self promotion and describe how you can be a benefit to the company. There is a lot of discussion about cover letters and whether they are needed. My suggestion is that you have one ready, but only submit it if requested.
Your resume, on the other hand, is the best opportunity for you to highlight your experience and accomplishments. It’s not just a chronological history of the previous jobs you have had; it’s a platform where you can get the employer interested in you as a real candidate to fill a company need.
There are several types of resumes that are currently used; however, I want to focus on only two of them: a “Chronological” resume and a “Functional” resume.
A chronological resume is the historical listing of all the jobs you have had starting from the most recent and working backwards. It’s straightforward and should include all the skills and tasks that you have accomplished in each position.
For other job seekers who have had several jobs in their lifetime, a functional resume is the one that I suggest to use. It highlights your skills and experiences up front and shows how they relate to the job you are applying for. If an employer spends more than 15 or 20 seconds reading your resume and still can’t figure out why you are qualified for the position, they will more than likely discard it. With a functional resume the employer can immediately see why you would be a great fit for the company. Remember, a resume is designed to do one thing...and that is to get you a face to face interview with a real person. The sooner you can get an employers’ attention and create an interest in you, the better the chances are that you will get called in for that interview.
Your resume should also include “Key Words” that come directly from the employers’ job description. Sometimes companies will have a computer scan resumes to search for these key words and if they do not find any your resume will be discarded before a person ever looks at it.
As a final note, do not lie or misrepresent yourself on your resume. If you get caught, it will show the employer that you are willing to compromise your honesty and may indicate that you might not be trustworthy.
There are many tools out there that can assist you with your cover letter and resume. You can Google “Resume Styles” on the internet or you can come into the Career Center and get help with putting an effective resume together. The Career Center has an excellent pamphlet called “Marketing your Job Talents” which is another free resource.
Remember, this is your first opportunity to introduce yourself to a perspective employer and your resume and cover letter are a direct reflection of you as a professional and as a person.
I’ll talk about the actual interview next time.
By Corey Conley
“It’s been busy,” admits Dr. Del R. Phillips, “but it’s been a good kind of busy.”
Phillips and his wife Amy are hard at work unpacking in their new home, and Phillips started his new job this week. It pays $178,500, offers plenty of bonus potential, and puts him in charge of thousands of Sumner’s teachers, principals, and hourly staff as the county’s newest Director of Schools.
“You want it to all get in the right place and in the correct drawers, but it takes a few days to get everything in order,” says Phillips of his big move, which starting this Monday takes a back seat to the director’s chair.
He says he and his wife are eager to get settled in.
“We’ve not met a person who’s said anything except that this is a great place to live. We couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity to live here.”
The first weeks for any new job are usually packed, and with thousands of employees and a nearly $200 million budget, the director’s chair is no exception.
“It will be really crowded,” says Phillips, who will have precious little time to orient himself before stepping right in where previous Director Benny Bills left off.
His first days were filled with meetings with his administrative assistant Linda Bradley and other central office staff, most of whom he met for the first time.
Today he will attend Sumner County’s annual administrative retreat to meet with principals and assistant principals.
Phillips was the ultimate selection from a lengthy hiring process, which subjected each candidate to multiple rounds of vetting, meetings, and interviews.
Starting Tuesday, Phillips will go through the hiring process all over again as he interviews potential principals and replacements for Assistant Director Judy Wheeler, who retires June 30.
Phillips says he is no stranger to interviewing for leadership positions, but he’s glad the process includes other voices.
“You have folks in the room other than me. Be able to get a lot of good impact from people who are involved in the school. I’ll have lots of information beyond my own opinion before I make a decision.”
For Phillips, facts and information are key to his leadership style.
“That’s what this whole first year is going to be about; it’s going to be about listening and developing a plan of what Sumner County wants to happen to their schools.”
The point that he will be working with the community, rather than dictating changes, is one he wants to emphasize.
“A lot of times, people think that a new leader of a community based organization is going to come there, and they’re going to do things to the community.
“Everybody asks, ‘What are you going to do to Sumner County?’ Well, I’m not going to do anything to you, I’m going to do things with you.
“That’s not the way leadership works. I’m going to listen to what you want to happen to your schools - parents, teachers, students, business leaders, and that’s what I’m going to do.”
At his previous post as Director of Columbus, Mississippi’s schools, Phillips made dramatic changes to the district. He implemented looser zoning regulations, grew enrollment for the shrinking district with an aggressive marketing campaign, and cut costs by outsourcing food service and transportation.
These and other moves concern some residents, but Phillips assures he has no grand plans in mind.
“I think it’s dangerous when a leader comes in with a preconceived idea one way or the other,” he says. “It skews your .bility to lead.”
With both Bills and Wheeler leaving, the school system is losing decades of knowledge in just a few weeks’ time.
Phillips says he’s never met either of them, but, speaking of Wheeler, he says, “Any time you lose a person of her caliber, that has so much knowledge about the system, it’s a tremendous blow. Certainly her leaving there’s a lot of information that she’ll take with her that will be important for me to know.”
Bills has already extended an offer to help says Phillips, and he hopes he can still call upon Wheeler in case he has questions about the district’s past.
Although specific plans for Sumner County will depend on meetings with community members, he hopes to bring real, significant improvements to the system.
“Any system, if you’re moving forward, you’re never satisfied. We’re always looking forward to make the system work for the students.”
By Marjorie Lloyd
Gallatin and Sumner County are well represented in helping to shape the future of Middle Tennessee.
State Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bill Hagerty, a Gallatin native, along with Governor Bill Haslam, announced last Friday the appointment of Reginald Reggie Mudd as the regional economic director for the counties surrounding Metro Davidson County. He is one of eight new people appointed to serve as part of the reorganization of the states Economic and Community Development department.
My responsibility is for a 13-county area which consists mainly of the counties surrounding Davidson and those that touch them, said Mudd.
The ultimate goal is job creation, focusing on existing industry, as research shows 98 percent of new jobs in Tennessee are created by existing businesses.
He added that the reorganization allows the department to become a one-stop place where all problems that face industry at the state level can be dealt with.
Mudd also noted that the department will continue to work with company relocations and new business ventures, but the focus will be on businesses that are already located in Tennessee.
By Marjorie Lloyd
Growth in the last decade in Sumner County has been in the heart of the county, from north to south, according to County Executive Anthony Holt, as he discussed the 2010 census reports on population.
In order to accommodate the new13,387 population count per district for Sumner County, the county districts will have to be re-aligned, stated Holt. The deadline for achieving re-districting is January 1, 2012.
This is important. The county has changed, added Holt. District 1 is the largest land mass, followed by District 3. The land area is going to get even larger. Look at District 7; its going to have to get a lot smaller, so do 2,4, and 6, so the growth is in this corridor. ... The part of Hendersonville that was the densest populated is less populated than other parts of the county. You are going to see the northeast and the south expand (geographically).
From the northwest section of the county in the Portland area (District 2) through the sixth and seventh districts in the mid-southern part of the county that range from Merrol Hyde Magnet School to Gallatin High School precincts, five districts will need to have less people, indicating the major growth area of the county. This includes districts 2, 4, 7, 10 and 11.
By Marjorie Lloyd
The rural serenity of the Castalian Springs community is beginning to change, first with Dollar General opening a location and now with a quarry company purchasing approximately 400 acres of land off Corum Hill Road, on May 11. However, the approval for the zoning of the property to change from R1A (residential, agriculture) to allow industrial use may prove to be difficult.
Hoover Inc., out of Rutherford County, which has plants and quarries in both Tennessee and Alabama, formed an LLC company in April, entitled Western Farm Products, with a Brentwood office in the Maryland Farms business district, and used a Wilson County realtor to make the blind purchase from the Charles Haynes family of the Ted Payne Farm, a 350.17 acre parcel.
Three other, much smaller parcels were also purchased at the same time that allow access to New Highway 25. The company paid $172,000 for one from Jimmy Dale West; $66,835 to Eric Birdwell; and to William Lawson, 115,000 for another.The company has filed a request for a conditional use permit in order to operate a quarry with accessory asphalt and concrete plants and rock-crushing facilities.
We had no earthly idea, said Michelle Haynes in discussing the sale. Thats the first time in my life as a real estate broker that we have done a blind sale. They would not tell us who they were. It was totally anonymous. Never in our wildest dreams did we think it a quarry company.
Sumner County Food Bank will conduct a food and fund drive on Saturday, June 25.
The goal is to raise 100,000 pounds of food, $10,000.00 in donations, along with a thousand pounds of hygiene products.
The drive will be held at Liberty Baptist Church, 354 E. Main Street, across the road from Sav-A-Lot grocery store.
James Gill, pastor of Liberty Baptist Church and Executive Director of the food bank said that it is not enough to feel sorry for the victims of the devastating tornados, we must reach out and show them we really care.
He is asking every family to purchase at least a flat of canned products and bring it to the church on Saturday, June 25 from 8:00 until.
Donations will be received at the site.
Gill expressed how generous Sumner County has been in feeding the hungry in our county, and now he asks all his donors to reach out to our neighbors in Joplin, Missouri.
June 25 will be a great day for Joplin and for Sumner County. The food will be convoyed to the tornado site on Thursday, June 30. Anyone wishing to make this missionary journey is welcome. You must be able to provide your own expenses for the trip and it must also be understood there are no motels in or near Joplin. As missionaries, we must do what is necessary to make this mission trip happen and to glorify God as we reach out to those in need. For more information, you may reach Reverend Gill at 504-6182 or Dan Ruffin at 207-5220.
Tennessee is receiving a $3.6 million National Emergency Grant to be used in cleanup and recovery efforts after severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and associated flooding struck the state in late April and early May. The grant will fund temporary jobs in 59 counties hardest hit.
The grant will help communities rebuild and at the same time provide income to people who lost employment in the wake of the storms, said Tennessee Department of Labor & Workforce Development Commissioner Karla Davis.
As a result of the storms a month ago, President Obama declared the state of Tennessee a disaster area. The Federal Emergency Management Agency issued four declarations that together include 59 Tennessee counties eligible for its Public Assistance Program. Sumner County has been identified as one of those eligible counties.
The funds awarded will be used to create temporary jobs to clean, repair, renovate, and reconstruct structures, facilities, and lands damaged or destroyed by flooding, high winds, and tornadoes. Over 30 people are needed immediately to perform this work in Sumner County. To be eligible to apply for these temporary positions a person must qualify under Department of Labor guidelines. In order to be eligible a person must have lost their job due to no fault of their own within the past three years or is long term unemployed.
Those wanting to apply for one of the temporary jobs or needing further information should contact the Sumner County Career Center in Gallatin at (615) 452-1964.
By Neil Siders
The employees of the Finance Department for the Central Office of the Sumner County school system still do not know where or for whom they will be working as of July 1. The merger of the county’s finance department with that of the school system’s, which would be housed on the third floor of the County Administration Building, is now on hold.
The Sumner County 1981 Financial Management Implementation Committee voted during their Monday, June 6, meeting to recommend to the full commission to repeal their vote to implement the ‘81 Financial Management System. The implementation of the Act was passed in November 2010 with the newly seated commissioners, after the previous commission had twice voted it down.
Monday’s vote followed a presentation by Board Chair Don Long, who listed the board’s concerns about the ‘81 Financial Management System.
School board members Vaness Silkwood, Hendersonville; Glen Gregory, Portland; Ted Wise, White House; Beth Cox, Hendersonville; and Danny Hale, Gallatin, also presented brief questions they considered important.
Their concerns ranged from who has the power of purchasing under the ‘81 Act, to whether operating under the ’81 Act removes the board’s state and federal mandated authority.
“My first concern involves authority,” said board member Cox of District 4.
“The School Board currently represents 85 percent of the combined budget. My first question is, will the commission amend the Act to guarantee that the four non-specified positions on the ‘81 Financial Management Committee will be members of the board.”
Cox said that representation on the committee should reflect the funding percentages, and with the current system of representation being utilized by the Implementation Committee, the school board only comprises 14 percent of the voting members. Currently, the Director of Schools Benny Bills is the only mandated board member associated with the school system. The county executive and the road superintendent are also mandated.
Board member Wise, White House, said that he feels the ‘81 Act not only removes power from the school board, but also affects the board’s ability to represent the voting public.
“When Jane Doe voted to put me into office, she voted for me to oversee the school system’s day-to-day operations and financial expenditures–the ‘81 Act takes those responsibilities or obligations away from the elected officials,” said Wise.
Wise also stated he would like to know if the County Finance Director, David Lawing, who under the’ 81 Act would be the individual in charge of school system financial management, would be available for both the County Commission and committee meetings and all of the Board of Education’s public meetings, including study sessions.
The school board’s meetings alone add up to approximately six meetings a month. Wise said he did not think that the school board could conduct business without input from its Chief Financial Officer.
Other questions asked by school board members included whether the board would have the ability, under the ‘81 Act, to contract professionals, such as lawyers, who would have the final decision concerning purchasing of property, and whether the school board and highway department would be able to issue purchase orders without getting prior approval from the County Financial Director.
Following Long’s presentation, during the portion of the meeting that Committee Chairman Frank Freels had placed on the agenda for the committee to attempt to answer the school board’s concerns, County Commissioner David Kimbrough, also a member of the committee, made the motion that the Implementation Committee make a formal recommendation to the full commission stating that the Implementation Committee feels the best action concerning the 1981 Financial Management Act is to repeal the Act and work with the Board of Education to come up with a financial management system that would be beneficial for all of the departments of the county government.
“I have worked alongside both Ms. Durski and Mr. Lawing, and I feel confident saying we have two of the best financial professionals in the state,” said Kimbrough.
“I think with these two very smart and skilled individuals, the best course of action is to allow them to sit down with both the school board and County Commission and come up with something that is beneficial for everyone involved.”
County Commissioner Paul Goode, another member of the committee, said he agreed with Kimbrough “100 percent.”
“We made a mistake,” said Goode.
County Commissioner Freels said that he disagreed with Kimbrough and thought the committee should move forward with a good faith effort to execute the Act the commission has already voted to implement.
However, the motion passed, 5–2, with Goode, Kimbrough, Holt, Bills and Judy Hardin, road Superintendent, voting to return it to the commission with a recommendation not to implement the Act, and County Commission Chair Merrol Hyde, the fourth County Commissioner on the committee, and Commissioner Freels voting in the negative.
The full County Commission will address the issue at their next meeting, June 20, and vote whether to repeal or continue with the transition of the ‘81 Financial Management System.
County Executive Anthony Holt, who voted to make the recommendation to repeal, said that whether the full commission repealed or upheld the Act, he hopes the commission could agree and move forward with some system of financial management to help ensure stability for the county.
“All of this uncertainty is not good for the county,’ said Holt.