County plans to help revitalize Stanton
Key to making megasite more attractive
The condition of Stanton may have played a role in
Haywood County not making the short list of a major
auto manufacturer who reportedly visited our megasite.
That’s why County Mayor Franklin Smith is applying for
grant funds paving the way for revitalization for the
county’s only other incorporated town.
At the February 10 county commission meeting,
county commissioners approved a grant application that
could bring about $200,000 to Stanton.
Mayor Franklin Smith said prospects took an
unescorted and unannounced tour of the city as they
reviewed the megasite, and Smith says “because of the
condition of downtown Stanton” they were turned off
about our site.
Smith said, “The county isn’t trying to take
Stanton over,” but he said county government wants to
help clean it up, help city government there plan and
County workers give helping hand to co-worker
County workers are stepping up to the plate for one
of their co-workers, and the county commission is
Sheriff’s Deputy Darrell McCarley has undergone
serious surgery and his recovery time is extending
beyond his county policy sick days. So county some
county workers are loaning him their sick days so he
won’t have to go without a paycheck.
Mayor Smith said this week that fellow county
workers have already agreed to give McCarley 60 days
and Smith thinks that’s more than he’ll need.
At their meeting February 13, the commission agreed
to the loan and Smith said he’s coming up with a plan
that could create a sick day loan pool for just such
County making moves to assure county jail is
up to state standards
A Kentucky based consulting company will help
Haywood County’s leaders make an informed decision
about the county’s aging jail facility.
The $5,000 study will help County Commissioners and
other leaders understand the various options that may
include building a new criminal justice complex or
just fixing the present facility.
County Commissioner Brad Bishop, who chairs the
jail committee, says a recent meeting with General
Sessions Judge Roland Reid, Circuit Judge Clayburn
Peeples and Chancellor George Ellis found all three
judges concerned about their courtrooms and courtroom
safety. He said all three “unanimously” are for a new
Mayor Franklin Smith said the study will look at
all options and includes a cost estimate for bringing
the current jail up to standards.
Commissioner Bishop said he hopes to bring
recommendations to the commission by July. The jail
has come under scrutiny of state jail inspectors.
Cub Cadet generous to local governments
In addition to being a huge local employer, local
manufacturer Cub Cadet, is saving taxpayers thousands
of dollars by loaning equipment to the city and county
parks and recreation department.The manufacturer of
power equipment and utility vehicles has loaned parks
and recreation everything from utility to tractors to
County Mayor Franklin Smith estimated the donation
of equipment at about $20,000 for 2007 alone.
Sheriff Melvin Bond and Mayor Webb Banks say the
factory has made similar donations of loaned equipment
to the sheriff’s department and city government.
Liquor by the drink on the way to passage
Brownsville is poised to add liquor by the drink
to its city ordinances. The action by the city board
comes as voters here approved the new rules last
At a city board meeting February 13, aldermen and
the mayor discussed the new rules and passed on
first reading an ordinance that also includes beer
by the drink.
The city must adopt the state’s rules regarding
liquor by the drink, rescinding local rules that
prohibit alcohol. The city attorney says the board
has no choice. The state’s Alcohol Beverage
Commission enforces the state laws.
But there are three other measures that must be
hammered out by the Brownsville City Board. License
fees must be set. The ordinance presented by Mayor
Webb Banks will require licensees to pay a local fee
equal to half what they’ll pay the state for a
The second issue is fraught with controversy. The
mayor’s proposal adds beer by the drink to the
ordinance. Beer is controlled by city government and
is not included in the liquor by the drink ordinance
passed last fall.
Proponents say that if beer isn’t added, the
liquor by the drink rules will be ineffective and
unlikely to capture the economic benefits of liquor
by the drink.
Opponents, such as city aldermen John Simmons and
Leon King, say they don’t believe voters knew what
they were getting into – so they’ve taken positions
The new rules, including adding beer and the license
fees, passed, but the mayor’s vote was required to
break a deadlocked two to two vote among the city’s
aldermen. Aldermen Joe Taylor and Carolyn Flagg
voted for it, and Aldermen John Simmons and Leon
King against. Mayor Webb Banks broke the tie, voting
with Flagg and Taylor.
Still, not yet
City ordinances must pass by two readings and even
though the mayor allowed comment from the public
this week (about 30 people attended the session), an
official public hearing must still be held. Plans
are to hold the public hearing and final vote on
March 13 at 5:30 p.m.
No early selling
City board members did agree that alcohol sales
should not begin before noon on Sunday. The state’s
rules allow it to start at 10. The time change is
the only optional rule the state allows local
governments. The resolution passed 3 to 1. Alderman
John Simmons voted against it.
To read the entire ordinance and resolution
governing the liquor by the drink and sales of beer
is available here.
Lasco Industries sold
Mayor Webb Banks announced this week that
long-time Brownsville manufacturer Lasco Industries
has been sold. One of Brownsville’s largest
employers, Lasco was sold by parent company Tompkins
based in London. Allberts, a company headquartered
in the Netherlands, will purchase the manufacturer
but terms of the deal were not disclosed.
In a published report, Lasco President Jack
Macdonald said he doesn’t expect anything to change
in Brownsville as a result of the change. Lasco
employs about 600 people. Lasco’s 2006 sales were
Housing grant completed
Housing rehabilitation spokesman Randy Nelson
said this week the city has just completed spending
a half-million dollar grant, rehabilitating homes in
North Brownsville. Of the nearly half million
dollars, $417,000 was actually spent on
construction. Seventeen low-income homeowners
benefited from the grant. The homes are located on
Rickey, Fleming and Houston Streets.
Sewer funds proposed
Alderman and the mayor have approved the
submission of a half-million dollar CBDG grant
application. If approved, the Brownsville Utility
Department will use the money to upgrade the city’s
City board honors workers
Brownsville Mayor Webb Banks and Alderman honored
three city workers for their long work history with
the city at the February board meeting. Receiving
special recognition were Sammie Rogers (left) with
41 years, Eddie Wise (center) and Robert Bryant,
both with 31 years.