A Simple "Thank You" Would Have Been Enough

After months of discussion and debate and months of being kicked around and vilified by developers and realtors, county commission was finally able adopted the new Adequate Schools Facility Tax. One dollar per square foot on all new residential construction. It was no easy task and there were many obstacles that had to be overcome. I applaud the commissions willingness to do what was best for the County even if it was some what politically unpopular.

The new legislation provided by the state, requires that all taxes raised by the ASFT must go to the schools. While the tax is to be collected through out the county including within the cities, there is no requirement to share any of the taxes with the cities. However, Loudon County Commissioners voluntarily decided to share the tax revenues with the Lenoir City school system. You might think the Lenoir City Board Of Education members would be very happy with the unearned windfall that they neither worked for nor openly supported. You might think the Lenoir City BOE would be grateful to the Loudon County Commission for taking the beating in adopting the controversial tax. You might think the Lenoir City BOE would be happy to receive any new funding for their little school system. You might be wrong.

Rick Chadwick, LC board member, called the 85-15 split "embarrassing."  "How can we just get 15 percent?" asked board member Mitch Ledbetter. (Click Here For Article) No gratitude but a lot of greed. Talk about looking a gift horse in the mouth. I don't remember ever seeing or hearing Mr. Chadwick or Mr. Ledbetter or any other LC board member at a single one of the many meetings on the ASFT standing up to express their public support for the measure, yet now here they are criticizing the very body that made the tax possible. A simple "Thank You" would have been enough. The level of ingratitude demonstrated by at least these two members is irresponsible. If they weren't happy with the recommended split, they could have at least been diplomatically gracious and civil about it instead of rude and crude. Their statements show total disrespect toward the county commission.

County commissioners should consider the attitude of the board and reconsider any sharing with the Lenoir City Board Of Education. After all, without the County students, there would be no Lenoir City School System.