remain unanswered as the city of Loudon looks toward a new
fiscal year. Who will accept site plans and bring
recommendations to the Planning and Zoning Commission? Who will
ensure construction projects meet the necessary requirements?
scrambling to establish an in-house planning office, or
contracting with the state of Tennessee for planning services,
the City of Loudon may seek to contract with Loudon County for
continued planning services.
The necessity for a change came last year when Lenoir City
leaders opted to discontinue planning services that had been
established by an interlocal agreement between the city, Loudon
County and the City of Loudon. Lenoir City Council's move left
the future of the regional planning office uncertain, and how
the City of Loudon would procure planning services unclear.
During early budget considerations, Lynn Mills, city manager,
had suggested the city might be required to fund the regional
office at a higher amount to continue receiving services. Loudon
leaders were also looking into state planning services.
Now, the County Commission is moving to combine the Loudon
County Planning Office and the Loudon County Codes Enforcement
Office. The regional planning office will no longer exist.
In Monday's workshop meeting Mills told Loudon City Council
members he had submitted a letter to Loudon County Mayor Doyle
Arp requesting the County Commission consider the city of
Loudon's continued use of the Planning Office's services.
Negotiations toward that possibility have not begun yet, and the
matter likely will not be included on the agenda for action June
15. Mills said he'd simply begun making inquiries, to determine
if the requested setup might be possible. "My feeling is that we
are better served to continue to use Russ (Newman) and his
staff. That keeps it local," Mills said.
Vice Mayor Eugene Lambert asked how much contracting with the
county might cost. "The county said they would save $150,000 a
year," Lambert said. "I think our payments should stay the
Mills replied city leaders and staff did not anticipate the cost
would stay the same, but said he didn't think it would be at the
$25,000 level. "They made Russ department head," Lambert said.
"I don't think we should pay that extra money. Maybe $1,000 or
$2,000 more, but not $25,000. He may be so busy with the new
work he would not have time to do our work."
Councilman Lewis "Charlie Brown" Garner expressed concern
regarding the quality of service the people of Loudon would get
under this new setup.