Loudon City Vandalism – A
big Problem that’s Growing
By: Pat Hunter
City Workshop, April 9, 2007, 6:30 p.m.
With more growth and more people,
come big city headaches and woes. At the April workshop meeting, council
members, Police Chief Webb and Recreation Director Mark Harrell aired
concerns about the ever-growing vandalism problem plaguing Loudon City.
Vandals are defacing public property around the new senior citizens
center. A light, which was recently replaced, was broken almost
instantly causing concern with officials.
New lighting is proposed. Under
consideration, the possibility and cost of adding security cameras to
catch the culprits behind this rash of crime. Certain activities are
occurring in the pitch dark in the Legion’s Park area around the tennis
court area, officials said. Graffiti is also quickly becoming a big
problem. The recreation director suggested that once the young vandals
are caught and processed through the court and juvenile system that
juveniles help with community service and clean up. Loudon City
officials all seem to be on the same page looking for solutions to this
growing problem. Officials are hoping that citizens will become more
involved and inform the police when they see vandals destroying public
property rather than looking the other way.
The Performing Art’s Center Vandalized, too:
Recreation Director Mark Harrell
said that the performing arts center (Tate & Lyle) was vandalized and
that the culprits were caught thanks to a concerned citizen, who
informed authorities. The vandals will be required to paint the fence
with two coats of paint as punishment. Work will be completed by late
summer. Much discussion was about what color to paint the fence, black
or metallic, and black won out! Rick Dover, dubbed by Pat Phillips, EDA
director as the “Donald” Trump of Loudon, will donate materials to paint
$1.5 Million Check’s in the Mail for a new 911 building:
Chief Webb, a member of the 911
Board invited all officials and VIPS to a catered lunch, at noon on
Wednesday April 11, 2007, at the Loudon County Justice Center. The 911
Board will receive a $1.5 Million check to build a new facility for 911.
Federal and state officials are expected to attend but Chief Webb would
not drop any names about who is on the Who’s Who list.
$105,000 Grant to Fix up Fountain in downtown Loudon
Loudon City council will approve a
matching grant at its next city council meeting. Plans are underway to
revitalize the downtown fountain. The city will have to spend about 20%
on its match for the grant.
Downtown Revitalization Around Courthouse:
Plans are underway to tap into a
revitalization project for Downtown Loudon City; a one-block area all
around the old Courthouse Square is the target area. Everything is very
sketchy but the money will be come from a match based on the dollar
amount of taxes generated from commercial businesses in that surrounding
area. City officials displayed great enthusiasm about this proposed
project. A map is available at the Loudon City manager’s office of the
Huntington Park Drive Street Repairs - Very Costly:
The planning commission has
recommended acceptance of the road and right of way in Huntington
Business Park however, councilman Charlie Brown expressed concerns about
this matter because the road will require extensive costly repairs
estimated at about $1 Million.
Air Quality a Top Priority
with Mr. Deeder Easter,
to the air quality task force (AQTF):
At the last Loudon County Air
Quality Task Force (AQTF) meeting, Dr. Bud Guider said that he would
attend Loudon City and Lenoir City’s workshop to address health issues
and fine particle pollution. Dr. Guider, medical community member, did
not attend Loudon City’s workshop meeting.
“Deeder” as his friends and
neighbors know him, is Loudon City’s representatives and one of its
newest members to the air quality task force. Deeder Easter attended the
workshop meeting to share concerns about air quality. He handed out more
information about state and county regulations concerning open burning,
fine particulate pollution and health related issues.
Easter emphasized the need for city
officials to consider implementing new regulations to curb open burning
by developers. He said that industry expansions could be affected
because of Loudon County’s non- attainment (non-compliance) of federal
ambient air regulations governing fine particle pollution.
Open burning adds to fine particle
PM 2.5 particulate matters, this pollution is very harmful to the health
of people of all ages from our youth to seniors. City councilmen said
that they would re-consider an open burning ban at next month’s workshop
Loudon City Police & Off Duty Activities:
Councilman Charlie Brown aired his
concerns about Loudon City police and off-hour police activities and
Maremont employees. Chief Webb said that Maremont Corp. was reimbursing
Loudon City for having extra police patrols on weekends at the residence
of certain employees, who felt that they were being harassed.
Allegations of shootings and threats were discussed. Webb said that it
was standard practice to furnish extra police services to industry and
business making requests and for business or industry to reimburse the
city for services rendered. He said that extra police service had also
been furnished to Kimberly Clark after an employee was fired. Some
council members expressed concerned about liability issues that this
might pose to the city.