A resident from Alexian expressed concerns about the Signal Mountain Road, especially the lack of lighting along the road. He also questioned why the Tennessee Department of Transportation postponed testing of Signal Mountain Road.
"TDOT was schedule to inspect the road; several of us have observed cracks along the road." said Mayor Dick Gee. "However, something more urgent came up, so they were not able to keep their inspection appointment. They have assured us, they will be inspecting Signal Mountain Road as soon as possible."
Claire Greisinger asked the council about the request for proposals (RFP) process for the management of the town’s water system.
"In November, we were told an RFP would be ready in a couple weeks," said Greisinger. "Will citizens be notified about the RFP process? Is there a timeline?"
Town Manager Boyd Veal replied, "I would have been very happy if this had already gone out."
Veal and Councilmember Chris Howley explained once the RFP is ready, the timeline will take 60-90 days to complete. There will be scheduled public hearings in the RFP. Both believe April is a probable timeline for the RFP to go out.
Resolutions were passed to appoint Eddie Smith and Jason Farmer to the Signal Mountain Municipal Planning Commission. Smith’s term will expire in December 2017, while Farmer’s term will expire at the end of this year.
In a separate resolution, Callan Pierson was appointed to the Signal Mountain Personnel Committee. Pierson will serve until the end of December 2018.
A resolution passed authorizing the town manager to enter into a contract with Johnson, Murphey and Wright to audit town accounts from July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016. The contract is not to exceed $23,400.
"They are excellent," said Veal. "It's a rough week when they are here, but we know what we are getting."
An ordinance passed to amend the language of the town code to clarify certain sections related to term appointments for members of subcommittees of the Citizen’s Advisory Committee. Subcommittee members will no longer have to serve on rotating one-year terms. They can now serve through the duration of the subcommittee’s existence, which should not exceed four years.
The ordinance also allows for more than two subcommittees of the Citizen’s Advisory Committee.
The council discussed Alexian's plan to issues bonds to finance their latest construction. To do so, according to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Alexian must have permission from the municipality in which it exists. Alexian will need to provide a 14 day notice prior to holding a public hearing. A representative from Alexian requested to be on the council’s agenda for its April meeting.
Councilmember Bill Lusk suggested the public hearing should be held at Alexian Village.
"Wouldn’t it be better to hold the hearing at their venue?" said Lusk. "Holding it at town hall would hinder a lot of their residents."
Councilmember Chris Howley made a motion to approve Alexian's request for a public hearing, if they agree to hold it at Alexian Village. The motion carried.
Councilmember Bob Spalding updated the council and citizens on the revitalization of Signal Mountain's Sparkle Days, which will take place on May 7. Sparkle Days is a day when citizens come together to pick up trash and beautify the Town of Signal Mountain.
"I'm really excited about this," said Mayor Gee. "This has some really good vibes to it that we can sustain a long time. Great job, Bob."
Councilmember Howley said, "This came up at our last agenda meeting, and someone said there's no way to pull this together this year. But, thanks to Bob's leadership and hard work, he pulled it together."
Several civic groups, including the Lions Club will participate in Sparkle Days. For more information about the event, visit the Sparkle Day Facebook page.
In closing the March council meeting, Mayor Gee gave an update on the evaluation of the Mountain Arts Community Center (MACC). The team is still early in their process of inspecting the building to determine where water is coming from, but the town should know something in the next two weeks.
The next council meeting is April 11 at 6:30 p.m. at Town Hall.