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Write-in candidates vie for District 5C Commission seat

Four write-in candidates —three Republicans and one Democrat — will face off in the May 2 primary for the Knox County Commis-sioner District 5C seat.

Leonard Brown, Larry Danner and Alexander Cain will vie for the Republican ticket position against incumbent Republican John Griess. A fourth candidate, Garry Strand, said he has withdrawn his candidacy in support of Brown.

Democrat Tom Salter faces no challengers from his party, but must attain a miminum of 25 votes and at least 5 percent of the total votes cast in District 5C in order to appear on the August ballot.

Cain, 35, is a security consultant and co-owner of MFC Consulting in Knoxville. He said the ineligibility of some commissioners to run for re-election prompted him to throw his hat into the political arena.

“I had always planned to get involved in politics,” he said. “When the issue of term limits came through, I thought it would be a good time. I want to breathe new life into the County Commission.”

Cain and his wife, Kristin, are members of First Baptist Church Concord.

Cain said if elected, the first thing he would address would be what he called the “ongoing traffic issues in West Knox County.”

“There are some concerns that need to be addressed,” he said. “The traffic along Grigsby Chapel Road between Smith Road and Campbell Station Road is becoming excessively heavy and we need some traffic control devices.”

Cain also said he would do away with the pending roundabout scheduled for the intersection of Northshore Drive and Concord Road.

Traffic is also high on the list of priorities for Brown if he were elected to the position.

“I believe we have the greatest community in Tennessee,” he said. “If you’ve driven around, you’ll see we have a few problem roads in the area.”

The intersection of Pellissippi Parkway and Westland Drive, he said, suffers from poor lighting and poor traffic conditions. Northshore Drive needs to be widened to increase safety. As county commissioner, Brown said he would resolve to remediate these problems.

“Our roads need to be constructed for safety, including lighting for dangerous intersections and designed to enhance, and not limit the flow of traffic,” he said.

Brown, a Farragut physician, said he is also in favor of easing the problem of overcrowding in the school system. He said schools need to better prepare students in terms of technology to facilitate their employment in the business community after graduation.

Brown and his wife, Karen, have been married for 30 years.

Salter said he is running in order to make a difference in the community.

“I have dedicated my life to making Knox County a better place to live and work for all its citizens and would like the opportunity to serve the people of the fifth district as their next County Commissioner,” he said in a written statement. “I made this decision after consulting with my family and friends and I am very uncomfortable about who the ‘replacement’ candidates will be when the term limited commissioners are disqualified after the primary.”

Salter, who earned his master’s degree from the University of Tennessee, is the executive director of Keep Knoxville Beautiful.

“I moved to Knoxville in 1970 after growing up in Cleveland, Tennessee,” he said. “My wife, Joyce, and I have lived in the Cedar Bluff Community for more than twenty years.”


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