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guestview: Mike Hammond

As your County Commis-sioner, I am pleased to report to you that on June 14 Knox County Commission passed a no-tax-increase budget for fiscal year 2007-2008 that keeps our county moving forward.

Two-thirds of the county budget will go to our schools. The budget provides $378.7 million for the school system’s operating fund, cafeteria, debt service, great schools partnership and telecommunications.

This does not include the new state Basic Education Program money.

As you may already be aware, the new Cedar Bluff Elementary School will soon be complete, the new Hardin Valley High School is fully funded and on track to open next year, and $17 million is in the budget over the next two years for a new Southwest Elementary School.

Funds for renovation to the Farragut High School Football Stadium are also provided.

In addition to education, the budget has much that benefits the 5th District.

One of the key areas is road improvements, a continuing need for our neighborhoods and businesses.

Among the road improvements contained in the budget are:

Dutchtown/Innovation Drive improvements in 2009 for $2.5 million;

Gallaher View Road/

Gleason Road improvements in 2009 for $1.5 million.

Among other budget highlights are:

• $2.2 million for park maintenance which will include Concord Park;

• $40,000 for the Dutchtown Road convienence center in 2009;

• $204,000 in operating funds for the Frank Strang Center;

• $1,500 for the Farragut Folklife Museum;

• $2,000 for Farragut Youth Baseball.

Naturally, this is not a complete rundown of everything in the $614 million Knox County budget.

As you review this list, please feel free to contact me with questions by phone at 865-212-4516 or e-mail

me at

Thank you for the privilege of serving as your Commis-sioner from the 5th District.


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